Archives for live


NEW ALBUM: Dirty Knobs – Stone In Focus (Live at Northern Isolation II)

Stone In Focus (Live at Northern Isolation II)
by Dirty Knobs

An excerpt from the set recorded live at Northern Isolation II, Duluth, Minnesota on 8/21/2016.
Performance and recording by Zac Bentz (ASCAP)
Photo by Steph Bentz
Original by Aphex Twin

NEW ALBUM: Dirty Knobs – Live at the Red Room 7​-​23​-​2016

Live at the Red Room 7​-​23​-​2016
by Dirty Knobs

As part of the fundraiser for Northern Isolation II

NEW ALBUM: The Electric Witch – Live at Homegrown 2016

Live at Homegrown 2016
by The Electric Witch

Selected tracks recorded live at Pizza Luce Duluth, Minnesota, on May 7th, 2016, as a part of the Homegrown Music Festival.

Original photo by Kip Praslowicz.

The Electric Witch is:
Eric Anderson: Keyboards
Steph Bentz: Keyboards
Zac Bentz: Programming, Keyboards
Mary Bue: Vocals

4 and 5 featuring Marcus Matthews on vocal.

NEW ALBUM: Dirty Knobs – Live at Homegrown 2016

Live at Homegrown 2016
by Dirty Knobs

Recorded live at Amazing Grace Bakery & Cafe in Duluth, Minnesota, on May 7th, 2016, as a part of the Homegrown Music Festival.

Original photo by Steph Bentz.

Performed by Zac Bentz and Eric Anderson.

NEW ALBUM: The Surfactants – Live at Homegrown 2016

Live at Homegrown 2016
by The Surfactants

Recorded live at the Main Club in Superior, Wisconsin, on the night of May 5th, 2016, as a part of the Homegrown Music Festival.

Original photo by Starfire.

The Surfactants are:
Eric Anderson – Bass
Steph Bentz – Live Keyboards
Zac Bentz – Programming, Drums
Greg Cougar Conley – Guitar, Backing Vocals
Marcus Matthews – Vocals
Brett Molitor – Guitar

NEW ALBUM: Dirty Knobs – Live at the Marshall W. Alworth Planetarium 4​-​8​-​2016

Live at the Marshall W. Alworth Planetarium 4​-​8​-​2016
by Dirty Knobs
released April 10, 2016

©2016 Xero Music

Everything by Zac Bentz (ASCAP)

The Electric Witch and FREEZEPOP in Mpls, July 18th

The Electric Witch will be opening for the legendary (at least in OUR eyes and ears) synth-pop band FREEZEPOP on July 18th in Minneapolis! DETAILS!!

Dirty Knobs and The Electric Witch at Homegrown 2015

The 2015 Homegrown Music Festival schedule is out! Both Dirty Knobs and The Electric Witch will be playing on seperate nights, and TEW singer Mary Bue will also be playing her own music. Check the info below and we hope to see you out there:

Monday, April 27
Red Herring Lounge
5pm Opening reception for Homegrown Photo Show
5:30pm Tim Kaiser
>>6:30pm Dirty Knobs<<
8:15pm Superfly McFlash
9:15pm Lorenzo’s Tractor
10:15pm I Am the Slow Dancing Umbrella

Friday, May 1
Pizza Lucé
10:30pm Retribution Gospel Choir
>>11:30pm Mary Bue<<
12:30am WOLF BLOOD

Saturday, May 2
Duluth Flame Nightclub
10:15pm Danecdote
11:15pm The Horror
>>12:15am The Electric Witch<<

Top 9 Xero Music Albums of 2014

As the year draws to a close and as the vast Minnesota wastes slowly slip into a long period of frozen stasis, we thought it was a good time to look back at what this year has delivered. From the 12 hour long The Hermit Seeks the Stillness from Dirty Knobs to the dreamy, gloomy electro-pop We See the Shapes from The Electric Witch, it’s been a strange year, to say the least. So while we go put the kettle on and light some fires, here’s the Top 9 Xero Music Albums of 2014 in a totally subjective order. (And yes, that is in fact all of the Xero Music albums of 2014.)

