Ceramic Dog “Connection” Yellowbird Records

September 2023 | MUSIC, 23/09

Ceramic Dog is a band whose core members are guitarist Marc Ribot, bassist Shazad Ismaily and percussionist Ches Smith. It’s impossible to sum up Marc Ribot’s career in just a few lines, such is the limitless eclecticism of his collaborations and musical research. Whatever your musical tastes, it’s certain that you’ve already listened to a record where this adventurer has made his six-string sound. From Norah Jones to John Zorn, from Tom Waits to Marianne Faithfull, from Brazilian Caetano Veloso to Italian Vinicio Capossela, they’ve all called on him. In addition to his contributions, he is the leader of several groups. On this album, the music takes off in all directions, and is not limited to the trio of guitar, bass and percussion. It features a host of musicians as prestigious as they are artistically interesting. The raw sound is reminiscent of early punk energy, with a dose of modernity and a hint of pop in certain melodic passages. The second half evolves towards a free jazz ambience, transitioned by the track “Swan” and the saxophone of James Brandon Lewis. The festive finale is reminiscent of a dreamlike brass band. A far from easy album, which shows us that music has no boundaries and that styles are there to be mixed and muddled.