Dial ‘M’ for Metal
For a long time, the jazz community turned a blind eye to the existence of heavy metal. With its propensity for brutality, various occult themes and raging volumes, the genre had to deal with prejudices for years, but things have changed. Contemporary jazz/improvisation heavyweights such as Craig Taborn, Matt Mitchell and Hilmar Jensson have not only expressed their love for heavy metal, but also incorporated some of it into their adventurous music practices.
Not surprisingly, really, as the much maligned genre has expanded into an embarrassment of richness, with bands not only vying for extremity, but also working with striking polymeters, exotic textures, genre-defying dynamics and even some improvisation. Also for Belgian guitarist Artan Buleshkaj, metal is a source of inspiration, and while some of that already seeped into his playing in other bands, Anemic Cinema is where he gives himself free reign.
The band name was taken from a short film by über-Dadaist Marcel Duchamp. Opening track “Oneirophrenia” refers to a dream-like state in which you start to hallucinate from a.o. exhaustion or sensory deprivation. It somehow fits the crushingly heavy music, in which Buleshkaj’s baritone guitar sounds as if he’s throwing thick slabs of meat into a grinder. There’s a massive growl in there that goes well with the unpredictability of the reeds and the surprising nimbleness of De Waele’s playing.