The Squid's Ear Magazine


Necks, The: Travel (Northern Spy)

Starting each day in the Australian studio with a 20-minute improvisation, The Necks trio of Chris Abrahams on piano & keyboards, Tony Buck on drums and Lloyd Swanton on bass developed this, their 21st album, as a collection of "shorter" and varied improvisations, released with minimal overdubs to present their music closer to their exceptional live performances.
 

Price: $16.95



Quantity:

In Stock

Quantity in Basket: None

Log In to use our Wish List
Shipping Weight: 2.00 units

Sample The Album:





product information:

Personnel:



Chris Abrahams-piano, keyboards

Tony Buck-drums, guitar

Lloyd Swanton-bass


Click an artist name above to see in-stock items for that artist.




UPC: 309272740097

Label: Northern Spy
Catalog ID: CD-NS-158
Squidco Product Code: 32943

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2023
Country: USA
Packaging: Digipack
Recorded by Tim Whitten, Studios 301, Alexandria, Australia.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Travel, the 19th studio album by Australian improvisational trio The Necks, documents their recent practice of starting each day in the studio with a 20-minute trio improvisation. The recordings offer some of their most ecstatic and captivating music cut to tape.

As bassist Lloyd Swanton puts it: "It's a really nice communal activity to bring us together in focus each day, and some lovely music has resulted from it." Although a straight "live" improvisation has never been recorded in the studio by the band, these tracks (save for some light overdubs and post-production) feel closest to their 30 years of celebrated live performances.

In 2017 Stephen O'Malley's Ideologic Organ label released the band's lauded Unfold, which first offered up this uncharacteristic studio work: four sub-20-minute pieces - instead of the typical 60+ minute arc for which the band is known - along with an obfuscated track list which leaves play order to the listener's hand. The album quickly sold out, and persists as a treasure in collections or as a high-priced 'Want' on Discogs."-Northern Spy



"Over 34 years, Australian trio the Necks --pianist / keyboardist Chris Abrahams, drummer/electric guitarist Tony Buck, and bassist Lloyd Swanton -- have forged a compelling, exploratory, singular musical language. Often categorized as a "jazz piano trio," they've essentially reinvented the configuration in their own image with some of the most captivating, yet difficult to categorize instrumental music. Travel follows 2017's Unfolded in offering four sidelong cuts spread across a double LP. This music -- impeccably recorded and mixed by longtime collaborator Tim Whitten -- documents the trio's recent rehearsal habit: They start each studio encounter by playing an extended improvisation for roughly 20 minutes. These recordings are some of those improvs played live-to-tape, then appended with minimal post production edits and overdubs.

"Signal," is initially straightforward but wanders wide. Swanton's incessantly repetitive double bass vamp is the anchor. Buck hovers behind, pairing ride cymbal and rim-shots while syncopating the rhythm. Abrahams explores Middle Eastern and North African modalism on piano, and on organ, layers nebulous chord voicings onto mysterious note clusters. He and Buck continually circle back to ground themselves in Swanton's vamp. The flow becomes intense as Swanton pulls out a bow, and Buck adds snare breaks.

"Forming" is a slow brooding burn. Its single piano chord foundation is broken up by Abrahams into individual notes before reconstructing it in alternating resonant tones and timbral combinations. Buck whispers, cajoles and encourages with fluttering tom-toms and cymbal washes. Swanton abstractly, combines harmonic drones with dark, taut chords. At nine minutes, Abrahams' right hand pointillistically vamps directly from them. He cascades around Buck's beats, creating an alternate, dynamic. "Imprinting" finds the players disguising the organic sounds of their instruments initially. As Buck builds a circular ceremonial pattern with low-tuned tom toms, Swanton's arco bass sounds akin to a muted cornet. Abrahams almost indecipherable electric piano notes slide in then commingle in a counter vamp of fat, shimmering chords, layered inside a noirish sounding Hammond B-3, producing a wealth of tonalities for the trio to investigate. Strangely, it resembles Jon Hassell's Aka/Darbari/Java: Magic Realism, and the latter half of Miles Davis's "Shh/Peaceful" simultaneously. Closer "Bloodstream" commences with an organ fugue over a seemingly breathing arco bass drone. Abrahams begins comping on piano, running through blues and modal postbop, then threads in a bounty of spooky, almost otherworldly organ. Buck enters at six minutes with thunderous, rolling snares. He drops out, allowing Abrahams to assert harmony, before the drum kit returns with thudding tom toms, and crisp, reverbed cymbals. Swanton adds electronic treatments to his droning bass. Buck's addition of a warmly distorted electric guitar adds ballast, texture and poignancy.

