Duo Milano-Cadence

Cadence talks about Duo Milano

Entirely different but equally fascinating is the often frenetic duo o Elliott Sharp and Nels Cline (2). These two veteran improvisers can’t help but excel, and communication is astonishing throughout these ten widely varied tracks. The first five are acoustic, some sporting well-placed and finely executed slidework. This is often complimented by tasty bends of a pan-Eastern variety, conjuring shades of vintage Shakti with John McLaughlin. Far from anything approaching Indian classical music though, the language is more indebted to Derek Bailey or Fred Frith in its shock, rebound and shock harmonic-drenched pointillism. Even the few liquified moments, presumably Ebo-induced, do not disturb the overall aes- thetic. The succeeding tracks find pointillistic concerns subsumed, ubmerged, flow and extended tones supplanting the attack-driven gestalt of the first half. Delay-drenched clanks, metallic wrenchings, and springy retractions keep the pieces from becoming too static, and the results are satisfyingly meditative. AMM’s noisier work is certainly a guiding force, but oddly gentle sounds bring tonal implications that add another layer of interest. Both discs are extremely well played, a comfort in this time when post-everything inclusivity far too often takes the place of bona fide musicianship. This is a label to watch, and I look forward to further releases.

Marc Medwin

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