In one week I’m getting on a plane and flying to LAX. From there I’m renting a van and driving out to the desert with Cult of Youth. I’m not the only New Yorker making the pilgrimage. While December 21 may not actually signal the end of the world, I’m sure by December 22 part of me will be wishing it had. In other words, it’s going to be a real wild time. If you’re lucky I’ll tell you guys about it, but chances are I’ll be in a state so altered that I won’t be able to recap with much reliability. So yeah, why don’t you just come too? The world’s not going to end but let’s pretend and go out with a bang, then wake up the next morning (afternoon?) and start all over again. Doesn’t that sound fun?
The event I’m talking about is the five-year anniversary celebration for Brooklyn label Sacred Bones. In a moment inspired by a stroke of genius with a touch of necessary irresponsibility, label founder Caleb Braaten and manager Taylor Brode decided they needed more than just a local label showcase Brooklyn venue bash. Besides, we already have CMJ and the Northside Fest. Coinciding with the supposed Mayan apocalypse they decided, even if there is a tomorrow, for one night they’d pretend there wasn’t and pull out all the stops.
And stops were pulled. The one night line-up is ridiculous. Zola Jesus, Cult of Youth, VÅR, Psychic Ills, Lust for Youth, Pop 1280, and Wymond Miles plus superstar DJ couple Dominick Fernow (aka DJ Jonbenet) and Becka Diamond (13:13). There will be surprises too. Whether or not they include recent label collaborators Jim Jarmusch or David Lynch remains to be seen, but even if the cinematic superstars don’t appear, the night promises to be filled with Lynchian surrealism and the following day will be a bleak rock and roll hangover that will move with slow deliberation and possibly be in black and white.
Hot tubs will be defiled, hallucinations will occur, and the moon will be barked at. But most importantly one of the last shows of the year aims to be the best show of the year.
Tickets are still available, although good luck scoring an affordable plane ticket this late in the game (and this close to Christmas.) Lucky for West Coasters, the Pioneertown venue Pappy and Harriet’s is a short drive from Los Angeles. In addition to the fest, Sacred Bones is putting out a limited edition compilation that will only be available at the show. We’re premiering the new VÅR track, “The Boy or the Boot” from that compilation here. It’s a meditative hypnotic piece of electronic sparseness, a suitable prelude to getting weird in the desert.
Sacred Bones Records Five Year Anniversary Celebration happens December 21 at Pappy and Harriet’s in Pioneertown, just outside of Joshua Tree. Tickets are available online. Most of the surrounding hotel rooms are booked but nearby accommodations are still available.