Categories: Interviews

Playing back with Trey Gunn

When he’s not part of King Crimson or busy with session work, such as John Paul Jones’ recent “Zooma” album, guitarist Trey Gunn is doing own thing.

His latest own thing, the Discipline Global Mobile disc “The Joy of Molybdenum,” was released Feb. 1, an experimental album if there ever was one. Joining him for his fourth solo effort are guitarist Tony Geballe and percussionist Bob Muller.

Gunn recently sat down to play “10 questions” with Pause & Play via e-mail, discussing among other things his new album and an upcoming King Crimson LP.

Pause & Play – One of the obvious questions, after listening to the hypnotic “The Joy of Molybdenum,” is: Are you ahead of your time? How did you dream up this musical landscape?

Gunn – “I suppose it came, largely, from a personal challenge I set myself to find a new kind of instrumental music. Instrumental with structure, character and development. With captivating sounds, yet not made up of simply shifting textures. I can’t bear to listen to jazz, and classical music sounds dated. The only other types of instrumental music left are new age and ambient. Neither of these deliver what I was looking for. So, I had to admit that there were no resources, musically, to draw on. I had to start with a blank slate.”

P&P – Molybdenum? Are you a frustrated chemist or something?

Gunn – “Music is chemistry, isn’t it?”

P&P – Let’s see, you have your solo work, you’re in King Crimson, you do session work, you run a collective music label called First World … do you use a Franklin Planner to keep on top of things? If not, what’s your secret?

Gunn – “I’m a nervous wreck focused inside of a very tight light beam.”

P&P – What can King Crimson fans expect from “The ConstruKction of Light”?”

Gunn – “To be utterly unnerved. There are some monstrous pieces on this record. Monstrous in conception, delivery and scale. Also, check out the companion disc to ‘The ConstruKction of Light.’ ‘ProjeKct X’ is a collection of wildly improvised pieces recorded during the same time period.”

P&P – Who has your vote, Bush or Gore?

Gunn – “Music and politics make a really stinky sandwich, in my book.”

P&P – Finish this sentence: NRA president Charlton Heston is a windbag because …

Gunn – “Cornelius, Cornelius!”

P&P – Who was funkier, Cameo or The Gap Band?

Gunn – “The Meters. What more can I say?”

P&P – What was the first record you ever bought?

Gunn – “Iron Butterfly’s ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida.’ “

P&P – What was the first concert you ever went to?

Gunn – “Rush and Thin Lizzy. San Antonio, Texas, in 1974. A young musician’s dream.”

P&P – What was the last CD you bought?

Gunn – “Tori Amos’ ‘To Venus and Back.’ Matt Chamberlain rules!”

BWF (before we forget): Find the joy of Trey Gunn Band on the Web @ www.treygunn.com. … The Trey Gunn album discography – “Raw Power” (First World); “The Third Star” (Discipline); “One Thousand Years”; “The Joy of Molybdenum” (2000).

Gerry Galipault @https://twitter.com/Pauseandplay

Gerry Galipault debuted Pause & Play online in October 1997. Since then, it has become the definitive place for CD-release dates — with a worldwide audience.

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