Zeena Parkins

Sharks!

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At 71 minutes, this is a free improvisation recording from New York electric harpist Zeena Parkins, who has a string of releases on Tzadik as well as countless collaborations in the avant-garde and improvised cannon. The U.K. percussionist Chris Cutler of Henry Cow and Pere Ubu fame has a multitude of avant-garde and experimental rock projects centered around his Recommended label, which published this recording in 1996. Sharks! displays a broad cross section of the duo's avant-garde techniques, from disruptive ping-pong instrumental dialogues to pensive, miniature studies in texture. The CD documents two live concerts recorded in London and Bologna, Italy. Though the full-length duration is a lot to get lost in, the experimentation remains compelling throughout, giving ample space for the improvisations to develop in a multitude of directions, from full-on sparks flying to distant rumbles on the threshold of audibility.