Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Sand Dylan Ryan Cuneiform 2013

On Janurary 15, 2013 the trio of Dylan Ryan/Sand will release Sky Bleached. The actual trio name is Sand and their sound is the backbone of the mainstay  of the pugnacious prog-jazz sextet Herrculanuem. With their latest release on Cuneiform there is a modern evolution to their sound. A cultural by product of their own experiences you find the avaunt-rock project Icy Demons alone with Omaha indie rock legends Cursive not to mention the electronic pop outfit of Rainbow Arabia out of Los Angeles. A myriad of sounds coming together as one voice with Sand quickly establishing their own voice as a force to be recognized on the alternative jazz scene.

The trio seems fixed around guitarist Tim Young who has been actively sought out by players such as Fiona Apple and John Zorn. Sand is a textured layered of ambiance that allows the band to take flight without being compartmentalized into an industry driven commercial pop sound that is driving the cultural base of jazz straight into the ground. Free improvisation? Close...While the band has the unique ability to shift dynamics and harmonics on the fly they transcend the more traditional form and functionality of the straight ahead scene for an adventurous visceral take on where the music starts and were you the listener would like for it to end up.

A far more open ended approach has Sand conducting a sonic exploratory that never becomes overly burdened into one singular course. Some more of the abstract work of Jimmu  Giuffre's late 1950's would seem to be the real back bone of the band. Spontaneity and combined with rhythm and harmonic consonance invites the listeners back in time to a "Are You Experienced" back ward cymbal line of a fuzzed out Black Sabbathian guitar line which has been deconstructed to share their love of groove, emotion, melody and improvisation all holding equal weight.

One of the most ambitious releases to come along in a decade. You can look long and hard but finding something critical to say would be taking "hyper-critical" to the next level.

4 out of 5 Stars.

Tracks: White Nights; Barocco; Psychic Journey; Mayan Sun; White Magic; Soft Rain On A Dead Sea; Time Stalkers; Translucent; Dreamspell; Sky Bleached.

Personnel: Dylan Ryan: drums; Timothy Young: guitar; Devin Hoff.