Metal Rouge performing at MOCA for Monument, April 7, 2016. Photo taken by Sara Gernsbacher
Metal Rouge was formed in 2006 in Auckland, New Zealand by Helga Fassonaki and Andrew Scott, initially as a vehicle for grimy freeform electric string music. After relocating to Los Angeles in 2007, the music took on the form of streamlined horizontal psychedelic continuums. They crafted an intensely personal brand of electrified minimal maximalism at the intersection of New Zealand free noise, NYC loft minimalism and free jazz. Drummer/trombonist Caitlin Mitchell joined from 2009 to 2011, bringing a more aggressive free rock aspect to the group resulting in the ‘Trails’ LP in 2010 and the ‘Then In Shadow’ tape in 2011. Their sets over the years have consisted of simple guitar figures strung around drugged minimalist drum pulses interspersed with explosive treble-heavy freeform ragas, fearless outré vocalese and horn accents. From 2013 till 2016 the duo lived on opposite coasts, throwing ideas across the continent some of which resulted in the ‘Soft Erase’ LP (2013), the ‘Gamble’ CS (2014) and a European tour that concluded with their first ever ‘legitimate’ studio session at Easthampton’s Sonelab in 2013. Three years later, Metal Rouge remain under the radar in order to communicate over the odometer what remains true still – we are alive until we destroy ourselves. As 2016 nears the end, the solar eclipse finally reveals it’s magma – two sister albums resulting from the 2013 Easthampton sessions – “Broke In” and “Broke Out”.