For the last five years, Dreamland has been a niche spot for the freaks and weirdos to wig out. Dreamland will host its last show on Thursday, June 29, leaving a legacy as the place to go for the most adventurous listening in town, from free jazz to experimental ephemera. The brainchild of Tim Barnes, who has collaborated with Sonic Youth, The Silver Jews and others, Dreamland was a home for many musicians that didn’t quite fit in a neat box. And it was awesome.
With help from Joel Hunt, Dreamland had an amazing run, bringing in some of the most fantastic bands such as Faust, Skull Kontrol, Endless Boogie, Bonnie “Prince” Billy and Cheer Accident to name a few.
Dreamland was the place that you went to have your perceptions challenged, learning along the way that genres were ultimately an illusion, superfluous and fluid, an unnecessary representation of musical expression. On the best nights, you walked away questioning everything you thought you knew about music.
Barnes politely and meticulously kept the lights on, and after the departure of Hunt, he picked up the majority of the load, save for a few irregular volunteers, logging hours to run sound, the bar and the door, and handling any and anything else that was needed.
It made sense that it was set in an old chapel, a church to the gods of noise and sound. The loss of Dreamland leaves a void for outsiders and their art, something that will be difficult to replace.
On Thursday, Barnes and company send Dreamland off into the night with Rob Collier, David Bernabo and Chris Kincaid, a lineup that in many ways reflects the diverse community that surrounded the venue. Bernabo is an experimental multimedia artist, a nice fit inside the walls of Dreamland. Collier is a modern composer from Louisville, with Kincaid rounding out the lineup, who is an innovator on modular synthesis.