Erin Rogers “2000 Miles”

Even if 2000 Miles is a solo saxophone record, there’s something wholly percussive about it. Erin Rogers plays with a focused force, moving deftly across the keys and finding every sonic possibility of the instrument. The lightspeed clicks as she dances lightly in the air on the opener, “Waxing (Home I)” instantly commands attention. Extended notes flutter as if manipulated by changing speed on a tape machine, flirting with impermanence as Rogers ticks off notes like a clock moving in reverse. Catharsis wails, her whole body-transforming these organic howls, a refusal to go into the ground peacefully. 2000 Miles bleeds energy.

Quieter spaces emerge on pieces like “Township Road 494” where the breaths and reverberating snaps pierce the still air, begging not to be lost to the ravages and decay of time. Rogers’ restraint on “Township Road 494” is palpable, letting bent tones breathe so the land harder. “Angelface” taps out messages in code with Rogers guttural disembodied voice and visceral breathing glowing supernova, feeling tactile. It’s so raw and heavy that it pulls everyone to the floor within earshot. 

Rogers finds droning melodies before disentangling lightspeed arpeggios on “Home,” flowing like a hypnotic machine. Mammoth explorations cascade across parallel planes on 18-minute closer “New Moon,” a beguiling combination of all that came before it, distilled and transformed into a singular exclamation.

Erin Rogers is incredible, transforming her saxophone into an archaic medium to spill the guts of past horrors channeled through her body and into erupting aural splatter. This intuitive, intense approach reminds me of Relative Pitch label mate gabby fluke-mogul in the way this instrument becomes supernatural and unrecognizable. 2000 Miles is a manifesto, a grating pronouncement to trash any expectations and prepare for the splendid hell she wants to unleash.

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