Local Spotlight: Quadrigarum

Take one part Sigur Ros at their heaviest, one part SQURL, and one part modified spinning wheel loom, mix together well, and the result is Kansas City based Quadrigarum. The guys in this group include some of the best contributors to Kansas City’s psych scene, but that’s not necessarily what makes Quadrigarum an experience to check out. The groups shapes and bends noise and sound into a Rothko-like spiritual experience. Their aural fields envelope entire venues (if not full city blocks). Quadrigarum is definitely a group to experience live.

At the center of their drones, minimal percussion, (a)sympathetic tones, and wave-making circuitry, an instrument links two musicians together. The chariot (seemingly a modified spinning wheel loom) plucks two guitars fretted by two people. The audio result is a constantly shifting chord–sometimes harmonious and sometimes not. The visual result is Abramovichian (when she collaborated almost exclusively with Ulay). The combination gives the best parts of post-rock aural textures and engaging performance art.


Indeed, Quadrigarum is a group better experienced than listened to. Their songs bubble with a tense chaos. Discord squeals through their electronically thickened harmonies. But in the end, all the textures tones marry into an aural soup. That said, as shown above, their live show seems to brim with an energy drawn out of the electronics and traditional instruments. The group doesn’t rely on smoke and lights to throw facsimile of a performance.

And due to the Kansas City Psych Fest, a performance is not far off. Day 2 (Saturday October 11th) of the Psych Fest will feature Quadrigarum at the Recordbar. They go on at 7pm, but the day will be full of great music and musicians such as: Akkilles, Psychic Heat, Your Friend, Jorge Arana Trio, Three Water Moccasins and a whole slew of other great bands.

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