No-Neck Blues Band Qvaris

Inevitably, some people will be disappointed that they didn’t have to hunt so hard to find this record. That’s because NNCK have built an elliptical career out of their endless stream of anti-commercial, hard-to-find, self-released vinyl, CDs, and CD-Rs, the good bulk of which laugh off words like distribution, promotion, or record store. The last time the collective stepped this far out of their barn was back in 2001 when they issued the career high-watermark Sticks and Stones Will Break My Bones But Names Will Never Hurt Me on John Fahey’s Revenant label. With Qvaris, these out-music fusionists of the highest order have conceived their most fully-realised record since Sticks and Stones. "The Black Pope,” the record’s best moment, is the soundtrack to an unnerving descent into psychosis, and the rest of Qvaris is never too far behind in noodling toward paranoia. Of course, the only issue with an improv band is that most of their records don’t duly represent a band best experienced live. (5RC)