The guitar-drum duo is a known entity. Probably most famously in its many rock iterations. And, likely best known locally in a particular experimental format: That of Ahleuchatistas. Sure, much has been said about the ying-yang magnetism and the explosive intensity of the duo that is Shane Perlowin (guitar) and Ryan Oslance (drums). But think, just for a moment, if one of those parts was exchanged. Like, what if Perlowin’s technical-meets-avant-garde guitar work was paired with the percussion stylings of a drummer less wild, more subtle. Someone like, say, Tatsuya Nakatani whose playing, according to his bio, “is steeped in the sensibilities of free improvisations, experimental music, jazz, rock and noise, and yet retains the sense of space and quiet beauty found in traditional Japanese folk music.”
OK, this is not speculation at all, but an actuality: Perlowin and Nakatani teamed up on Anatomy of a Moment. The nine-track collection spans eerie (“Undoing,” with its percussive creaks and thumps, almost jarring behind the gentle, moody thrum of the guitar), pensive (“Cruel to Be Kind,” where Nakatani seems to play a creaking door while Perlowin’s fingers squeak across the strings — both of which are as pretty as they are chill-inducing) and contemplative (the title track — washes of dusky finger-style guitar, gathering thunder clouds and delicate chimes that are as much a warning as a meditation).
Perlowin and Nakatani play an album release show at The Mothlight on Sunday, Nov. 17. 9 p.m., $8.