Argiflex is the live electronics project of Curtis Lehr. Based out of Cleveland MS, Lehr uses dedicated hardware to craft the project’s signature sound which ranges between neo-rave, acid, breaks, psychedelic trance, electro, IDM, and harsh noise. Performances are dynamic and range from ambient soundscapes to funky grooves to dance floor bangers to listening passages that are too intricate for dancing. The concept of a song is deconstructed to where recordings and performances are fluid time-based aural tapestries.
Argiflex has not always been a hardware-based project. After a short stint of looping a handful of samples in Audacity, Curtis moved on to the DAW Renoise. The project’s first album, 8367 Solarii, was composed and produced in Renoise. Moving on to Ableton Live, Argiflex released the ambient acid album Regolith. Soon after the release of Regolith, Lehr began acquiring hardware. In December of (year) Argiflex played their first all-hardware show, which coincided with their first hardware-based release: Summer is a Relative Term EP. The album Summer is a Relative Term II was released about a year and a half later and is the (surprise!) spiritual successor to it’s predecessor. A year later Argiflex released three EPs simultaneously: Dye Stains, Everything is Infinite, and Typographic Plane. Each EP showcased their own very distinct sound and performance style that was inspired by the strengths and limitations of the specific hardware setup for each. Everything is Infinite continued the vein of the SIART series with a denser sound, Dye Stains featured a harsher acid sound, and Typographic Plane was composed with the General MIDI soundset. Soon after the tour promoting the three EPs Argiflex designed and pieced together a new hardware rig that was expandable and extremely versatile. The sound of this rig was first featured on the split cassette release with Vexadrem. It has been used at every Argiflex show since it’s debut at Otherfest 2013, and can be heard on various online videos taken after that point.
Argiflex has a wide performance history of over 100 shows, including 3 tours. Growing up in the suburbs of Jackson MS, Curtis began attending hardcore shows in high school, and soon began performing in them as Argiflex (and provided live sound reinforcement for many of the shows.) The first tour was a weeklong loop in and around the state of Mississippi to promote the release of SIARTII in June of 2012. The second tour was a 3 week effort in May of 2013 promoting the release of the three EPs and covered the Southeastern USA Between Mississippi, Texas, Florida, and North Carolina. The third tour was a week long loop in May of 2014 that covered Mississippi, Florida, and North Carolina. Argiflex has proved themselves as very versatile in many nontraditional situations such as fashion shows, freeform improvisational performances, fundraisers, and openings. As an extent of their strong internet use and social media presence Argiflex has promoted and performed in multiple online shows including early performances with The Booklvng, the first #SPF420 event, a couple of #HD_GHETTO events, the first #SPF420 IRL/URL crossover event, the Argiflex/Vexadrem split tape online release show, and joobs’ Africanime release show. Genre fluidity has allowed Argiflex to open for a wide range of acts including Lil Whyte, Archnemesis, Lord Infamous, Venia, Bubblegum Octopus, Mucky Sticky, Greg Ginn and The Royal We, and The Holy Ghost Electric Show.
Curtis has always had a strong DIY ethic and independent spirit pervades every facet of the Argiflex project. Curtis is always learning new skills and applying knowledge learned to the project. From hand tie-dyed and screen-printed t-shirts to handmade short-run releases, each merchandise item has a unique handmade quality. A few of the skills applied to the project include audio engineering, event promotion & production, tour planning and management, website administration, photography, VJing, social media promotion, and graphic design.