Exposé Online banner

Headshear — Headshear
(Big Balloon Music BBM-1301, 2006, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2007-03-01

Headshear Cover art

Guitar junkies wake up! This one’s for you. I’ve had the good fortune to see this instrumental four-piece play a couple times around the Bay Area, and the varied and mesmerizing multi-guitar sound they present in a live setting is reproduced perfectly on this, their debut CD. Sometimes it’s a raucous and dirty distorted grunge, sometimes textures of little repeating melodic cells, sometimes screaming sustains over intertwining string inventions, or even all out jamming that goes wherever it goes, just about anything is possible across these nine tracks. Primary guitarists are Gwynn Adams and Dierdre Lynds, often augmented by a third additional guitarist (Igor Abuladze or Wally Scharold, track depending), as well as amazing bassist Van Spragins, who spends a lot of time percolating high in the mix and dueling with the six-stringers; it’s all tied together by drummer Matthew Guggemos. These guys can rock, swing, get mighty funky, and even strike a tasty jazz vein for a switch. The most evident influence at work is probably Crimson, 70s, 80s and beyond, but these guys are no knock-off by any means, and I sense little of that Guitar Craft type perfectionism at work here (with the exception of closer “The Bitter Cold,” which proves they can if they want to); for the most part, Headshear is a lot more punchy and ‘raw goods.’ Overall, a very solid and impressive opening move.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 34, 2006 releases

Related artist(s): Headshear

Latest news

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Nels Cline / Andrea Parkins / Tom Rainey - Downpour – There was no lack of insight at the 2006 Victoriaville festival where Wilco guitarist Nels Cline met with co-improvisers Andrea Parkins and drummer Tom Rainey for an explosive, heated exchange. The...  (2009) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues