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Live from California

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Album Review

Although Dose Hermanos leaders/keyboardists Bob Bralove and Tom Constanten both had ties to the Grateful Dead, Live From California has more in common with Sun Ra's space jazz than the type of relaxed, country-flavored rock the Dead were best known for. Constanten was the Dead's keyboardist from 1968-70, while Bralove was the band's sound designer from 1987-95; but the experimental music on this CD (recorded live at San Francisco's Fillmore West in June and November 1997) has very little in common with "Casey Jones" or "Friend of the Devil." Combine Ra's more eccentric avant-garde instrumentals (as opposed to his hard bop) and traces of Cecil Taylor with an awareness of progressive rock, and you've got eccentric Dose Hermanos offerings like "Shadow of the Invisible Man," "New York Cup O' Java" and "Know Peaking." The keyboardists (who are joined by Steve Kimock or Henry Kaiser on guitar, Joe Gallant on bass and Prairie Prince on electronic drums) can be overly self-indulgent, but even so, this is a risk-taking, highly creative release that lovers of avant-garde jazz should make a point of obtaining.

Biography

Formed: 1995

Genre: Jam Bands

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Dose Hermanos is the improvisational piano duo of Tom Constanten and Bob Bralove, both musicians associated with the Grateful Dead. Constanten (born March 19, 1944, in Long Branch, NJ) met Phil Lesh while studying at the University of California at Berkeley in 1961. The two became roommates, attracted by their mutual love of avant-garde music. Constanten moved to West Germany to study with various classical composers, while Lesh went on to become a member of the Grateful Dead. When Constanten returned...
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Live from California, Dose Hermanos
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