The past year’s been a good one for Dwyer fans. While Osees have been racking up the live sessions and proving their catalog’s depth knows few bounds, the main Osee and original Oh See himself has taken a dive deep into free jazz and psychedelic outre territory. With a rotating cast of players and a few names that seem to be constants in this circuit, Dwyer’s now into his fourth set of exploratory impulses and Moon Drenched resides near the top of the pile. The players shifted for a bit on this year’s Endless Garbage, finding more fun in noise than groove, but with Moon Drenched the ensemble pulls back in players from Witch Egg and Bent Arcana and the set winds up more of a kindred spirit to Egg than anything else.
With the same pulse of distended funk beating beneath it, the record pushes the band further into the cosmic end of the spectrum than ever before. The record brings back Sunwatchers’ Peter Kerlin on bass and along with Ryan Sawyer, the pair lock down a later of rhythm that lets the album slide through the cosmic rays with ease, providing a tether to pull the crew back when needed. Perennial collaborator in this endeavor Tom Dolas is back on synths and the band is pushing forward through their personal connections to Mwandishi and Live-Evil while concurrently carving out a new notch on the psychedelic jazz tally. What seems to be most consistent in these releases is that Dwyer and crew keep jazz-psych away from the pristine end of the pool. While the record keeps its finger on the glowing cosmic pulse, the craft is stitched together from junkyard pieces, rusted and ravaged but no less useful. While I love and will always love Osees, I’m all in on this new direction for Dwyer and I hope this pace keeps up.
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