Thursday, January 19, 2012

Andrea Centazzo-Henry Kaiser, "Infinity Squared," Live in Los Angeles, 2006

A couple of days ago we looked at the Andrea Centazzo-Elliot Sharp duo recording. Today it's Andrea and Henry Kaiser, Infinity Squared (Ictus 152). This one was caught live at Cafe Metropol in Los Angeles during the summer of 2006. Like the Centazzo-Sharp duet this one has atmospheric sampling-electronics, Andrea's beautifully melodic battery of drums and percussion, and adventuresome guitar explorations, this time Henry Kaiser in a spacey mood. Once again it's not a hot licks exchange, but rather a successful attempt to create a live soundscape of varying moods and textures.

Gongs and cymbal washes, backwards guitar, some energetic freestyle drumming and guitar soundsculpting are in order. In this context the percussion and drums have a pitched relevance that plays off of Henry's scrambled but no less pitched guitar poetics. Of course if Andrea is on vibes, that is a matter of course. The whole battery however is an extension of a tonality, which cannot be said for many avant percussion practitioners that come out of the improvisatory area. A surprise is "A Similar Thang" when Henry breaks into the chord sequence to Muddy Waters' "The Same Thing" and Andrea takes some nice vibes rides, then Henry turns in a blistering scorcher of a solo while Andrea comps. From there it gets way out there but with space a major factor. It's not so much a barrage as it is an essay in periodicity. Lots of two-way contrasts and empathetic listening is going on between the two artists.

"Eternal Current Anew" is a long motif reminiscent of the one on Zappa's "Watermelon in Easter Hay" and Henry gets quite lucid overtop of the ostinato percussion and guitar loop. There are some rocker-outs and a big spacescape to top off the album.

It's a very fruitful encounter. The two connect in multiple musical circuitry, in ways that envelop the listener in dazzling sound color. Space cadets, seek this one out by all means.

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