♫♪  Dane Rousay - Neuter

There was a time when bands employed hairy-knuckled, big-browed, capital-M Men to pound their kits in Neanderthal glory. Drummers like Keith Moon, John Bonham, and Bill Ward bashed away at the skins until they wrecked them, and then maybe they even set them on fire or blew them to smithereens.

But those days are gone, and all those drummers are dead, as extinct as the dinosaurs.* In the end, their testosterone alone could not save them. There’s a lesson here, a correlative example, that points to the destructive power of masculinity when applied unchecked to the drums: if you unleash the raging male id upon a drumkit without a shred of abandon, you will, most certainly, die.**

Dane Rousay does not mutilate their kit. In fact, Dane Rousay has much more introspective ideas about the drums, as well as how we approach them philosophically from the perspective of gender.*** A bold tactic, sure, and one intended to raise questions much more than answer them, but isn’t that what makes experimental music worth tackling in the first place?

Rousay has established themself as a prolific artist who has released several tapes on various labels over the past couple years (as well as a few self-releases, including this one), sometimes staying within the confines of their percussive idiom, sometimes straying far outside it (check out of SIRI, in particular, which I also happened to write about). Neuter is all drums, all the time, with Rousay switching between jazz flair and ambient space at will, its thirteen-minute runtime a marathon of considered expression. Powerful precision, meet deft touch.

So let’s just toss out any preconceptions on gender when it comes to drums, or anything really. OK?

Neuter is out November 2. In the meantime, check out a couple of excerpts below.

*OK, I just assumed Bill Ward was dead.

**Something something, correlation does not imply causation, something something… Although that doesn’t mean you’re not going to die.

***Cis white male here, to orient you to the author’s point of view.

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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