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    Chatham, Rhys – “Harmonie Du Soir” – [Northern Spy Records]

    2013 release from seminal No Wave string-thinker.
    Like his contemporary Glenn Branca, Chatham was drawn
    to the concert hall thrill and thrall of an orchestra
    pit packed with electric guitarists. Minimalist music
    for maximum force. We have many of his older releases.
    He has evolved as a modern composer (trumpet apparently
    was his primary calling card) but we find him here still
    with that kind of post-rock, or punk-driven-drone vibe.

    #1 The title piece launches with a minimal tick tock ear
    sweep, one note electric pinging on a Dreyblatt-itude. Six
    guitars, so his roots music doubling down on his early
    Guitar Trio action. This song often feels like a post-rock
    precision boogie suite but it finds its power 7:40 in with
    definite No Wave homage crescendo chord strikes spaced out
    then accelerating then bass beats alive and angling guitar
    swipe-by’s create a nice Interference pattern.

    #2 Almost feels like a bagpipe early, the alignment of player
    (nearly 70 on this piece, an apparent soundtraco to a French
    mountain town – Rhonabwy ) a dinosaur heavy stride follows for
    nearly 12 minutes, then we encounter these arabesque woodwind
    flourishes. They blow in with a hint of dilithium crystal method.
    Add in minimalist call and response over orchestral drone, the
    orchestra swells and rises while percussion marches back in. We
    wind up in a shimmery pool of sustained sound. Helluva town.

    #3 Bonus piece, a mere 10 minutes. Noisier and less stately than
    the two vinyl cuts. Crushing blender of guitars like the original
    version of “Drastic Classicism” updated with dizzy blurts of Chatham’s
    trumpets sprinting through the center. Drummer Ryan Sawyer doesn’t
    just keep time, he kicks it in the gut. Noise surf.

    Hey he’s coming to town to cut it up with Bill Orcutt
    http://www.thelab.org/projects/2016/11/6/rhys-chatham

    -Thurston Hunger

  • Reviewed by Thurston Hunger on October 20, 2016 at 6:30 pm
  • Filed as 12-inch,A Library
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