Henry Kaiser

Re-Marrying for Money

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Originally released on vinyl under the title Marrying for Money (on Minor Music) and re-released on disc with a couple of extra tracks, this album represents avant guitarist Henry Kaiser's more rockish side. Kaiser -- known for collaborations with Derek Bailey, Eugene Chadbourne, the ROVA saxophone quartet, and musicians from traditions of every corner of the globe -- here settles into some relatively basic rock forms, though retaining a certain gnarliness derived from his love of Captain Beefheart. The unusual thing is that all the pieces are freely improvised. But contrary to the practices evolved from free jazz or contemporary aleatoric music, here the rhythm siblings Hilary and John Hanes generally establish a straightforward groove over which Kaiser and several guest guitarists improvise. The results are thus more similar to Grateful Dead-style jams (albeit for far shorter durations) than anything produced by, say, Iskra 1903. Though uncredited with such, Kaiser appears to utilize the synclavier he was fond of at the time, and it supplies a somewhat dated, mid-'80s gloss to the proceedings. Still, the recording offers a reasonably enjoyable session and shows a facet of Kaiser's personality of which those who only know him from either his avant-garde or world tendencies may be unaware.

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