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Nomenclature matters. A stated name is often where the flow of information begins. A grouping of titles, pointedly labeled, furthers the flow. But how this and so much other cumulative information is interpreted — and indeed, what actually happens to it along the way, not to mention the multifarious bypassed possibilities — all such issues involve great uncertainty. One must make of it what one will, can — or won’t, as it were …

San Diego-based modern music-makers Aspects of Physics are not, as the name might (to some) imply, fixated on considerations of said field of science. No. “Physics” here refers to the SD group of seven years (fore)running, formed in 1993, that exhibited a distinct unhurried minimalism, blending organic rock tropes and electronic elements in a slew of slow-cooked stews.

Comparisons to storied Krautrock acts were inevitably drawn but Physics was its own beast, at once loud and subtle, lumbering on to the new millennium with both membership modifications — e.g., the still-mourned 1994 demise of sensitive soul Denver Lucas — and constants. (Rob Crow [Pinback, Goblin Cock, Optiganally Yours, Thingy, Heavy Vegetable et al.] is said to have never really been officially enlisted, but when he consistently showed up guitar-in-hand to make valued contributions at his Physics pals’ gatherings, he became an assumed, enduring part of the equation.)

Emerging in 2000, Aspects of Physics was simply a shifting development of core musical ideas and reduced personnel. With some humorous understatement that already might belie impressions of over-seriousness gained from contemplating their heady moniker, the AoP guys transcribe the transition:

“Physics was six people, no one in charge, trying to play music together — originally, 45 minutes on one chord; later, ten minutes on on riff, four times in a row. Physics broke up under is own weight and we wanted to continue but start using computers and go into new territory. More computers/less people. And originally, more IDM/less rock, though in recent years that balance has shifted back and forth depending on the focus of the release and live performance needs of players involved.”

Following AoP’s 2002 debut album Systems of Social Recalibration, 2004 saw the launch of their Marginalized Information Forms series, an eventual trilogy conceived by AoP principals Jason Soares and JFRE “Robot” Coad. It collectively offers a “triperspectival” strategy in helping to discern, roughly, what we know, how we know what we know, can we trust what we know given where it comes from (perhaps unknown — which we should try to know …), and which factors come into play on all sides of this.

The sound of MIF One: Ping was a merging of electronics with guitars, the objective being to convey a “human experience/observer” feel. Judiciously limited use of the stringed instrument with synthesizers, computers and altered electronic devices did indeed combine into a collection of experimental yet melodic soundscapes; it was a more circuit-board-driven take on some ideas going back to Physics days (with former members of same contributing).

2007 brought the trilogy’s second installment with MIF Two: Cummulative ErRror, an all-electronic effort from just Coad and Soares, exploring the “medium/carrier/vessel” role with well-wrought tracks ranging from the ambiently adventurous to catchy glitch-pop, some oozing a curious species of machine funk (see title track and “Blipsklippel”). Unfortunately, Cummulative ErRror was a low-profile release — for one thing, it didn’t benefit from the exposure that Ping got when AoP toured earlier this decade opening for Pinback, etc. — and its discreet charms deserve some retroactive engagement.

Finally, July of 2009 marks the release of the Marginalized Information Forms endeavor’s closing chapter. MIF Three: Other, focuses on matters of an “actual/source” nature with three guitars, sundry synths and computers and, significantly, live drums. Coad, Soares and Rob Crow are joined by veteran San Diego trapsman Arturo Ulloa III (Physics proper, Chune, Violador[a], HorseFuck, Napo, etc.), who delivers on record the tricky pacing featured in recent years in Aspects of Physics’ live shows. (Indeed, a track like the disc’s “That Which Resists,” with its warmly entrancing wash of sonic waves, suggests a live band at play, steadily unfolding its undeniable audio allure.)

