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Chicago Underground Duo to Release Album in February

Cornetist Rob Mazurek and drummer Chad Taylor add some international flavor to their usual stew of free jazz, electronic burps and avant-pop on the ninth Chicago Underground release. In Praise of Shadows, the fourth album from the group as a duo, is scheduled to be released by Chicago-based Thrill Jockey records in Feb 2006.

The new album brings European, Asian and African influences into the duo’s otherworldly sound that has been labeled everything from post-rock to free jazz to electronica. Rather than a collection of different tracks, In Praise of Shadows, was designed to be one continual aural experience. It combines modern composition with free-form improvisation.

In Praise of Shadows was recorded in only four days in Chicago last August.

Mazurek created the Chicago Underground in 1995 in an effort to explore free jazz forms of its namesake city. Prior to that, Mazurek was a successful bop player on the Chicago jazz scene.

Over the years, the group has fluctuated in size, from a trio to a quartet to a full-blown orchestra. Slon, the last Chicago Underground album, was released in 2004. It was in a trio format with Mazurek, Taylor and bassist Noel Kupersmith. The last Chicago Underground Duo record, Axis and Alignment, came out in 2002.

Originally Published