A loop station is one name for a device that allows a musician to sample
a live phrase they are performing and play it back continuously, thereby
allowing that musician to virtually duplicate their sound potential
on stage, ad infinitum. The technology brings new meaning to the concept
of the one-man band as musicians can now accompany their own playing
in real time with no limit to the number of samples they generate. Witness
a classically trained cellist, pluck out a rhythm segment on the strings
of his curiously wired instrument, and then draw his bow and play a
melody on top of it, literally without missing a beat. Add seasoned
vocalist, Robin Coomer,
also sampling and looping her own vocal phrases,
and you get the lush, layered, soulful constructions of the one-man,
one-woman band named,of all things, LOOP!STATION.
Of course, the audience is well advised to beware the gizmo, lest the
music gets lost in the novelty of circuits and motherboards. Indeed,
it is novel to watch two individuals build a tapestry of sound that
would normally take a large ensemble to achieve. It is also enticing
to watch a song being built from the ground up, before your very eyes.
Close your eyes however, and regardless of how-many- whos, and who's-
playing-what, the compositions captivate.
treats the listener to the building and receding of complexities, ethereal
associations, silvery voices, with flashes of soul, psychadelia, and
Coomer's vocals are especially impressive with
her ability to combine raw power with genuine emotive delicacy. Think
of a boxer throwing a punch and then drawing the gesture back slower
than the viscous bleeding out. Recall Linda Perry, Johnette Napolitano
and, I dare say, Grace Slick. Her range compliments Bass' remarkable
ability to pull an endless array of sounds from his strings, suggesting
everything from a screaming electric guitar to a weeping violin. The
final effect is one of rich swirling beauty, where the Buddha resides
in both the loop of the machine and the station of the heart.
Jeffrey Decoster, "Behind the Scene",
San Francisco Magazine, May 2003