#9: Dirty Knobs – Live at Drone Not Drones 2 8 14

Recorded direct from the stage during the DRONE NOT DRONES 28 hour live show at the Cedar Cultural Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota on February 8th, 2014. This was right in the middle of one of the must brutal Minnesota winters on record. I remember it being around -20F outside at the time. My hands were so dry, cracked and bleeding that after I got back from the show it looked like I had gotten in a fist fight. Keep that in mind while you listen. And you can get the entire 28 hour long show here, with all the proceeds going to a good cause.

#8: Dirty Knobs – Amusia: 2000​-​2004

This is a collection of early Dirty Knobs recordings, taken from various albums. Some of these tracks are already over 14 years old, but much of the spirit will be recognizable in all of this year’s recordings.

#7: Dirty Knobs – Descent Ascent Dissolution – Live at Homegrown 2014

This was recorded live in Duluth, MN at the annual Homegrown Music festival (as well as live in-studio). 2014 was a very busy year for DK live. I’ve played a dozen Homegrowns, but this was the first proper DK show in my hometown. As you will see, it would not be the last.

#6: Dirty Knobs – The Zeitgeist Experiments

Let’s just get the last collection of live albums out of the way. The Zeitgeist Experiments was a series of live shows I put together over a four month period at Teatro Zuccone. It was a very fun time and we met some amazing fans of whatever it is you want to call what it is we do. I hope to be bringing it back again sometime next year, so keep an eye out.

#5: Dirty Knobs – Trees at Sea

This one marks a bit of a change, at least in my mind, to the direction of Dirty Knobs. Taking a bit of the techniques used on last year’s more traditionally song-like BEDLAM album, it was a larval stage for what would become the next proper DK album The Hermit Seeks the Stillness. It was also made while developing the live show and also has a bit of that tossed in.

#4: Dirty Knobs – I Want to Live Inside the Sun

This was the first release of 2014, during the aforementioned Most Terrible Winter Of All Times. Life can be a struggle when then environment is more hostile than the surface of Mars. But we find a way…

#3: Dirty Knobs – Welcome to the Terrordrone

And this is the last release of 2014. It seems as though winter brings out either the most hopeless or the most aggressive tendencies. This is the latter. And also where things will be going to for foreseeable future, again with the hopes of bringing this new, distorted and thrumming aggression to the stage.

#2: The Electric Witch – We See the Shapes

Somehow this was the only thing The Electric Witch managed to release this year. But then we did focus entirely on our live show and had to say goodbye to singer Marcus Matthews when he departed to a new life in California. (Turns out that decades of miserable weather isn’t for everyone.) But we did say hello to our new singer Mary Bue, and our time with her has already been fantastic. New music is being worked on, but for now our live show continues to be the priority. We hope to see you soon.

#1: Dirty Knobs – The Hermit Seeks the Stillness

Of course the 12 hour long album had to be number one. This was truly a grueling project. At first I didn’t even know what it was. It was just a Thing That Had To Be Done. About mid-way into these explorations I read the story of the North Pond Hermit and there it was. This was all about finding that place away from everything. Those perfect moments of stillness. These songs were meant to be a space for those moments to live and expand.

Thanks to everyone who has supported Dirty Knobs, The Electric Witch and all that is Xero Music this past year. Getting this music onto the stage has become a high priority, so the studio work may slow a bit. But rest assured that much more is on the way. Watch this space.

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New Album: Dirty Knobs – The Zeitgeist Experiments

Over the past four months I’ve curated a night of experimental music titled The Zeitgeist Experiments at Teatro Zuccone in Duluth, Minnesota. Two of the tracks here are examples of my live sets, one recorded from the stage on the night and one recorded in the studio as preparation for the following live performance (which was not recorded, unfortunately). I’ve also included an out-take of sorts from the recently released 12 hour album The Hermit Seeks the Stillness.

More information about The Zeitgeist Experiments can be found through various links here.

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