Bucket of Songs

Labfield, 2015

I saw the band, Dance Les Arbres, at Issue Project and it was revelatory. It sent me on a tear, collecting everything I could find associated with Huntsville, since Arbres and Huntsville share the core duo of Ingar Zach and Ivar Grydeland. Zach and Grydeland also run a label (Sofa) and participate in half a dozen bands—together and separate—along with appearing in ad-hoc improv outings. This is like catnip to a collector like me: I love nothing more than tracking down the threads of wide-ranging musicians' career, trying to make some sort of card-catalog sense of it all. Not only is Ingar Zach a member of Labfield (along with David Stackenäs), but the band now features Giuseppe Ielasi, a mercurial electrician who's idiosyncratic activities have earned him at least three appearances in my collection already.

Bucket of Songs falls somewhere between electro-acoustic improvisation and extremely-post post-rock. Labfield aren't tearing down genre boundaries, they're rendering them meaningless. Rather than cut-n-pasting styles into a collage, they boil them down into a tar—a binding agent for explorations further afield. Wildbirds and Peacedrums singer, Mariam Walletin shows up to sing—or more, incant and invoke—lending her weathered alto to further confound your pigeon-holing triangulations. This may not be undiscovered country, the search for new inhabitable planets, but it is mapping new terrain across what we previously thought we knew—exploring the furthest depths of the ocean floor.