Friday, October 9, 2015

Lucien Shapiro & Minka Sicklinger Present: The Gaslamp Killer Experience's Trippy Live-Desert Visual, "Ritual" (Low End Theory Records)


"The Gaslamp Killer is the assassin and the antidote. His nickname wasn't conceived out of thin air. William Bensussen is entitlement's worst nightmare. His DJ sets bludgeon the basic sh*t, restoring music to a sacred place: shamanistic, visceral, honest, leaving pupils dilated and heads rolling," reads a rather interesting Impressum (or description section) attached to Alternative Hip-Hop DJ-producer Gaslamp Killer's Facebook profile. While it doesn't seem to appear within Bensussen's recently-released The Gaslamp Killer Experience: Live in Los Angeles, his latest video-single "Ritual" seems to have been filmed at the same November 2013 Mayan Theatre concert that yielded the album's highly complex, nearly orchestral sessions; recorded in collaboration with a 15-piece band featuring revered saxophonist Kamasi Washington, Jogger guitarist Amir Yaghma, LA-based drummer Gene Coye, and trumpet player Todd Simon. "As you watch, the video itself seems to hallucinate and fall into a dream, with twirling desert vistas making their way on screen-shots taken during GLK's recent Coachella festival set," okayplayer perfectly describes the transition from "Ritual"'s fall 2013 live footage to its cryptic desert shaman-esque hi-jinx; "we [explore] gorgeous craggy valleys, long flat horizons, sunsets over water, strange masks and... a gold-studded baseball bat."


"My friends and family begged me not to go through with this performance due to the fact that it was only four months after my near-death scooter accident," The Gaslamp Killer revealed to Rolling Stone back in April. "I insisted that I could handle it and after an insane amount of help from the people closest to me – and with only three rehearsals – we got up onstage in front of a sold out crowd of 2,000 people and performed my original compositions live with a 14-piece crew of some of my favorite Angeleno musicians for the first time," Bensussen continued. Urban Obsessor artist Lucien Shapiro is credited with designing the ornate bedazzled masks and "Sculpture + Art Direction of Desert Ritual," while Minka Sicklinger is credited with "Wardrobe Design + Creative Direction of Ritual," who along with Allison Bagg and William Bensussen himself, round out the mysterious "Desert People" from GLK EXP's Phil Nisco & Sawa-directed Coachella desert footage. Although "Ritual" just arrived this past week on the heels of The Gaslamp Killer Experience's final show of 2015, @GASLAMPKILLER promises: "Big news coming in 2016 from my [Gaslamp Killer Experience] crew & some solo sh*t on the way, too!" In the meantime, THE GASLAMP KILLER EXPERIENCE: Live in Los Angeles is currently available in a variety of formats in conjunction with Low End Theory Records through William Bensussen's own personal Bandcamp artist page.

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