Buckethead — The Day of the Robot
(Sub Meta SM 9804, 1996, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 1997-02-01
Out of the floating ambient textures that open the first track, a grisly mechanical metal monster arises, destroying everything within ear's reach; there is, of course no escape, until it subsides again into some cool ambient improvisation — something like Crimson could do if they wanted to; Vrooom hinted at this kind of free-wheeling spirit, as does Thrakattak, but the primary differences in Buckethead's approach lie in the intense contrasts and shock value therein. A guitarist from Oakland, California, Buckethead has been the axeman in Praxis for some time now, as well as appearing on various other Laswell related projects; this is (so I'm told) his first US release under his own name. A technically amazing guitarist, his penchant for grotesque manifestations of distortion and sinister playfulness belie his proficiency and raw fretboard speed. The more ambient and techno-styled sequences that follow later in the album also demonstrate a compulsion to go well beyond the established limits. Bassist Bill Laswell is featured here and gets production credits as well, while drums and some very interesting programmed percussion sequences are handled by Ninj. Not your standard fare to be sure, Buckethead picks up where others leave off. Recommended.
10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more
Bill Bruford Ventures into Uncharted Territory – Drum master Bill Bruford, veteran of some of the most creative bands in history (King Crimson, Yes, Genese, etc.), is sharing some of what he's learned about being a drummer and a musician in his new book, Uncharted: Creativity and the Expert Drummer, out on University of Michigan Press. » Read more
Language of Light / Crow Tongue - The Tower / Wind Chant – This split 7” dark gray marbleized vinyl 33 1/3 rpm record brings together two disparate, and yet similar bands. Language of Light is the love child of Frank Suchomel of Inalonelyplace and R.... (2009) » Read more