What a show! What a band! Definitely one of my all time favorite shows. Shanir Blumenkranz's new band, which consists of Ches Smith and Briggan Krauss. There was also one song with special guest Eyal Maoz. At least half the audience was guest list artists, including Zorn himself.
The music was amazing! Very soulful. I guess you could call it American Roots meets Avant Garde. I was just filled up with wonderful feelings the entire set, in awe, really. I wasn't quite expecting it.
After about 4 songs, Shanir told us it was music to die by, and that happened today. I don't know what he was referring to, but I got the feeling he lost someone today. All I can say is I felt very alive after that set.
It reminded me of Doug Wamble's music. Krauss seemed similar to other guises I've seen him in, but Ches and Shanir were different from the super free forms I've often seen them in. Don't get me wrong, it was still avant guard and different, just with a little more structure and familiarity you would find with Sexmob or Wamble. Interesting to have Shanir singing a little as well. I kept thinking this must be the latest trend.
Looking back, I should have checked out the next show of Kinan Azmeh on a whim, but I didn't. I did get the one familiar set that could follow that amazing early show ... TAIN!! I finally found something great at Cachaca: Craig Handy with Kyle Kohler and Jeff "Tain" Watts. It took me a while to find it, so I only got about 1/2 hour of the 2nd set, which started at 11:30. They started with a great improvised groovy piece and then played a couple of songs. I left during the Monk tribute song. It was a very nice way to end the evening and Tain was definitely the highlight for me. I enjoyed Handy as well, and had never seen him before. The keyboard guy was good, I just wasn't in the mood for the organ sounds after being in heaven already earlier in the evening.
Of course I'm going to The Beacon tonight, but I must say there is a part of me that is tempted to skip and go to The Stone instead.