Don Fiorino/Andy Haas: American Nocturne (Resonantmusic, 2018)

November 23, 2018 at 10:06 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Don Fiorino/Andy Haas: American Nocturne

This album captures live, overdub-free improvisations between guitarist Don Fiorino and Andy Haas, who plays sax, electronics, and drum machines. Fiorino plays lap steel and “glissentar”, so there’s a slippery, fluid, weeping tone to much of his playing, and Haas often sounds like he’s playing digital tablas or scratching turntables, in addition to layering blankets of sax on the title track. There’s never a locked-in rhythm here, it all sounds fuzzy, gelatinous, and malleable. Lots of pitch-bending and flipping and stretching, yet it doesn’t sound as blasted or druggy as, say, Black Dice/Eric Copeland. Fiorino’s playing still has an earthy quality to it, sometimes veering towards country while floating closer to desert blues on the epic “Days of Jackals”. Other times, it’s more of a detached downtown skronk. The sounds contrast, but they never really feel like they’re clashing, even if they rarely seem like they’re trying to interact with each other. It’s somewhat challenging to listen to, but instead of seeming confrontational, it invites you to join in somehow, and following the individual sounds becomes an adventure.

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