Friday, December 09, 2005

breathing and smothering

Immolation/Immersion (Strange Attractors) is the debut album from molten improv trio Nels Cline (guitar), Wally Shoup (sax) and Chris Corsano (drums). Astute JFAD readers will remember my giddy roof-top praise of the Graduation LP -- inaugural meeting of Nels and Chris, along with Carlos Giffoni -- from one of my first postings here. That platter kept me up for nights in anticipation of the beaut we have here now. The energy between Nels and Chris can make most grown folk cry and with Shoup is the mix, they become a near-infallible splatter team that rarely gets out of the lines. Despite the room, they don't just blow/bang/strike without focus instead zeroing in with rapid patience and buckets of tact. Though this is still heavy as brick off an overpass and nastier. The opening piece "Lake Of Fire Memories" begins with Nels sculpting miniature peaks for Shoup to span top register bridges across -- by the time Chris drops in like a fuggin bombshell their tones have multiplied like the spiderweb nation. And at just two-and-half minutes, it is the perfect biscuit-sized cranium breaker to get on the airwaves and set the rest of the album off.

61-year old Shoup sounds as huge and multiphonic as Pharaoh Sanders ever did and dangerous as handling glass shards while feeding a baby on your knee. Up against the other two, he simultaneously melts into the spiked six-string ambiance and dances with / stomps all over Chris with his canyon-lung solos. Next to Rescue Mission, his duo with Jeph Jermam, and Confluxus (w/ Toshi Makihara n' Brent Arnol) this might be my dearest Shoup to date (through I haven't heard his 80s output). Nels Cline. Not much more to say than that. He and Chris in a steel-cage match with be a nice proposition. Or more trio -- please.

Nels Cline/Wally Shoup/Chris Corsano - Lake Of Fire Memories


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