Performance Date: Sunday July 23
Stage: Cha Cha
Set Time: 7:45 PM
In the 19th century, metropolitan Seattle was founded by freemasons, occultists, and spiritualists—but today, it’s being dramatically rebuilt by the tech sector. Out of this strange intersection of energies in the city’s history emerges Charms, a biomechanical noise punk trio whose necro-electro sound is akin to a thousand broken computers surging with blue crystal power. Propelled by the piston-like industrial drumming of Ray McCoy, bubbling cauldron guitar of E.J. Tolentino, and the haunted alchemical bass synth of Josh McCormick, the group’s hyper-kinetic freakouts are a manifestation of the anxieties of Seattle—a city staring down what could either be a transhumanist utopian biofuture or a posthumanist dystopian decline.
It’s a concept the band drives home both sonically and visually with the help of projectionist Kevin Blanquies. Charms frequently plays shows in front of live feeds of themselves performing, the video feeding back on itself into an uneasy infinity as the group writhes around in epileptic fits. The future, as Charms’ music, weighs heavy, and there’s no telling where the intersection of man and machine really begins or ends.