Flagpole Calendar Pick

September 29, 2010
Flagpole Magazine

Aux Vol. 2 CD Release
By Sydney Slotkin

The AUX Vol. 2 compilation celebrates its unveiling Sept. 30 at Little Kings with a roster of more than 20 of Athens’ finest musicians. In keeping with the AUX tenet of experimentation, each musician will play onstage for 25 minutes while others are rotated in and out every five minutes, so that each has a chance to improvise with 10 other people.

“People who aren’t used to playing together can have a chance to play together in a improvisational setting,” says event curator Heather McIntosh. “It won’t be a constant cacophony if people kind of follow the rules we set for them, like, listen to each other, be aware of them.”

The AUX Fest is a relatively young event for Athens, where artists of all media can come together to create experimental, complementary art. The fourth annual fest was held last April, and AUX has hosted intermittent special performances, like last fall’s well-attended Faust and Circulatory System show. Started as a collaboration between McIntosh and Mark Callahan of ICE, UGA’s creative arts program that researches and funds synergetic art, AUX became ground for experimentation in any art form.

This sort of scientific approach to creating art gives the compilation an altogether deeper and clearer feel that cuts through a little bit of the feedback circulating in Athens’ lower atmosphere. Special guests from AUX Fest 4, Mary Halvorson and Jessica Pavone, have a track on the compilation, a melancholy, baroque symphony of folksy guitar and mood-swinging violin. Another highlight is a new track from Olivia Tremor Control, the first new tune in a while from the E6 staple, and it sounds just as sweet as it ever did.

The compilation had been in the works for over two years, and now just felt like the right time of year, McIntosh says, to get people together. “We just want to party because we want everyone to see what we made.” Doors open at 9 p.m.; experimentation begins at 10 p.m.