Monday, July 4, 2011
Golden Retriever - Emergent Layer - NNA Tapes
A definite perk of living is Portland is the chance to see Golden Retriever play on a semi-regular basis. The duo of Matt Carlson on modular synth and Jonathan Sielaff on bass clarinet occupy an interesting space in the current fringe scene, on the one hand leaning sometimes toward the kosmiche/kraut axis but on the other bringing to mind the New Music and DIY electronics of the 1970s, I'm thinking of David Behrman or Terry Riley. These recordings date to roughly a year ago and represent the band in their calmer early mode, with the two playing together with relative homogeneity to the more zonked territories I've seen them in most recently. Both modes are good, this stuff lending itself better to more relaxed listening. I think what really seals the deal for me with Golden Retriever is their willingness go right out there with a big bass clarinet or synth melody, which is to risk shattering the idyll of their pleasant cosmic-ness for the sake of creating something that goes somewhere, that doesn't just exist for its own sake. So it's great stuff, needless to say. And I'm looking forward to hearing recordings of their new material which goes further in carving out a new, weird zone that's all their own, which is all you can ask of a group, really. (I mean, if you've heard Carlson's solo music, you know that guy is going DEEP.) RECOMMENDED!
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