Monday, July 03, 2006

A look back at Pure

Here it is: the long-awaited (well, by some folks) podcast on the early-90s Asheville band Pure.

As I stated in the podcast, Pure put out a 7-inch record on Merge that seemingly everyone in North Carolina loved before mysteriously disappearing. Before putting this podcast together, I asked several folks I know if they knew anything at all about this band. The only info I got was from former Shiny Beast guitarist David Sullivan, who remembered playing a show with the band, and thought that one of the band members worked for Bob Moog. I did some more searching and eventually got in touch with Martin Beeler, the band's former guitar player, who then put me in touch with bass player Steve Dunnington and drummer Danni Iosello.

Following are bits from e-mails from the various band members. If you'd like to leave a message for the band, you can do so here in this blog, or you can e-mail me.

From Martin Beeler:
I played electronics, guitar, and Moog Rogue, in a
band called "Or" in Knoxville TN in the mid-late 90s.
Droney, noisy stuff. Or still exists in theory, but
probably only in theory. We last played a show around
X-mas two years ago, which consisted of a sort of
homage to Tony Conrad's "Outside the Dream Syndicate."

I have a couple of other projects underway, but
nothing worth speaking about yet.
Pure released that one single on Merge and a
self-released demo cassette (cassette!) that included
a couple of songs not on the single. That was it. I
believe we recorded a couple of additional studio
tracks, which Steve engineered -- he probably still
has the masters --, but never got around to releasing

(I have a bunch of live cassette recordings and some
4-track stuff, which I plan to post on my
cassette-only mp3 blog, once I get that going. I'll
let you know once I do, if you're interested.)

From Danni Iosello:
Martin wants me to tell you that after I quit Sisiters Of Mercy, I joined a
convent in Oswego.

Instead, after Pure, I
a) went to school at Chapel Hill
b) lived in Germany on a Fulbright
c) moved back to Chicago and joined the band Califone
d) later formed my current band, Sin Ropas, (
e) moved back to NC to a town called Marshall

5 steps cover 10 years.

From Steve Dunnington:
That’s funny – I still have a test pressing of that single lying around somewhere. Pure was my first “real” band – I was 19 when we started it. One of my recollections is passing up an opportunity to open for Nirvana in Charlotte (when they were touring to support Bleach) because I had a calculus exam the next day. I guess that’s not very “rock”, eh? I heard there were only 15 people who went to that show anyway ha ha ha. I got a B in that calculus class. There were so many nice people in NC around that time – and some really good bands – I remember really liking willard – I also remember playing w/ erectus monotone, polvo, emmanuel lewis flea circus, porn orchard. It was a really fun time to be in a band – except in Asheville, it was so sleepy back then you could walk around downtown on a weekend around 11:00 pm and it would be totally deserted.

Since then I finished college in 93– got a job working for Bob Moog at the end of 94 and have been doing that since. He died last year, which really sucks (he was a really fun and amazing guy) but the company’s still happening. I’m now helping to design new products. I played guitars and/or keyboards in a bunch of other bands after Pure none of which ever really did anything but we did have fun – let’s see – There was Snorebox, Valve, Spool, Chandelier Swingers, Tripod (not the metal version), Roberts Street Quartet, Sexpatriots. Now I do a thing called Soldadura – it’s mostly electronic noodly sort of stuff – kind of out there. We play out once every other year or so or not.

If I can find the cassette and a cassette machine that works, I have a Pure song that I recorded at UNCA that never saw the light of day. I have some other demos on cassette too. I also somewhere may have the original 4-track demo of “Senseless” that’s very different – it’s acoustic guitar, clarinet and synth burbles – recorded at the very first apartment I had in Asheville. (must have been the fall of 88). That would be fun to get out there and available.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Did you know that Danni dressed as Boy George in high school?