Kyle Bruckmann | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Kyle Bruckmann


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Soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy once named a particularly squawky improvisation "Duck." If Kyle Bruckmann had given similar titles to the thirteen tracks on his debut solo CD, Entymology (Barely Auditable), some of them would be called things like "Teakettle" and "Simmering Soup." Like German trumpeter Axel Dörner, Bruckman skillfully manipulates a myriad of scrapes, squeaks, hisses, and multiphonic squiggles that his instruments (oboe, English horn, and a Chinese double reed called the suona) weren't intended to make. And like British saxophonist Evan Parker, he uses circular breathing and scrupulously precise articulation to generate continuous double streams of high and low pitches, which spiral together like strands of DNA. But unlike many free improvisers, he's not allergic to melody: Entymology includes a couple pensive themes played in lovely, pure tones that betray his rigorous training (he has a master's in classical performance and contemporary improvisation from the University of Michigan). Bruckmann played in the now-defunct double-reed trio Corvus with Robbie Hunsinger and Tim McLoraine, and works frequently with Gene Coleman's new-music group Ensemble Noamnesia; he's also a member of the postpunk rock band Lozenge, where he plays amplified oboe, accordion, and electronics. But this concert is his debut solo performance. Bruckmann will play one set unaccompanied, then join Lozenge for a set of improvised electroacoustic music. Wednesday, 10 PM, Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western; 773-276-3600. BILL MEYER

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Marc PoKempner.

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