Sagas / The Last Door
Sagas is Matt McDowell, a Pittsburgh-based guitarist whose resume includes bands such as Dire Wolves (original edition), Arco Flute Foundation, and the Psychic Frost duo, as well as a growing body of work under his Sagas persona, much of it released in cassette form via his own Biological Radio imprint. The Last Door is the most fully-realized and confident-sounding Sagas statement to date, taking in various points along a sonic railway line that has American Primitive acoustic on one end (as on “The Mysteries of Mirror Lake,” with its extended fingerpicked drone) and psychedelic noise overload on the other (“Permutations for Lap Steel” imagines Henry Flynt recording for PSF), stopping off at a variety of scenic stations along the way. It’s all constructed using a home-made vernacular that gives off authenticity like smoke from a log fire or a blown amplifier (your choice), and brings with it serious transportational possibilities. Five tracks, 42 minutes.