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Percussion Show Transforms Cave

February 4, 2004
Three industrial barrels, clothes racks, a variety of power saws and jumper cables are all instruments for the unconvential percussion ensemble Savage Aural Hotbed. Arriving at the Cave last Friday, the stage was transformed into a unique performance space filled with recycled, found and often simply strange instruments that spilled onto the dance floor.

Savage Aural Hotbed, composed of members Mark Black, Stuart DeVaan, Dean Hawthorne and Bill Melton, has performed their ecclectic percussion sets nationwide, attracting audiences to their immersive shows that have drawn critical acclaim like that from the Twin Cities Reader, "…Even a smoldering power-tool became a fitting prop for these industrial rhythm-a-tists…they abuse oil drums, sheet metal, and PVC tubing in a most immaculate manner."

Often compared to the Broadway show "Stomp," the group has been featured on National Public Radio and Minnesota Public Television and Radio. The group also holds workshops throughout the country on finding, making and composing from "found object" instruments.

At the Cave, students were given an upclose experience with the groups' explosive stage show. Blue strobe lights flashed, sparks from a nearby grinder headed toward the ceiling, and 40-gallon barrels resonated in a pulsing beat, rattling the walls of the Cave and prompting impressed cheers from Carls lucky enough to watch the act.

Written by Scott Vignos '06