The 2nd installment of the trio of guitarist Henry Kaiser, double bassist Damon Smith and drummer Weasel Walter's unadulterated free improvisation escapades, with innovative approaches to playing and a quirky sense of humor leading to outstanding improv.
Kaiser, Henry / Damon Smith / Weasel Walter
Plane Crash Two
Label: New Atlantis
Released in: USA
"This album was created shortly after experimental guitarist Henry Kaiser's large ensemble collaboration with fabled Brit guitarist Ray Russell The Celestial Squid (Cuneiform, 2015), as Plane Crash Two marks the second installment of the trio's unadulterated free improvisation exploits.
Here, three longtime associates generate that special synergy required to pull it off. Regardless of tempo or pitch, the musicians expand, contract and generate call and response patterns via microsecond-like reactions amid the ensuing developments. The program is consummated by four 10-minute plus workouts.
On the humorously titled opener "Cactus Makes Perfect," drummer Weasel Walter's stimulating, hyper-mode cymbals, drums and small percussion instrument fabrications tender a bulbous platform, contrasted by bassist Damon Smith's rugged arco-lines and limber bottom-end. Moreover, they gel to a cavalcade of jagged phrasings and flex some muscle, offset by a few quiet interludes. But when performing on electric guitar, Kaiser's off-centered choruses complete with phased, reverse-engineering effects and eerie tonalities present a bizarre outlook as the band also ventures toward subterranean depths and volcanic zeniths.
They delve into asymmetrically oriented avant-metal wonderlands and on "False Alarms," Kaiser's volume control techniques and Walter's peppery snare drum rolls offer a fractured stream of consciousness with edgy dialogues. The trio pulls out the proverbial stops with all out blitzes and frenzied soloing galas akin to a lethal aerial assault; although, "Fifi Blows Her Top" features the guitarist's nimble plucking and Smith's mournful bowed-lines and other contrapuntal schemas.
In sum, the group's simmering narratives, animated exchanges and free-spirited risk-taking mechanisms spawn an indubitably intense joyride."-Glenn Astarita, allaboutjazz.com
"If sometimes I cover albums that have been out for a while, it is not for lack of anything new. It's because the music is central, more so than the politics of review jockeying, poll-meistering or otherwise fulfilling a role in the INDUSTRY, though some of that is inevitable if you post regularly in the current musical world.
So today we go back to an album from last year that I missed, the potent trio of Henry Kasier's guitar, Damon Smith's double bass, and Weasel Walter's drum set for the album Plane Crash Two (New Atlantic Records 024).
It is a free trio date with Henry Kaiser in a post-Derek Bailey guitar mode, meaning that he seeks clusters of extra-extended sound complexes along with warbling melodically outside sustains. In perfect simultaneity is the bass abstractions of Damon Smith along with the clutter, clash and power diving drumming of Weasel Walter.
The music ranges between sound-color textural emanations and avant psychedelics, and it does so with excellent creative thrust.
In the process all three define personal spaces of out-taking that meld together in ever-interesting and ear-awakening ways.
It is an excellent example of Henry Kaiser on the outer fringe, but also Damon and Weasel in interactive openness to create a trio of special sonance and varied warp drive modes.
This is a fine example of the fine line between power and finesse in avant trios who do not eschew a hint of avant rock as well as free jazziphonics.
Good show! Get it."-Grego Applegate Edwards, Grapplegate
• Show Bio for Damon Smith
"Damon Smith studied double bass with Lisle Ellis and has had lessons with Bertram Turezky, Joëlle Leandré, John Lindberg, Mark Dresser and others. Damon's explorations into the sonic palette of the double bass have resulted in a personal, flexible improvisational language based in the American jazz avant-garde movement and European non-idiomatic free improvisation. Visual art, film and dance heavily influence his music, as evidenced by his CAMH performance of Ben Patterson's Variations for Double Bass, collaborations with director Werner Herzog on soundtracks for Grizzly Man and Encounters at the End of the World, and an early performance with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company.
Damon has collaborated with a wide range of musicians, including: Cecil Taylor, Marshall Allen (of Sun Ra's Arkestra), Henry Kaiser, Roscoe Mitchell, Michael Pisaro, Wadada Leo Smith, Marco Eneidi, Wolfgang Fuchs, Peter Brötzmann and Peter Kowald. After many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, and five great years in Houston, Texas working regularly with Alvin Fielder, Sandy Ewen, David Dove & Chris Cogburn, Damon will move to the Boston area in the fall of 2016. Damon has run Balance Point Acoustics record label since 2001, releasing music focusing on transatlantic collaborations between US and European musicians."-Balance Point Acoustic Website (https://www.balancepointacoustics.com/damon-smith/)
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• Show Bio for Weasel Walter
"Weasel Walter (real name Walter Wyzowski) is a composer and instrumentalist who founded the band The Flying Luttenbachers in Chicago in 1991 with a current member of Cellular Chaos and Behold...The Arctopus. Over the years, The Flying Luttenbachers included noted Dylan Posa, and Michael Colligan, while creating a body of music drawing equally from no wave, death metal, gamelan, noise music, hardcore punk and modern classical. Walter moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2003, where he formed the latest of many Luttenbachers lineups, remaining on percussion with the addition of bassist Mike Green (Burmese), and virtuoso guitarist Ed Rodriguez (ex-Colossamite, Gorge Trio). Singular guitar phenomenon Mick Barr (Krallice, Octis, Orthrelm) joined the group in 2005. The Flying Luttenbachers ceased to operate in late 2007. On November 25, 2009, Weasel Walter announced that he was moving to New York City to join the band Behold... The Arctopus on drums and will be writing "new, more extreme material from scratch." He also formed Cellular Chaos with Marc Edwards (drummer), Admiral Grey and Ceci Moss."-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weasel_Walter)
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At The Squid's Ear!
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Shipping Weight: 2.00 units
Quantity in Basket: None
Label: New Atlantis
Catalog ID: NA-CD-024
Squidco Product Code: 21011
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded live at Fantasy Studios inBerkeley, California, on April 12th, 2014 by Adam Munoz.
Damon Smith-double bass
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1. Cactus Makes Perfect 15:27
2. False Alarms 21:30
3. Violent Is The Word For Curly 16:24
4. Fifi Blows Her Top 13:30