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.
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Label: Recommended Records
Catalog ID: ReR Necks9
Squidco Product Code: 12361
Recorded at Electric Avenue, Camperdown NSW and mixed at Studio 301, Alexandria by Tim Whitten.
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1. Silverwater 1:07:15
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"Four years on from their ARIA Award-winning 13th album Chemist, [Australia's] most beloved exploratory jazz trio return with the austere Silverwater. Named for a bleak, industrial Sydney suburb best known for its correctional facility, the record consists of a single hour-plus track that finds Chris Abrahams, Lloyd Swanton and Tony Buck in a very dark place indeed. As is fairly standard for the group, they start things out softly, with glimmering analogue keyboards that evoke the sci-fi ambience of Klaus Schulze's solo works.
From there, they proceed to subtly amp up the volume and intensity of the piece, led by Buck's fluid percussion. About a quarter of the way in, his bandmates step back, allowing him to set up the track's next section with a succession of circular fills, followed by Swanton's slowly evolving double bass line. This provides Abrahams with the impetus for Silverwater's most deliberately melodic movement, as he echoes Swanton's bass with admirable (yet not atypical) self-control. This is allowed to run its natural course for another 15 or so minutes, before being drawn (gently, of course) towards a more traditionally-structured jazz motif. Buck's increased confidence and ability as a guitarist (as showcased on his 2008 solo album Project Transmit) shines through here, as he augments Abrahams' understated playing with a few carefully-chosen and gently-bent notes.
Silverwater then glides back towards the near-empty space where it began, once again echoing early-'70s post-krautrock ambience. Buck's muted electric guitar brings some structure to the drift, leading into the album's final coda of piano, bass and gently-tapped cymbals.
There's an overall mood of passiveness to Silverwater that stands in direct contrast to the more aggressive Chemist. This is The Necks at their most reflective, utilising their key tools of minimalism and repetition to create a gently trance-inducing piece of music. Though occasional bursts of intensity serve to stave off monotony, Silverwater remains a largely subdued affair. That it's so utterly engaging, and so amenable to repeat listens is testament to the undeniable skill of the musicians involved."-Adam D Mills, Mess and Noise
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• Show Bio for Chris Abrahams
"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)
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• Show Bio for Tony Buck
"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)
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• Show Bio for Lloyd Swanton
"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)
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