Throwaway Style: Purging the Treasure Chest #1

Throwaway Style, Local Music
04/26/2018
Martin Douglas
Image by Alex Kunchevsky

Throwaway Style is a weekly column dedicated to examining all aspects of the Northwest music scene. Whether it’s a new artist making waves, headlines affecting local talent, or reflecting on some of the music that’s been a foundation in our region; this space celebrates everything happening in the Northwest region, every Thursday on the KEXP Blog.



I’m holding a bag, standing in a black room, completely dark aside from a very light shimmer of gold at the room’s center. I get closer, feel around the source of reflection and everything attached to it. It’s a treasure chest; although I can hardly see the wood casing, it feels smooth to the touch until I’m poked by a splinter in the corner. The keyhole is what’s shining a light through my chest, so I open the chest. My face lights up like everybody who opens the briefcase in Pulp Fiction.

Of course. The chest is filled to the brim with shimmering gold coins. My bag is empty except for a black and white cat with drowsy eyes named Daryl, so I set Daryl down on the floor and start to fill this dark green overnight tote until it’s almost too heavy to carry. While I’m filling my bag, I notice massive steel door which my back was facing. Setting Daryl atop the dozens of pounds of gold coins, I walk toward the door, my footsteps as heavy as the steel frame it is bordered by. There’s a coin slot right next to the door handle, which makes the fact that I just looted this treasure chest very advantageous.

I feed the slot a coin. And then another. And then another.

Entering a long, wide hallway with steel doors -- smaller than the one I just exited -- every two feet on both sides, I notice I don’t have to light my way using the bag of coins like I did to exit the dark room with the treasure chest. I’m a Libra, and as I’ve been told by horoscopes, friends, and a palm reader two and a half years ago, Libras are habitual practitioners of indecision, so I decide not to use any sort of logic when choosing a door. I walk until my shoulder is a little sore from carrying this heavy tote and stand in front of the door on the right. As I expected, the door is locked and there is a coin slot on the wall, right next to its silver knob.

I feed the slot a coin. And then another. And then another.

con (Max Koh) - “Eulogy”

 

 

I’m staring a white ceiling; I’m lying face up in a casket and can’t move. The lid is in my peripheral vision, its underside is plush red velvet. I feel the soft texture of racoon fur on my head and worn denim on my arms, and I’m thankful someone decided to bury me in my favorite outfit. Who knows, maybe they decided to just bury me how they found me. A light touch of music, sound from a synthesizer, floats through the air. I see a procession of faces peer into the casket: A couple of close friends, the kind folks I rent my place from, my grandmother who is less than a week shy of 77-years-old. My parents make an appearance even though they both have already passed away. None of them are crying, but they are talking to me in voices that sound like they’ve been run through a vocal processor. I try to call out to each of them, but no sound comes out of my mouth. I try to scream, nothing happens. I can’t tell if I’m actually dead or if this is just sleep paralysis.

A couple loved ones make second viewing appearances. Everyone who does looks at me and laughs a little. I try to sit up so that I can startle them, but I still can’t move.

The Black Chevys - “Sweet Tooth”

 

 

The trees outside breeze in and out of my line of sight from the passenger seat. We’re going at least ninety miles-per-hour down a freeway very similar to southbound I-5. Looking to my left I see a woman with black hair, a black leather jacket, and black jeans driving. The interior of the car is black, incredibly clean. There is a Super Sport emblem on the glove box, right next to the word Malibu. We both have Dum Dum lollipops in our mouths and a freewheeling rock tune in our ears, the latter of which seems to be at full volume. (The former too, the flavor of blue raspberry fills my mouth like the ink from a leaking pen fills a shirt pocket.)

There were a handful of Dum Dums in the cup holder, all blue raspberry. An empty bottle of wine rolls around on the floor next to my feet, Daryl sways along to the music in the backseat. There is a feeling of deja vu here, like I’ve done this before, maybe in a past life -- when this vehicle produced in 1965 was brand new. I feel the same way about the music, but feeling like you’re evoking the past isn’t always stifling; sometimes it’s just comfortable. I look to the driver and ask her, “Where are we going?”

She turns her head to the right and with a loving look in her eye, says, “It’s a surprise.”

jewyork - “pawnbroke”

 

 

“What in the world is a golden blunt?”
“C’mon man, what are you being so skeptical for? Just smoke it.”

I’m in the passenger seat again, this time riding shotgun in my good friend’s 1996 Chevy Impala. The trees here look less like a loose configuration and more like we’re driving through the forest. Daryl is sitting in his daughter’s car seat, eyes looking even sleepier than usual. This friend in particular I would trust with my life in even the gravest of situations, so I take two puffs and pass it back to him. The smoke I exhale is gold, and flecks of glitter shoot out of my mouth when I cough. We’re nodding our heads to muffled drums and chopped up soul, having a conversation about warped nostalgia. Do we twist the nostalgia ourselves, cut it up and paste it back together like a sample, or are we just misremembering what really happened? The tempo changes and everything start to slow down.

Police lights flash behind us -- blinking like the lights beneath airplanes when they’re in the sky, only red and blue -- and a twinkle gleams in my friend’s eye. He passes me the golden blunt again, and I take another puff, realizing it’s going to be a long ride. At this point, I finally realize I’m in a dream, but I’m still frightened as shit by the cops chasing us and jerking out of sleep after having a gun pulled on me, as I have in many dreams before this one. My friend assures me the cops aren’t going to catch us as he makes a sharp right turn onto a dirt road; the back end of his car fishtails and kicks up a bunch of gravel. I can feel the emotion of trusting him completely in my heart, especially since I know what he does for a living. The cop car tries to nail the turn but misses its mark and crashes into a tree out of my frame of view. I look over and ask him, “Where are we going.”

He turns his head and shoots me the mostly amused look he always offers when he thinks I’m being overly stoned and paranoid. After what feels like a pregnant pause reaching full term, he says, “It’s a surprise.”

New and News

Clyde Petersen is Filming an Earth Documentary

Torrey Pines director Clyde Petersen (who we recently interviewed for our Local Artist Spotlight) is currently working a documentary about Earth, which you might have been able to tell from the above photo is about the Seattle band and not the planet we live on. Named after the 2014 song by the group, Even Hell Has its Heroes, the film will feature a pretty exhaustive look at the metal pioneers (Peterson served as the band's manager from 2008 to 2013), with interview and concert footage (including their Crocodile show on April 18th), as well as a score composed by the band itself. The Stranger interviewed Peterson about the project, which you can read here.

Live and Loud: This Week's Recommended Shows

April 26: Dead Sonics, Mo Brown & the Shit Downtown, and Gypsy Temple at Central Saloon

April 27: Mirrorgloss and Breaks and Swells (with Strings, Guayaba, and El Mizell) at Clock Out Lounge

April 27: Coach Phillips, Tres Leches, Emma Lee Toyoda, and Anime Creek at Columbia City Theater

April 28: Kris Orlowski, Lowlands, and Jason McCue at Barboza

April 29: Skizzy Mars and Oliver Tree at Neumos

April 30: Pink Mexico, Close Encounter, Choke the Pope, and Rat Queen at The Vera Project

May 1: Alice Glass and Pictureplane at The Crocodile

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