Monday, August 10, 2009

Jonathan Kane raises the brow with rhythmic blues

Posted By on Mon, Aug 10, 2009 at 2:00 PM

click to enlarge MODERN-DAY BLUESMAN: Jonathan Kane
  • MODERN-DAY BLUESMAN: Jonathan Kane

Jonathan Kane holds a strange musical pedigree. His drumming on the first Swans record Filth shaped the antagonistic scrape of American industrial rock throughout the ’80s, but he fancies himself a bluesman.

“I like music that swings,” he says. “Music that obsesses on a theme and builds to a point of the ecstatic is what I aspire to, and it’s what moves me.”

Kane also spent time playing drums with minimalist composers Rhys Chatham and La Monte Young’s Forever Bad Blues Band, Young’s marriage of blues riffs and minimalist composition. Although low-brow blues and the high concepts of minimalism are seemingly disparate, with his second solo album Jet Ear Party (Table of the Elements), Kane delves into the DNA of what makes them so much alike. “Pick up any Mississippi Fred McDowell record or most John Lee Hooker records and you hear driving riffs, hypnotic grooves and a scintillating riff. That’s minimalism,” he adds. “It’s about the same droning riff and infinite pattern that you get even in a La Monte Young piece.”

"Gripped" mp3

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(Photo by Amanda Burns)

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