It’s not so much a return to the earlier Physics sound as an evolved appreciation of it, a refinement and advance — and something that still sounds unto itself … Yes, even with an acknowledged point in all those comparisons to — invoking alphabetical randomness here — Aphex Twin, Autechre, Battles, Can, Four Tet, Fridge, Mogwai, Neu!, Schulze, Slint, Squarepusher, Stockhausen, Tangerine Dream, Tortoise …

“Ideally, we would be a perfect mix of rock, electronic, experimental, punk …” confirm the Aspects of Physics folk. “We’re a multi-tiered project. Going between more rock-like live performances, music for the recorded experience — music where the recording is the music — along with video and visual and art and philosophy.” (Aside from being the designated “AoP mascot” and mastermind behind the AoP alter ego/side project “w0rkf0rce,” veteran veejay Matt Lorenz [Three Mile Pilot, etc.] warrants laudable mention for his important visual [and more] input as a team player. And additionally notable, all of the other AoP-eople have aesthetically-oriented [a]vocations: Coad is a visual artist [www.landfillgraphics.com]; Soares is also a visual artist and computer programmer/internet blaster; Ulloa is an esteemed glass-blower; Crow believes one can never start/play in too many bands …)

All this/that put them in a position to produce a sequence of interrelated collective statements on information flow with a potentially far-reaching resonance — observations in sound that may be more or less abstract depending on perspective and perceived meaning.

“In conceiving the Marginalized Information Forms, we realized we were making music all over the spectrum so we decided to group similar tracks onto separate listenable albums with three different, though somewhat overlapping, themes. Thus, by name, MIF 1, 2, 3.”

Utilizing a diverse array of machinery and programming is part of how they do it.

“We’ve managed to amass quite a collection of useful and not so useful equipment over the years: from home-made, circuit-bent, custom software, vintage synths, laptops, electronic drums & gadgets, to the more traditional guitar and drum variety…”

And, of course, no matter what something is supposed to sound like — say, what the name you know that item by implies it should sound like, etc., etc. — Aspects of Physics make a point of breaking up that conventional information flow themselves to creatively communicate.

“We always look for a piece of equipment or software’s unintended use: what can it do, that is unique to itself, that will produce something unexpected and useful, when used in a non-standard way.”

So …

Really, it’s almost never “all in the name” after all. Info is a slippery pup, a dicey prop. And any assemblage of verbiage should be carefully considered for accuracy, intent, and so on; seeking out some appropriate Marginalized Information Forms may help …

Timeline

Bread & Salt

October 8, 2016
Bread & Salt

The Tin Can

September 22, 2010
The Tin Can

Aspects of Physics, Felt Drawings (LA), Great Willow (SF), Shimomitsu Encore presentation of aop’s space4art set that never happened & (therefore) first live band set in over a year!! + we will be giving away all of our PHYSICS & AOP MERCH FREE! Tshirts, Vinyl, CDs, etc. first come first serve.. come by and check out familiar and unknown musix!!

The Whistlestop

June 9, 2009
The Whistlestop

MIF3 CD Release Party

The Casbah

October 6, 2007
The Casbah

aop live at casbah w/ sleeping people and kill me tomorrow sat oct 6th  

Tower Bar

August 31, 2007
Tower Bar

Museum Of Contemporary Art

February 1, 2007
Museum Of Contemporary Art

TNT (THURSDAY NIGHT THING)

San Diego Sports Club

August 4, 2006

with: Atomic Bomb Audition (oakland), Bill Wesley San Diego, CA  

Whistle Stop Bar

July 14, 2006

with: SSI San Diego, CA

Ken Club

June 30, 2005

with: Sleeping People / Alpha Males San Diego, CA

Casbah

June 15, 2005

with: Red Sparowes (members of Isis, Neurosis, Pleasure Forever), Skull Skull San Diego, CA

Detroit Bar

April 23, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Costa Mesa, CA

Belly Up Tavern

April 22, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Solana Beach, CA

Knitting Factory LA

April 21, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Los Angeles, CA

Howie & Sons Pizza

April 20, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Visalia, CA

The Independent

April 19, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok San Francisco, CA

