Tag Archives: The Thing

Perfect Saturday Morning Music: The Cherry Thing

Neneh Cherry, who rose to stardom in freewheelin’ punk-jazz troupe Rip Rig & Panic (for those of you old enough to remember they performed on The Young Ones), has returned with her first album since 1996’s Man, an album of covers titled, The Cherry Thing. But this is no ordinary album of covers… teaming up with Scandinavian free-jazz legends, The Thing, they meld their worlds of avant-pop and improvisational muscle to push the boundaries of each song, until they collapse and reform into something truly exciting. I know the year is only at the half-way point, but this is going to be a major contender for album of the year! Here they are transforming MF Doom & Madvillain’s, Accordian. This is bound to get your Saturday morning jumping!

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The Thing!

On Thursday night I experienced The Thing, live at The Judith Wright Centre as part of their Syncretism series. And I mean experienced, physically!

From the moment Mats Gustafsson, blew the first savage breath into the mouthpiece of his baritone sax, my skin prickled and I was moving, laughing, hooting. Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten was plucking and slapping at his bass strings, at times, stretching them to the point of distortion while Paal Nilssen-Love was a flurry of syncopated rhythms and splashing cymbals.  They were out of the blocks faster than a rabbit on a greyhound track, playing for their lives, attacking their individual instruments with equal parts fire and dexterity and in the process redefining the possibility of wood, metal, muscle and breath. The joyous force these three men generated was transformative… the crowd surging along with them until the final silence. Simply put, it was a thrill!

Here’s a clip of the band playing live in Budapest. C’mon, give yourself over to The Thing:

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The Year (Ahead) In Music

I am too excited to look back at 2010, though there was much to revel in. Right now, the calendar is filling up with a cluster of concerts that are making 2011 look like an exceptional year for live music.

It all begins this Friday, Jan 4, with The National, live at The Enmore Theatre in Sydney. Their latest album, High Violet, is without doubt, a contender for the best release of 2010. It is a slow burner, muscular, yet introspective. The atmosphere is spacious and lush, the layers of instrumentation created by the band, build a solid foundation for Berninger to embellish with his haunting vocals. It is an album built to last and I am itching to see them take it to the stage. If this is any indication…

then this Lost Shark is going to be swimming in some sonically rich waters.

Then, later in January, I am off to see Swedish jazz innovators, The Thing. These guys are something else, a hybrid force of jazz, rock and experimentation. Check out this excerpt from a recent live performance…

even on screen, their energy is palpable. And to top it off, they are being supported by one of China’s young pioneers in the field of poetry and sonic art, Yan Jun. If you are interested in getting tickets for this event, head to The Judith Wright Centre’s website for all the details.

I do love the summer touring circuit…

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