21 May 2016: Thollem McDonas, LIVE!

13263922_10154634047408465_7102183674906038024_n21 May 2016: Thollem McDonas, LIVE!

TODAY Noon to 1 PM Pacific Standard Time we have a SUPRISE GUEST on What’s This Called?, the one and only constantly moving keyboard virtuoso Thollem McDonas!


Thollem is a classically trained pianist with a love for the lo-fi as well, who’ll likely be bringing in thrift store half broken keyboards to apply his vast knowledge of musical possibilities to, completely on the fly. Thollem, who’ll be playing at the Portland Cinema Project tomorrow night. Thollem lives on the road, constantly collaborating and performing solo and expanding his music. We are thrilled to nab this opportunity to capture him having fun at the Saturday lunch hour!


Punkish Pre-Game Show Starting NOW! :

Playlist as it goes down! – Red Kross – “Lita Ford Blues” – Born Innocent; The Runaways – “Cherry Bomb” – The Best of…; Coffin Break – “Kill the President” – No Sleep Till the Stardust Motel; The Wipers – “Return of the Rat” – Hype! The Motion Picture Soundtrack

So to give the artists their due speed… Red Kross – “Linda Blair” – Born Innocent; The Runaways – “Born to Be Bad” – The Best of…; Coffin Break – “Just Say No…” – No Sleep Till the Stardust Motel; U-men – “Dig It a Hole” – Hype! Motion Picture Soundtrack

Frightwig – “My Crotch Does Not Say Go” – Wild Women Never Die… … They Just Dye Their Hair; Echo and the Bunnymen – “No Dark Things” – Heaven Up Here; The Cramps – “Caveman” – Psychedelic Jungle

Thollem McDonas setting up now!

Big Star – “You Get What You Deserve” – Radio City; Dolly Parton – “Here You Come Again” – Super Hits; (the) Melvins – “Grinding Process” – 10 Songs; SubArachnoid Space – “Slow Boat to China” – Delicate Membrane;Psychic TV – “Message from thee Temple” – Force the Hand of Chance

NOW! Thollem McDonas LIVE!

Closing the show with the title track of Sun Ra – Atlantis in honor of his birthday tomorrow!


23 April 2016: Big Tom the Lithuanian’s Lo-fi Lounge

23 April 2016: Big Tom the Lithuanian’s Lo-fi Lounge

Set your listening device for the triumphant return of Big Tom the Lithuanian’s Lo-fi Lounge from Noon to 1 PM Pacific Standard Time on What’s This Called?

Y16 - 1our host Ricardo Wang is very excited to bring Big Tom the Lithuanian and his keyboard down from Olympia to cut loose in the KPSU.org dj booth (with subtle noise accompaniment by members of the Dead Air Fresheners) for a non-stop hour of on the fly gonzo synth shenanigans.

26601533785_4dca18621f_oStreaming Live in the PNW Noon Hour.

Tom will attempt to play any request you call in during the show to: (503) 725-5945

Big Tom’s pedigree of artists he has performed alongside in the NW is staggering but includes the likes of Green Tea, Blood Paradise, Behead the Prophet No Lord Shall Live, the aforementioned Dead Air Fresheners, and the Kelsie Love Experience. He’s even played alongside Conrad Keely from …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead in a reggae band in the early ’90s! However, the incarnation of Big Tom that many fans especially love is “the crazy street keyboard guy”, which is what we seek to recreate and reconstruct in the KPSU sub-basement this joyful Saturday lunch hour.


20 February 2016: Cyclopsycho, LIVE!

12592471_1671208796489222_8429905293811269070_n20 February 2016: Cyclopsycho, LIVE!

Today from Noon to 1 PM Pacific Standard Time on KPSU.org, What’s This Called? presents the world premiere live performance of Olympia, WA’s Cyclopsycho!

Featuring manipulated sounds created entirely from her own voice, 24786348519_c24a9eb722_oshe will mesmerize you with her elecro-acapella sound sculptures.

Catch the Live Stream and be forever changed!


Performance Excerpt by Ricardo Wang:


Photos by Ryan Ray, Engineer






10 October 2015: Journey Into Space, LIVE!

12118707_1106752326032335_5385268980226499560_n10 October 2015: Journey Into Space, LIVE!

Beachfront property on Mars and now even Pluto gets wet. Stephen Hawking says that E.T. wants to EAT you, and the latest word from the string theorists is that the Universe will just keep on expanding until the Ramones sound like a prog rock band.

