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Dragon's Head

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iTunes Review

Guitarist Mary Halvorson’s influences are drawn not only from the jazz tradition but also from contemporary indie rock and experimental sound. All of these approaches are equally manifest, and Dragon’s Head is a fine example of her range. Here, she’s joined on 10 original compositions by contrabassist John Hebert and drummer Ches Smith. With only a volume and distortion pedal, she toys with loud-quiet dynamics on “Momentary Lapse” as the trio moves from measured slow-to-syrupy tempos in proggy cycles, closing with flits and cage-rattling. “Screws Loose” is minimal and precise art-rock, while the gentle waltz of “Sank Silver Purple White” is classically poised before evolving into atonal, flinty repetition with snatches of bluesy post-bop peeking out. Smith’s athletic precision and mild distraction provide a fascinating counterpoint for Halvorson’s guitar, while Hebert is the fulcrum on which the music turns.

Customer Reviews

Stellar Performance

Stellar performance on all accounts that rewards repeated listening. Nuanced with a powerful grip, and killer guitar solos. Left me wanting a compilation of Halvorson's live shows.

Dragon Head

Unique and risky but don't lose the purpose, I'd love to see you and Henry play I'm curious as to how the connection would come off


Born: 1980 in Boston, Massachusetts

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Electric guitarist Mary Halvorson plays new improvised music that touches on various avant-garde styles of jazz and rock. Born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1980, she was determined to remove categories from the equations of her style, which do range from experimental rock and modern creative music to noise. After studying near her home, she took classes at Wesleyan University, and then at the New School of Jazz & Contemporary Music upon a move to Brooklyn, New York in 2002. She then connected...
Full Bio
Dragon's Head, Mary Halvorson Trio
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