For those who don’t know, The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol (TBWNIAS) are a collective from Ottawa, Canada who meet every now and again to bring together their encyclopaedic music knowledge in the form of jams in the basement of the Birdman Sound record store, owned by drummer John Westhaver (and sadly closing later this year when Westhaver retires).
Often when a jamming band meet up the proceeds of their efforts often stay in the room… lost in the ether… absorbed into the four walls never to be heard again. Fortunately TBWNIAS often record their sessions, and these four tracks here are a product of just that, no overdubs, one take off the floor… that’s it!
I like TBWNIAS because of the way their musical influences are integrated into their sound… there is no sense that they are signposting anything… it’s all very ingrained… like a piece of wood that has had many coats of varnish added to it… each one effecting the overall look, but none standing out.
Because of this every one of their recordings sounds different because of the multitude of permutations they bring to their playing. But in the same way as you can’t peel off a single layer of varnish, so here you cannot discern one particular style or sound. Yes there is a TBWNIAS style, but it doesn’t impose itself in any way… rather it allows for freedom of expression.
So, as the Press Release says:
The “Berserkir” session was recorded in the spirit of peoples gone by from ancient times. Berserkir, in the old Norse, means “bear-shirt”, that is to say, warriors who went into battle without armor. It is with that in mind that you listen to 6 friends who have simply rolled tape and let the freak flag flyCardinal Fuzz website
Moreover, this is Volume 1 of a two disc set, the second will come out later this year… so goodness knows what will be cooked up then.
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