Sunday, April 18, 2010

HurdAudio Rotation: Bones, Kingdoms and Wings

Bone: Uses Wrist Grab. 2003. Cuneiform Records: rune 176.

Nick Didkovsky: guitar
Hugh Hopper: bass
John Roulat: drums

Remote multi-tracking (Didkovsky and Hopper still had not shared the physical proximity of playing with one another at the time of this release) that reconciles a brainiac restlessness with a hard edge. The collaborative sound that ultimately emerges from Uses Wrist Grab is an updated take on progressive rock impulse. And it's one that absolutely requires taking the whole thing in in one sitting. Perhaps a couple of times through just to get the ears acquainted with the jagged edges and sharp corners of these compositions. It says something that hearing such rigorous composition that rocks this hard is so disorienting. Plenty of guitar front and center in this one.

Cristian Amigo: Kingdom of Jones. 2007. Innova: 671.

Cristian Amigo: composer, acoustic guitars, electric guitars, lap steel, prepared tiple, pianos, synthesizers, beats, loops, processes, programming, soda cans, miscellaneous percussion, soundscapes, voice, lyrics
Izzi Ramkissoon: bass, laptop, processes
Guillermo Cardenas: percussion, trance
Wojciech Kosma: samples
Philip Blackburn: samples
Jeff Schwartz: upright bass
David Martinelli: drums
Andy Connell: clarinet
Robert Reigle: alto saxophone
Jonathan Grasse: electric guitar
Manoocher Sadeghi: santur
Nikos Brisco: guitar, Tibetan prayer bowl

Guitar is occasionally front and center in this one. Or off to the side or completely submerged beneath the wide ranging stylistic textures Cristian Amigo is willing to fashion. When the acoustic guitar comes to the foreground for the "Guitar Gestures" pieces one is treated to the mad chops of this sound artist when focused upon his instrument. These are embedded within a larger frame of sounds that embrace dance even as grooves come and go fleetingly at times. At each turn the sonic space is thoughtfully devised as it steers well clear of predictable turns. A sonic language without borders that carves out its own sense of form. And a thoughtful creative voice clearly operating beneath all of it.

Killick Erik Hinds/Dennis Palmer/Bob Stagner: A.S.A.P. Wings. 2007. Solponticello: SP-019/SRR CD-005.

Killick Erik Hinds: h'arpeggione
Dennis Palmer: synthesizers, drum samples, moogerfoogers
Bob Stagner: drums, found objects

This trio marks an incarnation - and recorded documentation - of the Shaking Levis collective. Which pulls together improbable strains of American sounds to arrive at a folksy free improvisation. The raw materials of sound folded into an inviting concoction that compromises neither the challenging quality of experimental music or the approachability of roots-based music. In short, these guys are having fun and it sounds like it.

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