Four side-long improvisations from the Australian trio of Chris Abrahams on piano, Tony Buck on drums, and Lloyd Swanton on bass, each side a masterpiece of slowly transpiring and evolving music, unhurriedly expanding each track to reveal tension and allure.
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Label: Ideologic Organ
Catalog ID: SOMA 025LP
Squidco Product Code: 23794
Format: 2 LPs
Packaging: LP - Gatefold
Recorded at Studios 301, Alexandria, Australia, by Tim Whitten.
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1. Rise 15:35
1. Overhear 16:18
1. Blue Mountain 20:59
1. Timepiece 21:47
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"The Necks are the legendary Australian trio who excel in bypassing musical cliche whilst exploring and extending the practices embedded within improvisation, jazz, post rock, ambient, minimal, and textural, "sound based" music. The latest document from this long-running ensemble presents itself as a double LP, with four side-length tracks.
A deliberate absence of numbered sides hands a substantial swatch of participation over to the listener, allowing her to navigate his own path through the soundscape at hand. The shorter length of the vinyl format, far from being a constraint upon the members of the ensemble, instead offers them a more compact horizon to contemplate, wherein the distance travelled is recalibrated to more immediate and dynamic textural concerns.
The immediacy of "Rise" confirms this new path, as the mournful tones of Lloyd Swanton's bass swirl around Chris Abrahams's crystalline piano motif, with Tony Buck's percussion steering proceedings into enlightening free-jazz territories. "Blue Mountain" cuts a swathe through the sonic undergrowth, with soul organ, rattling percussion, whistles, and loping sound-waves all vying for the foreground. "Overhear" retains a sublime melancholic aura as the percussion and keyboards simultaneously embrace and fall apart, whilst "Timepiece" skips along as a gentle gesture of further possibilities.
Exactly how The Necks conjure their particular magic - as deceptively simple as it seems - whilst always moving forward, is anyone's guess, but Unfold proves yet again that rules and schools are to be broken and re-formed into patterns and frameworks unlike those already known."-Ideologic Organ
• 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)
^ Hide Bio for Lloyd Swanton
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