Tabs Out | Patrick Shiroshi and Arturo Ibarra – LA Blues

Patrick Shiroshi and Arturo Ibarra – LA Blues

3.11.19 by Ryan Masteller

When I first heard that Patrick Shiroshi and Arturo Ibarra were going to mash together my two favorite songs by The Doors – “LA Woman” and “Roadhouse Blues” – I couldn’t believe my luck: instead of having to listen to TWO songs, I’d get a single tune with all the best parts of each. I wouldn’t have to wait for one track to end for the other to begin.

Imagine my surprise, then, when “LA Blues” began to play and it wasn’t even REMOTELY what I thought it was going to be. However, instead of giving in to the brief flare of white hot rage that passed like an energy cloud across my consciousness, my humors quickly abated as if they were hit by a sudden cold front as I decided to give this a chance, regardless of how easily my foolish and completely misguided expectations had been dashed. The urge to chuck my cassette deck out of the second-floor window disappeared before I had the chance to yank it out of the wall.

That’s not to say the music I was hearing wasn’t white hot. “Loosely inspired by the forms of Japanese guitarist Masayuki Takayanagi,” “LA Blues” from the get-go rends physical space like a swiftly fissioning star, finding alto saxophonist Shiroshi and guitarist Ibarra swirling about each other like primordial starstuff, their notes atoms trying to form bonds at velocities approaching light speed. Dangerous, dangerous stuff, and something you don’t want to get too close to if you find such things disturbing! Tracks 1 and 4, “Projection 8” and “Projection 58,” respectively, are “‘mass projections,’ marked by bombast, intensity, and a total disregard for anything approaching conventional melody or structure.” The Doors, or the idea of listening to them at this specific time, turned into Huxley’s actual “Doors of Perception” and flung themselves wide to welcome me into cosmic embrace of chaotic functionality.

These performances masquerading as neutron bombs sandwich “Projection 14” and “Projection 3,” in which Shiroshi and Ibarra’s considered interplay is more readily apparent. But neither is a break or a reprieve, just a slower eruption of plasmic materials. The duo’s live takes are physical workouts, as if the players’ are lifting weights with their lips and fingers or running a marathon with their lips and fingers. Regardless, they probably have to sit down after a while to recuperate, let their lips and fingers slowly regain feeling again after all that energy expulsion. Not unlike Ray Manzarek after “The End.”

Edition of 100 from Eh?/Public Eyesore. Not a lot left…

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