20 Best Avant Albums of 2014

The year's best in noise, out-jazz, contemporary classical, ambient, drone and more

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Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love, 'Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love'
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15/20

15. Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love, 'Otomo Yoshihide & Paal Nilssen-Love'

A live Copenhagan summit between two full-contact jazz-mosh muckmakers: Ground Zero's psych-noise guitarist Otomo Yoshihide and the Thing's manic drummer Paal Nilssen-Love. They have a little more than three speeds in this 33-minute piece of improv: pure chaos, unsettling cymbal-squeaking ambience and something mid-paced that sounds like Sonic Youth or the Melvins finishing a song. Yoshihide is still one of a kind, his guitar yowling, screaming, ranting, cutting like a turntable or just playing walls of Dead C-style noise while Nilssen-Love — one of jazz's most heavy-metal drummers — goes Whiplash.

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