Brace - "Live at Skronk"
Horn-swoggler Ollie Moore and kit crusher Aidan Searle team up as jazz-flinging, note-hurling mod gouls, Brace. Live at Skronk sounds like it was recorded in some dimly lit hole-in-the-wall free jazz establishment, in the basement of an abandoned bar at the epicenter of the 'jazz only' part of London.
Brace produces the kind of mind trip one goes on once they've been drugged by the bad guys in a cheap gangster movie. Long passages of angular, collapsing jazz cascade at the listener - a calamity brought on by furious, cave-dwelling percussion and more hornwork than this reviewer can keep up with. How many people are on this record? Supposed to be two - sounds like a whole outfit. One can hear saxophones, clarinets, even melodica weaving in and out of this jazzy overgrowth.
There are points at which the music departs from the natural world and swims through the dark and murky ethers of the spirit plane. The horns echo eerily as they undergo some sort of dimensional shift, the drums multiplying themselves into a cacophony of mangled rhythms. These stretches of metaphysical entanglement elevate the vibrational fever of the recording to uncharted levels.
While avoiding abject abstraction, Brace is certainly able to let some mess hit the fan, while braiding together a sonic whirlwind like a tumbleweed of audio artistry. If you walk the be-bop path of free jazz - put Live at Skronk on your radar.