Drummer Barra Brown has stepped back from his quintet for the moment to form a Portland band named the Wishermen with guitarist Grant Sayler and bassist Chris Friesen—for the time being. There are moments when this trio can’t help but haul in some outside help, mostly of the wind variety, to assist in cranking out instrumental music that hovers somewhere in the ether between post-rock and free jazz.
Their 27-minute EP Epoch is not overly-ambitious or off-putting. Granted, a concrete theme that acts as an anchor for any ever-lasting memories tends to run secondary here, but the interplay of sounds and the atmosphere they give off is still pretty intoxicating. With Barra Brown and the Wisherman, it’s as if it were the lasting impression given by the atmosphere that takes priority (their “Saturn” has many rings). If they could hone their jams just a little more, they could become the next Tortoise. And yes, I know, the album cover… .
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