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Ducks on Acid

Artist: Mark Whitecage
Mark Whitecage - Ducks on Acid CD
Label: Acoustics
Regular Price: $13.95
On Sale For: $5.58 
Year: 2003
Format: CD


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"'Ducks on Acid' holds true to its name, bringing reedy adventures into a most surreal realm with more than a few aquatic features. This particular recording sees Whitecage mostly on the clarinet with an openly improvised approach. Given the many voices that seep out of his horn, he is compelled to keep his tone mellow. The lone standard, Sonny Rollins' "Oleo," rips through a minute and a half without detouring far beyond its main theme. But the superimposition of a thousand eerie supporting voices makes it a truly psychedelic experience. A fitting way to open (and close) this particular can of worms. "Pong" is where the ducks come out to play. Whitecage dips, warbles, quacks, and nips along, convening an imaginary avian gathering where the conversation has a sense of storytelling at one moment, heated argument the next, sympathetic agreement later on. The piece cleverly exemplifies the way Whitecage has chosen to reinvent his instrument through voicing. This experimental work has moments of extreme brilliance...the recording serves very well as a snapshot of a creative force in progress and a floating vision with many reflections." -- Nils Jacobson, AllAboutJazz.com

"Showing once again his technical prowess and his penchant for out of ordinary ideas, Mark Whitecage uses mostly his clarinet and a self-built array of guitar pedals and delays to create beautiful (and also funny) moments of self absorption. Mark's "trip" is not something running too fast or needing enormous amounts of concentration to be perfectly enjoyed; on the contrary, his constructions explore the landscapes of semi-dissonant superimpositions without losing sense and perception, not even for a moment. Sometimes near to minimalism, "Ducks on Acid"'s general sound is never too obstinate; it leaves open doors to be fully understood and is relaxing enough to listeners willing to pick records made by serious musicians instead of mainstream blubbery." -- Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes

"It's odd but arresting stuff; "Pong" sounds like a Pauline Oliveros outtake circa 1965, while I'd be curious to learn what Mr. Rollins would make of the two readings of "Oleo"." -- Dan Warburton, Signal To Noise, Paris Transatlantic

"These pieces often unfold slowly and then are mildly mutated with some echoes bending them into somber shapes. The constant haze of echoes has an unnerving effect, which does have a sort of effect of the way acid alters our perceptions, sometimes against our inner logic, making a life a bit scarier at times. There is also a playful quality here as well, as the echoes swirl in clouds of quick moving or dancing ghosts. Often fascinating, sometimes fun and occasionally disturbing." -- Bruce Lee Gallanter, proprietor, Downtown Music Gallery

Mark Whitecage (Clarinet and alto saxophone trigger a whole array of electronics)
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