"Where's Thurston Moore?"
That is the question we've been asking each other since the Sonic Youth frontman and South Florida native was first spotted at nontraditional art spaces around town during Art Basel Miami Beach week.
On Thursday morning, Moore visited the art studio of Holly Hunt's Beatriz Monteavaro and Gavin Perry with Miami noise legend Rat Bastard. That night, he performed at the Gusman, a theater where his mom first saw Gone with the Wind. Then Friday night, word was Rat might be bringing Moore to the house show of Greg and Eddy Alvarez, two of the three that make up the Jellyfish Brothers.
And the rumors were, as often rumors are, true.
The Jellyfish Bros were performing in their studio apartment when Moore showed up. Next was incredible Japanese all-girl act ZZZ. Then it was time for the pornography-screening, sax-playing, goggle-wearing restauranteur Kenny Millions. He was joined by Rat, Moore, Steven Bristol on drums, and Kramer, formerly of Bongwater and ShimmyDisk's, on bass.
They played at least two long segments of a cacophonous orchestra. The audience antagonized the performers with sporadic pit action, especially Kenny, who bore the brunt of their aggression.
Rat seemed in a euphoric state. Moore was also in his own world. Bristol looked happy as a cliched pig in poo, the bass guitarist took breaks to sit on the speakers and hung his instrument from the rafters. Roy Hunter of the experimental pop band Ice Cream used those same bars to jungle gym it into the pit. A Christmas light interaction with a ceiling fan caused sparks to literally fly.
MonstrO guitarist Juan Montoya and DJ Alex Caso were in attendance, as were an assortment of musicians, people in band tees, Japanese girls, old guys, and gutter punks. Moore was on his knees, messing with pedals during the second song when Kenny Millions was tackled and thrown around the room by a rowdy crowd like a perverted teddy bear.
After the madness, there was more madness with Crucial Taunt, who'd just come from the Spin party at Wynwood's newest bar Gramps, to make more angry noise at the Jelly's place. Drummer Max (Michele Kane) rested her legs on the bass drum while she pounded away with her sticks. Autumn Casey yelled into the mic and bounced around while Luciano Guidini cockily sauntered up to people in the crowd, setting his instrument on people's bodies.
Moore watched on approvingly, or so it seemed, though he mighta made a funny face when Guidini blew snot rockets into the mic. People left Moore alone for a short period, then attacked him with fanboy/girl conversations. He signed one guy's Sonic Youth jacket "love life." The Cost closed out the night and somewhere in there, Moore must have left to go back to loving life elsewhere.
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On a personal note: While photographing with my iPhone and videotaping with my camera at the same time (yes, that's what I did), my glasses got knocked off. I spent like two minutes on all fours trying to find them in the dark. It took forever and a head hit or two for someone to help me retrieve them. Thank you to that person, and the rest of you... Not nice.
Oh, and this was the most awesome thing I've seen, maybe ever.