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ARTIST
TITLE
We Have Dozens of Titles
FORMAT
2CD

LABEL
CATALOG #
DC 836CD DC 836CD
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
5/24/2024

"Like a bolt echoing back from the blue, We Have Dozens of Titles restrikes the iron of Gastr del Sol, plunging the listener back into the maelstrom of their all-too-brief passage of 1993-1998 via an assembly of previously uncollected studio recordings and beautifully captured unreleased live material. Gastr del Sol's music was of the transformative variety -- or was it transfiguration they were up to? Or transmigration? Flux was key, to be sure. David Grubbs formed Gastr from the final lineup of Bastro; on Gastr del Sol's debut, The Serpentine Similar, Grubbs, Bundy K. Brown and John McEntire downshifted from a thrashing electric outfit into a droning, acoustic-based one. Following this, the lineup shifted again, decisively -- Brown and McEntire departed to focus on the project to be known as Tortoise, and Jim O'Rourke arrived, pairing with Grubbs to make a sequence of unpredictable leaps across genre and practical approach alike, over three LPs and a pair of EPs. We Have Dozens of Titles contains nearly an hour of previously unreleased live recordings, alongside another near-hour of studio recordings culled from previously uncollected singles, EPs, and compilations. As much as Gastr del Sol's albums showcase a group eminently at home in the studio, they were inclined to thoroughly reinvent their compositions in performance. While reviewing live tapes for this compilation, the studio versions of most things felt more and more definitive, with the exception of the live takes included here, which essay startling new qualities in pieces that have been in the public ear for several decades. The majority of these live performances come from a miraculous find in the CBC archive -- a broadcast-quality recording of Jim and David from the 1997 Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville. The extended company of players on these numbers includes Jeb Bishop, Bundy K. Brown, Steve Butters, Gene Coleman, Thymme Jones, Terri Kapsalis, John McEntire, Günter Müller, Bob Weston, and Sue Wolf. We Have Dozens of Titles revisits the slow-burning incendiaries of Gastr del Sol, finding, once again and after so much time elapsed, another, further set of reinventions."