Saturday, March 25, 2006


The codenamed one is safely back in her jodie marshland and the apartment cleanup utility application (ie. Me) has cleaned up all unnecessary celebrities from the immediate environs.

I am beginning to seriously believe that Mrs N is privy to battlefield information and deliberately plans her trips away to perpetuate the myth of her non-existence. I was so looking forward to ringing her doorbell with CNL in tow and just letting her run in when she answered, in the same manner as she lets the dog/pig in at my apartment door. But sadly, it was not to be. She has (of course) returned today but I am feigning total deafness.

Last night headed out to the Whitney Museum to try out a possible Commuter Jazz substitute - Gutbucket and Ethel performing together as part of Whitney Live . Have seen both groups live before, but separately - Ethel when they were being a quite 'serious' contemporary string quartet at the Cutting Room and Gutbucket ripping up the Spitz in London in a sweat-spraying frenzy, so couldn't quite imagine them performing together. As it turned out the result was surprisingly palatable (like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches - or so I'm told by last guest but one). The collaboration emphasised their incredible virtuosity on all their respective instruments, and also a similarity in their compositions, which are in the main built around immensely complicated but awesomely tight rhythmic structures. Ethel got a bit loose and were swaying around a good deal, whilst the hyperactive Ken Thomson, Gutbucket sax monster, managed to restrain his leaps and jumps to a mere 2 foot cubic area, probably because, this being Manhattan, the air-rights almost certainly belong to someone else, who might have demanded rent.
Gutbucket's 'O.J Bin Laden', from 'Dry Humping the American Dream' (which has to be one of the best album titles ever), showed the string/band fusion at their best. An organised chaos of minimalist yet frenetic jazz/punk.

As for the vast concrete foyer venue (a subject about which I know more than the average shark in the street), it left a little to be desired. I do like to lean at a gig, and any leaning on the sorry excuse for a (practically bottled beer only) bar would have involved a spinach-wrap elbow situation.
So we made do with perching on the less-than-comfortable shop/cafe area wall divider, whilst others sat on piles of merchandise or stood and a lucky few actually had chairs (which at a cost can be reserved beforehand). The capacity is limited - at 200 or thereabouts it was pretty packed , but the sound was good under the circumstances, and one has to hand it to the programmer for what looks like a fairly cutting edge series of events. The vibe was relaxed and on the whole it was a good way to spend a couple of hours on a Friday night, so with some interesting gigs forthcoming, I will definitely be returning...


Post a Comment

<< Home