Monday, August 13, 2007

Marc Ribot - Asmodeus: Book Of Angels: Vol.7 (Tzadik, 2007)

Marc Ribot leads an amped up power trio through ten pithy improvisations from John Zorn's Masada songbook. Ribot is a guitarist of great flexibility and subtlety... but not here. This album is all about pinning his ears back and howling at the moon. But this isn't just some exercise in self gratification, the trio with bassist Trevor Dunn and drummer G. Calvin Weston is super tight and the musicians really listen to and support one another. If anything, the music is about collective improvisation, with bubbling bass, seething drums and slashing guitar coming together as a comprehensive whole rather than going for individual glory. Knowing that this type of one-dimensional music can only go so far, the group keeps the songs short, with improvisations on the order of two to six minutes, and the whole disc clocks in at about the length of a vinyl LP. Like the great early Ramones albums that hit hard and finished fast, this disc packs a well timed wallop. Guitar fiends and other lovers of high energy music are urged to make its acquaintance.

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