David Thomas & Foreigners — Bay City
(Thirsty Ear Thi57085.2, 2000, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2001-12-01Starting with his tenure in the seminal art-punk outfit Pere Ubu, David Thomas has shown himself to be a lyricist of great talent and singer of acquired taste. For this outing he teams up with a trio of Danish musicians. Guitarist Jørgen Teller, clarinetist Per Buhl Acs (also playing guitar), and drummer P.O. Jørgens provide relatively minimal, fairly improvisational accompaniment for thirteen of Thomas’s emotional vocal pieces. There are a couple of real gems here, though nothing really approaching what could be called a “song.” My favorite is probably the bleak “Nobody Lives on the Moon,” with its wall of feedback and interesting drum pattern. “15 Seconds” contains a cryptic reference to “repopulating the American continent with clones.” Not sure what to make of that, but the same song contains this chilling observation: “I feared the worst that worst could be, that everything would be just what it seems to be.” Any of the others, in isolation, is interesting, but the cumulative effect of an entire CD of this music is probably too much for anyone but a dedicated Thomas fan or a lover of improvisation along the lines of Damo Suzuki. I’d recommend for the novice to start with one of Pere Ubu’s classics.
Related artist(s): David Thomas
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more