Feeders of Ravens
(Not Not Fun, 2007)
Sudden Arrhythmic Death vol. 2
(Not Not Fun, 2007)
Sudden Arrhythmic Death
(American Grizzly, 2006)
Infinite Horned Abomination
"My Death Prefigures My Rebirth"
San Francisco's Ettrick is a self-destructive free jazz/black metal assault featuring two multi-instrumentalists rotating through every permutation of their drum and sax duo. In their brutal free improvisations, Jacob Felix Heule
and Jay Korber explore the extreme sounds that can be wrenched from their instruments through brute force – screaming through saxophones, throwing drums and other such impolite extended techniques. The doubled instrumentation provides a situation to explore playing contrasting and complimentary styles on like instruments.
James Plotkin, Weasel Walter, 16 Bitch Pile-up, Aaron Hibbs (Sword Heaven), Tralphaz, and Moe! Staiano have all performed live collaborations with Ettrick. Weasel and Moe! matched Ettrick's instrumentation, rounding out trios and quartets of drum/sax multi-instrumentalists on various occasions, while Aaron Hibbs introduced new sounds with his "jazz balloon". Ettrick's harsh noise influence is brought to the forefront in Elf Ass, an ongoing collaboration with Tralphaz on electronics.
"...bone-shattering, ego-melting music... shifts just as quickly into eerie bouts of beauty and sadness before dive-bombing back into the lake of burning blood." -- Foxy Digitalis
"With all the squawks, rasps, and synapse-smacking harmonics of John Zorn and Albert Ayler, the San Francisco duo Ettrick wields saxophones like some kind of pan-dimensional alarm clocks—or, at the very least, malfunctioning dentist's drills. But like the best free jazz, there's a deep intuition and discipline at work within the band's music... To top it all off, the twosome splices bits of Orthrelm-level metal into the frenetic jazz..." -- The Onion AV Club (Boulder/Denver)
"Total free music of total free form mayhem. No electronics are used in this recording, yet it sounds like a big crash course in noise... Quite hard hit to the face and play loud is more than recommended." -- Vital Weekly
"...But holy shit when the duo truly get going, they can outpace any current jazz duo like of couple of impalas sprinting towards the horizon. Of course they don't have any of the intricacies of those other groups since it's basically playing almost full blast as often as possible, but you don't need fucking intricacies when your album is called "Sudden Arrhythmic Death". Both J.'s are hell bandits on the kits, frequently choosing to play the sides/rims instead of the actual skins and when they both get on at the same time it makes for a vertigo-inducing psyche-pummelling soup, no shit. At their most aggressive I'd put Ettrick on equal terms with grindcore overlords like Fear of God, World, Arsedestroyer and so on... Gather Bennink, Corsano, Pearson, Graves, Mounier, Blair, Portnoy, Chippendale, even the dude from the Berzerker on their own kits in a one and a half flat, stick a coupla brass throats in the middle and have them play along to Napalm Death and Pig Destroyer records and that's the kind of intensity Ettrick are bringing to the table, with just two men on the job!" -- Outer Space Gamelan
"Sudden Arrhythmic Death (American Grizzly, 2006), is an absolute must-have, a 15-minute live session recorded in Portland, Ore., that begins as an achingly radiant saxophone duet before it explodes into a maniacal barrage of beats that push the eardrum till white noise is the only sense the brain can make. It concludes with Ettrick's signature: bloodcurdling screams and the sound of drum kits being destroyed." -- San Francisco Bay Guardian
"...a bludgeoning amalgam of black metal and skronk sure to summon the apocalypse... an excruciating free jazz that feels like being trapped in a metal shed during a thunderstorm." -- San Francisco Bay Guardian
"a dizzying barrage... as if there were some sort of free jazz monkeys screaming and beating their chests wildly... pelting the listener with sonic stones and hurling great handfuls of free jazz dung! Intense and aggressive and furiously freaked out." -- Aquarius Records
Reviews of Infinite Horned Abomination
Paris Transatlantic, Dan Warburton, January 2006
Ettrick is a two man outfit from San Francisco consisting of Jacob Felix Heule and Jay Korber (no relation to Tomas, methinks) who both play saxophones (Heule alto, Korber tenor) and drums. As you might have guessed from the album title, these lads are coming at free jazz from Black Metal, though I rather suspect that die-hard aficionados of those lovable Scandinavian homicidal maniacs might find Infinite Horned Abomination a trifle intellectual. John Zorn's flirtation with hardcore of a couple of decades ago is a little closer to home, as is Paul Flaherty's recent power duo with Chris Corsano. But that pair's Hated Music is a hard act to follow, even if Heule and Korber are just as energetic. There's a noble tradition across the pond of wild men blowing themselves silly and giving the finger to straight ahead jazz snobs (whom, you will recall, Mr Zorn advised to "eat shit") – if your collection includes the aforementioned Mr Flaherty and seasoned brain melters like Borbetomagus, this is one you'll enjoy checking out. What it lacks in subtlety it certainly makes up for in pure adrenalin rush. Play loud.
Bran(...)Pos, December 2005
free jazz/free mad as presented through black metal. a really great idea as the album start is like the intro to a Leviathan album and then launches into pedaltothemetalogical-freebasing drum/sax duo reminiscent of charles gayle style hard-blowing and made me pull out the late-90s Cygus Adapter CD of 99Hooker/Tom Scandura duos in a similar style though this recording is more dry not drenched in the reverb of 90s-era noiseviafreejazz. the versatility here is not in dynamics but in the fact that both players switch off on drumkit and tenor/alto saxes, so you have a couple of tracks of sax/drum blowing, one track of split-channel sax duos, one track of split-channel drum duos. i'd love to see these guys trio with M.Guarino (drums from Oaxacan) to fill in the few spaces between with hyperspeed micro-rhythms on blocks and bells + to hear the sax duo in long tones (which is especially effective on this CD) alongside drums would be a great plow to the brain. Always glad to get my noise fix via acoustics, I'd be happy as hell if the noise bookers in this town (SF/Bay Area) continue to plug these guys in as synapse glue between the AC/DC crowd.