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20 April 2011

Get Your Heptagram On At Third Not-Really-Annual Crabwalk

Samantha Anne Carrillo

It's hard to draw a perfect heptagram. Console yourself by attending the Third Not-Really-Annual Crabwalk on Thursday evening at the P & J (202 Harvard SE). But what is a crabwalk, exactly? Event organizer DJ Caterwaul briefed Things in Light on the structure and history of the crabwalk. Crabwalks gather a diverse group of musicians - typically five, primarily local - in a performance space and then the musicians play in round-robin, usually pentagram, fashion. The audience is positioned at the center of this vortex. The musicians often band together for an improv session by the end of the performance.

"I think this is the most musically diverse of all the crabwalks that have happened. Hip hop, singer/songwriter, metal, sound collage, noise, experimental, and chiptune music are all represented here, plus some stray subgenres, I reckon," said DJ Caterwaul. This year's crabwalk features seven musical elements. It's formula is : Bud Melvin's "8-bit hacked Gameboy accompanied by banjo/uke" + Chemtrail Pilot's "lone wolf hip hop" + Cinik's "solo-experimental-[ism]" + Iceolus' "proggy high desert 'burnt sienna' metal" + Javelina's songstress Emma Arsonist + Las Cruces-based Lobsterbreath's "mad scientist culture jamming" + a guest appearance by Alan George Ledergerber's Blacker Guise.

According to Bud Melvin (the Grave of Nobody's Darling, Lionhead Bunny, Phantom Lake), "In a crabwalk, the groups form a circle as the primordial point. The audience goes wherever it will. I walk in with a plan and the plan becomes useless, as I end up changing songs at the last minute to compliment or contrast what came immediately before and what maybe my unconscious knows is next."

Cinik said, "Even though I play live occasionally, I'm still always a bit uncomfortable playing for an audience, but, for once, I feel totally comfortable because this group event has a strong purpose -- to illustrate that Albuquerque has an excellently diverse music scene. The concept is less about the traditional performer audience relationship and more about communicating what Albuquerque has going for it."

According to Greg Markham (Roñoso, Iceolus, Prison of Sound), "This event shows our capacity to have seemingly contradicting genres compliment each other. Meanwhile, an audience in the middle is given a ride through five, and now with this year seven, different sonic entities. And, in the end, when all the sounds converge, we hope that if we haven't treaded upon new ground, we can all come out inspired."

The Third Not-Really-Annual Crabwalk will commence at the P&J (202 Harvard SE) on Thursday night at 8 p.m. and end by 11 p.m. All-ages. Donations for the P&J and local artists are welcome.

Scroll on for video of the artists performing at this year's Crabwalk.


Bud Melvin


Chemtrail Pilot










Alan George Ledergerber/Blacker Guise

Samantha Anne Carrillo / a fifth-wave feminist from the fourth estate | a burqueña | a ladyboss | a writer + editor

I am a fifth-wave feminist and a reluctant member⸺hey, Groucho knew whereof he quipped⸺of both the fourth estate and the gig economy. I am an Albuquerque-based freelance writer, editor and social media marketing and branding+PR consultant. I remain an observant ’90s riot grrrl and a devout practitioner of halfhearted yoga posturing and zen and the art of the sentence diagram.


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