Saturday, December 12, 2015

Peter Brotzmann, Keiji Haino and Jim O’Rourke - Two City Blues 1 (Trost Records, 2015)

Split over two sides of vinyl or strung together digitally, this album features the legendary free jazz saxophonist Peter Brotzmann along with Keiji Haino and Jim O’Rourke on guitars. They play balanced and exciting free improvisation over the course of two tracks, “Two City Blues 1” and “Eyes Stay the Same.” Together the three musicians make an interesting musical gathering where free jazz meets experimental post rock. The music is very impressive, they forgo bass and drums for slashing guitar work and torrid and pungent saxophone playing, projecting their music forcefully and confidently. They move with barreling and blistering power, but remain well connected to each other, and seem quite comfortable interacting in this challenging environment. Dynamic shifts in tone and volume allow the music to ride swells from ominous abstraction through to howling full volume collective improvisation. Brotzmann’s horn has more than enough power to match the two electric guitarists, as they make their way navigating through an infinite journey through sound. The guitars spark, scratch and sparkle on both lengthy tracks with Brotzmann weaving in between or howling overhead. Everything seems to be coming from a deep tributary that each of the musicians is able to tap into, melding pure sound into an emotionally accomplished performance. Two City Blues 1 -

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