• PrintMag

Free Liquid

It’s common enough for designer/illustrators to play music too, but not all are as well known as Richard McGuire, who plays bass (and designs) for Liquid Liquid. The group has reunited for a free performance on August 8 at Lincoln Center. The opening act is Rhys Chatham, a composer who wrote a composition for 200 electric guitars. The show starts at 7:30pm.

For those who don’t know Liquid Liquid (below, back in the ’80s; bottom, recently in London), they were a groove-and-dub combo that provided much of the dance-floor soundtrack for the no wave era. The quartet—Scott Hartley, Richard McGuire, Salvatore Principato, and Dennis Young—used texture, rhythm, tension, and empty space to create sound unlike any other; along the way, they produced one of the most recognizable tracks of the era with “Cavern,” a funk-fueled cut with a bassline and vocal hook famously “borrowed” by Grandmaster Flash & Melle Mel for “White Lines.”

In 1997, the Beastie Boys’s label, Grand Royal, reissued the combo’s material; by 2003, interest in the band became so strong that the four reformed for a reunion gig at NYC’s Knitting Factory. They recorded “Bellhead” for the DFA label. In 2008, Domino released a deluxe Liquid Liquid compilation of old material and unreleased tracks.




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