Tarwater — Adrift
(Bureau B BB 183, 2014, CD / LP + download)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-12-20In 1980 Graham Lewis and Bruce Gilbert from Wire released some experimental industrial recordings as Dome, a combination of electronics spoken vocals, sound bites, and found sounds. The new Tarwater album is very similar in nature to these older recordings. This Berlin-based duo (Robert Lippok and Bernd Jestram) have been around since 1995, Adrift being their twelfth release. Adrift is a great album title, as there is definitely something adrift here in the voices and rhythms. And like Dome’s work, much of Adrift is on the edge of consciousness. I am also reminded by some of Pyrolator’s Ausland and the contemporary band The Holy Sons. The music is minimal rhythmic electronics and electric guitar, at times quite melodic, and I find that the four instrumental tracks are the best on the disc. Lippok’s laconic spoken English vocals tend to wear thin after a while. It isn’t until the eleventh track “The Evening Pilgrims” that you can almost detect a melody line. The final song, “Rice and Fish,” features a cameo by Sabrina Milena aka Milenasong, which is a nice shimmering touch for the last third of the song. I suppose you could play this disc to help you fall asleep at night — it is that soothing. But I am left with a so-so feeling about the disc as a whole.
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more
Allan Holdsworth RIP – Surely in the list of artists who have contributed to the sound of modern music, there is a special spot for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. His name is known to virtually every student of the instrument in jazz and rock, and his style has been so widely emulated that it's hardly worth mentioning anymore — we can just assume that every guitarist has Holdsworth as an influence. » Read more
Larry Coryell RIP – One of the greats of jazz guitar has left us at the age of 73. Larry Coryell was one of the founding figures of jazz fusion, but produced a significant body of work the bridged many styles. His group Eleventh House provided a unique take on the combination of jazz and rock that was distinct from contemporaries such as Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, and Weather Report. » Read more
John Wetton RIP – After a long battle with colon cancer, singer and bassist John Wetton has died at the age of 67. As an integral member of such bands as King Crimson, UK, and Asia, his was one of the distinctive voices in progressive rock, lending a human touch to often difficult music. » Read more
Seaprog Announces First Artists for 2017 – The organizers of the Seaprog Festival in Seattle have announced the first set of confirmed performers for the 2017 festival. The best known names are Jack o' the Clock and Zero Times Everything, but a host of other bands are featured, mostly from the Northwest. The festival will take place June 2-4, 2017. » Read more