Experimental musician, fl3m, returns for anniversary show


It’ll be exactly 30 years ago this Monday that local experimental musician Gene Kosowan first got on a stage to make noise.

The venue was a Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity gig, and Kosowan was part of a group called Dr Worm and the Beirut 66, along with fellow musical adventurer Beta Decay. Both went on to various other ventures, but it was when Beta Decay prodded Kosowan (now known as fl3m) for an anniversary show after reuniting briefly at last year’s Sasquatch Gathering that things began rolling.

“I wanted to originally do something for the 25th anniversary, but I was concentrating on personal issues that year,” explains Kosowan, who will be releasing the 75-minute opus Dork Manner under the fl3m imprint for the show. “When we finally decided to do it, I wanted to bring along a bunch of other amazing artists that I’ve played with.”
The bill—which Kosowan drolly refers to as an “Ed Sullivan format”—is filled with compatriots old and new, like Beta Decay, electro-death screamer Himiko, plus unusual choices like mentalist Louis Pezzani, an ex CJSR DJ who now makes a living performing at corporate functions.

“He was basically a punk cognoscenti back in the day, but now he wears more suits in a month than I do in a year,” Kosowan says. “I think he wants to see how he does in a more unconventional setting.”

While Kosowan often labours at the margins of music, his efforts don’t go completely unnoticed; one of his pieces, Severely Normal, is being performed by old friend Marion Garver Fredrickson on August 24 during the British Flute Society Convention at the University of Warwick in Coventry. Kosowan will be attending, and looking for future opportunities for fl3m to perform overseas.

“It’s funny, because we have this idea that experimental music might be bigger there, but I was talking to someone over there and he was saying we overemphasize this. London may be a larger city, but just like here the scene is quite small. It’s definitely a novelty for them to find out about people like me, who come from cities that aren’t quite known for this kind of music.”

Mon, Jul 7 (8 pm)
With Himiko, Bong Sample, Lurch, Louis Pezzani, Don Ross, Beta Decay, Motonogo
Bohemia, $10

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