by Dan Goldin (@post_trash_)
Last year New York’s Dressage released their self-titled debut album, an instrumental record that revels in experimental post-punk, free jazz, and improvisational bliss. The record scrapes and contorts, taking new shape with each fractured movement. It’s mesmerizing and wildly interesting, the only thing missing (for those who struggle with instrumental music) is vocals to make sense of their nuanced insanity. Sometimes dreams do come true as Dressage has paired together with ex-Birthing Hips vocalist, the one and only, Carrie Furniss. If ever there was a band that could fill the empty void that arose as Birthing Hips called it quits, Dressage are capable and certainly willing to try. Take Me Home, their first album with Furniss in the fold, deals with themes of cowboys and aliens, with one foot planted in the dirt and the other drifting toward another galaxy.
Lead single “Star Scar” is a space ballad with a brilliant structure, sending transmissions from the dark as yelps of “take me to your leader” become insistent. The space voyage rhythms and technological bleeps and bloops tangle together, causing a digital knot like malfunctioning radio waves. Dressage lurch into a sultry groove setting the slinking tone for Furniss’ croon and dead-pan delivery over shifting guitars, ambient drifts, and jazzy flourishes that explode under pressure. The musicians, Will Greene (guitar), Sam Fribush (keys), and Jon Starks (drums) are exceptional in both minimalist intensity and chaotic charm, and the addition of Furniss finds them quickly becoming on the city’s best up-and-comers.
Dressage’s "Take Me Home” is out November 13th.