Photo taken at Moog Music by Erin Brethauer
Asheville Citizen Times: written by Michael Flynn
Many people still associate Asheville with old-time and acoustic music, but electronica has developed a deep following in the city.
“It’s been on the rise for at least the last 10 years,” says Paper Tiger singer Molly Kummerle (aka RubySlippers), talking to take5 after a class session on Ableton mixing technology. “There’s a huge electronic scene about to pop.”
Existing fans and those interested in the genre should hit the Emerald Lounge on Saturday, as Paper Tiger and Chattanooga, Tenn.’s Digital Butter bring a beat fest to the Lexington Avenue venue that includes DJ sets from Mike McBride (Peripheral) and Kummerle herself.
A seductive blend of Kummerle’s jazzy vocals and Isaac Gottfried’s mellow trip-hop grooves, Paper Tiger released its debut CD last January. After several years of performing, Gottfried (MINGLE) has decided to stick to production with the group, so Paper Tiger’s live show now features revamped sets and remixed samples.
“A live show never stops growing — you always find better ways to do things,” Kummerle says. Behind her smooth vocals Saturday will be Dave Mathes (Madlock) on drums, McBride on keys and samples, Ben Mason (neb.Cinema) on visual production, and guests such as Chuck Lichtenberger on melodica.
The evening plugs in at 10 p.m. with Peripheral’s DJ set. His mix of serene melody and thick rhythm has drawn notice, including top honors in the initial Moogfest remix contest. “He is an incredible producer — his original content is amazing,” Kummerle says.
At 10:30 p.m., Digital Butter takes over, marking its first show in Asheville. Featuring, as Kummerle says, “a skinny white guy, a drummer and a gorgeous front woman,” the trio is Becky Ribeiro (Bexy), on vocals and trumpet, Adam Staudacher (SKiNNYiLL) on production and bass, and Hunter White (H-note) on drums. “We’ve wanted to bring them for a long time,” Kummerle says. “It’s such a sultry, R&B, edgy electronic sound. It’s really catchy.”
After Paper Tiger’s midnight performance, Kummerle wraps the show at 1 a.m. with her debut DJ set under the moniker Molly Parti. Mixing samples through a MIDI controller is another outlet for her to explore the sonic possibilities of electronic music. “It seems to fit me more than anything else I’ve done,” Kummerle says about electronica. “This is the opportunity to play and have fun.”
In the wake of Moogfest’s big crowds and the instrument maker’s move downtown, look for the local electronic scene to keep growing, Kummerle says. That includes a new Paper Tiger disc next year. “We’re six or seven songs into a new record,” she notes. “We’re all still working on music all the time.”
Flynn writes about entertainment for take5. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.