Monday, January 16, 2012

Zs, "33": Brooklyn's Insistently Idiomatic Trio Logs in with a Double Seven-Inch EP

Brooklyn's trio Zs are a thing apart. Not just noisemeisters, not a simply free aggregate, they go their own way with a certain insistency. The double 7" EP 33 (Northern Spy 016) gives guitarist Ben Greenberg (who we recently discussed in the context of his solo opus Hubble Drums), tenor saxophonist Sam Hillmer, and drummer Ian Antonio a chance to shine in miniature. They respond with four brief slabs of anarchic cohesion . . . with structure in amorphosity, order in formlessness.

This is music of the lineage of AMM, MEV, Spontaneous Music Ensemble, Il Gruppo and other sound-oriented a-rhythmic improvisational ensembles. It is brutally brief, compact in extremis, telegraphically concise, an Occam's Razor slashing the sound to bits. Yet they manage to say four things that speak in abstractiveness, utter meaning in incoherency, find logic in the irrational.

That's something.

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