Days in the Desert

Days in the Desert

The Seattle-born, LA-transplanted collective continues the satisfying process of becoming ever stranger on Days in the Desert. High Pulp’s third full-length is an entrancing specimen of beyond-jazz, full of groove and abstract swing, bold orchestration, beautiful electroacoustic tone color, and sonic atmosphere, not to mention brilliant production and mixing. Joining drummer/founder Bobby Granfelt, keyboardist Rob Homan, altoist Andy Morrill, and crew are several prominent guests, including Tortoise member and leader of The New Breed Jeff Parker on guitar (on the old-soul jam “Unified Dakotas”). The rich sound and explosive attack of James Brandon Lewis’ tenor sax solo on “Dirtmouth” is a key highlight. Daedelus gets busy on the metrically off-balance “(If You Don’t Leave) the City Will Kill You,” while MonoNeon’s impeccable bass animates “Never in My Short Sweet Life.” The core band is featured, hugely impressively sans guests, on “Slaw,” “Fast Asleep,” and “Bad Infinity” as well as the brief ambient chamber music interlude “Robert Pollard” (named for the Guided By Voices frontman).

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