Gun Outfit: “Teardrops (Classic Hell On Earth)” Live at the Getty

With 2017’s Out of Range, Carrie Keith and Dylan Sharp of Gun Outfit committed to tape a hazy, revelatory set of songs. Blending cowpunk and far out poetry, songwriters Dylan Sharp and Carrie Keith, along with collaborators Henry Barnes (Man Is the Bastard/Amps for Christ), Adam Payne, and drummer Daniel Swire, tapped into a sense of slow magic on the lp. That same spirit of unfurling discovery and spiritual vastness is on display once again with “Teardrops (Classic Hell On Earth),” a new song recorded live at the Getty. Sharp says the new song, one of a handful the band has been playing live, was inspired by “the fires that have been torching much of California for the past couple years—including the vicinity immediately around the Getty.”

Joined for this performance by bassist Kayla Cohen (Itasca) and Warren Lee, the band created the short film for “Teardrops (Classic Hell On Earth)” in collaboration with filmmaker Mike Stoltz. In addition to footage filmed at the famous art center—more was shot, and could be released in the future, Sharp notes—the video includes material from home, where the band recorded for “the first time…in the home studio we’ve been working to build in the past year,” Sharp says.

In advance of Gun Outfit’s upcoming tour with Steve Gunn, we’re sharing the short film here, along with the following production notes from Stoltz.

Filmmaker Mike Stotlz: We shot this performance on 1600′ of twenty-year-old Fuji 8652 color negative 16mm film (some artifacts of this expired stock are visible in the image). The camera used was an Aaton Super 16 camera with a 25mm lens. The sound was taken directly from the board mix and synced during post-production.

There were a lot of unknowns with this performance, so the approach taken with the camera was one of surprise. I was seeing and hearing these versions for the first time through the camera on my shoulder, a cyclops stumbling upon this performance in a manicured non-space tucked away amidst opulence and beauty. Daniel [Swire] scripted narrative events that would take place in the audience throughout the set, one of which you see here in this excerpt.

Shortly after their performance at the Getty, Gun Outfit christened their new tape machine setup, and I wanted to be there to capture it on film. The band’s core and I set up in their home studio under artificial lighting.

The combined imagery you see represents two ends of the document perspective—the curious camera trying to capture bits and pieces of a confident, well-practiced expanded version of the band juxtaposed with a tightly composed scene of the musicians experimenting with a piece of recording equipment for the very first time.

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