Space Holiday: Dance Machine
story by tim mcmahan
Lazy-i: Sept. 29, 2004
Her Space Holiday
w/ Daedelus, Neotropic, & Octavius
Sunday, Oct. 3
13th & Martha
Her Space Holiday mastermind
Marc Bianchi promises a more "bombastic" show than the
last time he came through Omaha, way back in October 2000 as the
opening act for a then-little known local musician who goes by the
name Bright Eyes.
Back then, in the smoky, stale confines of Sokol Underground, Her
Space Holiday's performance consisted of Bianchi and his girlfriend,
Keely, sitting behind a couple keyboards, oblivious to the world
as they leaned forward to their microphones cooing to a crowd of
akimbo-sitting youngsters with heads craned to the stage, mesmerized.
"The live show is very different now," said Bianchi as
he drove across the hinterland between Montreal and Toronto on the
way to his next tour stop. "Keely isn't part of the live show
anymore. We'll have a live drummer and bass player, and I'll go
back and forth between guitar and keyboards. Some of the main elements
have been revamped. It's a little more bombastic."
The new approach reflects Her Space
Holiday's subtle shift in sound on The Young Machines, Bianchi's
latest CD released on LA-based electronic hip-hop label Mush Records
in September 2003. Whereas his music used to have a denser, almost
Jesus and Mary Chain appeal, The Young Machines is sonically
closer to the blip-pop heard on the last Postal Service CD. Bianchi's
warm, breathy croon floats like vapor over a jagged, bumpy layer
of electronic cacophony; quietly, calmly telling us the story of
And make no mistake about it, it is his life. He doesn't deny that
the words are drawn from personal experiences. "All my songs
are autobiographical," he proudly declares. Songs like the
perfect, piano-driven "Sleepy California," where Bianchi
reads us a musical, home-sick letter to his mother. "I never
thought I'd say this but I miss my mom / Even though for all those
years we didn't get along / And when I stop to think about it I
guess we were the same / Too stubborn to apologize, too filled up
The song goes on to tell about a Christmas-day phone call informing
him that his grandmother is dying "in a painful way,"
and about how, despite being able to, he never visited her before
song was about stuff that happened right before my quick departure,
and about how, as things get bigger, I'm losing touch with
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I go to shows -- even to something I'm completely blown away
by -- I just stand there and take it all in."
"People in their late-20s blame
their geographic location for everything," Bianchi explained.
"I fell under that assumption, too. When I was living in California
I thought moving to Austin was the answer. That song was about stuff
that happened right before my quick departure, and about how, as
things get bigger, I'm losing touch with my family. But more so,
it's really just me saying. 'What's up, mom?'"
Though "Sleepy California" is a sad, lonely song steeped
in regret, it sure has a good beat. Bianchi hopes that while the
crowd takes in the meaning, they still feel like dancing. And that's
where the new band comes in. "I wanted to give people a more
enjoyable, engaging experience," he said. "I used to dread
touring, but now it's more like playing with friends. And the tour
is useful not only to sell records, but to get people closer to
Still, if you don't feel like dancing, that's all right with him.
Bianchi knows where you stand-and-stare types are coming from. He's
not the dancing type, either.
"When I go to shows -- even to something I'm completely blown
away by -- I just stand there and take it all in," he said.
"It doesn't mean I'm not having a good time. You have to let
people do what they want to do. I'd rather have them focus on each
other than what I'm doing on stage. We want the show to be a loose
night on the town. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't."
Published in The Omaha Reader Sept. 29, 2004.
Copyright © 2004 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.