Review: Aaron Myers-Brooks – “Multilinear Smatterings”

Pittsburgh-based guitarrorist Aaron Myers-Brooks summons up precision-lined metal shredding and keyboard-thrusted polyrhythms on his excellent, new one-man/one-song instrumental single, “Multilinear Smattering,” out last week on Bandcamp.

Now, the entire “single” runs less than two minutes but, that, for a descendent of Orthrelm, is more than enough time to make a hell of a racket. Myers-Brooks, leading on guitar but also programming drums, and playing bass and keys, manages to cram in more than a few bridge-runnings and crescendos into the 1:43 running time, and the result is appropriately a-linear or … well … multi-linear. (He kind of gave you a clue with the title.) Never a fan of verses and choruses – though he’s done a fine job of those with local post-punk/metal hybrid Night Vapor – Myers-Brooks wants the listener to get lost in textures, time and tone, and, as is par the course, he more than succeeds.

The song is more bent on delivering the punch, at least in some of the technical senses, than the prog-minded avant-jazz Myers-Brooks released as Conduits last year, though it’s a little more tame than the microtonal death metal with which he also has toyed. In short, this is my way of saying the record might be one of the guitarist’s more accessible, an interesting and surprisingly juicy point of entry for the uninitiated. (And it costs a buck!)

Anyway, remember when Metallica lamented how Napster would beckon the end of music? Myers-Brooks is the real by-product of that digital revolution, a hyper-local musician who constantly funnels his work right from his amp to your ears, no label-head middle-man, the stream all in front of you for your pleasure and consumption. I say, “Bring more of it on!” – Justin Vellucci, Punksburgh, May 29, 2018

About the author

Justin Vellucci is a staff writer for PopMatters, Spectrum Culture, and MusicTAP, a contributor to Pittsburgh Current, and a former staffer for Popdose, Punk Planet and Delusions of Adequacy. His music writing has appeared in national magazines such as American Songwriter, alt-pubs like The Brooklyn Rail, Pittsburgh CityPaper and San Diego CityBeat, blogs Swordfish, Punksburgh and Linoleum, and the Gannett magazine Jetty. He lives in Pittsburgh.

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