WORT supporters get to experience a new retro-sounding group, Compact Deluxe, at the Cardinal Bar Salutes WORT benefit on Friday, November 27th. The keyboard-driven trio open for campy disco act VO5 at our post-Thanksgiving dance party. Suggested donation for this special event is $10. The show starts at 8:00 p.m.
Compact Deluxe co-founder Tim Consequence is a man out of time. Born in 1977, the year punk rock broke, he collects & restores vintage keyboards & sound equipment. He uses them to perform covers of mostly instrumental music from the 1960s to the 1980s.
Describing the danceable sound he strives for as “party-time music,” Consequence joins forces with virtuoso organist Harris Lemberg & drummer John Woodburn to perform an intimate showcase of Cold War-era music.
Compact Deluxe honors such groups as Booker T & the MGs and Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass with punchy, trippy renditions of Memphis soul, surf rock, spaghetti Western soundtracks, ’60s spy-show & movie theme tunes as well as lounge-pop. Imagine Ennio Morricone‘s hypnotic “The Good, the Bad & the Ugly” mashed up with Dick Dale‘s “Miserlu.”
A native of Wisconsin Rapids, Consequence has a day job as a union stagehand (IATSE Local 251) & recording engineer. His passion since age 16, however, is performing music ranging from hip-hop (as organist in Optigan) to the B-52s (in the tribute band Deadbeat Club). He has collaborated with Lemberg (aka Harrissimo) since 2007.
During a recent visit to Acme Sound Studios near the ice arena on Madison’s east side, Consequence invited me to smell the electronic guts of his Hammond B-3 organ – a tactile treat that reminded me of a visit to the Stax Museum of Soul Music in Memphis.
He also demonstrated his Leslie cabinet, a modulating device used frequently in recordings by the mid-’60s Beatles. The Leslie’s spinning speakers project sound through all four sides of the cabinet, filling an intimate venue like the Cardinal Bar with its whirring melodic drone.
Consequence then fired up his Rheem Le Bass, a gorgeous little red & white instrument with black keys that can substitute for a bass guitar. He’s proud of the ’80s-era Yamaha synthesizer he gutted & used to build an analog-digital hybrid Tim calls a “digi-Farfisa.” It hums to life beside his silent vintage Vox Continental keyboard.
Tim also showed me a Farfisa model Compact Deluxe organ, which inspired the band’s name. He bought it via Craigslist from fellow enthusiast Chip, a Madisonian who served as Melissa Etheridge‘s guitar tech.
Consequence & Lemberg formed the predecessor band Compact Duo a few years ago, recently expanding it to include acoustic drums & occasional female guest vocalist Terry Lynn Lane. Their first gig was in August 2015, on the seashell-shaped stage at the Tempest.
The band’s mission, Consequence says, is to be “efficient in space and time.” Compact Deluxe plays tunes that rarely surpass 3 minutes in length. Their equipment, while old & heavy, requires few wires to set up.
Compact Deluxe is playing a gig at the Tempest immediately after the WORT benefit on Friday night. They’ve been given a monthly residency at Tempest, so Madison live-music fans will be able to hear them regularly soon.
“We’re all about the community-sponsored radio,” Consequence says about performing at The Cardinal Bar Salutes WORT benefit dance concert Friday night. “We’re happy to do it.”
WORT’s been sticking it into your ears for forty years. Yet we remain hip enough to bring you fun bands like Compact Deluxe & V05. If you’re ready to dance while having your mind pleasantly blown, come to the WORT benefit this Friday night at the Cardinal Bar.