Sorne’s Chilling Performance

Last Thursday, Knuckle Rumbler presented a fusion art exhibit that included Vid Kidz displaying visuals and Blank Fritz, Missions, Spells and Sorne presenting their live sets. I was only able to catch Sorne’s set but I am definitely glad I made it out to the Ghost Room for this event.

The driving force behind Sorne is Morgan Sorne an award-winning performer, visual artist and composer. He is a transplant to Austin, just like all of us here at ovrld. He originally hails from Tallahassee, Florida but has been in Austin now for years. Morgan comes from a studio art background and is also an actor. This multi-discipline background can definitely be seen in Sorne’s intriguing artistic musical performance.

At the show, Morgan was accompanied by two percussionists, who played non-traditional drum sets and rhythm instruments. Also contributing to the sound was a backing track that added electronic effects and additional vocal layers. The songs were driven heavily by the percussionists’ tribal beats and also by Morgan’s unique vocals. Morgan’s vocal range is extensive and at some points I heard moments of throat singing and falsetto.

Early on in the set, Sorne played “First Born” which appears on the recently released album House of Stone. This song started soft with a light beat and almost whispering vocals. Then, it exploded into a vocal exploration of various timbres accompanied by booming bass drum beats. Through the rest of the set, Sorne played their breed of electronic tribal fusion while video of 3d shapes, naked ladies and space travel was projected onto the wall. All the while, the crowd danced along and shouted their approval.

Along with the music, Sorne displayed visual artwork in the form of various prints and life-size cutouts of children in tribal regalia holding spears and knives. Taken together, the mixed-media elements that Sorne presented spoke to themes of ritualism and violence.

It was great to see that the Austin music scene is open to and supportive of conceptual artistic music performance. I’m hoping to check out more shows that challenge the traditional concert format in the near future.

Sorne will be playing again in Austin on June 18th at the Mexican American Cultural Center. I definitely recommend going to the show and witnessing the otherworldly artistic performance for yourself.