The Rinse has a new lineup in place and is playing its first show together this Thurs., March 29, at the Star Bar. To mark the occasion, the group is unveiling a series of improv recording sessions that have been fitted to themes based on the Major Arcana of the Tarot of the Old Path - Tarot cards. The First card to be pulled from the deck is XVIII: Illusion, and it brings with it a chance narrative, unlocking hidden doors in the music's droning ambiance.
Each song in the series will capture a moment of improvisation as it happens, taking advantage of the recording facilities at Living Room Studio where the group practices - rolling ones and zeros, capturing the off-the-cuff moments.
The Rinse plays the Star Bar on Thurs., March 29 with Social Studies, the Meeks Family, and solo sets by Frankie Broyles and Philip Frobos. Free. 9 p.m. 437 Moreland Ave. 404-681-9018.
Okay, so this idea sort of plays on the idea of a mixtape, or a demo kind of recording - you're dicking around in the studio and this is what you captured, kind of like a diary of what happened on a certain night.
Exactly. Since the band is rehearsing in The Living Room, we have the ability to capture some of the music we play between the songs we are rehearsing, and we figured we could release this for free.
How'd you came up with the idea to base it on the Tarot deck?
I'm no expert on the Tarot, but I'm told when it is used correctly it can mirror a region of the mind which would normally remain hidden. Since this music is improvisational, and we are just responding to sound stimuli around us, I thought the music could be related to the idea of the Tarot. Years ago, when I worked at Sevananda this woman gave me a set of Tarot cards and I've always loved the artwork, all the symbolism is very mysterious, and there a lot of hidden concepts within each one that you may not see the first time. So I thought, "Ok, well here's something I can use them for." Maybe that's why she gave them to me in the first place...
... Like maybe she had some knowledge about the future handed down to her, through the Tarot, about the future of your band and this project?
[Laughs] Maybe so ...
The card you've chosen start it off is "Illusion." Why that card?
There are 22 cards in the Major Arcana, and the Minor one is exactly like a deck of cards - 52. So we thought 22 would be a good number to shoot for, and eventually get them all done. But I just shuffled the deck and that's the card I pulled. It's also called "the Moon."
This kind of reminds me of Oblique Strategies.
That was one inspiration, as well as MF Doom's Herbs and Spices, trying to quantify the music. Have something to relate it to without being like, "This is slow jam number 5," or trying to come up with a song title for it. It doesn't need a title. It's sort of like a moment in time - like you said, a diary of what happened late one night.
Will there be a physical release as well?
Maybe down the line. It could take us a while to do all 22 cards, but I think once we get all of them done we could put them on a CD, LP, or something - get one of our friends to do some artwork with all of the cards. First we'll get the music done, then we'll figure it out from there.
Who plays in the Rinse these days?
There's me, Mathis Hunter, playing guitar and singing. Ed Rawls plays bass, Justin McNeight playing drums, Rich Morris singing and playing keyboards, and Ben Coleman sings and plays guitar - Ben just joined the band about a month ago, and "Illusion" is from the first night that we played with him. This is somewhat the sound of us getting used to playing together. We played for half-an-hour, and if you listen to it, "Pt. 2" is a full-on improv thing. For "Pt. 1" I just looped it so it would go on longer and then put vocals, and guitar over it, and Rich laid down some Fender Rhodes. So there is some overdubbing, but it's just first takes stacked on first takes.
It's important to clarify that this is not the Rinse's typical sound ...
This song is a little more spacey and ambient, but you could say the Rinse has a late '60s/early '70s British blues-rock sound, something along the lines of Humble Pie, Free, or Mott the Hoople. Last year my favorite shows that I saw were Uriah Heep and Motely Crue, if that tells you anything. Since I've been playing guitar again I've been taken back to a lot of stuff that I was into when I was a kid, and it's been coming out in the music. The effects are off and this is more of us just rocking - it's more '70s rock if that's even possible for us.
ooooohhhh, I'm so excited!! I can't wait to see them together!
come on man you know you got a bromance. you probably still rock that OutKast…
Yes, 14 is the correct answer. I'll pass your info along to the group's manager,…
That was January of 2007, and they are 21 now, so I'm guessing 14?