Don’t worry you won’t live to have to hear that, even with the new life expansion nano-vitamin injections. But you will live to hear What’s This Called? cohost Austin Rich return to the KPSU studios from his explorations of the south end of the galaxy! The Eagle has landed and your host Ricardo Wang looks forward to sitting back in hyperspace and letting Austin run havoc on the turntables and decks. Though RW might launch a photon torpedo or two just for fun as well.

Streaming Like a Briney Martian Oasis.



01.) Genetic * Sonic Youth * Dirty
02.) Ziggy Stardust * The Moog Cookbook * Ye Olde Space Band: Plays the Classic Rock Hits
03.) Austin Rich & Ricardo Wang Break It Down For You

Journey Into Space (performed live by Austin Rich & Ricardo Wang)

04.) metallized excitements of our shared dreams of technology * Tärr * Tärr / Cornelius F. Van Stafrin III
05.) Operation Luna Episode 1 * Journey Into Space * BBC Radio (1953)
06.) Ricardo Wang & Austin Rich, LIVE!
07.) Piece 7 (Excerpt) * ALTO! * ALTO!
08.) Quadruple Penetration (chapters 1-4) * Overdose The Katatonic * Feel The Frequency: 2015 Norcal Noisefest Audio Compilation Document
09.) [untitled Side B] * L.A. Lungs * Rrest
10.) Driving Eyes Open * Bob Bucko Jr. * How to Fuck All Your Coworkers in One Sitting
12.) The Fallow Field of Vision * Dull Knife * Dull Knife
13.) Subtle Afterthoughts * Expo ’70 * Expo ’70 / Plankton Wat Split LP
14.) Total Massacre * Uneasy Chairs * Feel The Frequency: 2015 Norcal Noisefest Audio Compilation Document
15.) Heaven And Hell Part 2 [Excerpt] * Vangelis * Heaven And Hell
16.) metallized excitements of our shared dreams of technology * Tärr * Tärr / Cornelius F. Van Stafrin III
17.) Whipsnapper * Small Drone Orchestra * Feel The Frequency: 2015 Norcal Noisefest Audio Compilation Document

26 September 2015: Uneasy Chairs, LIVE!

11914754_1656875294555405_3021879856810997072_o26 September 2015: Uneasy Chairs, LIVE!

Playlist & Footnotes: https://whatsthiscalled.net/2015/09/26/26-september-2015-uneasy-chairs-live

Today at Noon Pacific Standard Time on What’s This Called? I am thrilled to present Live in the KPSU studio, the delicate noise guitar stylings of Patrick Neill Gundran AKA Uneasy Chairs! Patrick is a member of many avant groups in the Seattle area including Colour Out of Space, the Rolling Blackouts, and Devil’s Club, but his solo outings have a special over the top energy that you won’t want to miss for brunch.


Streaming All Over Your Speakers from: kpsu.org


12 September 2015: Derek M Johnson LIVE!

12 September 2015: Derek M Johnson LIVE!

TODAY from Noon to 1 PM on What’s This Called? on KPSU.org you get the ultimate Nofest 8 preview for the day as Olympia’s bowed and stringed sensation Derek M Johnson, 5732013763_e767e47e13_m

as his trusty cello, and vast box of effects pedals make their first appears on the program in 9 years!

After that Derek MAY be one of the secret Dead Air Fresheners performing at the Nofest mainstage oustside in the historic St. John’s Square at 2:30 PM, and he will certainly be tearing up the stage inside at Slim’s from 7-8 PM.

29 August 2015: Big City Orchestra, Live

11949514_1075295742511327_4555724034935784959_n29 August 2015: Big City Orchestra, Live

Hard to believe it’s been nearly 5 years since the long running Bay Area experimental pioneers Big City Orchestra played on What’s This Called? but it really has!

BCO ended up enlisting some unmasked members of Dead Air Fresheners to help them play the KPSU studio with contact mics and processors.

Big City Orchestra, Live:

Track * Artist * Album

First Dream * Big City Orchestra * Daydreams of Night
Live on What’s This Called? * Big City Orchestra * KPSU
Interview * Big City Orchestra * KPSU
Church of the Sub Species (edit) * Big City Orchestra * Church of the Sub Species
Live on What’s This Called? * Big City Orchestra * KPSU