Lydia Lunch bringing ‘Retro/Virus’ party to Knitting Factory
Lydia w/ TJ&TJ at MHOW in 2009 (more by Lori Baily)
I mean that’s why I call it the retro-virus. Because, I mean, you know, & I guess it started… I’ve lived in so many cities, I’ve worked with so many incredible collaborators, I’ve done so many different kinds of things & here we are back at the beginning. Um, uh, & I guess it started with Scott Crary who did this documentary about, I dunno, 6 or 7 years ago called Kill Your Idols. He’d been asking me for months, could I please be part of this, & I just like, I don’t wanna talk about, you know it’s done for me, I don’t even remember, you know, my memory is shot out, my memory banks have been flooded. There’s nothing there but filth, it’s gone. And um, finally he made his point with how he was so disappointed with the music that was going on at that point in New York that he just, I had to come in & be his mouthpiece. And like, you know, all right, there again is my duty. My duty to be the aggravator. To be the instigator. And um, I don’t even know what your question was, oh god (laughs). The retro-virus! So that’s when I started terming it the retro-virus. It’s like, you know it just started to pick up momentum, I mean this movement that at the time was so immediate & so short-lived & had such a small audience. But I think part of the attraction to that period, the no-wave period in New York is the sense of community that really, you can’t plan that, there was a real sense of community, even if there were different… you know I always felt outside of every community anyway, I always felt no matter who I’m collaborating with or what city I’m living in, I’m still somehow, maybe because I occupy my own universe, I still feel outside of everything, um, & just a small part of whatever’s going on no matter how much of a cattle-prodder or an instigator, uh, that you wanna blame me for being, um, but I think that sense of community, & also the sense that it wasn’t just musicians, there were a lot of painters, there were a lot of filmmakers, there were graffiti artists, there were poets. To me, if anything should be the song sung to that period is that it was such a collective of different, differing types of creative people brought to this asshole of the universe, New York, bankrupt, brutal, ugly, dirty, all forged to create or go insane. And I think that the most important aspect of it was not necessarily the music that came out but that, um, so many different kinds of creativity were hatched at that point. I think with the domination of music which, or the segregation in America especially, you know like, here’s music, here’s photography, you know in Europe it’s different, they just consider whatever you do creatively is all part of this cultural respected field & in America everything is so separated. And at that period it wasn’t. I think that’s the most important part of what came out of that at that time. – Lydia Lunch
The above quote is no wave legend Lydia Lunch (who was a member of Teenage Jesus and the Jerks, has collaborated with Sonic Youth, Nick Cave, Rowland S. Howard, Michael Gira and many others, and has a lengthy solo career) explaining her concept of “retro-virus,” which in addition to describing the no wave community, is the name of her party which she’ll be throwing in NYC at Knitting Factory on November 15. She’ll be bringing out some of her friends (TBD) to play with her — no word yet on who they might be. Tickets for the Knitting Factory show are on sale now.
A list of all dates and some recent live videos of Lydia with her current band, Big Sexy Noise, and her spoken word shows are below.
Big Sexy Noise in Paris – 5/26/12
Big Sexy Noise – “Kill Your Sons” (Lou Reed cover) in Glasgow – 6/28/12
Lydia Lunch Spoken Word in Berlin – 3/15/12
Lydia Lunch — 2012-2013 Tour Dates
11/15/12 Knitting Factory Brooklyn, NY
11/23/12 Festival Invisible Brest, France
11/24/12 I Boat Bordeaux, France
02/17/13 Stereo Glasgow, UK w/ Big Sexy Noise