While drummer Brian Chase is probably best known as a member of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, you may also know he's a regular of NYC's avant-garde scene. He's focusing on the latter side for a new album this year, a collaboration with avant-jazz saxophonist, improviser, and composer Catherine Sikora. The album is called untitled: after, and Catherine and Brian say they were inspired by the Old English epic poem Beowulf for this album. "The classic text’s themes of fearlessness, battle, and courage proved to be analogous to current life experience, and were channeled into compositions as a basis for improvisation. Think John Coltrane’s Interstellar Space meets epic poetry as depicted in an adaptation for film," reads their bio. The album comes out July 13 via Brian's own newly-launched label, Chaikin Records (pre-order). We're premiering the song "Rigged," which does indeed hearken back to Coltrane's free jazz era, and if you're mostly familiar with Brian via his work with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, it's really interesting to hear how much of a natural he is at this too. Listen below.
Brian also has a new album with his Drums and Drones solo project, Decade, out June 15 on the same label. Brian plays a Drums and Drones show in his hometown at Mercury Lounge (6/15) the day the album comes out. He'll be joined by Ursula Scherrer during his set, and the show also features Brian's YYYs bandmate Nick Zinner's solo project 13 Million Year Old Ghost (who's releasing an album on Brian's label this fall), MV Carbon and DJ JG Thirlwell (tickets).
Brian also plays a solo set opening for Alex Zhang Hungtai (fka Dirty Beaches), who will be playing a free jazz set with drummer Gabriel Ferrandini, on May 17 at National Sawdust (tickets).