Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Neon Brown Presents: "Abstract Imperialism"!

Set 1 47 megs 
Set 2 30 megs
Here's something that was rare even back in the days when Adrian was doing these with me regularly: an all-improv loop-driven set with just the two of us!  I'd been doing a similar thing with Denali Williams in our all-improv duo Bicuspid, and had even played a couple of great shows in a similar format this Fall with Paul Turner (which I still need to post here at some point).  However, for me the real genesis for this format clearly lies in 'neon brown' and especially an all-improvised show that Adrian and I did in Portland a couple of years ago.  In that particularly-magical show (tragically, not recorded), we played well over an hour of some of my favorite music of all time -- mostly just loop-jamming but often re-interpreting lyrics from across our catalogue over whatever was happening musically at the moment.  This still ranks as one of my favorite shows ever, and I've always looked forward to the opportunity to try the format with Adrian again.  

Well this past Wednesday (December 10th) we finally managed to arrange something similar for the last 'Neon Brown Presents' of the year, and while we're perhaps not quite as fluid as we were two years ago, there were stil plenty of magical moments.  Adrian brought out his beautiful rolled-steel kit along with his usual side-car of electronics/FX.  I played my favorite electric 6-string, split right off the bat by a new panning/volume pedal which allows me to arbitrarily control how much goes to each of my two looping/FX rigs -- all resulting in a wide stereo sound with lots of looping-options.  
The first set starts really nicely and has plenty of comfy grooves, some great aggressively-polymetric syncopation-jams, and even a couple of ugly spontaneous re-works of recent 'neon brown' tunes (near the end of the set, it just seemed like time for some lyrics).  But the second set is where things really began to gel and the weirdness really surfaced in a beautiful way with an extended Ween-like tune (Bunny, Kitty, and Horsey's Revenge) and the strangely-compelling grooves that surrounded it. 

(unedited clips right there at the top of this by Robert Kirkpatrick)

ps. Older postings still available for a limited time at the old JOTW page.