Words by Aaron Fortin and Wesley Hodges

*Download or stream the show courtesy of MacDaddy at Archive.org. Thank you tapers!

Last night as part of ’s month-long, five-show Wednesday Residency @MintLA, Guitar God () and bassist (/Minutemen/Stooges) joined in alongside (bassist – Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros / ), drummer and Abby Travis (/Bangles/ of Death Metal) for a little rock and roll-post-punk-psych-jazz-awesomeness.

The show took a little while to get to the stratospheric proportions it would achieve in the second set and began with a brief solo mini-set by the resident. McFadden showed a great deal of stylistic range and a quiksilver style of playing seldom heard on a classical guitar. Although no nylon strings were harmed in the performance, EMAC sure tried. After a heavy and poignant cover of ’s “Blight”, and his randomly-strewn pedal setup made its way onto stage the night completely blasted off.

It should be noted that the night’s constants were McFadden and drummer , a dynamic duo who managed to lock down the sound like a well-traveled / band, despite constant lineup changes throughout the show. MINTMikeWattMcFadden joined the fray at the beginning of the second set and basically stole the show, entering the stage with a thunderous swagger, throwing down the proverbial gauntlet and pretty much vanishing from the scene in a flash – exiting mid-set in true rocker fashion. Nels and Watt’s history of playing together in certainly helped make their chemistry a veritable force to behold, especially when the band busted into the gargantuan “Maggot Brain” (Nels Cline would later tell us the last time he performed it was with McFadden a couple years back at ). On the list of songs we’d like to see Nels Cline cover in person, the classic tune lists pretty damn high and McFadden, Bisquera, Ford-Young and Nels absolutely torched it, infusing the post-1 am crowd with a palpable, visceral energy (accompanied by apropos visuals on-stage by live painter Norton Wisdom).

Everyone who stayed for the encore had to pick their melted faces from the floor. Everyone we spoke to acknowledged that this was a one-off to remember and luckily there were plenty of cameras and multiple taping sources to document this special night of live music. The cover is top-shelf/a must-hear so be sure to check out the stream link up top!


During the show painter Norton Wisdom offered a visual feast for the eyes, live painting several brilliant and ephemeral (i.e. wiped clean upon completion) pieces throughout the four-hour show. You’ve never seen live concert painting quite like this! Oh, and was in attendance as well as three members of who had just taped a performance on O’Brien. Random, but awesome. Only in LA!

Norton Wisdom Live Paints @MintLA. Photo by Wesley Hodges
Norton Wisdom Live Paints @. Photo by Wesley Hodges

Here are some of Wesley Hodges photos from one of the best second sets I’ve seen at the Mint in a long time!

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