Tonight: Skinny Puppy's cEvin Key brings his SUB CON Beyond Fest 2011 to Santa Monica
Using bass and glitch as its niche, the SUBcon Beyond Fest continues to occupy a special place in the dark, experimental world of electronic music. Organized by cEVin Key of industrial quartet Skinny Puppy, the moniker of the festival stems from Key's L.A.-based label Subconscious Communications. Originated in 1993, SUBcon has lasted for 18 years on a strict diet of sonic weirdness.
Starting Tuesday night at Zanzibar in Santa Monica, Key and other notable Subconscious artists, including Philip Western of Vancouver and England's Mark Spybey, parlay their various programming and psychedelic synth projects into a weeklong tour through the western U.S. and Canada. The carnival of ambient and ear-splitting noise includes Key's hypnotic side projects, Tokyo Decadence and plaTEAU (featuring Western), along with Spybey and Western's collaborative act Download.
Spybey is also showcasing the haunting atmospherics of his solo project, Dead Voices on Air, and Gnome and Spybey, a collaboration with trance and industrial artist Tony D'Oporto. Aside from Key, who's from L.A. by way of Vancouver, the local portion of the bill resides with electro experimentalist Cyrusrex and Wet Mango, a raucous beat vixen based in downtown whose abrasive mix of ghetto house and Game Boy beats rounds out the lineup.
SUBcon Beyond Fest, Tuesday at Zanzibar, 1301 5th St., Santa Monica, 9 p.m. $5 before 11 p.m., $10 after. (310) 451-2221, www.zanzibarlive.com.
Photo: cEvin Key of Skinny Puppy, founder of L.A. label Subconscious Communications. Credit: Subconscious Communications