The Necks

The Boys

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The Boys was originally issued in 1998 on Australia's Wild Sound label. It contains the soundtrack for the blockbuster Australian film of the same name directed by Rowan Woods. But it is more than a soundtrack as well. The disc contains more music than was used in the motion picture and stands as a true Necks album in its own right. The Necks -- Chris Abrahams (piano/keyboards), Tony Buck (drums), and Lloyd Swanton (bass) -- who have become synonymous with long, gradually unfolding opuses of harmonically adventurous and intoxicatingly accessible jazz, are at their tightest here. The space inside this music is vast, unhurried; it is repetitive and hypnotic. The title theme and its two variations offer shimmering, moody chords, attenuated with various effects that draw the listener further and further into the progression. As cues come and go, improvisation slips in and the listener is carried so far into the mix that all notions of time have drifted away. There is simple and intricate melody here, there is unintrusive use of dissonance, and the inventive rhythmic subtlety makes this seem as if it were all a single piece with many movements. This is a welcome addition to the American side of the Necks catalog, and may be the perfect place to start for the curious.

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