Album Review

Brains – “Unloaded” – [Edgetone Records]

Thurston Hunger   11/2/2011   CD, Jazz

Striking while the tenoris hot. Second release
this year from powerhouse duo. Hell, the sax
player has a name that sounds like it should be
a musical term, Drew “Ceccato” starts this 3-cut
release chirping like a eurobird, drummer Chris
Golinski summons/bends some haunted tom-tom
spirits. Foreboding, sparse but growing with
some subtle heat until about 10 minutes, when
Ceccato re-emerges with throaty flurries, slowly
closing the space between runs till he’s sped up
to work some hand-jive tag with the accelerating
drums till 15:30 when the bird returns. Feels like
a Noh play in the air. “Dirt” up next droney doom
vibe to start, cymbals open up an oasis guide the
sax up to a peak for some jumpy, not-bop bop.
Golinski breaks it up with a drum extension before
Ceccato circular breathes dervish around maracas.
A sad but strong climax then gives way to bird
chirps. “Gnash” offers reverbed angles and then
drums bounce off walls. Half-way through Ceccato
gets slithery, like a shenai. A fiery finish to
a quick 1-2 drop and out! The more I listen to
this album, I really dig Golinski’s work, often he
takes over to help move the piece through a
transformation, giving Ceccato time for a sonic
wardrobe change, and they also play great together.
Not to be missed!

-Thurston Hunger

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