field report no.051816

LOCATION: Issue Project Room BK.NY
SUBJECT: Chris Abrahams

Even though Chris Abrahams is the pianist for hypnotic improv trio, the Necks, I was not expecting an extended, acoustic performance. The majority of his solo work (that I've heard, at least) is electronic, more along the lines of musique concrète. More fool me.

I would say, in the end, what he delivered was something almost squarely between the two. With astonishing endurance, Abrahams would build up otherworldly drones, rolling endlessly over the same chord until it ricocheted around the marble space. It could really pile up into a fearsome din. A repetition would be pushed so far that introducing the slightest shift felt like a sea change. Then, with a deft use of the foot pedals, he would pull the rug out from you entirely, transforming a drone into a staccato rhythm. 

NOTES: Chris Abrahams, piano; 2 sets

Fluid to the Influence

Chris Abrahams, 2016

It's so easy to consume Fluid to the Influence—which in itself is startling. Musique Concrète isn't easy listening. It's more known for being angular and jarring. Sonically, this record may be all over the map—piercing modular synths, rattling metallic strings, distorted noise, field recordings, tumbling organs and plaintive piano—yet somehow, it hangs together as a cohesive whole. To be absolutely honest, I have no idea why, either, but it's a remarkable feat.