Saturday Media Club

April 16, 2005

with: Manuok Bellingham, WA

Neumos

April 15, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Seattle, WA

The Doug Fir

April 14, 2005

with: The Album Leaf, Manuok Portland, OR

Bottom of the Hill

April 9, 2005

with: Rob Crow (My Band Is A Mess), Adam Green San Francisco, CA

the Ramp

April 8, 2005

with: Rob Crow (My Band Is A Mess), Pidgeon Oakland, CA 219 E. 15th Street

Whistle Stop Bar

November 21, 2004

South Park, San Diego keep it like a secret…

Trees

November 12, 2004

wwith: Pinback 2709 Elm Street Dallas, TX

The Opolis

November 11, 2004

with: Pinback 113 N. Crawford Ave Norman, OK

Dickson Theatre

November 10, 2004

with: Pinback 227 W. Dickson Fayetteville, AR

Triple Rock Social Club

November 8, 2004

with: Pinback, The Lacerati 629 Cedar Ave South Minneapolis, MN

Metro

November 7, 2004

with: Pinback, Earlimart 3730 N Clark Chicago, IL

High Dive

November 5, 2004

with: Pinback, Earlimart 51 Main Street Champaign, IL

Little Brothers

November 4, 2004

with: Pinback, Earlimart 1100 N High Street Columbus, OH

Blind Pig

November 3, 2004

with: Pinback, Earlimart 208 South First Street Ann Arbor, MI

Headliners Music Hall

November 2, 2004

with: Pinback, Earlimart 1366 Lexington Road Louisville, KY

The Mercy Lounge

November 1, 2004

with: Pinback One Cannery Row Nashville, TN

State Theater

October 30, 2004

with: Pinback, Laketrout 887 Central Avenue St Petersburg, FL

I/O

October 29, 2004

with: Pinback 30 NE 14th St Miami, FL

The Social

October 28, 2004

with: Pinback 54 N Orange Ave Orlando, FL

Vinyl

October 27, 2004

with: Pinback 1374 West Peachtree Atlanta, GA

Cat's Cradle

October 26, 2004

with: Pinback, Mates Of State 300 E Main Street Carrboro, NC

Black Cat

October 25, 2004

with: Pinback, Mates Of State 1811 14th Street NW Washington DC

North Six

October 23, 2004

Brooklyn, NY

Ottobar

October 22, 2004

with: Pinback, Mates Of State 2549 N. Howard Street Baltimore, MD

Beyond Nightclub

October 21, 2004

with: Pinback, Mates Of State 801 Callow Hill Philadelphia, PA

San Diego Contemporary Museum of Art

October 7, 2004

with: Liz Janes, Castanetes Downtown, San Diego (TNT) Thrusday Night Thing

Belly Up

October 6, 2004

with: Pinback Solana Beach, CA

Knitting Factory

March 19, 2004

with: Slo-Ro of Soul Junk, Bizzart (in Support of Ear Drunging Tour), Create (!), Thavius Beck (Mush Records) Los Angeles

Casbah

December 21, 2003

with: Pinback San Diego, CA

El Rey Theatre

December 19, 2003

with: Pinback, Van Stone Los Angeles, CA Someone hated us so bad they shut the power off!!!

Slim's

December 18, 2003

with: Pinback San Francisco, CA

Showbox Showroom

December 16, 2003

with: Pinback Seattle, WA

Aladdin Theater

December 15, 2003

with: Pinback Portland, OR

Starry Plough

December 13, 2003

with: Pinback Berkeley, CA

Hard To Find Showspace

December 12, 2003

with: Pinback Goleta, CA

Glasshouse

December 11, 2003

with: Pinback Pomona, CA

Nita's Hideaway

December 10, 2003

with: Pinback Tempe, AZ

Plush

December 9, 2003

with: Pinback Tucson, AZ

The Scene

November 30, 2003

with: Pinback San Diego, CA

North Six

October 19, 2003

with: Kurt Ralske & Lukasz Lysakowski, Grandpa’s Ghost Brooklyn, NY Part of the New York Underground Film Festival First Annual “AUDIO/VISUAL.”

