In 2011 we were lucky enough to welcome Loren Connors to OTO for a sold out show. With the room suitably hushed, Connors' elongated washes build and then evaporate - leaving behind fragile notes which sit and linger in soltude. Dreamy and ethereal, abstract and atmospheric, it's like reading Virginia Woolf's 'To the Lighthouse' and waiting for the sun to come up. One to shut your eyes to.
"These were Connors 'Airs', played with a softness that meant they floated in the breeze, merging into the night. It was so fragile, barely even there in fact: the notes only just made it above the level of the amp hiss. Like a selection of old photographs, you had to study hard to pick out the detail of those memories being lost amongst paper grain and colour fade. These ghosts of songs felt as much about the passing of time, about loss and heartbreak, as Langille’s vocal set did earlier." - Scott McMillan
Loren Connors / electric guitar
Recorded on Saturday 14th of May by John Chantler. Mixed by John Chantler. Mastered by James Dunn. Photo by Andy Newcombe.
Available as 320k MP3 or 24bit FLAC
1. 14.05.11 (29.55)
2. 14.05.11 Encore (3.59)
Loren Connors has improvised and composed original guitar music for over four decades. His music – which embraces the aesthetics of blues, Irish airs, blues-based rock and other genres while letting go of rigid forms – has been recorded on Family Vineyard, Northern Spy, Drag City, Table of the Elements, Recital, RoadCone and other labels.
Connors, who names abstract expressionist painter Mark Rothko his most important influence, has performed with Thurston Moore, Keiji Haino, Jim O’Rourke, John Fahey, Alan Licht, Jandek, and Kim Gordon. Suzanne Langille has often appeared on Connors' recordings as vocalist, lyricist and arranger. Connors also on occasion performs with an avant blues band called Haunted House, together with Langille, guitarist Andrew Burnes and percussionist Neel Murgai.
In July 1979, Cadence Magazine noted that Connors, who had recently emerged in the scene, was “similar to others in the Advanced Guard of improvising guitarists in that he is trying to extend the boundaries of sound and pitch of acoustic guitar, but he is unique in the utilization of Blues in his work, one could almost say this is Avant Garde Blues. He’s swimming in new waters and beginning to make his own environment.”
In recent years, Connors has focused mostly on live recordings of extended blues abstractions, with occasional performances in a more avant blues rock vein from time to time through the Haunted House band and collaborations with other artists.