The Sound Projector (UK) - Ed Pinsent
For another approach to the pleasing aural combinations of woodwinds and strings, try Screw and Straw (VETO-RECORDS EXCHANGE 004), an improv record where the American cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm meets up for a musical conflab with Christoph Erb, the Swiss tenor player. Ten tracks were recorded in a single day at a Chicago studio. Where Sigman’s compositional approach yields a very dry recorded sound, these two free improvisers are full of juice and hot gravy in which to dip their respective biscuits, and a very warm and friendly record results. A large range of extended techniques are used to keep the dialogues fresh and eccentric, and the duo are clamped together in a happy exchange of atonal gibberish inflected with long tones, insatiably itchy sawing motions, skittery plucks, animalistic barks, low growls, and crazy freewheeling rhythms that are discarded and abandoned almost as soon as invented. It’s a fascinating conversation between two enlightened enthusiasts, and one you’ll be glad to overhear, if not actually participate in. Beautiful rich and loud presence to the music, meaning not a single nuance of sonic invention is missed. The playful titles are another nifty feature. They are like fractured chapter headings from the story of imaginary outlaw characters Screw and Straw and their picaresque adventures; we can’t help reading the tale of these two freebooters as one of violence, blood, lust, and fatal adventure, with a dash of occult mystery thrown in.
released March 19, 2012
Christoph Erb, tenorsaxophone and bassclarinet
Fred Lonberg-Holm, cello and guitar
All tracks by Christoph Erb and Fred Lonberg-Holm
Recorded on June 23rd, 2011 at Kingsize Studio, Chicago by John Abbey