The return of underground, avant-garde legend Peter Brotzmann in a duo with innovative pedal steel guitarist Heather Leigh.
Peter Brötzmann is a living legend of improvised music who has embodied the leading edge of the European avant-garde for over 50 years, challenging audiences and convention alike with a relentless intensity. On pedal steel guitar, Heather Leigh (former Austin resident) is rapidly becoming a legend in her own right, both for her solo work (published by Not Not Fun Records, KSE, and Ideologic Organ among others), and especially in combination with Brötzmann. Since 2015, the two have toured extensively as a duo whose fearless, improvised collaborations have been heralded as “an intoxicatingly weird take on the blues” marked by ferocious speed-of-thought improvisation and deep lyrical soul – each a perfect foil for the other. Their 2018 release, Sparrow Nights was selected among the 20 Best Jazz Albums of 2018 by Rolling Stone Magazine.
“Sometimes typecast as an inveterate hell-raiser, Peter Brötzmann is actually one of the great collaborative improvisers of the past 50 years. Duets tend to bring out the best in him, and his ongoing collaboration with pedal-steel maverick Heather Leigh reached its high point to date on this gorgeously stark set of improvisations rendered in warm studio fidelity. Whether on his home-base tenor or one of several other saxes and clarinets, the 77-year-old responds to Leigh’s somber, sometimes abrasive textures with forlorn laments and wrenching cries. These 10 pieces might be abstract, but on purely emotional terms, Sparrow Nights contains some of the earthiest, most affecting blues heard on record in 2018.” – Rolling Stone Magazine ’20 Best Jazz Albums of 2018′
“If you don’t like free jazz, you might not be able to stop yourself from being carried along on such molten momentum, and if you do it will be like being swallowed whole by a truly visceral vortex.” – The Quietus on the 2017 release ‘Sex Tape’
“In a set of spare duets with pedal-steel radical Heather Leigh, the multi-reedist presents one of the moving statements of his 50-plus-year career” – Rolling Stone magazine 4* review of the duo’s 2018 release ‘Sparrow Nights’
This project is supported in part by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department.
Peter Brötzmann (reeds)
Heather Leigh (pedal steel)