Stream Rehearsal Jam from Gaster, Morton, Papadopoulos; Members of Clutch, Lamb of God & Stinking Lizaveta

Posted in audiObelisk on August 14th, 2019 by JJ Koczan

yanni mark morton jp gaster

About two months ago, I was lucky enough to stream a jam-room recording from Stinking Lizaveta called ‘The Odor of Corruption’ (posted here) after being hit up by the Philly-based doom jazz trio’s founding guitarist, Yanni Papadopoulos. Late last week, another note came in from Papadopoulos — did I want to hear a jam he played bass on with Jean-Paul Gaster of Clutch drumming and Mark Morton from Lamb of God on guitar?

Easy question.

The jam from what’s being called Gaster, Morton, Papadopoulos was hosted by the drummer in Frederick, Maryland — where else? — and has been dubbed “Blues to Infinity,” which about sums up the vibe. Morton, who released the solo album Anasthetic earlier this year, leads the way on guitar through the easy-flowing sub-four-minute snippet, starting off with a bluesy bounce over Gaster‘s groove, while Papadopoulos helps drive the subtle linear build even as he anchors the central progression beneath the guitar solo to come. If that level of blues hits infinite anywhere in the song — let me get my tape measure — it’s in that solo, but the the way jam kind of sways into its crescendo afterward is where it’s at one way or the other, and even after the guitar cuts out, the drums and bass seem ready to keep the vibe going in case there’s another pickup.

Doesn’t happen this time, but something tells me this might not be the only time we hear from Gaster, Morton, Papadopoulos. True enough that their schedules aren’t exactly empty as it is, but if this is the kind of work they’re doing off-the-cuff whenever their respective planets happen to align, there’s simply too much chemistry and too much potential here to leave it alone. And I mean, you know, if they wanted to send some jams off to Per Wiberg to put some keys on there too, I wouldn’t complain. Just a thought.

Whether or not that actually happens, here’s hoping for more from these three.

Enjoy the jam. Some quick comment from Morton follows:

Mark Morton on “Blues to Infinity”:

“There’s totally a cool anxious tightrope feel… like it could fall apart at any second but never does. My lead sounds frustrated and hurt… because I was. This is a real one for sure.”

Stinking Lizaveta on Thee Facebooks

Mark Morton on Thee Facebooks

Clutch on Thee Facebooks

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Wino Wednesday: Wino Perform The Obsessed’s “Skybone” at Doom Shall Rise 2009

Posted in Bootleg Theater on September 11th, 2013 by JJ Koczan

Their tenure was brief, but the Wino trio nonetheless hold a place in the lore of their namesake guitarist/vocalist, tragic though it ultimately turned out to be. Formed with Scott “Wino” Weinrich himself, drummer Jean-Paul Gaster of Clutch and Rezin bassist Jon Blank, the Wino trio released their only studio album, Punctuated Equilibrium, through Southern Lord in 2009. It was very well received (one of my favorites from that year) and worked in a lighter, jammier spirit than did The Hidden Hand, which had dissolved in 2007. Of course, it was still plenty weighted and had no shortage of crunch and fuzz, but the grooves Gaster worked around Wino‘s riffing and the warm, natural low end brought to the material from Blank made the record a joy to listen to on multiple levels. It came out in winter and made you long for summer.

I was fortunate enough to see the Wino band at Roadburn in 2009 as part of a weekend that, no bullshit, changed my life. They killed, as one would expect, and later released the set as the aptly-titled Live in Roadburn 2009 on Burning World/Roadburn Records (review here). The chemistry between the three players was fully locked in, from the balcony in the Green Room at the 013 in Tilburg, they looked to be having a great time, and they looked like a band who could very easily go for a long time doing whatever they wanted in between Gaster‘s commitments to Clutch, jamming and rocking out tunes like “Wild Blue Yonder” and “Release Me,” “Smilin’ Road” and “The Woman in the Orange Pants.” Given that, how on their game they were, it was all the more horrible when the band returned to the States and Blank died of an overdose a short time later.

Wino joined Clutch on a tour that summer with Gaster pulling double-duty on drums and Dog Fashion Disco‘s Brian White filling the bassist slot, but it wasn’t ever going to be the same, and by the fall of 2009, Wino was beginning the unplugged explorations that would result in his 2010 solo acoustic debut, Adrift (review here), the trio effectively defunct. There isn’t much quality live footage around of them — not every cellphone was an HD video camera in 2009 — but this clip of them playing “Skybone,” the centerpiece from The Obsessed‘s 1994 final studio album, The Church Within, at the German Doom Shall Rise festival on that lone European tour makes it plain that they were something special in their time.

Enjoy and have a great Wino Wednesday:

Wino, “Skybone” Live at Doom Shall Rise 2009

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