BICYCLE DAY WITH ALEX GREY @ 1015 FOLSOM
Bicycle Day w/ Alex Grey, Shpongle, Random Rab & more
San Francisco, CA
On Bicycle Day, 70 years ago, Albert Hoffman discovered the effects of LSD after consuming his magical chemical medley. While he was in for a extraordinarily enchanting bicycle ride home- 70 years later, Euphonic Conceptions celebrated by taking us on a 10 hour psychedelic journey through time and space filled with eargasmic music and visionary artwork.
Let me kick this off by saying that Euphonic Conceptions is one of the best things I’ve discovered in the new year. Their productions continually present only the best in visionary live painting, and somehow seem to bring together every musical artist I’d ever hope and dream of together on one bill. Not to mention the art installations and decor always pull me into some fantastical wonderland, each unique in its own fairytale ways. Hats off to you folks at EC for consistently doing it up right from coast to coast. No one else has even come close to putting together an event that has made me book a plane ticket across the country on a whim, without even thinking of second guessing my impulse decision.
Anywho. Bicycle Day. This was my first visit to 1015 Folsom, and it pretty much blew my pants off (metaphorically and truthfully- at one point in the night I believe I actually was scampering around the dance floor in my bra and panties like a fabulous little acid-pony). The spot was pretty much Mystery Mansion- with every twist and turn, I was in a new room with its own unique vibe and brand new smiling faces. This three story megahouse was completely transformed into a tripatorium. We’re talking a hallucinatory henhouse- a looney coop full of all the best wiggly weirdos.
Three seperate stages filled the air with polished soundscapes that expanded consciousness and elevated spirits hour after hour. When we arrived around 10pm the front room was already packed like a can full of technicolored sardines, all getting loose to a Thunderdome style beat battle featuring Nebakaneza vs. Trevor Kelley. They made the room radiate with glitchy chirps, a splash of psytrap, and a dash of dub. An auditory recipe for success that fed us until midnight and had us pulling a Oliver Twist, all like “Please Sir…..I want some more.”
But that was the thing about Bicycle Day- there was always another room waiting to blow your brain into some new dimension. I made it into the main room in time to catch Alex and Allyson Grey premiering their Entheon Project Kickstarter. “Entheon” refers to a place to discover the God within. Alex Grey first offered this name to the renowned Burning Man Camp, birthed in 2006, where many world’s greatest visionary painters exhibited their work in Entheon Village’s various domes and sculptural tents. At the Grey’s Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, Entheon (currently under construction) will be the sanctuary of visionary art. The lecture concluded with the presentation of a mock-up sculpture of Entheon that was carried to the stage and became the sickest DJ booth facade I’ve ever seen in my life.
Shortly after, Kaminanda hit the decks with some worldly rhythms, tantric psy-hop, and shamanic dub that kept us swaying smooth and sexy. Stephen Kaminanda is a man of blissful energy; you can’t help but smile an infectious grin when his colorful tribal tunes hit your ears. Hell of a performer too.
Next came Bluetech, laying down the spacious realms of downtempo interchill. The man took us on an auditory exploration through a lush digital jungle. You closed your eyes and were whisked away to a flourishing geometric rainforest- a mental zen den of musical therapy.
Soon to follow, it’s none other than Simon Posford himself, ready to butter us up and get us nice and Shpongled. One of my favorite things in life is seeing an entire room full of people giving zero fucks. Absolutely no cares in the world. I call that bliss. And this was a very very blissful room. Simon, with a feather stuck in his hat like space-case Yankee Doodle Dandy, drowned us in psychedelic symphonies- such beautifully refined layers of aural artistry. Even if I was some crazy savant who could recite Pi to the ten-thousandth decimal place – even if I were mining BitCoins with my brain power alone- I wouldn’t have enough intellectual resources to completely comprehend the plethora of sounds that man made come out of those speakers.
At this point my brain feels like a pack of Gushers, bursting with vivid colors and sound that take me into a complete sensory overlap. Waves of sound are rippling from the speakers reminiscent of heat waves in a desert, colors lingering in the air as they meld and morph together like the paints mixing on Alex’s palette. A large fan positioned above stage-left blew so hard that when I closed my eyes again, I felt as though I was atop a high hill, all alone amidst a desert storm. Out of my body, I watched over myself dancing freely and writing the story of my happiness with each step in the sand. A stranger in paradise, I had entered Shpongleland.
Opening my eyes is just as mind-melting as my close-eye visuals. Visionary masterminds Alex and Allyson Grey are whipping up breathtaking art throughout this whole shabang. It is always a pleasure to watch these two work. They are honestly the most beautiful couple I’ve ever witnessed together, and are a display of true love in its most genuine form. Their energy together can fill 1015 Folsom in and of itself, even without the thousands of wiggly ragers.
Around 2:30ish, Random Rab hits the MainStage. This event happened, what, a week ago? I haven’t shut my mouth about Random Rab since Bicycle Day. In fact, I was in San Francisco when this gig finally let out, call New York City and wake my girlfriend up out of a dead sleep so I can talk her ear off about the magicalness that is Random Rab.
“Baby. Wake up. Go iTunes now. Random Rab. You’ll thank me later. Go. Go iTunes.”
Not only is this man’s music fantabulous, but his live show will just leave you speechless and radiating love and light. Beautiful lyrics. Powerful performance and delivery that packs a heartfelt punch of euphoria. One thing you know you’re dancing that ass out of your pants, the next thing you know you’re hugging your neighbors all Kum-ba-yah style having a sing along.
I couldn’t tell you what time Rab wrapped up because at that point, time was nothing but Dali melted clocks. I went exploring to check out how the live paintings had progressed when I realized there was an entire basement floor to this sucker. YumSauce Lounge put together an epic nuzzle nook with plenty of soft spots and a tea room. Tired feet? How about a cuddle puddle. Don’t mind if I do. With music being pumped in from the MainStage, no one missed a beat. I caught all of Shawna’s sexy space-disco set from the zen den. Have you heard of Shawna? No? I hadn’t either. And then she made me hop out of the sexiest of cuddle puddles on multiple occasions so I could get up and get groovy because her music was JUST. THAT. GOOD. Sleepy from 8 hours of ragetasticness? Screw caffiene, ginseng, all that shit- go put some Shawna in your ears wake up with some chills down your spine.
Then comes my favorite part of the night (or morning). People start to clear out…it’s bedtime for the masses. Then shit gets silly. An-ten-nae had a large part in promoting this shindig, and as a promoter as well as a DJ – he definitely picked the primo time slot for himself. This Acid Crunk pioneer threw down the absolute dirtiest of mashups, the filthiest breakbeats and some Six Flags roller coaster drops. And only the strangest of the strange were there to hit the dancefloor like a gaggle of those inflatable WindyMen you see at the car dealership. No restraints. None. Shit, there were people dancing around on all fours like little deemster doggies. Fuck yeah, weird.
Thanks again to everyone involved in putting together a hell of a party. When the doors opened I covered my eyes, “Holy shit, turn off the sun!” 6:30am. 6:30am! I was flabbergasted that this badboy had went well past the wee hours of the morning and well into breakfast time. …Wake up and rage! 😉