Sunday, September 28, 2008

Caress Of My Fist - "Etudes In Violence" CDR

First off, the presentation here is impeccable - the professionally-produced CDR is housed in a stylish origami-style textured red paperboard, with informational insert. That said, the more important component here is the sound within, and it's fortunately as interesting as the packaging.

CoMF is basically a duo consisting of violinist Mike Khoury and sax/flutist Fred Bergman - both veterans of the free music and avante scenes. Here, they collaborate with drummer Curtis Glatter and guitarist Chris Riggs on a series of improvisational vignettes that hint at both out-jazz and noir-ish soundtracks - all based around a fist-fight theme.

Songs like 'Fat Lip' seem to allude to a dramatic sort of beat poetry (but minus the poetry) - evocative and haunting work. 'Knuckle Sandwich' is a brash and disorienting cut, with wild violin swipes and crazy sax bleating - a collision of chaos and invigorating unpredictability. 'Knocked The Wind Out Of Me' picks up the pieces - exactly as the title describes. 'Punched In The Stomach' (staying on topic, of course) feels the brunt of it (I can almost feel my ribs throbbing with pain), whereas tracks like 'Black Eye' seem to question what just happened - a state where the endorphins have kicked in. A superb, clever, and amusing musical approximation of a basic, old-school brawl! Nice work, and definitely a lot of fun to listen to - and certainly much better than the violent confrontation that it depicts. (Cohort Records)

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