As the metronomic timekeeper behind the legendary rock band the Pixies, Mr. David Lovering was hidden from view, shyly remaining behind his kit and content to bang out a solid backbeat for the band that basically created the independent rock movement of the 90’s. But when that band went el foldo in the early 90’s and Lovering completed drumming stints in Craker and the Martinis later in the decade, he found himself unemployed and bored—what can you do for jollies in the real world after touring the world with U2, and the Cure, and topping alternative charts for a half dozen years?
The answer that this one-time human metronome chose was a hybrid of his college days studying electronic engineering at Wentworth Institute of Technology plus his years of professional showmanship. Combining his love of card trickery and metal detection plus his fascination with all things scientific plus the need to tread the boards once more, this one-time rhythm backbone became a one-man spectacle as rock and roll’s first ever science/performance artist and morphed into what he calls a “Scientific Phenomenalist.” For now anyway. “I have no idea what I actually am, at any given time, it’s subject to change,” he says, modestly.
Since 2000, Lovering has brought his act all over the US and Canada as opener for Frank Black, Grant Lee Phillips, Camper Van Beethoven and The Breeders. He’s also taken it overseas to Europe’s ATP 2002 festival. Strutting confidently onstage in flapping white lab coat and tie (and looking somewhat like a demented internist at an overworked county hospital!), Lovering’s 30 minute turn is a bizarre take on “Bill Nye Science Guy” gone semi Cheech n’ Chong gone p-o’ed punk rocker as mad scientist. he attaches electrodes to pickles in a “Luminescense” act that boils the sodium content out of the vegetable and lights up the stage an eerie green, he uses telekinesis to create a miniature tremon onstage that dislodges wood slabs off the top of a bottle without touching them, he uses a lethal “mind melt” to quell the jabberings of hecklers (by channeling the energy of a magnetic pulse into a stunning force that floors them) and, true to his heritage, rolls out a huge bass drum and creates a “vortex cannon”, filling the drum with smoke and pounding out enormous rings -it never fails to bring down the house!
Giving the restless nature of rock club goers, that is an amazing in and of itself. But Lovering’s transformation is what grips the assembled—self-deprecating, hyper-enthusiastic and child-like, this is a trip back in time for anyone who was ever agog at a science fair—Lovering included!
Has to be seen to be believed, this retiring 40-year oldBoston emigree that was once the “invisible Pixie” gone mega-magical stage ham. Lovering, like any good magician/phenomenalist, refuses to discuss any of his stunts or tricks and therefore implores you to see that not only is there life after rock and roll, there is magic beyond it-see for yourself!