Hotel Congress Presents...
HOCO Fest Day Five
Lee Fields & the Expressions, Project Pablo, Drab Majesty, Yves Tumor, Rabit, Marshstepper, Container, Willis Earl Beal, BOAN, Ben Olayinka, Plastic Disease
311 E. Congress St
Tucson, AZ, 85701
Doors 7:00 PM (event ends at 2:00 AM)
This event is 21 and over
Watch & Listen
HOCO FEST—held annually at the historic Hotel Congress in the heart of Downtown Tucson—will be marking its 12th year by establishing itself as a truly international destination event. Featuring a vanguard, genre-spanning musical lineup, guest lecturers and producer workshops, vintage clothing and vinyl record fairs, free regional liquor tastings, specialized menus from acclaimed local restaurants, and a series of wild experimental afterparties amid Arizona’s majestic desert daybreaks, HOCO Fest 2017 strives to celebrate everything that makes the culture of the Borderlands so important.
Lee Fields & the Expressions
Veteran funk and soul man Lee Fields has been actively recording and touring since 1969. He's cut albums for 14 labels and has been backed by dozens of musicians. In 2006, he signed to Truth & Soul Records. His first offering for the label, The Many Moods Of..., paired the vocalist with the label's house band the Expressions, led by producer and co-label head Leon Michels. The singer and band clicked and began to tour in Europe and the U.S. My World, issued in 2009, was greeted with widespread acclaim. Treacherous followed in 2011, and Faithful Man came a year later. Fields & the Expressions toured globally almost nonstop, playing to ever larger audiences on the festival circuit in Europe and sold-out houses at home.
Emma Jean After a short break in 2013, they headed back into the recording studio. A new single, "Magnolia" (a cover of J.J. Cale's classic tune), appeared on Record Store Day in 2014, followed by the 11-song full-length Emma Jean in early June. Lee Fields & the Expressions opted to follow Michels and his business partner Danny Akalepse to their new Brooklyn-based independent Big Crown Records. Their kick-off set for the label, Special Night, was designated a "throwback" album, chock-full of smooth ballads and quiet storm tunes. Preceded by the title track in October 2016, the album was released in November.
Project Pablo (Patrick Holland), is a DJ and Musician residing in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. 2015 saw Holland's debut full length release I Want to Believe and his inaugural European Journey. Inspired by the depths of dollar bins and adult contemporary, his records cover a wide spectrum of energy and dance music sub genres. Outside of solo endeavours, Holland co-pilots ASL Singles Club and SOBO, releasing collaborative efforts and music from friends. 2017 sees the Canadian musician travelling extensively through Australia, Mexico, USA, and Europe.
Drab Majesty is the solo project of Deb DeMure, the androgynous alter-ego of Andrew Clinco from Los Angeles, California, United States. With its combination of reverb-drenched guitars, synth bass lines, commanding vocals, and rhythmic drum machine beats, this project is a stark departure from Clinco’s previous stints as drummer in Marriages and Black Mare. Dubbed "tragic wave" and "mid-fi" by DeMure, Drab Majesty eloquently blends classic 80s new wave and hints of early 4AD with a futuristic originality.
Yves Tumor is the inspired, enigmatic and conflicted persona of Tennessee-raised producer/performer Sean Bowie, a conduit for a distinctly bold personal aesthetic that has wrought the entrancing Serpent Music LP (out now on PAN), and a burgeoning reputation for bruising, invigorating live performance.
Evolved from a diverse and prolific creative history under an expansive plethora of covert aliases, plus strong ties with forward-thinkers such as NON and Mykki Blanco, Yves Tumor emerges as Bowie’s most personal and matured incarnation to date, with Serpent Music his strongest recorded statement.
Painstakingly written from pieces developed upon since 2013, Serpent Music was initially composed as a soul record – based around delicate and emotive songwriting in various forms.
The album spans sonically diverse and richly-textured pieces, formed from live, organic instruments, samples and various field recordings. Dreamlike lo-fi psychedelia sits alongside broken electronic experimentations, ambient compositions between abrasive noise offer insight into a haunting otherworld.
The Yves Tumor live experience offers a thrilling, jarring counterpoint to his recorded self, designed to detonate in a range of contexts from a punk pit to low-lit club: a wild card one-man-show that confronts sonically and gesturally, ripping preconceptions asunder… the fangs of Serpent Music bared and bloodied.
