Chicago Underground Duo Boca Negra

Chicago Underground Duo Boca Negra
This album is the first in a few years for Chicago Underground, but the time off has only intensified the communication between Rob Mazurek and Chad Taylor. For a change of scene, this wasn't recorded in Chicago, but in Sao Paolo, Brazil. Also, Taylor is the main computer manipulator this time around, lending the record a different feel than Mazurek's style of processing. There's a fluidity to the playing that may speak to the change of scenery, or more likely the years of partnership in defining and executing complex ideas. "Confliction" bounces between 17/8 and 4/4 time, but it doesn't sound overly math-y because of the hypnotic tones and textures of Taylor's electronics and drums. Mazurek plays his ass off throughout and, frankly, it's refreshing to hear him strut his slurs, burrs and circular rhythms outside of the Exploding Star Orchestra's massive arrangements. The only knock against this disc may be the use of certain clunky, old-school electronic sounds, but that's in the eye of the beholder and isn't the main story here. Welcome back, guys. (Thrill Jockey)