It is in sepia tones that we perceive the Tara Clerkin Trio’s altered reality pop. There’s a retro-futuristic streak that runs gently through the genetics of the Bristol group, whose elegance and irreverent expressions take them back to a distant musical cartography. The languid, minimalist songs breathe space and form, as if they were bringing a blank canvas to life. Using clarinet, percussion, synthesizers, voice, and various effects pedals, they move through the various perpendiculars of jazz – sometimes in a more incendiary, sometimes in a warmer form, or even in a slow and hazy version of the memories of acid jazz. The soft, deviant electronics also make their presence felt, unobtrusively. Originally from the city that introduced trip-hop to the world, their heritage hangs proudly, but as the seed for something more, not as the final state. Intriguing as always.
The prominence surrounding the album with the same name, released last year, only accelerated the word of mouth that was already circulating around the Clerkin Trio. Shortly before, In Spring had already given us more than enough reasons to involve us in this wonderful oneiric nursery in constant (un)construction. From the sweet psychedelia of My Bloody Valentine, to the orchestral surrealism of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra or Julia Holter, Arthur Russell’s echo also makes its spiritual regency in every detail. However, familiarity with the music of Tara Clerkin Trio is both a fact and a fallacy. If on the one hand these and other formative names visit the experience, on the other they soon evaporate, giving way to other, unexpected and exotic manifestations. This sense of dislocation is then the ideal point for the band to find itself – and itself with us. A brilliant sonic labyrinth that will now be revealed on stage at ZDB. NA