Despite the change in m.o. Travel is very much a Necks album and lines up seamlessly with the trio's vast catalogue. It blossoms with new ideas, fluid spontaneity and fresh ideas. For newcomers curious about the longstanding trio's music, Travel is a truly excellent place to begin."-Thom Jurek, All Music

Also available as a vinyl LP.
Get additional information at All Music

Artist Biographies

"Chris Abrahams was born in Oamaru, New Zealand but grew up in Sydney, Australia.

He became very active in the Sydney jazz scene in the early eighties playing with modern jazz groups including Mark Simmonds' Freeboppers and The Keys Music Orchestra. With Lloyd Swanton he formed the 60's modern jazz-influenced The Benders in 1982. During its day, the band released three albums - E, False Laughter and Distance.

In 1984 Chris recorded and released his first solo piano album - Piano, followed in 1986 by Walk.

In 1985 Chris became a founding member of the Sydney indie rock band The Sparklers. As a result of this, Chris began working regularly with the singer and songwriter Melanie Oxley. Chris collaborated with Melanie, writing songs and producing albums, throughout the nineties. There are five releases with her: Resisting Calm (1990), Welcome to Violet (1992), Coal (1994), Jerusalem Bay (1998) and Blood Oranges (2003).

Chris released a third solo piano album, Glow, in 2001. This was followed in 2003 by Streaming, and then Thrown (2004), Play Scar (2010) and Memory Night (2013).

Chris has collaborated, in both recording and performance, with many contemporary improvising musicians including Burkhard Beins, Mike Cooper and Anthony Pateras. He performs regularly in the improvising music scenes both in Australia and Europe."

-The Necks Website (http://www.thenecks.com/bio)
7/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Born in Sydney in 1962, Tony is regarded as one of Australia's most creative and adventurous exports, with vast experience across the globe. He has been involved in a highly diverse array of projects. Apart from The Necks, he is probably best known as leader of hardcore/impro band PERIL.

Early in his musical life, after having graduated from the New South Wales Conservatorium of Music, he became very involved in the jazz scene in Australia, often touring with visiting international artists such as Vincent Herring, Clifford Jordan, Mickey Tucker, Branford Marsalis and Ernie Watts, as well as Australians Mark Simmonds, Paul Grabowsky, The catholics, Sandy Evans and Dale Barlow.

Following time spent in Japan, where he formed PERIL with Otomo Yoshihide and Kato Hideki, Tony moved to Europe, and has involved himself in many projects there, including the development of new "virtual" MIDI controllers at STEIM in Amsterdam.

Tony has played, toured or recorded with, among others, Jon Rose, Nicolas Collins, Tenko, John Zorn, Tom Cora, Phil Minton, Haino, Switchbox, The Machine for Making Sense, Ne Zhdall, The EX, Peter Brotzmann, Hans Reichel, The Little Red Spiders, Subrito Roy Chowdury, Clifford Jordan, Kletka Red, Han Bennink, Shelley Hirsch, Wayne Horvitz, Palinckx, and Ground Zero."

-The Necks Website (http://www.thenecks.com/bio)
7/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Described by Billboard Magazine as "an outstanding and imaginative Australian bassist and composer", Lloyd Swanton was born into a large and musical family in Sydney in 1960.

His long-running group, The catholics, has released eight albums, all produced and predominantly composed by him, with three receiving ARIA Award nominations. Their album Simple was nominated for the German Deutsche Schallplattenkritik Award.

His 12-part suite Ambon, drawing from his uncle Stuart's secret diary kept whilst a prisoner of war in World War II, had its premiere in 2015, and is now released as a double CD.

Overseas exposure in nearly 40 countries with numerous groups includes countless performances throughout Europe, Canada, the USA, Mexico, India, Cuba, New Zealand, Taiwan, South Korea, Russia, Indonesia, Thailand and Japan.

For fourteen years, Lloyd Swanton hosted Mixed Marriage, a very popular radio program which examined crossings of jazz with other musical styles, on Eastside Radio in Sydney.

In his spare time, Lloyd is an avid follower of Australian Football, and a keen collector of Australian Aboriginal art, ice crushers, modernist ceramics, and books on Fellini. He is also gathering historical information on his distant ancestor Theodore Deck, a leading name in 19th Century French ceramics."

-The Necks Website (http://www.thenecks.com/bio)
7/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.


Track Listing:



1. Bloodstream 18:38

2. Imprinting 17:14

3. Signal 20:50

4. Forming 20:10

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
The Necks
Australian Improvisers, Composers and Experimenters
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Improvised Music

Search for other titles on the label:
Northern Spy.


