Asthmatic Kitty Records

I Heart Lung


Catalog: AKR408 • Cover Art: Tom Steck
Release date: September 23, 2008
  • CD

Improvisation captures the here and the now. Jazz producers like Bob Thiele at the legendary Impulse Records encouraged John Coltrane and others to record in one take, preserving the excitement generated in the moment. Working in this fashion, I Heart Lung (comprised of guitarist Chris Schlarb and drummer Tom Steck) went into the studio and recorded two days full of improvisations that, over the course of three years time, would be revised in the anti-jazz tradition of overdubs, remixing and post-production composition.

On Interoceans, I Heart Lung blends first-take methods with Oblique Strategies: carefully composed, meticulously recorded pieces rooted in improvisation, revised and augmented over time. The results are a compelling vision of chaos and beauty as Chris Schlarb’s electric guitar drones and Tom Steck’s free-jazz drumming hold and flutter with shimmering acoustic guitars, soaring pedal steel and beautifully captured field recordings. When Kris Tiner‘s trumpet follows Nels Cline‘s electric sitar three minutes into “Interoceans II,” it’s like Don Cherry‘s loving spirit doting on universal music drones.

Presented as a set of four long-form drone-based compositions, Interoceans hints both at the sonic palette and renegade spirit of ECM Records alumnus Steve Tibbetts and Ralph Towner and the measured studio edge of Talk Talk‘s Laughing Stock. While influenced by Fripp & Eno, Miles Davis, and Terry Riley, I Heart Lung possesses a healthy balance between tradition and the respectful corruption thereof. This can, in part, be seen by I Heart Lung’s active involvement in the L.A. art noise scene. In 2006 the group was featured in the documentary 40 BANDS/80 MINUTES! alongside HEALTH, No Age and Abe Vigoda and they continue to pursue a tangential connection with L.A. underground hip-hop, many participants of which are mutual fans of the group. Interoceans remixes are currently in the works by several prominent hip-hop artists including Jel (Subtle, Themselves), Awol One, Serengeti, Omid (Freestyle Fellowship) and Radioinactive. A second set of electronic/ambient remixers include Strategy, Greg Davis and Danish artists Badun and Sugarghost. In addition to CD and digital formats, Interoceans also sees a limited vinyl release on the outer-limits label, Thor’s Rubber Hammer Productions. It features alternate artwork by I Heart Lung drummer and visual artist Tom Steck, beautifully screenprinted on heavy Raw Kraft stock by VGKids.