Trevor Dunn's Trio-Convulsant

Sister Phantom Owl Fish

BY Chris GramlichPublished Dec 1, 2004

Yup, "the Trevor Dunn of Fantômas, Mr. Bungle,” as a sticker on the case so elegantly puts it, and even diehard fans of either of the previous bands (or his vast amount of session work) may be thrown for a loop by Mr. Dunn’s Trio Convulsant. The long-time in-demand session bassist (having played with the likes of John Zorn, among countless others) unleashes his Ipecac Convulsant debut and it’s not for the hook and chorus crowd. While not as confusing as fellow Bungle alum Trey Spruance’s post-Bungle work (nor as metal or cut and paste as Patton’s "jazz” band, Fantômas), Sister Phantom Owl Fish features structured jazz runs, plucked single notes, atonal scratching, noodling lines building to freak-outs, moments of improv, vaguely metal power chording, impressive playing from all three involved (Mary Halvorson and Ches Smith round out the trio) and absolutely no vocals whatsoever. Take all the non-metal moments from Bungle and Fantômas and throw them together with a more avant mind-set and for the lay-person, it’s a good place to start in grasping this.

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