Devin “PAN” Barrett
It’s a Thursday night and I’m along for the ride with Tone, headed to Newark International Airport to deliver our esteemed guest to the Loft for tomorrow evening’s show. Fresh from the left coast, arriving on a midnight flight, we’ve brought the wheels out to scoop up beat-savant AFTA-1 for Ep14 of Live At The Loft. The season has abruptly shifted from summer soft to an autumn chill, but it’s still a warm Jersey welcome for the Cali kid. He’ll have to rest up tonight. Tomorrow should be a dandy.
For those not familiar with Afta-1, allow us to introduce you. For the past few years, he’s been one of the foremost proprietors of southern California’s beat movement, nurturing an electronic love legacy. His music is off kilter and ambient with synths, chords, clacks, reverbs and a real soul to it. It’s computer blue, yet organic. During the set, positioned before the night’s attendees, Afta-1 plays the role of mad machinist, twisting knobs, pushing keys, and tapping pads to create his own binary language. Obviously, it’s a language that we’ve all interpreted, and we communicate back with synchronized head nods.
Once the love comes down, the good vibrations carry on through the night. Later on, long after our guests have retreated, Afta-1 surprises the Loft crew with a wicked dub treatment, playing live improvised sounds over some classic Lee “Scratch” Perry tunes. Either this really inspired Tone, or he was just feeling adventurous, because instead of ordering out for the night, he chef’d up a London broil, steamed asparagus, cherry tomatoes in balsamic, served with blue corn tortilla chips & salsa, and chased by a mango sorbet. This was enough to put everyone down for the count. The following afternoon, Afta-1 was in the mood for another impromptu session, and went to work with some vocoder action! Later, Tone, Afta-1, and I would hop in the whip once again, and make a run for some Neapolitan pastries at Giorgio’s Italian & French bakery, all before depositing Afta-1 at his next destination. The archival footage from this episode is gonna be epic…that’s a win for all of us. Stay tuned again. This is Live At The Loft…