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Intangibles XXXXX LIVE at the Harlem Square Club by Martine Syms

XXXXX LIVE at the Harlem Square Club
Martine Syms

XXXXX is a party band. Her first show was at a warehouse rave in Chicago. The kind of party with Solo cups and vomit in the corner. The crowd was a terrible mix of college students, bros, and commuters. Her set was fifteen minutes. She played a song about teevee, a song about craigslist, a song about a song, a scuffed version of Sam Cooke's "(Don't Fight It) Feel It," and a song about her mother. She was booed. There was a heckler. XXXXX opened for a Steely Dan-inspired-white-guy-rock-out. She would have hated them if they weren't her friends.

The second show slash party, or party-as-performance was in Miami, Florida in a squat tract house in a Little neighborhood with good food. XXXXX was the out of town band. She was the reason people had to pay a few bucks to come in. She agrees that it's annoying to pay for entry into a private residence, but c'est la vie motherfuckers. She thinks the crowd was disappointed. But that's part of the project.

The third XXXXX show was at an art opening. This counts because openings are "basically bad parties." I wanted to ask her if they were "basically" bad parties or "just" bad parties, but she was about to start. Her set was the same, except this time she covered Trina's "Da Baddest Bitch."

XXXXX's style is understated. It's not exactly knob-turning—more laptopping, head-bobbing. There's a beat, some chords, a sample or two, a tiny bit of vocals. Like if you went to Subway to order music. She starts right on time and doesn't mind an empty room. "I put the punk in punctual," she explains. "I like to be home before midnight."

Upon purchase of this Intangible, the buyer will be put in contact with the artist to arrange their unique voicemail from members of XXXXX.


Martine Syms