Drip Audio // 2010

Barrel Fire is The Gordon Grdina Trios’ most brutally driving, raw, dynamic record to date. The collaboration between GG3 and Mats Gustafsson at the 2009 Vancouver International Jazz Festival was recorded and Barrel Fire is the first set from that night. There are few edits in order to retain the natural raw power of the original concert. The band expands and explodes through the melodic sketches with inherent interest in the raw dynamic energy of group improvisation. The group sounds at times like a freight train screaming down the tracks in the dark recesses of your city but as the Oud takes the fore ground we are reminded of the sensitive and delicate reflection in this darkness. There are moments of silence and individual exploration filled with the intensity of the search. The search to let go to what will become. The band owes as much of a debt to the energy of bands like The EX, and The Dead Kennedys as it does to the primal melodic sensibility of Albert Ayler and the sophistication of Ornette Coleman. This music is engaging and gripping, an onslaught.

Listen or purchase via DRIPAUDIO.COM. More info at GORDONGRDINA.COM & MATSGUS.COM

CONNECTION // Gord Grdina has played with Dan Mangan since 2010. Kenton Loewen since 2008.


“…this is a stunner.”
– The Province

“There is so much power behind the drum hits, so much pent-up frustration in the guitar entanglements and as usual, Gustafsson makes the sax sound like a rabid beast rather than a musical instrument. Seek this recording out.”
– Beat Route

“Grdina’s guitar and oud playing acts as a good foil to Gustafsson, with Babin and drummer Kenton Loewen supplying just the high-octane rhythm section required. Thrilling stuff.”
– All About Jazz

“After its initial impact, relentless fury soon becomes one-dimensional, but Grdina and his rhythm section leaven Gustafsson’s bluster and he responds, making this music for repeated listening as well as catharsis.”
– The Wire

“Fast-paced heads, smoking improvisations, and a high level of interaction between everyone.”
– Monsieur Délire

“…the resulting sound is as violent as the cover art.”
– Pop Matters

“Free, yet focused, intense and over-the-top, this is one of heaviest discs I’ve recently reckoned with.”
– Bruce Lee Gallanter (Downtown Music Gallery)

“Egged on by a worshipful audience, the band rips through five pieces like a rabid dog on the attack, the musicians’ sound at times reminiscent of Naked City in intensity and of Ornette Coleman’s (original) Prime Time in harmolodic approach.”
– Textura

“…from acid-toned string-tickling skitter to boring-down relentlessness…”
– Paris Transatlantic Magazine

“There is freshness and vitality to the performance, tight ensemble playing, power, subtlety – what’s not to like?”
– Hour

“It’s stirring stuff, and the band’s ability to infuse jazz with this sort of manic skronk is not something I’ve encountered much beyond bands like Ultralyd, Universal Congress of, or John Zorn during his Naked City and Painkiller era.”
– Foxy Digitalis