Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog

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January 2024

The noise of guitars and drums is suddenly joined by a scream: "I got a right to scream like an idiot / I got a right to say fuck you!" There is a reason why Marc Ribot not only picks up the guitar as usual right at the beginning of the latest album by his jazz-punk trio Ceramic Dog, but also screams his heart out. The 63-year-old musician, whose versatile guitar playing helped shape the sound of musicians like Tom Waits and Elvis Costello as well as countless recordings by avant-gardist John Zorn, is angry. Very angry, actually.

The thrust of songs like Personal Nancy, Fuck La Migra or Muslim Jewish Resistance is clear: "It's about solidarity against Donald Trump and against anyone who is racist," said Ribot in an interview. The New Yorker has always been politically active, but not necessarily in his music. That has changed recently: "There's so much crap going on right now that I think people need to respond to it."

So does the world need more protest songs? "I don't know if we need many, but we need at least a few," Ribot said. Starting with the Occupy movement, he noticed "that although everyone had their headphones on, there wasn't a single song that people could sing together."

As with political actions, Ribot also asks the question in protest music: "How do you fight the enemy without becoming an enemy yourself to a certain extent?" A large part of partisan music doesn't sound all that different from fascist marching music. Characteristically, anti-fascist songs would not only recognize strength, but also characteristics such as sadness, weakness and fragility.

The formation Ceramic Dog is the loudest and rockiest of Ribot's many own band projects. Live like on the new album YRU Still Here? Not only does righteous anger blaze, there is also room for quieter, more soulful tones.

When it comes to protest, Ribot is releasing another solo album, Songs of Resistance, later this year. Tom Waits, the musician for whom Ribot has now recorded iconic solos that sound like someone tumbling down a flight of stairs, appears as a guest. So it will be interesting to see what it sounds like when Ribot and Waits intone an Italian partisan song together: Bella Ciao. (Karl Gedlicka, April 23, 2018)

Connection is Ceramic Dog's fifth album (or sixth if you count the Bandcamp digital EP "What I Did On My Long Vacation", or seventh if you count the collaboration with Deerhoof).

It's also their best... a work that captures the tension between Ceramic Dog's (not so much post-) punk/new music/free jazz starting points and the pop ambitions they always (never too far) beneath the surface buried, not dissolved... Look at the post-apocalyptic landscape of "Subsidiary", the anthemic manifesto "We Are Soldiers in the Army of Love" or the unhinged tirades of "Heart Attack": all perfect, to dance on a minefield (our current pop moment?). Fans of minimalist polytonal disco will surely appreciate the indescribable "No Name". And if you like multiple time signatures: the song "Connection" has everything you need. "That's Entertainment" devours/deconstructs the psychotic clichés of the Hollywood standard and, with a wink, takes aim at the Gang of Four (see "Entertainment") and the "Gang of Four" (Madame Mao Tse Tung et al.).

But it's the track Ecstasy - whose boogaloo-influenced groove recalls Ribot's earlier work with the Cubanos Postizos - that most clearly expresses the band's ethos: "I don't want you to give me nothing... unless , you give me... ecstasy." After 18 years of collective life on the streets/in this world... this seems to be the only currency Ceramic Dog still accepts. And on "Connection" they play with/for her like there's no tomorrow. (press release)

Program and cast

Marc Ribot: guitar, voice
Shahzad Ismaily: guitar, bass, electronics
Ches Smith: drums

PORGY & BESS Jazzclub

Porgy & Bess (actually, Jazz and Music Club Porgy & Bess ) is a jazz club in the Riemergasse 11 in the 1st district of Vienna. The club , founded in 1993 is considered " the most important jazz organizer and trendy meeting point " of the Austrian capital .

The program of Porgy & Bess speaks to a very large audience , about 70,000 guests a year ; is accordingly Jazz " understood very pluralistic ," and the program " even in fringe areas , such as electronic music , contemporary music and world music penetrated . " Many international artists , particularly from the U.S. space , see also Austrian musician here an opportunity to perform . The club also offers the stage for events, such as the award of the Austrian World Music Award.

Musicologist Christian Scheib According to the Porgy & Bess " at the same time essential for the development of the musical ( jazz ) reality of a City" and needs and uses ' plain commonplace as urban space music. " It creates itself " through artistic preferences, acoustic quality , capacity and real capacity, the necessary exclusion of other clubs. " Here, the different areas of the jazz clubs allow - the area in front of the stage with tables, upstairs gallery , a lateral area with a bar at counter - different intense concentration on the concert scene . For Jazzthetik Porgy & Bess is even a " traditional club . "

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