Circle X


Circle X
Circle X
Origin Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Genres No Wave
Art rock
Years active 1978–1995
Labels Matador Records
Past members
Bruce Witsiepe
Tony Pinotti
Dave Letendre
Rik Letendre
Mike McShane
Martin Köb

Circle X was a No Wave/art-rock band that began in 1978 in Louisville, Kentucky. They were part of the same late '70s/early '80s No Wave scene that included bands like Mars and DNA.

Contents

Career

The formation started when art students Bruce Witsiepe and Tony Pinotti abandoned Louisville's first punk act, No Fun, to join brothers Rik Letendre and Dave Letendre (who played in the I-Holes). By the end of 1978, the four had relocated to New York City, then to Dijon, France.

In France for nine months with new manager, Circle X toured from the base in Dijon, garnering strong press and stronger public reaction while writing new material as well. An untitled four-song EP, for then-nascent Celluloid Records, saw the light of day in 1980. The record’s cover - identifiable only by a spray painted circle with an X through it, a symbol the group chose instead of a name - gratingly reflected its content. Marketeers forced a spelled out "Circle X" on them.

Upon returning to New York, the band recorded the LP titled Prehistory, unreleased until 1983, for the California-based consortium of Enigma and Index Records. Some say this recording served as a crucial blueprint for the subsequent New York noise scene that spawned Sonic Youth, Swans, and Live Skull.

The remainder of the ’80s saw the group diversify with new drummer Mike McShane, guest violinist Lois Delivio, and complex art performances, often involving constructions of great wheels, techno puppets, and machines, as well as collaborative visuals with film makers Bradley Eros and Jeanne Liotta. In addition, the integration of synth technologies, tapes, and samples now figured in the music’s stew of beauty and din.

By 1989, the band had begun publishing Anti-Utopia, a limited edition artists’ book. A 1990, volume included a flexi disc featuring Peter Van Riper, Mike Pullen, Christian Marclay, Bodeco, and a Circle X offering, "Crash/St. Sebastian of the Hood" (after a J.G. Ballard novel).

In 1992, drummer Martin Koeb joined Pinotti, Witsiepe and Letendre for four white-vinyl seven-inch singles for Matador, American Gothic and Lungcast Records, titled The Ivory Tower, and released over the course of a year. The music within remained eerie, intelligent and harsh, yet far more aurally complex.

In 1994, Circle X released Celestial, their culminating full-length album on Matador Records, as well as a soon-to-be CD EP in France for Sordide Sentimentale titled Frammenti de Junk.

The band ended in 1995, when founding member and guitarist Bruce Witsiepe died from HIV complications.

Discography

Studio Albums

  • Circle X - 7" EP, 1979 / 1996 (Dexter's Cigar)
  • Prehistory - (LP, Album), 1981 / 2006 (Blue Chopsticks)
  • Anti-Utopia Flexi - Flexi Disc, 1990 (Anti-Utopia Publication)
  • The Ivory Tower - Four 7" EP, 1992 (American Gothic, Lungcast Records, Matador Records)
  • Celestial - (CD, Album), 1994 (Matador Records)
  • Frammenti de Junk - (CD, EP), 1994 (Sordide Sentimentale)

Compilation Albums

  • New York Eye and Ear Control - CD, 1991 (Matador Records)

External links


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  • Circle — Cir cle (s[ e]r k l), n. [OE. cercle, F. cercle, fr. L. circulus (Whence also AS. circul), dim. of circus circle, akin to Gr. kri kos, ki rkos, circle, ring. Cf. {Circus}, {Circum }.] [1913 Webster] 1. A plane figure, bounded by a single curve… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • circle — [sʉr′kəl] n. [ME cercle < OFr < L circulus, a circle, dim. of circus: see CIRCUS] 1. a plane figure bounded by a single curved line, every point of which is equally distant from the point at the center of the figure: see CONIC SECTION,… …   English World dictionary

  • Circle — Cir cle, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Circled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Circling}.] [OE. cerclen, F. cercler, fr. L. circulare to make round. See {Circle}, n., and cf. {Circulate}.] [1913 Webster] 1. To move around; to revolve around. [1913 Webster] Other… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Circle — Circle, AK U.S. Census Designated Place in Alaska Population (2000): 100 Housing Units (2000): 42 Land area (2000): 107.672614 sq. miles (278.870779 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.540092 sq. miles (1.398832 sq. km) Total area (2000): 108.212706 sq …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

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  • Circle D — KC Estates, TX U.S. Census Designated Place in Texas Population (2000): 2010 Housing Units (2000): 847 Land area (2000): 9.274671 sq. miles (24.021286 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.034981 sq. miles (0.090601 sq. km) Total area (2000): 9.309652 sq …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

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  • circle — ► NOUN 1) a round plane figure whose boundary consists of points equidistant from the centre. 2) a group of people or things forming a circle. 3) a curved upper tier of seats in a theatre. 4) a group of people with a shared profession, interests …   English terms dictionary

  • Circle — Cir cle, v. i. To move circularly; to form a circle; to circulate. [1913 Webster] Thy name shall circle round the gaping through. Byron. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English