Wednesday, December 30, 1998

Review - Hoffman Estates

Artist: Loren Mazzacane-Connors and Alan Licht

Posted on Wed, Dec 30, 1998 at 4:00 AM

Hoffman Estates
Label: Drag City
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: Hoffman Estates

Critically favored New York City avant-improvisational guitarists Connors and Licht have recorded their latest effort with ubiquitous indie-rock musician Jim O'Rourke. Influenced by the legendary jazz producer Teo Maceo, O'Rourke fuses the interchange between Connors and Licht with a seven-piece orchestra that features trombonist Jeb Bishop and tenor saxophonist Ken Vandemark.

Like Maceo, O'Rourke makes extensive use of the studio. Connors' warm-and-fuzzy single notes pingpong in slow motion, while Lichts' wall of sound is mixed low, allowing delicate moments in the improvisational storm. Alternately enthusiastic and nervous, "Hoffman Estates" aspires to and often reaches greatness, but I wonder if a real-time performance by these same players might achieve more.

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