Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Mike Pride: Drummer’s Corpse

JazzTimes may earn a small commission if you buy something using one of the retail links in our articles. JazzTimes does not accept money for any editorial recommendations. Read more about our policy here. Thanks for supporting JazzTimes.

The disparate influences of drummer-composer Mike Pride bleed into one another in distinct and surprising ways on his two very different new releases. A powerhouse presence in the jazz, hardcore and metal realms, Pride spotlights the myriad ways those seemingly opposed genres illuminate and interact with one another in a multifaceted celebration of his newfound fatherhood on Birthing Days, and in the punishing, monolithic percussion assault of Drummer’s Corpse.

Birthing Days features Pride’s longtime quartet, From Bacteria to Boys, featuring pianist Alexis Marcelo, bassist Peter Bitenc and the equally chameleonic saxophonist Jon Irabagon. The 11-minute title track alone shows off the band’s versatility, tracing an impressionistic portrait of the first day of life for Pride’s newborn son. It starts off sunny and strange, Marcelo’s synth-playing helping situate it somewhere between soft rock and Zappa-esque eccentricity; by the end of the piece, the group is meditating in Coltrane-like surges, explicitly hinting at “Naima.” This is followed by the spare chamber abstractions of “Marcel’s Hat” and the farcically swinging “Brestwerp.” Irabagon summons a breathy, melancholy tone for the tender ballad “Lullaby for Charlie,” while the airy, painterly “Motiaon” pays illustrative homage to the late Paul Motian. Throughout, Pride anchors the proceedings with a deft balance of raucous force, buoyant swing and coloristic accents.

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.
Originally Published