the necks


last night the necks at the cultural center. 2 sets. the first sounded like water. the way all the instruments worked together. the piano. the bass. the drums. this pulsing mass of music flow. it was nice. 40 minutes. growing music.

the second set. quieter. more sinister. the drums stole the show. or the lack of drums. the drummer played the drums without playing the actual drums. played around the kit. sounded like a wheezing antiquated machine lurching back to life. rolling in spurts and fits. rolling a metal disc around the rim or the floor tom. metal on metal. a brush flickering on the snare. no beat. just flow. slow burn build up until the kick drum is constant. thump. thump. thump. and a counter tap sizzle of drum stick on cymbal. the way these two sound played off each other sounded unnatural tense and evil. all the while metal on metal, discs on rims, taps and skitters of other little instruments on the drums instead of a stick.

the bass started the song. 4 notes. slow quiet solitary.

the drummer rolling something with his foot that made this percussive loud clicking rattle.

the kick drums sounds like stomping on the pedals of a piano really hard. soft disembodied attack hit followed by deep distant lingering reverb.

improvised music is the new newness

lately. i’ve been into the band. new ideas. new modes. it’s nice. i thought i woulda been more bummed that the rories stopped. but by the end, it was feeling like too much. too much responsibility. too much being in charge. not enough being part of a group. don’t get me wrong. i loved it. it was fun. but i think it had run its course and now we’re on to the next thing. the rories had been moving in that direction anyways. freeform. open-ended. improvised. and that seems to be what this new group is. open ended. we’re working on it. figuring it out. figuring out how to play with each other. what to play with each other. what musics. what instruments.

which is fun for me. playing new things like drums. trying to figure out how they work. sleigh bells – a christmas present from h’s sister. the sleigh bells rule. a keyboard that’s been sitting in my closet for years. now i’m playing all these things. and anything i can get my hands on. like a melodica. i wish i still had my harmonica. i wonder where that got off to. and yes i’m still playing my guitar also. it’s a nice feeling to be trying new things, making new sounds (new for me) and learning to interact musically with new people.

it can be frustrating. some nights. when we’re off. not coherent. but that’s the nature of it. and it seems like we’re getting more comfortable with each other and the music and it’ll continue to improve.

we still don’t have a name yet. some terrible ideas have been thrown around. maybe i’ll write them down later. we’ll see.