Art in progress
Music and art come alive as the audience watches
Adam Pierce sounds like a nice enough, affable kind of guy as he speaks on his friend's cell phone while riding a ferry to Vancouver, British Columbia. But talking to him about his anagrammatic music project, Mice Parade, is tough going.
RVCA Art Show
With music by Mice Parade with illi Vill
» Place: NextDoor, 43 N. Hotel St.
» Time: 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturday
» Tickets: $15 presale; 21 and over
» Call: 548-6398 or online at whoisnextdoor.com
It's not that his music is obtuse. On his latest album, "Bem-Vinda Vontade" (loosely translated from Portuguese, "welcome will"), he and his band adeptly weave an intriguing blend of sound and rhythm, going from private sparkles of introspection to a more aggressive approach with Latin and Brazilian influences.
What started as a one-man instrumental project seven years ago is still going through permutations. "I got the band together starting on the third record," Pierce said, "and when we eight people get together in the studio, a lot of the music is made up as we go along. ... The music is made up of all different pieces, whether it's the opportunities in the studio or just me playing guitar in my basement studio."
A visual counterpart to the music is the album cover, by English artist Dave Thomas (pictured at right). Linoleum cuts and bits of painting combine to form a stark abstract landscape, as a dotted trail meanders past and through circles, arrows and triangles.
So it seems only natural that when Mice Parade performs Saturday night at downtown's NextDoor, it'll be in conjunction with two artists creating their own work live as the band plays on.
Painters Matt Gordon and David Choe will bring their unique street-savvy visions to Honolulu courtesy local promoter BAMP Project and the RVCA apparel company. RVCA's artist network program showcases artists like Gordon and Choe on their clothing, with partial proceeds from the sale of the garments donated to the artists' charities of choice.
Pierce, in turn, has a very workman and methodical approach to his music -- "once one album gets done, we get on with the next."
He studied music early in his time at State University of New York, "but split the music department, because I thought it was more a joke." He also studied a bit of art while a freshman, but expresses some disaffection for his time as a student. "It showed me what was out there ... but it wasn't a big part of who I became."
What he does say with certainty is that, "I consider myself, first and foremost, as a drummer. I still think of myself as a drummer, even though I play guitar and keyboards with this band. I consider rhythm almost as important as melody in my music."