Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Skaller/Holt Duo, Music of Mark Dresser: Two Keyboard Excursions into Free-Modern
When something doesn't quite fit into your preconceived notions of what goes with what, you can do a number of things: ignore it, get angry with it, or listen to it carefully and get somewhere with it. Naturally I tend toward the latter. The Skaller/Holt Duo (Philip and Danny, respectively) is decidedly different. They combine a free improv sensibility with a new music approach and get someplace very expressive. That is, on their Music of Mark Dresser (pfMentum CD 062). Where the Dresser compositions leave off and the improvisation kicks in is not clear-cut, and that too is interesting.
The duo gets to the music on pianos, prepared pianos, toy pianos, celeste, melodica and percussion. And what they do is a kind of Cecil Taylor-meets-John Cage-meets-Skaller/Holt. It is music of energy, ultra-expressiveness and a little slapdash helter-skelter thrown in besides.
I find it quite invigorating and really interesting. Recommended.