subota, 7. ožujka 2015.

Subtle Lip Can - Reflective Drime (2014)

Subtle Lip CanReflective Drime

Klepet raštimanih holograma na vjetru. Esencijalno štivo.

Subtle Lip Can is a trio consisting of Bernard Falaise [guitar], Joshua Zubot [violin] and Isaiah Ceccarelli [percussion]. All three are members of Montréal’s fervent improvisational community. The textures they create are unique, rich and cover a wide dynamic scope, from contemplative soundscapes to frantic climaxes.

From a self-professed failed polygote, instagram photographer, and an adamant non-facebook user, comes this intimate, imitative, mirror-pond of mammalian spring-songs. The Trio brews up a plethora of sonic phenomena that echoes Morton Feldman's Triadic Memories, Art Pepper's Wintermoon (more in the rhythmic sense), and melted melodic moments of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring. These references are woven into a complex morphological lexicon that is intrinsic to the performers' fine-tuned intuitive capabilities. Overall, the album maintians its sense of authenticity in the way that the performers work with one another to reach a degree of catharsis.       
An esculent for audiophiles, Drime's refined spatial presence is quite palpable to the auditory nerve and as such, has the propensity to induce sporatic moments of subdued synaesthesia. Suble Lip Can's sophomore album, as the name suggests, pays its respects to tradition and is reflective of itself, suggesting that the trio has entered the Lacanian "mirror stage" in this phase of evolution. Punctual and accurate metamorphoses indicate that this caterpilar knows it will inevitably transform into a magnificient monarch.

Someone picking up Reflective Drime without having previously heard Subtle Lip Can might make certain inferences based on the cover details. Seeing that the group consists of Joshua Zubot (violin and mandolin), Bernard Falaise (guitar), and Isaiah Ceccarelli (drums/percussion), one might conceivably picture a trad-jazz trio riffing on tunes by Stéphane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt or some such thing. In like manner, track titles such as “Shuffle Stomp,” “Slam Hum,” and “Chackle Clast” could lead one to think the album might feature blues-based romps, be-bop, and concise solo statements by the string players supported by high-energy drum swing.
Well, all such expectations are certifiably dashed by the fifty-two-minute recording, which pursues an entirely other agenda from the one described above. Subtle Lip Can, which formed in 2007 and issued its eponymous debut album three years later, is no Hot Club of France, in other words. Laid down in 2013, Reflective Drime sees Zubot, Falaise, and Ceccarelli digging into ten improv-styled tracks with a hydra-headed unanimity of purpose.
The recording's uncompromisingly experimental tone is established early, with raw swathes of violin and guitar dragging themselves across a lumbering percussive carcass during “Siffer Shump.” Though comparatively more subdued, “Gull Plump Fiver” is no less alien in its overall comportment, though Falaise's playing does surprisingly flirt with jazz-styled melodicism in its textural shadings. In one seeming nod to conventionality, “Shuffle Stomp” includes wiry solos by Falaise and Zubot, albeit ones constantly besieged by the immolating undertow churning alongside. Elsewhere, crabby, atonal guitar shards butt up against glockenspiel tinklings and nocturnal violin scrapes in “Salk Hovered,” while “Chackle Clast” resembles some woozy convergence of spidery guitar picking and convulsive violin micro-textures.
Eschewing standard musical conventions of melody and rhythm, the trio burrows into its material, operating in a free-spirited improv zone and seemingly indifferent to notions of commercial potential or accessibility. Throughout the recording, the musicians appear intent on wresting from their instruments anything but the normal sounds associated with them. Put simply, Subtle Lip Can's pieces are less conventional compositions and more multi-limbed organisms undergoing nightmarish birth before one's ears. It ain't easy listening, as we like to call it, but the musical firmament should be large and open-ended enough to find a spot for the trio's highly individualized brand of experimental psychogeography. 
- Textura

