alien creatures in discord with existence: white cube, h. de heutz, mark molnar


“I’m against the colonization of space.”
– Aaron Vansintjan

Continuing in the tangent of exploring sonic textures, Ottawa/Gatineau-based duo H. de Heutz took the stage after Mark Molnar. Bassist Nathan Medema and percussionist Olivier Fairfield imploded with industrial, militant aggression. Out of the hallucinatory loops and reverb, H. de Heutz constructed geometric patterns, and affected the audience with their characteristically startling contrasts. The interruption and isolation of sounds that H. de Heutz featured prominently in their set left a palpable, bodily effect. Against Fairfield’s hyper-controlled, sharp percussion, Medema’s bass reverberated into a haze, created agitation even when it seemed like songs might have a hook to find some comfort in. This undertow of distress was intermittently punctuated by an unidentifiable presence of what alternately seemed like a hovering chant, and a mystical drone, emerging from the chaos like the low hum revealed by acid.

Unlike Molnar, H. de Heutz explored non-musical elements not so much in the spaces around sound, but rather in the discovery of voice within anarchic sonic collage. Medema and Fairfield alternated between singing and speech, making the human voice seem displaced. Later after the show, Medema remarked on the conspicuousness of one of the only audible lyrics,that being the urge for “a fist through a wall” against the subtly sensual track “Of little or loss”.


“Everything is coming through clear now,” came the desperate but harmonic cries of Brooks and Langer, rapidly communicating against extraterrestrial synth. “Can you hear me?” she demands. “I hear you.”

The band’s fascination with temporality and atmosphere, a characteristic shared by all of the night’s performers, was evident in the changing bodies of instrumental sound and vocals. Non-musical qualities of voice were once again a prominent theme, disembodied against an electronic drone that alluded to a greater, more sinister void. This disquiet unfolded through the use of what Brooks described as encountered sound, in a mantra proclaiming, “I saw twelve roses for $19.99.” The absurd, abandoned, alien fragments of what might have easily been speech collected out of the streets, gave significance to the useless.

“What do I do with that?”

“I saw 12 roses.”

“What do I do with that?”

“I saw 12 roses for…”

“What do I…”

“12 roses…”

“…do I do…”

“12 roses for $19.99.”

“What do I do with that?”

“Don’t lose your nerve.”


“What is it we’ve been saying?”