THIRD EYE FOUNDATION
As recent recordings by Squarepusher and Boymerang continue to play Frankenstein with drum ‘n’ bass, it seems only a matter of time before some artist embraces the form while severing its connection to the dance floor altogether. One that comes awfully close is Third Eye Foundation, aka Matt Elliot, whose previous work with Flying Saucer Attack and Movietone was decidedly not beat-oriented. As heard on Third Eye Foundation’s U.S. debut, Ghost (Merge), Elliot channels in dense, often harsh, slate-gray soundscapes that frequently rumble with hyperactive rhythm programming. The biggest break with dance music is the lack of a steady bass line; it’s more drum ‘n’ hum than drum ‘n’ bass. Elliot’s beats aren’t particularly exciting on their own, but in conjunction with the bizarre textures he creates it doesn’t matter so much–they serve as a component in a larger picture as he trades the crisp precision of drum ‘n’ bass for a much more amorphous sound. Third Eye Foundation makes its Chicago debut on a bill rounded out by musicians affiliated with the New York experimental label New World of Sound. Guitarists Loren MazzaCane Connors and Alan Licht will reprise their appearance at Lounge Ax from a few weeks back, but Fuzzhead and the Sabir Mateen Trio are also making their Chicago debuts. The former is a loose, decade-old combo from Kent, Ohio, led by guitarist Bill Weita, who enthusiastically scrambles psychedelia, free improvisation, noise, and folk rock into an engaging mess. Mateen is an obscure free-jazz sax journeyman who worked with LA pianist Horace Tapscott back in the 80s and has more recently played with New York drummer Marc Edwards. He’ll be backed by drummer David Nuss and bassist Matthew Heyner of the No Neck Blues Band. Thursday, June 19, 9 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western; 773-276-3600. PETER MARGASAK
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo by Jim Albers.