136

Chris Cutler & Fred Frith: 2 Gentlemen In Verona

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Chris Cutler & Fred Frith: 2 Gentlemen In Verona
On 2 Gentlemen In Verona guitarist Fred Frith and drummer Chris Cutler perpetuate an alliance that was established back in the pioneering days of “Henry Cow”, “The Art Bears” and other projects too numerous in scope to cite here. However, their intuitive improvisational speak once again comes to fruition on this altogether fascinating live exhibition recorded in Verona, Italy, April 16, 1999.

Here, the duo performs a series of “Acts” subdivided into incremental “Scenes”, akin to a theatrical production. However, this outing does not represent anything that might resemble a musical score for an Italian melodrama or social comedy. Hence, Frith and Cutler overwhelm our imaginations as they generate multi-textured pastiches that feature abstract rhythms, otherworldly effects and mind-bending dialogue. Whether Frith is slashing his guitar strings alongside Cutler’s odd-metered and undulating rhythms or when the musicians perhaps mimic some alien language they often stagger our aural senses as we soon learn to anticipate the unforeseen. – At times, the music conjures up bizarre images of automatons or unknown entities performing with unexpected soul and emotion. Needless to state, Cutler and Frith straddle the avant-garde yet they also pursue funk-rock rhythms on “Act 4 – Scene 1” whereas Frith’s guitar wizardry and Cutler’s springy yet evolving militaristic pulse invokes some sort of mutant John Philip Sousa style march or procession.

With this new release, Frith and Cutler once again seize our imaginations as they take us on an indescribable journey to the land of the unknown while they also astonish our senses with their contorted proclamations and merciless assaults on modern improvised music! Highly recommended.

* * * * 1/2 (out of * * * * *)

Personnel

Chris Cutler; Drums, Electrified Drums, Flotsam: Fred Frith; Electrified Guitars, Voice, Jetsam

Distributed in USA by Cuneiform: www.cuneiformrecords.com/

ReR Megacorp: www.megacorp.u-net.com

Album information

Title: 2 Gentlemen In Verona | Year Released: 2000 | Record Label: ReR Megacorp

Post a comment about this album

Tags

Shop Amazon

More

All About Jazz needs your support

Donate
All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, shelter in place and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary effort that will help musicians now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the bottom right video ad). Thank you.

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.