The New & Avant-garde Music Store

Review

Andrew Magilow, Splendid E-Zine, March 8, 1999

If you’re a fan of avant-garde music from the last 25 years, progressive cross-genre performer and composer Fred Frith has most assuredly wowed you in one form or another. Combining guitar forces, this quartet engages in a variety of styles, from intricately delicate, lush compositions, to noisy, experimental beasts that seem barely tamed by the axes of Stewart, Lussier, Didkovsky and Frith. You practically have to wipe Spitty Boy off of your face, as its quick-tempered excitement sprays forth in a mere 52 seconds. No Bones is a noisy concoction that presents several layers of riffs and leads that smartly intertwine, manifesting in a composition that’s on the verge of a nervous breakdown, and comparable to, dare I say, Naked City’s most sparkling, definitive moments. However, the FFGQ also harnesses space, as it guides several tunes through periods of tranquility and fragility that are sure signs of musical maturity. Frith’s considerable creativity and tenure are apt guides, as the variety and complexity of these 13 tracks show that you’re not dealing with some flippant “nuvo-guitar-artiste” but rather the exalted Fred Frith, with guitar surgically attached to hand and creative juices that are always simmering with fresh ideas.

… you’re not dealing with some flippant “nuvo-guitar-artiste” but rather the exalted Fred Frith, with guitar surgically attached to hand and creative juices that are always simmering with fresh ideas.

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