de Sac / Damo Suzuki
Released: November 2, 2004
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Beograd 1 - Halle 2 - Baltimore 5 - Berlin 4 - Frankfurt 4
Disc Two: Beograd 6 - Cambridge 1 - Berlin
6 - Kopenhagen 3 - Berlin 3 - Zagreb 3
"We had to
learn to be FEARLESS, to be willing to make mistakes, to play beyond what
we thought were our own abilities." - Glenn Jones/Cul de Sac, on
playing with Damo Suzuki; Dream Magazine #4 interview
instrumental innovators Cul de Sac
teamed up with infamous ex-Can
vocalist Damo Suzuki for
a tour of the US and Europe in 2002 and 2003, respectively. A pairing
for the ages to be sure, for very few bands other than Cul de Sac
operate in the same heady and rhythmic sphere as Can did - they
are a perfect modern-day backdrop for Suzuki's free-associating
vocal approach. However brilliant and almost obvious a pairing it is,
there wasn't much forethought. Having never met each other, Cul de
Sac received an email from Suzuki totally out of the blue,
suggesting they collaborate. How did this come about? Seems that a perceptive
fan had slipped a copy of Cul de Sac's second album, the ubiquitous
I Don't Want to Go to Bed, to him at a show. It only took
a few months for Suzuki to listen to it (!!!), but one day as he
was cleaning his apartment he popped it on - and promptly sent the band
a request that they tour the US together.
The one caveat: no rehearsing.
Four hours after Suzuki stepped off the plane in Boston, he and
Cul de Sac played their first show before an enraptured crowd at
the Middle East in Cambridge, MA. Everything clicked. "Instant composing"
is Suzuki's terminology for his philosophy of penning songs (not
"jamming" or wanking by any stretch of the imagination) on the spot, on
stage, allowing chemistry and energy to dictate the creation of the music
and the path it will follow. For Suzuki, nothing is planned in
advance. In keeping with Suzuki's spirit, Cul de Sac allowed the
process to flow without rehearsing any new tunes of their own, or playing
anything from their repertoire.
The results are nothing short of astounding.
Abhayamudra is a 2xCD collection of what Cul de Sac
and Damo Suzuki consider to be the best moments of the 45 dates
they played together - nearly 138 minutes of stunning psychedelic avant
mayhem, performed live and composed entirely on the spot. Cul de Sac
refract clusters of electronics, sorrowful violin and genre-defying surf/middle
eastern guitar over chugging bass and astounding polyrhythms, while Suzuki
concocts his vocal somersaults over the affair, manipulating the direction
of the tunes like it was liquid in a vessel. Abhaymudra
immortalizes some very special moments captured on stage, a musical genesis
that, by its very nature, could only be conceived at its particular moment
in time and can never be replicated.
Visit the Damo Suzuki official website
for info on his "Never Ending Tour", discography, biography
Visit the Cul de Sac official website
for discography, biography, press quotes etc
Press: The Wire,
Music Guide, Fac193,
See a clip of Cul de Sac and Damo
Suzuki performing live May 4, 2002 at the WFMU Record Fair!!!
MP3: "Berlin 6"
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