FRIEDMAN & LIEBEZEIT: Secret Rhythms 3 (Nonplace Records)


Posted on Sep 26th 2008 12:08 am

Filed in Albums | Tags: , ,
Comments (0)

Friedman & Leibezeit: Secret Rhythms 3

Secret Rhythms 3
Nonplace Records 2008
07 Tracks. 52mins40secs

Long before Kieran Hebden teamed up with legendary percussionist Steve Reid, German electronic musician Bernd ‘Burnt’ Friedman joined forces with another celebrated drummer in the person of Can member Jaki Liebezeit. Their first shared offering came in the shape of Secret Rhythms (2002), combined Friedman’s characteristic dub and futuristic electro jazz and Liebezeit’s feel for multi-faceted rhythmic formations to create a collection of subtle impressionist tracks caught somewhere between dusk and dark. Four years on, they were at it again. Secret Rhythms 2 continued to outline a fascinating world all in contrasts and undertones.

Third in the series, this latest Secret Rhythms collection redefines once more the spectrum in which the pair evolve. Perhaps their most compelling collaboration yet, this latest album seems at first more open and pop-infused than its predecessors, especially with opening track Morning Has Broken, which features an inviting slide guitar wash layered over Liebezeit’s crisp drumming. But, as the track progresses, the hypnotic nature of the piece becomes apparent as the rhythmic pattern locks the rest of the piece into a series of atmospheric loops which evolve slowly into one another. This process of cellular decomposition is repeated at various levels throughout, from the lively Entsafter to the atmospheric stretches of Gegenwart or the dub-infused Die Ehrliche Haut or Wirklich Version, and often developed over the course of seven to ten minutes, giving enough time for the mood to settle without ever overloading the record.

Interestingly, there never seem to be one particular leader here. Although Liebezeit and Friedman are the core creative force behind the project, the various intervenients (Hayden Chisholm on clarinet and saxophone, Tim Motzer on guitars, Joseph Suchy on E-Fuzz guitar and Morten Grønvad on vibraphone) all take centre stage at some point and bring their own flavour to the compositions. This results in Secret Rhythms being at once the most varied of the three albums Friedman and Liebezeit have collaborated on, and the most consistent. Their partnership is getting stronger and more organic with each record. Liebezeit’s flair for odd time signatures and progressive approach fuel Friedman’s creative thinking, and vice versa. This is particularly palpable on Gegenwart and Wirklich Version, which bring together exotic rhythm, dub and jazz in loose entities, but the space between each elements on Die Ehrliche Haut or closing Sandale, with its delicate touches of steel drum and processed guitars, seem to highlight the deep understanding that the pair have for each other..

Very much like its predecessors, Secret Rhythms 3 is a record that unveils its strengths progressively, and it has been one of the attractions of this collaboration from their first release. Both Friedman and Liebezeit have made very distinctive marks on the music scene throughout their respective careers, and this double legacy transpires through their collaborative work, but this series of records is all about looking at fresh ways to make music, and they deliver here with brio.


Burnt Friedman & Jaki Liebezeit (MySpace) | Nonplace Records
Buy: CD | LP

Filed in Albums | Tags: , ,
Comments (0)

Comments are closed.