Exposé Online banner

Slobber Pup — Pole Axe
(RareNoise RNR056, 2015, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2015-12-11

Pole Axe Cover art

Not so long ago, we encountered Jamie Saft (keyboards) and Joe Morris (guitar) in The Spanish Donkey; for Slobber Pup they are joined by Balázs Pándi (drums) and Mats Gustafsson (saxophones), whom we heard together with Merzbow in the Cuts project. So the resulting Free Noise orgy is no surprise: three tracks of improvised interactions unhindered by any boundaries of style, genre, or convention. The lack of a bass player (that role was handled by Trevor Dunn on the first Slobber Pup release) contributes to a floating feeling to the music and leaves Saft free to do all sorts of unspeakable things to his analog keyboards in the lower register. (“Unspeakable” here being a synonym of “indescribable” because I can’t speak to what he’s doing.) This kind of unfettered improvisation runs the risk of alienating listeners, but that’s okay. You don’t have to make music to try to please everyone – it’s a futile task, so you might as well not try. In the case of Slobber Pup, they just hit Record and have at it, and to my ears at least, the result is commendable. I’m not going to listen to it every day, but it didn’t have me impatient to be done with it over the numerous times I’ve listened to it. Don’t be looking for melodies, harmonies, or even a consistent tempo, just spontaneous interplay between four really creative players. They listen to each other, react to whatever comes up, and there are lots of great moments ranging from quiet to screeching. Give it a shot if you’re in an adventurous mood, and now I’m going to go foxtrot a skyscraper.


Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Slobber Pup, Jamie Saft, Balázs Pándi, Mats Gustafsson

Latest news

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Musica Urbana - Iberia – Spanish ensemble Music Urbana are quite an interesting group of musicians, creating a very original music. Their first album, recently reissued showed a band blending a plethora of styles –...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues