He hooks up an electric-guitar pickup to a garden rake, plucks it and scrapes it on the floor and whatever other surfaces are nearby. It makes quite a sound, a sound I heard in the basement of the P.S. 122 performance space in New York 20 years ago and one not likely to draw an overflow crowd to The Lounge on Elm Street tonight. But it’s a beautiful noise, in an arty, not-so-melodic way, and I have a dream that every adventurous music listener in North Texas will be there to see underground guitar hero Eugene Chadbourne play the electric rake and some regular guitars, too.
Chadbourne’s style is hard to describe, in part because he doesn’t stick to one thing. He started with blues and jazz, discovered avant-garde composers like John Cage and Frank Zappa and came closest to wider recognition when he recorded an album of covers with Santa Cruz post-punk art band Camper Van Beethoven. What cuts across his work is a love of improvisation and chance. Taking a chance yourself will cost a mere $5 if you’re 21 and over, $10 for those under the legal drinking age.
Added incentive: The opener is Dennis Gonzalez’s jazz band Yells at Eels with additional muscle from Tidbits, a trio that includes New Bohemians guitarist Kenny Withrow, BL Lacerta keyboardist/trombonist Kim Corbet and drummer Gerard Bendiks. Doors at 8.