Absolute Body Control + Wolf Eyes + Martial Canterel + Carlos Giffoni

Music Hall of Williamsburg; April 4, 2008

When synthesizers go wild! Tonight’s bill brings us the man-machines, old-school-style. The can’t-miss act is Absolute Body Control, which has finally left Belgium for a freakishly rare NYC gig. At the vanguard of the dark-synth wave that swept Europe’s dankest clubs in the early ’80s, Dirk Ivens (vocals) and Eric van Wonterghem (things that go vroom in the night) were the missing link between the homoerotic pulse of DAF and the superdisciplined, muscular electronic body music of Front 242 and Nitzer Ebb. The duo re-formed in 2006 after a 22-year break; cryogenically preserved, its severe prototechno thrust has lost none of its steamroller urgency.

Brooklyn’s own Martial Canterel, real name Sean McBride, is a relative newbie who keeps the minimal-synth flame burning—so to speak, since we’re not talking party music here. He doesn’t add much to a template that peaked creatively circa 1981, but his gloomy analog romanticism certainly sets him apart from his jejune indie-rocking borough cohorts.

The evening is completed by two acts that prefer to treat electronics like a toothy beast that should not be tamed but rather must be cattle-prodded into a series of frenzied convulsions. Michigan’s Wolf Eyes is one of the most visible members of the electronic-noise scene (it’s currently signed to Sub Pop, for Throbbing Gristle’s sake), while local Carlos Giffoni is both a purveyor of dense, improvised noise and curator of the No Fun Fest, an annual get-together dedicated to the joys of ear-drilling sonics.

Wolf Eyes also plays Cake Shop Apr 5, 2008.