Gordon Grdina's Box Cutter New Rules for Noise

New Rules for Noise is an apt title for this album from experimental, jam-style jazz rock fusion band Gordon Grdina’s Box Cutter. Named after guitarist Gordon Grdina, Box Cutter also features bassist Karlis Silins, drummer Kenton Loewen and clarinettist Francois Houle, the latter playing a primary role on the album, setting this band apart from other jam bands. The quartet are tight, whether they’re playing groovy dance floor numbers, slow burn ballads or more experimental free-form creations. Aside from a dominant clarinet, the music also reveals a lot of interesting guitar wankery, including feedback and Sonic Youth-style pick-scraping. Unfortunately, the disparate sounds of each instrument sometimes connect to create chaotic music that can border on cacophony, as on "The Good News” and "Plan of Attack.” At other times, like with "The Bad News,” the music is so stripped down and bare that there’s almost nothing going on. Fans of Captain Beefheart and Bitches Brew-era Miles Davis may find the improv experimentation enjoyable but jazz and rock fans will probably find the more straightforward songs a little more appealing. (Spool)