We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.
“The Lowest of the Low Tour”
It’s impossible to dislike the spirit behind Invisible Records and its band showcase tour, “The Lowest of the Low.” As run by Pigface front man and former PIL, NIN, and Killing Joke drummer Martin Atkins, Invisible is about independence—from major labels, from chart concerns, from units shifted, and from musicians shafted. Too bad that in its infancy it was a piece of cake to dislike Invisible’s roster, a wasteland of industrialists such as Test Dept and a halfway house for half-wit rock bands like Evil Mothers and Sugarsmack. But electronica’s sonic boom seems to have rattled Pigface’s pen; for its latest album, A New High in Low, Atkins and his ever-changing collaborators treat, sample, and loop the metallic sounds with modern dub as an ideological backdrop rather than beaten up Throbbing Gristle records. Even as Atkins continues to covet techno-industrial sewage like Leech Woman and Ashtrayhead, Atkins is signing compelling soundsmiths such as Not Breathing, Dead Voices on Air, and Scorn (pictured). The deep, dark dub of Mick Harris (Scorn) seems particularly influential to Invisible’s current ethos, with its recent licensing of Same Here by Harris’ Matera project and a two-disc compilation of his Possible Records. See Scorn, Einsturzende Neubauten’s F.M. Einheit, Bagman (featuring Lee Fraser from Sheep on Drugs), Not Breathing, and Pigface (a tremendous live band, no matter what they play), at 7 p.m. at the Capitol Ballroom, 1015 Half St. SE. $15. (202) 554-1500. (Christopher Porter)