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“The Rattler,” a 15-minute stream-of-consciousness drone that resides somewhere in between minimalist psych-rock and Weather Report–style jazz fusion. Drummer and Moog player Karl Kriemelmeyer slowly layers low-end heavy loops while guitarist Ted Morgan dithers with foot pedals. Eventually Kriemelmeyer’s breakbeat-informed drum rolls signal that a climax, of some sort, has arrived.
“That song is based on a set bass-line loop,” says Kriemelmeyer, a 40-year-old title-services worker and former jungle DJ who resides in Accokeek, Md. “It sort of gets into a groove, then it dives off into a freer element where more and more layers of sound are being added.” But he rebuffs any comparisons to the Dead or its brethren. “It’s us sort of letting loose,” he says. “We don’t consider ourselves a jam band.”
After playing in a raft of D.C. outfits, Kriemelmeyer now resides in the sticks, which has its positives: Astronomy Dominatrix can practice at high volume all the way into the wee hours of the morning. “I’m kind of out in the country, and I’ve got cool neighbors. We’ve done all-night sessions, but I’ve never got a complaint.” In fact, Kriemelmeyer and Morgan’s all-night sessions sound pretty potent, even though they involve a few breaks. “It’s more like, we’ll play, we’ll go chill, then go play some more,” says Kriemelmeyer. “But by the time we were going down there at 7 a.m. I was like, ‘Dude.’”
Astronomy Dominatrix performs at the Velvet Lounge Wednesday, Oct. 29.