Free-reed veteran Peter Brötzmann brings his newest duo to town | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

Music » Concert Preview

Free-reed veteran Peter Brötzmann brings his newest duo to town


Sign up for our newsletters Subscribe


Peter Brötzmann justified the crude nomenclature of early recordings like Machine Gun, Nipples, and Balls with the coarse tone and pugilistic phrasing of his saxophone playing. So the vulgar cover image of his latest album, Sex Tape, which depicts a crucified man getting a blow job from a viper, looks like a roots move. But the music that he and American-born, Scotland-based steel guitarist Heather Leigh make can hardly be said to fall back on old habits. There’s no mistaking Brötzmann’s rasping, insistent sound on each of the four woodwinds (alto and tenor saxophones, B-flat clarinet, and the Middle-European tárogató) he plays over the 48-minute-long concert album. But instead of ripping through the action or driving home rhythms, he drops straight into Leigh’s undulating squalls and falls like a skydiver bent on keeping his rip cord untugged until the last possible second. If you’re looking for Brötzmann to rehash glories of yore, you might just stay home with your old records. If you want to hear the fearlessness that’s made him a force to be reckoned with for his more than 50 years in action, come on down. This concert is part of EB25, the Empty Bottle’s yearlong series of concerts celebrating its 25th year of operation.   v

Support Independent Chicago Journalism: Join the Reader Revolution

We speak Chicago to Chicagoans, but we couldn’t do it without your help. Every dollar you give helps us continue to explore and report on the diverse happenings of our city. Our reporters scour Chicago in search of what’s new, what’s now, and what’s next. Stay connected to our city’s pulse by joining the Reader Revolution.

Are you in?

  Reader Revolutionary $35/month →  
  Rabble Rouser $25/month →  
  Reader Radical $15/month →  
  Reader Rebel  $5/month  → 

Not ready to commit? Send us what you can!

 One-time donation  → 

Add a comment