From expressive contributions to King Britt’s Back to Basics house band in the 90s to work with UK singer-songwriter David Sylvian (of the new wave outfit Japan) and his duo with acclaimed poet Ursula Rucker, Philly guitarist Tim Motzer is no stranger to constant collaboration. His latest project matches him up with two very like minded musicians in an experimental power trio they call Orion Tango.

The group features bassist Barry Meehan, who also worked with King Britt on his acclaimed Sister Gertrude Morgan record, performed in Clutch Cargo in the early aughts and, more recently, in BASE3. Drummer Jaremy Carlstedt makes moves mostly in the NYC jazz scene, showing up on the roster of Euphoria with Chico Hamilton, Phat Chance with Vincent Chancey and Brian Settles & Central Union.

Together, the members of Orion Tango are a meeting of the minds that explore space and sound, free of conventional constraints. Their performance for the Key Studio Sessions touched on moments ambient drone a la Godspeed You! Black Emperor, but also built into a krautrock frenzy in the vein of Can’s more explosive work. At the center was Motzer’s Fripp-esque guitar leads, which impressionistically dipped and dove in arcs across expansive, 10+ minute compositions.

The session was performed live in our studio (all single takes here) features all new Orion Tango material that ranges from slow-burners (the nervy build on the opening “Between Time”) to songs that hit hard from the get-go (“Disintegration of Turbulent Surfaces”) and even a spectral ballad (“The Apple of No”). The band is putting together its next Philly appearance – keep tabs on its Facebook page for more on that – but for now, we invite you to get lost in their performance at WXPN Studios. Listen below, watch a video of the intense finale “From the Black to Light,” and grab a free download of the entire session at Soundcloud.

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