Voltaire St

September 6, 2003

Ocean Beach pointsofaction (audio and visual installations+) –> audience-of-(n)one –> midi-web –> laser-yard-break –> speak-n-destroytable

Scolaris' Office

August 2, 2003

with: Tarantula Hawk and Tourette’s Lautrec San Diego

The Ramp

July 12, 2003

with: Saxon Shore and Map Berkeley, CA 2236 Parker Street, Berkeley

The Casbah

June 26, 2003

with: pleaseeasaur and soul-junk San Diego (Middletown)

Gelato Vero Cafe

October 24, 2002

San Diego, CA Art opening / conclusion of artwork presented by Jason Soares. Also featured this night will videos by Aspects Of Physics. Opening: 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm Videos: 8:00 pm

Casbah

October 17, 2002

with: Do Make Say Think, Fly Pan Am San Diego, CA

Museum Of Contemporary Art San Diego (Downtown)

October 3, 2002

San Diego, CA part of TNT (Thursday Night Thing)

Brass City Records

September 4, 2002

with: iso, afikomen, and the wind-up Waterbury, CT 489 Meadow St. Waterbury, CT 06072 (203)574-7805

Sound and Fury Records

September 1, 2002

Manhatten, NY

Patio Show

September 1, 2002

Brooklyn, NY

Hearing Problems

August 30, 2002

with: landed and sawsall Providence, RI Hearing Problems is in the Atlantic Mills building located at 122 Manton Ave in the second tower

Blackbird

August 9, 2002

with: lesser / sagan* Portland, Oregon NULL West coast tour *sagan (j lesser, bLevin bLectum & ryan junell))

The Baltic Room

August 7, 2002

with: lesser / sagan* Seattle, Washington This will be aspects of physics seattle cd release party. *sagan (j lesser, bLevin bLectum & ryan junell))

Pencil Tit

August 4, 2002

with: lesser and Curcuit 3957 San Leandro St, Oakland CA

Brisbane Powerhouse Centre for the Live Arts

August 1, 2002

with: The Cathedral Band web broadcast from San Diego to Australia Between July 26th and August 3rd William Duckworth will be presenting MINI[]MAX. Four concert-webcasts of this ?interactive edifice of the 21st century? share the Powerhouse stage with a kind of retrospective of his work and that of colleagues associated with him, several of whom come to Australia for the first time as members of ?The Cathedral

the Sushi Community Space at the ReinCarnation Project

July 12, 2002

with: lesser / sagan* downtown, san diego between J and K streets San Diego cd release party for “systems of social recalibration”. *sagan (j lesser, bLevin bLectum & ryan junell)

The Lounge/KPBS

July 11, 2002

San Diego, CA (89.5 FM) – show starts at 6:30pm

Loudspeaker/91X

July 8, 2002

San Diego, CA (91.1 FM) – show starts at midnight

The Fold

May 16, 2002

with: plastiq phantom, diagram of suburban chaos, halicon, the snodgrass, calculator man & hangar, johnny kawasaki [djs on strike] Los Angeles, CA imputor? – SPECIAL 1.5-YEAR ANNIVERSARY REUNION WORLD TOUR

The Juke Joint Cafe

May 15, 2002

with: plastiq phantom, diagram of suburban chaos, halicon, the snodgrass, calculator man & hangar, johnny kawasaki [djs on strike] San Diego, CA imputor? v.so8.0 – SPECIAL 1.5-YEAR ANNIVERSARY REUNION WORLD TOUR

ITP Japanese Room at the Tisch School of the Arts on the NYU campus

April 20, 2002

New York, NY Aspects Of Physics will be in San Diego sending a live audio stream along with random video snippets. While Mathias Lorenz (dj proxy) will be at NYU providing the public interface for the performance along with audio manipulations and video configurations.

The Casbah

February 16, 2002

with: richard devine [schematic, warp] (miami), phoenecia [schematic, warp, astralwerks] (miami), otto von schirach [schematic, beta bodega] (miami) San Diego

ITP Japanese Room at the Tisch School of the Arts

February 15, 2002

New York Performing as (Remote) Aspects Of Physics. Jason and JFRE will be sending a live signal from San Diego to NYU where Matt Lorenz will be doing live visuals and extra sound manipulations. This will also be broadcast live from the ITP radio station.

