Mats Gustafsson – Sonic Youth With Friends

NY free-rockers in Scandi scream-up

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This large-scale progressive piece has emerged via Oslo’s rambunctious Smalltown Supersound, which has released many CDs by Swedish sax mangler Mats Gustafsson. Nine open-ended improvisations recorded live at an art gallery four years ago are mixed by Jim O’Rourke: the kind of thing that these days tends to test the Youth’s ‘hardcore’ following to the limit. Gustafsson’s playing is percussive and textural, but his spit is supremely polished. Meanwhile the Youth party like it’s 1985, with the ratcheting and girder-grinding of LPs like EVOL and Sister making a welcome return.

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