Oct 13 2018 | 9:00 pm
Kuzu Record Release Party!!$10Kuzu returns to Chicago towards the tail end of a fourteen-date North American Tour, to celebrate the release of their first record, Hiljaisuus on Astral Spirits, which was recorded in this very room in September 2017! Comprised of Chicago saxophonist Dave Rempis, recent Chicago transplant Tyler Damon, and Asheville-based guitarist Tashi Dorji, this band relishes in a patient development of themes and ideas into a maelstrom of energy. Detroit-based Shells opens the night up with a set of punk wildlife!
9 PM : SHELLS
Shelley Salant – solo guitar
10 PM : KUZU
Dave Rempis – saxophones
Tashi Dorji – guitar
Tyler Damon – percussion
KUZU is a hard-charging but patient trio that came together in the fall of 2017, after saxophonist Dave Rempis, a stalwart of the Chicago improvised music scene, worked with both Tashi Dorji (guitar) and Tyler Damon (drums) individually as part of a lengthy solo tour of the U.S. that he undertook in the spring of that year. Dorji and Damon’s work as a guitar/percussion duo has become well-known, a highly refined and specific language developed through relentless touring and recording over the last few years, with a sound that straddles improvised music, rock, and any number of as-yet-undefined territories. These two provide an incredibly fresh take on the possibilities inherent to spontaneous composition. Superimposing Rempis into this mix was a logical next step after the relationships they’d forged individually. The trio’s forthcoming debut record Hiljaisuus (“silence” in Finnish…) is slated for release on the well-known Astral Spirits label in summer 2018, to be followed by two separate tours of the United States in late summer and fall.
Musically, these three create a highly focused pallet of sounds. At times, spacious gestures carve up the canvas with the austerity of a calligrapher, while at others those sparse gestures build into an unstoppable tsunami of energy. Those waves are never impulsive or impetuous though, they ebb and flow logically and patiently out of simple and clearly defined sources. This trio pursues every gesture with tenacity, passing them back and forth until they’ve explored every facet of an idea.
Michigan wonder Shelley Salant (Swimsuit, Tyvek, SLGTM, etc.) began playing solo shows under various names a few years ago, bringing her brittle, mantra-like guitar meditations into form over the course of several tapes on her Ginkgo label. “In A Cloud” is the first LP collection of her songs, streamlining things a bit from the often lengthy zones of her tapes, but maintaining her expansive and thoughtful sounds.
A focus on themes of nature, struggle and compassion are expressed loudly through the simple means of a single guitar with minimal processing. There are some soft dub touches in the production, and the occasional wash of drums or staticy overdub, but mostly we hear the cavernous refractions of Shelley’s instinctive jamming, spreading out like ripples on the lake and unfolding new possibilities as they go. Do punks go camping? Is there punk wildlife? Can we communicate with the animals and be absolutely certain we understand each other? Absolutely.