The Intelligence with The Lamps at Mr. T's Bowl in LA

The Intelligence by Victoria Reynard
The Intelligence by Victoria Reynard
posted Wednesday May 23rd, 2007

This Friday in Los Angeles, an anvil of gloriously tormented and artful tweaks of noise will descend upon the city. Two of the most original sounding acts ever to bang out rhythmically haunting and mechanically menacing tunes that when combined in one show will cause an upheaval we haven't seen the likes of since the seersucker revolution in the early 90s. The Intelligence and The Lamps will be performing at Mr. T's Bowl, along with Wounded Lion and Le Face. There's no question that the arroyo The Intelligence have dug up in modern underground music has led us down a path we'd probably never get to without them. They've taken up the reins of art pop clamor with a sound that breezes far past the maelstrom of noise-oriented bands that perpetuate their message with more aggro forms of tuneage, a la some of their predecessors, The Birthday Party or even more loosely, Throbbing Gristle just to name a couple. The weird intersection between futurism and primitivism has certainly been revisited by others, but Lars and company take us there with an astute and off-handed attitude that gives you a feeling that these guys probably know best. Their ability to sound melodious and dangerous within the same chord captures the grit of the times, and you can see the direct connection between what they've been doing for the last number of years to the Glue Wave going on now. Recently, The Intelligence popped up on Bobby Flay's Food Network show when he challenged Terry Wahl from the late Red Aunts and The Screws to a red velvet cupcake throw-down—Terry won. Monty Buckles, The Lamps frontman, was also featured in the episode wrapping his mug around a cupcake.

Their symphonic cronies, The Lamps have a new LP due out this summer on In The Red Records and a single coming out on Hook and Crook Records soon, too. They are touring the Left Coast with Haunted George and Cheap Time kicking off in July, so it seems they're building some momentum. Like the Intelligence, their approach to rock'n'roll feeds from a mysteriously vanguard gutter space, and offers a sound that's instantly identifiable. With waltzing doom beats and instrumental interplay that digs up visions of tortured machinery trying break free from their monotonous existence to become some sort of reasoning contraption who puts their pants on like the rest of us. Instead, they are doomed to serve out their warranty making grommets for another machine that will soon replace them. Wounded Lion and Le Face open the show and fit perfectly with both The Intelligence and The Lamps, so get there early.

Check out this video created by Monty Buckles of the The Lamps, for the Intelligence song, "Dating Cops."