Recommended & Related Releases:
Skein (Kaufmann / Gratkowski / de Joode)
Spectra & Affrays
(Klanggalerie)
Describing their improvisation as a chemical reaction of positive and negative ions, the central trio of the ensemble Skein--Achim Kaufmann (piano), Frank Gratkowski (winds) and Wilbert de Joode (bass)--are heard in this incredible 2018 concert at Konfrontationen Festival as a septet with Tony Buck (drums), Richard Barrett (electronics), Liz Allbee (trumpet) and Uchihashi Kazuhisa (guitar).
Avenaim, Robbie / Chris Abrahams / Jim Denley
Weft
(Relative Pitch)
The Australian trio of percussionist Robbie Avenaim, keyboard player Chris Abrahams performing on a Waldorf Q+ Synthesiser and bass flutist Jim Denley, all compatriots in a variety of groupings, in an extended studio improvisation of spacious textures and rapidly understated percussive elements, aptly titled for the weaving and cris-crossing threads on a loom.
Machinefabriek
With Drums [VINYL + DOWNLOAD]
(esc.rec.)
Rutger Zuydervelt (aka Machinefabriek) invited 41 drummer/percussionists including Tony Buck, Vasco Trilla, Tim Barnes, Greg Stuart, Cyril Bondi, &c. to take part in a project by recording a few short fills or phrases, which Zuydervelt used as "Lego Bricks" to build a series of short rhythmical collages, the results being 24 diverse and fascinating compositions.
Machinefabriek
With Drums
(Machinefabriek)
Rutger Zuydervelt (aka Machinefabriek) invited 41 drummer/percussionists including Tony Buck, Vasco Trilla, Tim Barnes, Greg Stuart, Cyril Bondi, &c. to take part in a project by recording a few short fills or phrases, which Zuydervelt used as "Lego Bricks" to build a series of short rhythmical collages, the results being 24 diverse and fascinating compositions.
Regenorchester XII
Relics
(Trost Records)
Franz Hautzinger formed the orchestra in 1995 as an ensemble for experimental music, developing into an advanced improvising band that incorporates a shifting and diverse set of styles, heard here at Klangspuren Festival in 2019 with Hautzinger on trumpet, Christian Fennesz on guitar & laptop, Otomo Yoshihide on guitar & turntables, Luc Ex on bass, and Tony Buck on drums.
Roberts, Dean
Not Fire
(erstwhile)
Berlin-based songwriter Dean Roberts' first album in 12 years is a collection of dark and melancholic songs, set in unusual formats based around guitar, electronics, strings, with subtle rhythmic elements, performed by Dean's Dark Moth Ensemble, with additional musicians that include Boris Hauf on piano and The Neck's keyboardist Chris Abrahams on harp.
Bosetti, Alessandro / Chris Abrahams
A Heart That Responds From Schooling
(Unsounds)
The 2nd release from Italian composer/performer Alessandro Bosetti and Australian pianist Chris Abrahams (The Necks), a very intimate album of sonic explorations that spans improvised fragments and original renditions of compositions like Steve Lacy's "Esteem" with Bosetti's lyrics.
Kahn, Jason
Open Space [VINYL 2 LPs]
(Editions)
Jason Kahn developed these graphic scores, commissioned by the 2012 now NOW Festival in Australia, to push these specific players into situations outside of their comfort zone, as heard in this double LP which includes copies of the score plus notes and interviews.
Abrahams, Chris / Magda Mayas
Gardener
(Relative Pitch)
"Four hands on one piano" from the duo of pianist Chris Abrahams (The Necks) and Magda Mayas, both improvising in Berlin at the Vivaldi Saal performance space using their piano, harpsichord, and harmonium.
Bosetti, Alessandro / Chris Abrahams
We Who Had Left
(Mikroton Recordings)
Necks pianist Chris Abrahams teams up with electronic artist and sound poet Alessandro Bosetti for 6 introspective and mysterious tracks that mix Necks-like playing with ambient electronics and curious monologs, plus one waltz.
Mayas / Buck
gold
(Creative Sources)
Necks drummer and percussion Tony Buck in a duo from December 2007 performing at the dOeK Festival in Bimhuis, Amsterdam with extended technique pianist Magda Mayas.
Other Recommended Releases:
Buck, Tony / Mark Nauseef
Mongrels
(Relative Pitch)
Using a wide assortment of guitars (electric, baritone, arch top acoustic, bass) + monochord, waterphone & zulu bells, Necks drummer and multi-instrumentalist Tony Buck joins with percussionist Mark Nauseef performing on bells and gongs for seven exotic improvisations rich in overtones, microtonal movement, ringing harmonics and hybrid motion.
Spence, Alister / Tony Buck
Mythographer
(Alister Spence Music)
Stepping away from the Australian trio The Necks, drummer/percussionist Tony Buck meets pianist Alister Spence in the studio for seven distinct dialogs of "submerged rhythm, oblique extended forms, entwined interplay, and sound for its own sake", Spence at times using preparations on his strings, as both listen and respond deeply through a congenial approach to playing.
Abrahams, Chris
Follower [VINYL]
(Room40)
A diverse album of compositional work from Australian pianist and The Necks legend Chris Abrahams, in two works of rich ambience and spacious soundscape performed on acoustic and electric pianos, organ, detuned bells and acousmatic sources, contrasted with two more capricious works on acoustic piano, unusual percussive platforms, haunting tones and moody interjections.
Rose, Jon / Chris Abrahams
Peggy
(Recommended Records)
Phillips, Simon James
Blage 3
(Mikroton Recordings)
A reduction of composer Simon James Phillips' 5 hour improvisation performed with Tony Buck (drums), Werner Dafeldecker (bass), BJ Nilsen (electronics), Liz Allbee (trumpet), Arthur Rother (guitar) & Simon James Phillips (piano) exploring time, perception and place.
Abrahams, Chris / Clare Cooper
Germ Studies For Guzheng & DX7
(Splitrec)
The Australian duo of pianist Chris Abrahams (Necks) & Berlin harpist Clare Cooper in a series of 198 short improvisations performed on Yamaha DX7 and the 14th century Guzheng harp, presented with 198 illustrations in an unusual and obsessively rewarding project.
Necks, The
Silverwater
(Recommended Records)
The trio of Chris Abrahams, Lloyd Swanton & Tony Buck in their first release in 4 years, named for an industrial suburb, a bleak and beautifully building affair in The Necks tradition.
Necks, The
Mosquito / See Through
(Recommended Records)



Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought:
Bechegas / Rodrigues / Rodrigues
Secrets Under Trees
(Creative Sources)
Recording at Berlin-Wedding's performance space Werkhalle Wiesenburg in the summer of 2023, the free improvising chamber trio of violist Ernesto Rodrigues and cellist Guilherme Rodrigues meet with Portuguese flutist Carlos Bechegas, bringing contemporary classical technique to an extended and energetically tempestuous improvisation and a sprightly "Time Between".
Wooley, Nate / Mutual Aid Music
Four Experiments [4 CD BOX SET]
(Pleasure of the Text Records)
Engaging an expanded version of the ensemble from his Mutual Aid Music, trumpeter Nate Wooley provides scores for his players in various configuration that challenge concepts of group composition, instrumental sound and resonance, idealized tones and the human voice, the development of melody and harmony in compositions, &c.; performers include Wooley, Seymore Wright, John McCowen, Gabby Fluke-Mogul, Cory Smythe, Luke Stewart, Eric Wubbels, &c.
Campbell, Roy / William Parker / Zen Matsuura
Visitation Of Spirits - the Pyramid Trio Live, 1985
(NoBusiness)
A superb album of 80's free jazz with a warmly lyrical loft influence and filled with jazz reference, from the trio of late trumpeter Roy Campbell, also performing on flugelhorn & flute, late Japanese/NY drummer Takeshi Zen Matsuura and bassist William Parker, in a never-before issued performance at Boston-area Brandeis University for five expansive conversations.
Fujii, Satoko / Otomo Yoshihide
Perpetual Motion
(Ayler Records)
Expanding their instruments into sonic sculpture, this first meeting between acclaimed Japanese improvisers Satoko Fujii, performing inside and out of the piano, and electric guitarist Otomo Yoshihide, demonstrates their incredible compatibly as heard in these live recordings at Tokyo's Pit Inn, part of an annual festival organized by Fujii & trumpeter Natsuki Tamura.
Schindler, Udo / Nikolaius Neuser / Georg Karger
Rhapsodic Topologies
(FMR)
Performing at the Gallery arToxi in Munich, 2022 as part of clarinet & cornetist Schindler's LowToneStudies series, the free improvising trio of Schindler, Nikolaus Neuser on trumpet and Georg Karger on double bass perform four extended conversations of meticulous momentum and superb technique, at times repurposing, extending or modifying their instruments.
Dikeman, John / Pat Thomas / John Edwards / Steve Noble
Volume 2
(577 Records)
The second of two volumes from the quartet of John Dikeman on tenor saxophone, Pat Thomas on piano, John Edwards on bass and Steve Noble on drums, bringing the American saxophonist working throughout Europe together with this nearly telepathic collaborative grouping of UK frequent collaborators, captured in concert at Cafe OTO in 2019 for two absorbing improvisations.
Drake, Hamid
Dedications (Black Cross Solo Sessions 6)
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)
As prolific a drummer as Chicago-based international improviser Hamid Drake is, he has never released a solo drum album, which is finally put right with this release recorded at Experimental Sound Studio, developing strategies for these nine accomplished recordings, performed on a standard drum kit with each dedicated to prominent free jazz icon or group.



The Squid's Ear Magazine

The Squid's Ear Magazine

© 2002-, Squidco LLC