Mon Dec. 19, 2022

Buck / Butcher / Stangl (AUS/GB/A)

Tony Buck: drums
John Butcher: tenor, soprano saxophone
Burkhart Stangl: guitar

The best came last. The trio’s music had vitality and a sense of purpose. It took improvisatory risks, displayed individual virtuosity and collective alertness. It was genuinely exciting and it sounded really good. Buck is a wonderfully oblique energiser, relentlessly attending to texture and percussive colour as he generates momentum. Stangl’s clenched or splintered chords, pedal-swell and dramatic attack proved a great foil for Butcher’s intensity, inventiveness and cliche-free expression.

Was this ‘experimental’? Well, it had life, and in the arts that’s often what that term has essentially meant, in opposition to reified forms, commodification or mindless repition. (Julian Cowley, Wire)