NPR logo The Necks, Recorded Live In Brooklyn

The Necks, Recorded Live In Brooklyn

The Necks, masters of mesmerizing. Holimage hide caption

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The Necks, masters of mesmerizing.


You know those nature documentaries about volcanoes? The highlights are usually the most violent, debris-scattering, catastrophic eruptions that National Geographic (or whomever) has in film stock. But occasionally, they'll cut to other types of lava flows too. And sometimes, the molten earth oozes like molasses instead: it looks innocent in its high viscosity trickle, but it's still deathly hot and searing a new path wherever it decides to go.

That's sort of like the experience of listening to The Necks, the Australian piano trio. The band is known for issuing records which are CD-length improvisations, where repeating riffs slowly morph into new patterns — and all of a sudden, you realize WHOA THAT'S DIFFERENT NOW. WAIT WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN OMG THIS IS AMAZING. The Necks just did a (brief, infrequent) North American tour, which included two nights at the Issue Project Room in Brooklyn, and the Free Music Archive has the results of night one, set two for download or on-demand streaming. Sound quality is pretty solid, too. We'll embed all 49 minutes of it below, but you'd also be well served to check out all the other (mostly experimental) jazz offerings in the archives, including lots of good stuff recorded by the venerable WFMU. [Free Music Archive: The Necks (a two-night engagement)]