It’s up today, my first interview/feature in quite some time, and I think it reads fairly well. Though it’s awfully long.
Mirror Twins: Conversations with Nels and Alex Cline[25 February 2009]
by Jennifer Kelly
As “mirror twins”, Alex and Nels Cline were identical but opposite—Alex right-handed, Nels left, their hair parted on opposite sides of their heads. If one Cline looked in the mirror as a child, he would see an exact image of his brother, any minor differences reversed by the reflection. And yet, even then, in those days when the two of them would bash out original rock songs on entry-level guitar and drums, it seemed clear that they were very different—as people and as musicians. Their respective musical careers have been just as alike but divergent, from their early untrained efforts at rock ‘n’ roll to a shared love of progressive rock, fusion, jazz, and avant garde improvisation.
Today both are well-regarded composers, pushing their respective instruments—guitar for Nels and drums for Alex—into genre-crossing experiments that touch on rock, jazz, classical, and ethnic music. But with both releasing new albums in February on the Cryptogramophone label, there is no mistaking one’s work for the other. Nels Cline’s Coward layers electric and acoustic guitars over one another, in an entirely one-man exploration of the instrument’s potential. Alex Cline’s Continuation showcases an acoustic ensemble’s interplay, his compositions interpreted by pianist/harmonium player Myra Melford, bassist Scott Walton, cellist Peggy Lee, and violinist Jeff Gautier, as well as himself.