428 S Hewitt Street
Los Angeles, CA, 90013
This event is 21 and over
I suppose the “smart” thing to do would be to start off with all the usual crap folks tend to talk about when Jason Narducy, the “brains” behind the rock collective Split Single, comes up in casual conversation, like how he plays bass with Bob Mould and those fuckers in Superchunk, used to play bass with Bob Pollard and whomever else, had a band called Verbow, inspired Dave Grohl to devote his life to music back when neither of them were even old enough to go on all the rides, and whatever the hell else you wanna throw in there. But do you want the “facts” or do you want the truth?
The truth is Narducy scares the hell out of me.
I’ll never forget the first time I met the guy. It was in Chicago or Baltimore maybe. Or it might have been Akron. Anyway, I was shuffling home after another long night of anything goes when suddenly, from out of nowhere, a van pulls right up onto the sidewalk and screeches to a halt right in front of me, its side view mirror nearly cracking me right in the jaw.
“Get in,” a voice tells me.
I look up to find Narducy, still in shades at 3am, hunched behind the wheel, the look on his face suggesting I’d better just do what I’m told. And fast. I waste no time hopping into the passenger seat and buckling up.
“Pixy Stick?” Narducy asks, extending a fisftul of colorful straws filled with the popular powdered candy in my direction while still staring straight ahead.
It feels like a test, so I grab two and suck them down as fast as I can.
“There’s more in the back if you want ‘em,” he says with a smirk, before whipping the remainder over his shoulder and hitting the gas.
What follows is easily the craziest night of my life. First, Narducy insists we go skeet shooting even though it’s pitch black out and the clay pigeons are all but impossible to see.
“Don’t care,” he grunts at me and the guy from the skeet shooting place, who’s still plenty groggy after being woken from a dead sleep. “Pull!”
From there, Narducy pulls the van to the side of the road, leaving it to idle as we rearrange a front lawn nativity scene into what I can only describe as the most disturbing sight gag I’ve ever laid eyes on. Next, Narducy takes me to an all-night diner where, over a plate of onion rings and a Cobb salad, he manages to completely seduce the mayor’s daughter, a woman who, it feels worth nothing, was 46 years-old at the time.
“I’ll call you,” Narducy says, stuffing the napkin she had just written her phone number on into the pants pocket of some sad sack passed out in a booth by the entrance and heading for the van. “Maybe.”
The night finally ends with Narducy standing on a hillside at dawn, caressing a disoriented fawn while giggling uncontrollably with a gaggle of French schoolgirls who seemed to have appeared out of nowhere.
The reason I bring all this up, of course, aside from the fact that it’s awesome, is because Narducy’s band Split Single has a new album out. It’s their second, it’s called Metal Frames, and, kind of like the night I just told you about, it’s goddamn exhilarating and scary and I didn’t want it to end. Narducy sings and strangles the guitar on it, Jon Wurster (Bob Mould, Superchunk, Mountain Goats, and 78 other bands) beats the crap out of the drums on it, John Stirratt (Wilco, duh) thumps the damn bass on it, and Nora O’Connor sings her ass off all over the thing.
Simply put, Metal Frames rocks, an especially notable qualification in an era when most other musicians stand on stage with a conviction that leads me to believe they don’t know how to fuck. Metal Frames is pop in the way that I bet the guys from Cheap Trick try to drive by Jason’s house like it was an accident. And Metal Frames is punk in the way that I bet Dave Grohl is still as scared of Narducy as I am. No wonder the mayor’s daughter, despite her advancing years, wanted to pork Narducy right there at table three.
Also, the waiter gave us free refills even though they don’t normally do that sort of thing and man that shit was awesome.
— Dave Hill, 2016
Ever wary of the evil eye, the title of Imaad Wasif's ‘dzi’ comes from The Tibetan Book of The Dead. Pronounced 'zee,' the word translates to "shine, brightness". dzi may or may not contain references to love, paranoia and delusion. Characterized by Wasif’s psychonautic sound, it's a marked departure from the acoustic guitar and folk rock style established by The Voidist and veers more into the uncharted territory of indoproto-dreammetal. Wasif, an Indian singer, songwriter and guitarist, known for his simplistic compositions and dark emotional ballads contrasts vulnerability with riffs that strive against the notion that rock n roll has completed its historical trajectory. ‘dzi’ is a foray into psychedelic rock, and credited as “the last Western rock album to integrate Indian raga sounds.”
On a search for some true spirit amidst others obsessed with celebrity mystics, “warlocks”, Arthurian myths and the Kaballah, ‘dzi’ is awash with religious subversion and the “the nearest album to a magick treatise that I’ve written.” In the aftermath of recording Wasif was able to halt his rapid descent as a paranoid recluse in LA, drawing pentagrams on walls and carpets to conjure demons & stop throwing associates out of recording sessions because he was convinced they were witches and believing that they were plotting to steal his semen to create the Antichrist.
To date, Imaad Wasif has released three solo albums, 2006’s S/T (Kill Rock Stars), 2008’s Strange Hexes (World In Sound), 2011’s The Voidist (Tee Pee) as well as numerous collaborations. His credits include early slo-core noise pop duo lowercase (Amphetamine Reptile), his psych folk band alaska!, an album with Lou Barlow & The Folk Implosion, a deathfolk album with Black Mountain’s Stephen McBean, Grim Tower (Outer Battery). He has also recorded with Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Lykke Li and as co-wrote songs with Karen O on the soundtrack for Spike Jonze’s 'Where the Wild Things Are’. His forthcoming album, dzi, was produced with Bobb Bruno and will be released in March of 2017.