Chinatown Survival Research Labsthe Survival Research Labs show in Los Angeles at Dangerous Curve. That show ended with the arrival of the L.A.F.D., who looked at the aftermath of the show in stunned disbelief. I was floored by that performance, but sadly I suspected it may have been the end of SRL in L.A.
Fortunately, Survival Research Labs was back in the City of Angels yesterday, this time in Chinatown in a space outside of Fringe Exhibitions. My brother drove down from SF and we headed over to the show around 6:00. We watched the artists preparing for the show; ominously, there were sacks of strange fluids being loaded into even stranger devices, a humanoid figure composed of dead fish, and warnings from the safety crew that we might get splattered with "something". But I didn't give up my primo spot, even after the crew made us stand three feet back from the plywood crowd barrier with the admonishment that it might fall onto us during the show!
The show finally started around 8:00; once again, it was intensely terrifying, although not quite on the scale of the April show. After all, the show was in a parking lot adjacent to an occupied apartment building! It's useless to try to describe the entirety of the chaos, but these are the images that stuck out for me:
- The sneaky soldiers, which are squirming telerobotic humanoids that serve mostly as targets.
- A giant styrofoam lizard head which drooled fish guts as it rose above the crowd. It also had a harpoon that pierced and mauled at the dead-fish humanoid.
- The return of the pulsejet hovercraft. Pulsejets are giant propane-powered trumpets that pump out a noise so loud that it serves as the vehicle's propulsion device!
- A robot with a giant claw and a set of off-centered flywheels that allowed it to grab a target and vibrate the hell out of it.
- An enormous flamethrower on a forklift. This eventually was used to immolate the lizard head into a mass of molten sytrofoam. (I noticed that the forklift was a rental.)
- Two barrels filed with some sort of milky-white fluid and hundreds of small humanoid beanbag dolls--and an automotive airbag in the bottom. The exploding airbag expelled the disgusting doll soup sky-high and into the crowd.
photos of the show on Flickr, but I think the insanity of the show is best captured by the grainy videos I took of the show:
- Xeni for BoingBoing
- Sean Bonner for Blogging.la
- SRL Perfomer Violet Blue gives us a peek behind the curtain; she was driving the out-of-control walker-bot!
- Laughingsquid is also collecting SRL show links.
- There were haters, too: Casey Fairlawn was disappointed in the show.
- (More as I find them--leave a comment with a link!)