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SOPHIE + A. G. COOK + QT at 1015 FOLSOM

1015 Folsom

Thursday, March 26, 2015 at 10:00 PM - Friday, March 27, 2015 at 2:00 AM (PDT)

SOPHIE + A. G. COOK + QT at 1015 FOLSOM

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Ticket Type Sales End Price Fee
Quantity
Presale Ticket 1 (limited)
All events are 21+ | Please bring valid ID | Please PRINT your ticket or have it ready on your mobile device | NO REFUNDS
Ended $15.00 $5.06
Presale Ticket 2 (limited)
All events are 21+ | Please bring valid ID | Please PRINT your ticket or have it ready on your mobile device | NO REFUNDS
Ended $17.50 $5.13
Presale Ticket 3 (limited)
All events are 21+ | Please bring valid ID | Please PRINT your ticket or have it ready on your mobile device | NO REFUNDS
Ended $20.00 $5.72

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Event Details

Noise Pop, DJ Dials, & 1015 Folsom present

SOPHIE
A. G. COOK
QT

with support from
BLACKBIRD BLACKBIRD
(DJ Set)
GRIMECRAFT
TREKKIE TRAX

Thursday March 26th / 10pm - 2am / 21+


 

SOPHIE

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While PC Music constitutes a largely self-contained universe, SOPHIE has travelled a parallel path, appearing first on singles for Huntleys & Palmers and then Glasgow's Numbers label. Though not technically under the PC Music umbrella, his affiliation with the label recently solidified though a high-profile collaboration with A.G. Cook on a project called QT. It was briefly rumored that SOPHIE and Cook were, in fact, one and the same, but a photo of the pair on stage at SXSW suggested otherwise.

Listening to SOPHIE's music, you're tempted to wonder, how could anything so breezy be so dense? Every cubic centimeter of his constructions is packed with detail—helium-huffing voices, tea kettle squeals, Skittle-hued synth leads, plasticized foley effects, beats that careen like weaponized Slinkies—but it's also shot through with an aching sense of emptiness, as though every sound were cushioned in the dread that it might be the last sound you ever hear. Then, after each heart-in-mouth moment of silence, there's that reassuring cartoon zing! and we're zapped back to life, back to (hyper-)reality. I can't help but think of SOPHIE's chain-reaction beats in relation to the spectacular explosions of Alfonso Cuaron's Gravity, and perhaps that's because collision plays such a key role in his music. The two opposed forces are, primarily, pop and anti-pop—the catchy and the cacophonous, the deft and the garish. Like the J-pop artist Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, whom SOPHIE interviewed for Dazed magazine, and with whom he's apparently collaborating, SOPHIE seems fascinated by the juxtaposition of the cute and the grotesque—or, more precisely, in the point where one becomes the other.

SOPHIE Ray-Ban x Boiler Room 005 | Hudson Mohawke Presents 'Chimes' DJ Set

 


 

A. G. COOK

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A. G. Cook is PC Music's founder and chief theorist. The 24-year-old has credits on a handful of the label's releases—Nu Jack Swung, "Keri Baby" [ft. Hannah Diamond], "Beautiful", Dux Content's "Like You" and Lifestyle—and he's contributed graphics to releases by easyFun and Maxo; it's a safe bet that he's also had a hand in other projects on the label, like easyFun and the Lipgloss Twins.

Before founding the label, he ran Gamsonite, a "pseudo-label" he’s described as "a prototype for PC Music." But for the most part, it seems he arrived upon the scene with his vision fully formed.

For anyone who doubts Cook's genuine, non-ironic appreciation for pop music, that TANK Magazine interview is worth a read. He cites producers Max Martin and Jam & Lewis as inspirations and singles out Scritti Politti's Cupid and Psyche 85 as an example of "'extreme' pop music"—"a really beautiful balance of great hooks, rhythms and sounds." Praising Cassie, he says, "some of her tracks epitomize the minimal, synthetic, almost robotic potential of commercial music, something which can sound crap when it's done badly, but can also become a sort of perfect, untouchable product when done in the right way." To that end, I find it telling that he says he prefers to compose using "very plain sounds, basically the most boring string, flute and piano sounds my computer has": even at its most ecstatically garish, there's a deadpan quality to his sped-up trance anthems. (Perhaps for that reason he reserves special praise for Ukraine's Eurovision 2013 entry, Zlata Ognevich's "Gravity").

Special attention is due to A. G. Cook's DJ mixes, in which he stretches out and explores every possible angle of his aesthetic, from Carly Rae Jepsen homages to punchy preset disco to Teknian's "Sweded" version of Hudson Mohawke's "Cbat", sounding every bit as thin and weird as you might expect. (In fact, despite the wild swings in tempo and tone, PC Music generally works best mixed together. Granted, too much of the stuff can quickly become exhausting, but many of their mixes are unusually short: 31 minutes for Cook's "Personal Computer Music" mix, 14 minutes for his Creamcake mix, just nine minutes for GFOTY's "Secret Mix", and 10 minutes apiece for all the various players on the PC Music x DISown mix.)

A. G. Cook - Beautiful

 


 

QT

If there's a complaint to be made about “Hey QT" it's that it's a bit too on-the-nose. QT, we're told, is "a sparkling future pop sensation"—not a person, but an energy drink, or an "Energy Elixir," to be precise, "where organic and synthetic meet to stimulate an uplifting club sensation." And yes, we get it—their music is fizzier than a bottle of Club Mate spiked with Pop Rocks. The dance music scene is already dominated by an actual energy-drink brand, so it's possible to read QT as a kind of subversive statement—cuteness as a form of critique. So far, though, that angle fails to deliver, and QT's deadpan Boiler Room performance didn't necessarily add to the concept. It began with QT's willowy singer/spokesmodel reclining on a chaise lounge, idly flipping through a fashion magazine while a piped-in voiceover attested to the virtues of the canned beverage, and it concluded with a deliberately unconvincing lip-sync of the studio track. Throughout both halves of the performance, at least on camera, the energy in the room looks as flat as a day-old soda.
The Boiler Room performance may be proof that translating PC Music's aesthetic from URL to IRL is harder than it seems, but the song itself is a masterful distillation of SOPHIE and Cook's pipsqueak aesthetic, with a call-and-response hook so simple ("Hey QT! Yeeeeeah?"), it's like the pop-music equivalent of one of Saul Bass' corporate logos. If they can just add a little more of their typical zaniness to the project, they may yet hit upon the secret formula for actual pop domination

QT - Hey QT
Plays: 649,804

 

NP23



Tickets:
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All events are 21+ | Please bring valid identification | NO REFUNDS
 

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When & Where


1015 Folsom
1015 Folsom St
San Francisco, CA 94103

Thursday, March 26, 2015 at 10:00 PM - Friday, March 27, 2015 at 2:00 AM (PDT)


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