|Oren Ambarchi at Issues Project Room, Brooklyn, NY. |
Photo by Peter Gannushkin
By Antonio Poscic
Australian composer and multi-instrumentalist, primarily guitarist and drummer, Oren Ambarchi is a unique and important character in today’s experimental and improvised music scene. Never confined by genre or style, he seems to be fueled by a relentless desire to shape sounds into impossible forms, dissolving them from their original patterns and recontextualizing them into contemplative yet often ominous structures that show glimpses of an emotional substrate. Analog and digital, improvised and composed, the various modes of operation he discovers in solo works—looped and sampled guitars might crash droningly into themselves—are reflected in his numerous collaborations with varied but always impressive names such Keiji Haino, Jim O’Rourke, and Fire! Unequivocally, his work shows a musician with a keen, thirsty ear to the developments in improvisational, electronic, and experimental music and a voice that never fails to narrate something new.
When artists as prolific as Ambarchi are concerned—he appeared on over ten records in the past two years—it becomes difficult to cover all of their work with due attention. Since we at the Free Jazz Blog are guilty of neglecting Ambarchi, we’re dedicating a week to his recent output. Follow us during the next few days as we review several of his solo and collaborative releases from 2016 and 2015. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did!