 The first release back for Tanya Tagaq collaborator Jesse Zubot's newly (and thankfully) relaunched label Drip Audio keeps it in the family. Reflective Drime is the followup to Subtle Lip Can's eponymous 2010 debut, a project featuring Jesse's brother Joshua Zubot on violin alongside percussionist Isaiah Ceccarelli and guitarist Bernard Falaise. Unlike Animism, there is no opening Pixies cover to ease you into this album. It dives straight into the deep end, delivering an unrelenting assault of cacophonic timbre combinations, a blistering chaos of extended technique, scrapes and distortions, raw noise expressed through free jazz gestures.   
While evocative and thoroughly artful, its longer, dissonant pieces like "Rommer Chanks" can be difficult to get through, but when they reign it in a touch for tracks like the eerie space jazz of "Gull Plump Fiver" or the album's sparse, droning closer "Too Pins Over," the humanity of the Montreal trio's endeavour can envelope your soul. It's powerful and terrifying to behold. Unflinchingly, Reflective Drime boasts the ability to turn sound into colors and vice versa, which may look cool on paper to those who occasionally chew blotter, but the reality of which can be a bit much to handle for even seasoned veterans. - Exclam!

Album Review: New Canadian Music
Album Review: Le son du GrisliAlbum Preview: Exclaim!


Subtle Lip Can is a trio comprising percussionist Isaiah Ceccarelli, guitarist Bernard Falaise (of Miriodor renown) and violinist Josh Zubot. This CD, their debut release, stands among those albums instantly calling for a second, a third and perhaps a fifth listen after the first. The reasons are manifold, and all positive. Firstly, the practical impossibility of comparisons (although a few glimpses did remind yours truly of early Curlew, the Tom Cora era to be precise). Then, the brilliance with which the improvisers manage to defy anticipation by utilizing hundreds of different timbral characteristics – often contrasting – thus rendering the palette much more abundant and richly textured than one could expect by mentally picturing only three men at work. The sonic milieus are varying and constantly intriguing: raucous dronage, clattering raspiness, incendiary screeching, tickling repetition, over-charged lyricism, pungent dissonance. The musicians look for alternative methods to imperil calmness, without caring about hypothetical aesthetical judgements. This no-frills attitude keeps things on the scorching side of the matters, warranting 43 minutes of interplay that manages to distill juices even in the shrivelling components. It’s good to see someone who does not accept subservience to the improvisation market’s current laws; here’s hoping that we’ll hear again soon from such an unexampled unit. - Massimo Ricci

"The band’s invented a tonal vocabulary all its own; a language crimped, parched and folded; a sound that communicates a different kind of communion. Absolutely, most definitely essential listening." - Forest Gospel

"...the sheer amount of creativity and musicality seem to bounce unrelentingly from the speakers..." - Beat Route      

"The sheer distinctiveness of this trio's sound is a blessing: music this engaging and unique is a rare gift." - Exclaim!       " is the musicians' ability to maneuver as an ensemble - the sudden, breathtaking changes from breakneck flourishes and jarring textures to seductive reverberations that shimmer and disappear - that ultimately make this album so captivating." - Signal To Noise

"...languid microtonal free improvising." - Monsieur Délire

"Subtle Lip Can’s debut is a fleshy menace of sound; sound abounding in subtlety and carnage; sound with lungs and a heart. Simply put: it’s an album you can’t afford to miss. - Foxy Digitalis

"...a heavily reverberated sound-walk through a dangerous junkyard raining scrap metal. A primo storm of improvised noise." (9 out of 10!) - Montreal Mirror

"...a largely quiet but peculiarly invasive soundworld suggesting a musical attempt to explore the inner workings of disgust." - Paris Transatlantic Magazine       "It’s cutting edge stuff at it’s best, ...beautiful, moody, dramatic, and a thoroughly enjoyable listen." - Left Hip Magazine       " of my favourite releases of this year and, coupled with the recent Pink Saliva release, the sounds have me convinced that there’s something in the water in Montreal." - Spontaneous Combustion       "...consistently mesmerizing." - Bruce Lee Gallanter (Downtown Music Gallery)      
Album Review: Forest Gospel
Album Review: Pop Matters
Album Review: Foxy Digitalis
Album Review: Paris Transatlantic Magazine
Album Review: All About Jazz
Album Review: Left Hip Magazine
Album Review: Exclaim!
Album Review: Montreal Mirror (Scroll Down!)
Album Review: babysue
Album Review: Spontaneous Combustion
Album Review: Downtown Music GalleryAlbum Review: le son du grisli
Joshua Zubot Bernard Falaise Isaiah Ceccarelli

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