Houston-based producer Rabit is helping stoke what The New Yorker has called "the resurgence of grime." His highly praised debut album Communion was released in late 2015, while 2016 saw an even more decisive turn towards the avant-garde with high profile collaborations from the likes of Lee Bannon and Elysia Crampton.
Ascetic House-affiliated goth techno act Marshstepper live in Arizona's badlands and like making an unholy racket without wearing many clothes. Their shows resemble occult gatherings: figures in robes and masks lifting chalices, strange rituals incorporating bondage and fetish play, naked bodies stretched out in supplication. 2014 saw the group on an international tour, bringing their performance art to such meccas of hedonism as Berghain.
The solo guise of multifaceted artist Ren Schofield, Container became one of avant-garde electronic label Spectrum Spools' most intriguing artists. The Nashville, Tennessee producer released his first LP -- simply titled LP -- on John Elliot's (Emeralds) curated Editions Mego offshoot label. A mind-warping crunch of electronics, smashed techno loops, and distortion spread over just five tracks, LP was a visceral assault on the senses and won Schofield wild acclaim and applause in 2011. He quickly followed this with another album -- again named LP -- in 2012. Recorded on Labor Day weekend 2012 in Providence, Rhode Island, it was a darker and more cohesive affair than its predecessor. EPs on Morphine Records and Liberation Technologies followed, and Spectrum Spools released Container's third album -- yet again bearing the title LP -- in 2015. Recalling the likes of D.A.F., Surgeon, and Legowelt, Container proved to be one of the most exciting "avant-techno" artists to emerge from the latter-2000s' electronic underground scene and, most importantly, he was the one who could really pack a punch and make a lasting impression.
Willis Earl Beal
Chicago singer/songwriter Willis Earl Beal began his foray into the music business by tacking hand-drawn flyers all over the greater metropolitan area with his phone number and address. The flyers said "My name is Willis Earl Beal. Call me and I'll sing you a song. Write to me and I'll draw you a picture." Beginning around the end of the 2000s, Beal was busking in train stations and making good on the promises of his flyers whenever the occasional call came in. In 2009 Found Magazine graced the cover of their seventh issue with a flyer Beal had made with a crude drawing of himself soliciting a soulmate. The issue also included an interview with Beal, and reader response was so strong to his open-hearted and quirky personality that Found went on to release a limited-edition CD collecting some of his home-recorded songs in 2011. Still living at his grandmother's house on Chicago's South Side, Beal began playing more proper gigs around town. His songs and recordings ran the gamut, from gospel confessional to noise-touched soul ballads, all characterized by his booming voice. His strange back-story and grassroots approach to self-promotion gained him a reputation as an outsider artist, and much more press coverage began to come his way following the Found Magazine article. In 2011 he inked a deal with Hot Charity, a subsidiary label of XL Records. Willis Earl Beal's debut LP, Acousmatic Sorcery, was slated for release in the spring of 2012, and he embarked upon his first tours in both the U.S. and Europe. He followed in 2013 with the more polished but still plenty quirky Nobody Knows, which featured cameo vocals on one tune from Cat Power's Chan Marshall. Beal split from Hot Charity for the release of 2014's Experiments in Time. The self-released third album again switched gears, tending toward a more dreamy, synth-heavy sound.
BOAN consists of José Cota (SSLEEPERHOLD) and Mariana Saldaña (ex - //TENSE//) who, outside of their lauded individual creative efforts, are widely known as two-thirds of the now defunct electro-trio Medio Mutante. MM's critically acclaimed 2008 EP Inestable was released by Cititrax, an imprint of the illustrious Minimal Wave Records, and was the first modern album allowed into the label's celebrated cannon of classic reissues. On BOAN's highly anticipated debut LP Mentiras, Cota & Saldaña continue to deconstruct, sharpen, and enhance their idiosyncratic cold wave tradition by using all hardware electronics to sequence and arrange infectious live dance music. Cota's vivid analog compositions form a solid foundation for Saldaña's indelible and predominantly Spanish vocals to sink into, reflecting a unique confluence of Texas' vibrant electronic music scene with its rich and inextricable history of Hispanic culture.
Berlin-based DJ and founder of Tucson party collective Dazed & Confused can get you into Berghain, no problem; and likes to throw parties in German bodegas in the middle of the afternoon.
Plastic Disease is the solo techno project of producer and DJ Tamara Jenney; member of the seminal goth band Alter Der Ruine.