Friday, July 26, 2013

Currency's live debut leads a night of jazz and improvisation at Eyedrum

Posted By on Fri, Jul 26, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Adding yet another leg to Atlanta's sprawling experimental music scene, Currency is a fledgling free jazz and improv troupe featuring Daniel Bailey, Chris Childs, John Gregg, Ben Shirley, Jared Pepper, Ryan Gregory, and Eric Fontaine. Similar to Faun and a Pan Flute, in which Bailey, Childs, Gregg, and Shirley all share duties, Currency is an expansive group of players that curiously picks through any angle or idea that comes to shape over the course of random improvisations. The group's hypnotic runs of instrumental experimentation ebb and flow in a heaving mass of intricate sound and color, shifting from moment to moment with Fela Kuti's precise flair and Albert Ayler's vaporous bombast. Bailey explains the group's mindset by offering, "I don't know exactly what we are going for. I don't think we are really going for anything in particular. I had some ideas. I asked these people to contribute to the ideas. And magic blossomed. I am super grateful to be making music with such a solid group of comfortable improvisors. We have only had a few rehearsals, only one with the full group, and things are already flying. I directed the group enough by writing the building blocks for the music and by choosing the instrumentation ... The rest is at the will of the players. It can be taken in any direction at any moment. All textures and emotions are open for exploration."

Following an impromptu set without Shirley and Gregory at the Merman Manor on July 18, Currency plans to make its live debut as the full band at Eyedrum alongside New Orleans jazz enthusiast Steve Marquette and Atlanta's-own noise primitivists Suffer Bomb Damage.

$3. 9 p.m. Mon. July 29 at Eyedrum, 115 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive SW, Suite 225, Atlanta.

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