Zoh Amba, Chris Corsano and Bill Orcutt Create Beautiful Chaos on Their New LP The Flower School (Plus live video from Amba/Corsano DC show)
When in Washington D.C. for work in late June, I saw a show that had Chris Corsano on the bill. I knew of him from multiple apperances back in the day at the (much missed) Heliotrope Fest in Minneapolis, so knew it would be worth the train ride to Rhizome DC, a non-profit/house venue. Joining Corsano was a tenor sax player I didn’t know named Zoh Amba, and it turned out she was as commanding and wild on her instrument as Corsano is on his, which is saying a lot for anyone who has seen or heard him play. The venue was a charming old house crammed between condos rising like weeds all around it (it seems from the venues website that their location isn’t long for this world) that had no AC and was, approximately, 400 degrees inside. The video below somewhat captures the sound, but certainly doesn’t capture the multiple pounds of sweat weight lost by each person in the totally full venue.
The searing temps made the performance even more mind-blowing as the two volleyd barely-controlled chaos back and forth for nearly an hour. It was a dizzying performance that had me hopeful the two had some recordings together, and, less than a week later I come to see they not only have a record out together, but they are joined by the legend Bill Orcutt. It’s as good as you could hope, even if it is a but more subdued than I was expecting at points. A blend of rambling guitar, waves of sax and Corsano’s sun-exploding drums, which never cease to stop exploring. It’s free jazz, noise and a dabble of non-organized songwriting all wrapped up in a nice, experimental bow. Stream and purchase the digital album below, and follow the page for the link to the vinyl if that’s your flavor. Here’s to hoping this trio ventures west and graces our city sometime soon.
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