Spruce Street Forum

January 19, 2002

Hillcrest, San Diego

Galapagos

December 1, 2001

Part of Project Cathedral New York Performing as “Mail Pattern” this is a collaboration between Therefore and Aspects Of Physics. Jason Soares (AOP) and Michael Kaufmann (Therefore) will be broadcasting live from San Diego. While Wayne S Feldman (Therefore) will be sending audio files to the San Diego location. The live stream will be sent to New York to club Galapagos where

Borderhack 2.0

August 25, 2001

Tijuana, Mexico

The Juke Joint Cafe

August 22, 2001

with: The Album Leaf, Contact, Disastero, Portland San Diego, CA

The Smell

August 15, 2001

with: Roots of Orchis Los Angeles, CA

I-Spy Nation

August 10, 2001

with: Plastic Phantom, Diagram of Surburban Chaos, C.O.C.O. Seattle, Washington

The Voyeur

August 9, 2001

with: Gorge Trio, Untet, The Curtains Olympia, Washington

Blackbird

August 8, 2001

with: Strategy, Rob Walmart Portland, OR

40th St. Wherehouse

August 5, 2001

with: Bevin from Blectum from Blechdom Oakland, CA

Bottom of the Hill

August 4, 2001

with: Pinback, jet black crayon San Francisco, CA

Bryan Marin Blast

August 3, 2001

Marin County

The Juke Joint Cafe

July 22, 2001

San Diego, CA

The Casbah

July 14, 2001

with: M DOUGHTY (ex of Soul Coughing), DJ Ikah Love, Transit Aural Assault San Diego, CA

The Casbah

June 9, 2001

with: Triztesa, Audio Armada San Diego

Brick By Brick

June 8, 2001

San Diego, CA

Che' Cafe

May 30, 2001

with: The Locust, Black Dice, Aveytare & Panda Bear San Diego (UCSD Campus)

Che' Cafe

May 5, 2001

with: Triztesa, The And/Ors San Diego (UCSD Campus)

The Casbah

April 20, 2001

with: The Fucking Champs, Drunk Horse San Diego (Middletown)

Spaceland

April 19, 2001

with: The Fucking Champs, Drunk Horse Los Angeles (Silverlake)

The Juke Joint Cafe

April 18, 2001

San Diego (Downtown)

Off The Record

April 7, 2001

San Diego (Hillcrest)

The Juke Joint Cafe

February 21, 2001

with: diagram of suburban chaos, halicon, the snodgrass San Diego (Downtown)

The Fold – Silver lake lounge

February 20, 2001

with: plastiq phantom, diagram of suburban chaos, halicon, the snodgrass

Che' Cafe

January 5, 2001

with: Rhthym of Black Lines, The Roots of Orchis, Aspects of Physcis and Knife in the Water San Diego, CA

Koo's Cafe

December 16, 2000

with: The Ziggens, four letter words, gogogo airheart, bargain music, Rachael Cantu, kickfire, fish people, algernon dash Santa Ana, CA

Che' Cafe

November 26, 2000

with: Enemymine, Mome Raths San Diego, CA

Sweetooth Theatre

November 17, 2000

Downtown, San Diego

Knitting Factory

October 5, 2000

with: Circle (Finland) Los Angeles, CA

Singing Serpent

September 20, 2000

with: Soul Junk San Diego, CA

Cafe Eclectico

September 1, 2000

with: Into Ether, dj bastian Tijuana, Mexico

I-SPY

July 9, 2000

with: Blessed Light, Transmarine 1921 5th Ave (Alley entrance), Seattle WA 98101

Brickyard

July 8, 2000

with: The Black Heart procession VANCOUVER , BC

Thursday's Pub

July 7, 2000

with: The Black Heart Procession VICTORIA , BC

pdxrobotsteakhouse

July 3, 2000

Portland

Koo's cafe

June 15, 2000

with: The Black Heart Procession, Julie Doiron, Radar, The Soundhead 1505 N. Main St, Santa Ana, CA

Pokez

May 28, 2000

with: The Locust, Go Go Go Airheart, The Free Stars, Run For Your Fucking Life Save Pokez Benefit Show

Submit House

May 20, 2000

First Show: Plasticratic

April 22, 2000

Tarantula Hawk, Anonymous Masters 2, Incoherent DIY