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Column258 @ The Beacon 9th June

Column258 @ The Beacon 9 June

Column258 launch Off / Radar nights at The Beacon

Launching June 28th, is a regular Thursday night of eclectic entertainment, set in the open air grounds of the fabulous Beacon venue on the West Hill. Local artists and performers form all disciplines will present their unique offering within a night of diverse sets.

Column258 would like to invite you to dinner. As a way of promoting these nights, the Hastings 7-piece groove-psych band will perform on Thursday 9 June outside the log cabin at The Beacon, with special guest Jude Montague.

Column 258 is a band/music collective who’ve been producing experimental sounds/experiences for the last 5 years. They’ve mostly played away: having toured Germany and gigged by London canals, so they are excited to post-pandemic, blow some cobwebs off and play on home turf.

The band’s eclectic influences produce an addictive and hypnotic cocktail of sound. Blending analogue and digital sounds from found objects and samples; from horns to distorted guitars and mini-moogs to electric pine cones.

If you like soulful beat poetry, schmu blues and cinematic music this band is a must see.

C258 playing at Grow, Hackney

C258 playing at Grow, Hackney

They have variously been described as sounding like The Doors meets Nick Cave meets Gong, crossed with The Velvet Underground, Tom Waits and Can—but ultimately their sound is truly their own, with a post-modernist feel, apocalyptic energy, soaring and carving its way into a hinterland of dark and mysterious soundscapes.

This is music as a force for change, seeking escape from the tyranny of conformist predictability.

Although the Column258 sound is very much the sum of its core musicians, the band does have a leader and front man Ross Andrews-Clifford so HOT put some questions to him.

HOT: What’s in the name?
Column258 came from when I did some work on the pier during its early construction days in about 2011 … and the foreman was telling me how all the stanchions – or columns that support the pier structure were numbered by divers … only one stanchion was missing … Column 258 … I didn’t have a band back then, but the name stuck with me, and when the band formed a few years later, it seemed to fit.

HOT: What are the aims of this band?
The band’s aims are to be more of an experimental cooperative, with no hierarchy as such, but all the music is created from raw improvisations with no one person leading … we are always looking to change it up into different gears, so the next song could be flamenco rap for instance … or bossa nova blues … like messing around with those pre-sets on old analogue drum-machines! The core sound is psychedelic though … but we don’t set out to create it that way, it sort of gravitates towards it—a sonic gravity we can’t control. The idea is always to be as explorative as possible and defy genre-gaming, and going forward to incorporate more film and stage performance.

HOT: Please elaborate on ‘OFF / RADAR’
Not a simple answer to that. Except it’s going to blow the bloody doors off an evening out. Originally I’d envisaged it to be an Open-Mic night, but then as ideas developed it became more of an anti-Open mic. Let’s face it, we are kind of awash with Open-Mics, and I find that formula a bit tired and static … So I wanted to curate it, and actually programme the nights, that would be like taking the lid of a box of fireworks that the audience wouldn’t quite know what to expect next. It will champion some of the amazing ‘alternative’ scene stuff that is a rich seam down here, but rarely gets much of an airing—so it would be like a contemporary revue and would be super-diverse, with solo artists, musicians, bands, performance poets, pole acts, jugglers, writers, renegades … all in one beautiful place—the garden at The Beacon. And as such would serve as both an artist’s salon and space for some pretty cool happenings! Each act has only 15 minutes, and everyone that is there will support and respect the acts and the diversity, which might challenge your tastes or open your eyes to something totally new.

HOT: How important are words and writing to you and what do you like to write about?

Words are magnificently important—they are kind of the engine to getting any song or bit of music started for me … and the form of poetry can be as mundane as a shopping list or as elaborate as a piece of Tennyson—both have currency for making something sonically interesting … You autobiographize, of course, but you also absorb everyone else’s day-night perspective into that, or it might just be about their life, so in a way it’s theatre and the writing is an extension of different consciousnesses. Individually complex like a rosetta stone of complexes! But I love road signs, bird laughter, and whatever else might be going on finds a way to the pen, the way Ivon Hitchen’s used to paint by incorporating ambient stuff around him at the time of painting into his art, or Rauschenberg’s White paintings that are always an open invitation to absorb content—I think this is a good philosophy for beginning any artistic conversation.

Column258 Soundcloud
Column258 Bandcamp
Column258 Facebook

Column258 with special guest Jude Montague is on Thursday 9th June. Doors open 6pm. Vegan food served from 6-8pm and music starts around 7:30pm Admission £5

The first OFF / RADAR night will be on Thursday 28th June. Doors 6.30, performances start around 7:30pm; Vegan chilli available on the night. Tickets for the event only will be £5 on the door for all.

Subsequent Off / Radar nights will be on the last Thursday of every month: so August 25th and September 29th etc. Keep an eye open for social media updates and check-in with The Beacon website.

If you want to be considered to perform or bring your thing to the OFF / RADAR nights, get in touch with Ross – ross@junction44.com | 07791 302 006

The Off / Radar team is currently Ross Andrews-Clifford, Andrew Cooper and Nick Weekes, so make contact via any of them, and we look forward to seeing you at The Beacon soon!

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Thank you for your continued support!

Posted 17:47 Saturday, Jun 4, 2022 In: Music & Sound

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