12XU 152LP 12XU 152LP

"Activator is the third installment from the trio of Jayson Gerycz, Jen Powers, and Matthew Rolin, who respectively need no introduction writ-large. For anyone observing the American underground in the last decade, whether live, on tour or across various listening formats, these names are attached to the crucial goings-on propelling the Rust Belt and beyond. Here the trio expand their collaborative vernacular across two sides of vinyl starting with the steady strumming of 'Entrance,' a paradox of pensive riffing and anxious percussion where Gerycz and Powers meld into a nebulous cluster of shapeshifting staccato and phantom rhythms. Tracks like 'Sun Rays' and 'Ivory' walk a tightrope between structured songcraft with chord patterns and concise riffs held together by steady cadence, ranging from hand bells to the bombastic, full-kit eruptions Gerycz has perfected over many years. As each piece ascends and unfurls, Powers provides a gentle tessellating from her dulcimer, with each strike landing like raindrops upon shallow puddles. The title track 'Activator' displays the full range and might of the trio, highlighting and merging the many facets and abilities each individual brings to the table, forming the singular identity that has made the project so beloved. Starting with slow dulcimer swells, watery bells, and mellow, motorik electric guitar, the track slowly tangles up its own elements and tumbles itself with grace and patient beauty while ascending to an ecstatic explosion of distortion and thunderous drumming before dissolving into an iridescent singing bowl meditation. 'Activator' leaves it all on the table, displaying a perpetual metamorphosis of different modes from improv to song structure, a display of seemingly endless possibilities executed with a nimble prowess that comes from time spent in close collaboration. Over 40+ minutes of transcendent music the trio employs these multitudes of music making approaches while remaining cohesive and articulate, beautiful and mysterious - a rare talent for the artists and a gift for the listener."