MAGNET Television: Q&A With John Herndon (A Grape Dope, Tortoise, Isotope 217)

John Herndon is best known as the co-founder and drummer of Tortoise, the highly influential and technically savvy band that not only made “post-rock” a vocabulary staple of all the ’90s indie kids but also was their gateway drug to sounds of the dub, minimalist, krautrock, electronic and, eventually, jazz persuasion. While Tortoise now releases albums at a snail’s pace, Herndon stays busy as a visual artist, with work ranging from painting and illustration to tattoos and T-shirts. He’s also into collage, both visual and aural. Herndon explores the latter under the moniker A Grape Dope, which just released debut LP Arthur King Presents A Grape Dope: Backyard Banger (Dangerbird). It’s a 32-minute, cut-and-paste collection of rhythms, resolutions and clusters. Inviting and exciting, it’s highly recommended—and not just for the brave and the bold.