Hoots and Roots

April 5, 2009 at 9:04 am Leave a comment

Hoots and Roots — “Life and Death” (Ayler, 2009)

source:ayler.comMan, one guy on eMusic sure hated this one. The comparison to Yoko Ono has its merit, but you shouldn’t run screaming just because the musicians do.

This is a one-off track available under Ayler’s new online-only series. It’s a duet of drums and vocals, combining avant-garde screeching with some Scottish/Gaelic folk songs — making the name “Hoots and Roots” appropriate and even a bit humorous. Ken Hyder and Maggie Nicols get into the ear-splitting wails very early on, but the 21-minute piece also gets into quieter sections, a soft dialogue of chant-like singing under a steady drum beat.

Hyder spouts a lot of nonsense words at first, but gradually, you hear folky laments poking through from the noise. Monologue snippets start to become clear: “no comfort zone … no comfort zone …” Apparently, Nicols adds some tap-dancing in there, too.

They wrap it up with a drunken folk song, warbly and off-key, the finale being a long held note (“…at the eeeend of the ROOOOOOOOAD”) that turns into a screeeeech from Nicols.

OK, it’s not for everybody. I had fun with it, though, and you can tell the performers did, too.


Entry filed under: CD/music reviews. Tags: , , , .

Playlist: April 3, 2009 April 6 Freebies

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