GOOD-BYE to MR. GINGER BAKER (1939-2019)
“Pressed Rat and Warthog” from Cream’s ‘Wheels of Fire’, released August 1968
Written by Ginger Baker with lyrics by Mike Taylor
Pressed rat and warthog have closed down their shop.
They didn't want to; 'twas all they had got.
Selling atonal apples, amplified heat,
And pressed rat's collection of doglegs and feet.
Sadly, they left, telling no one goodbye.
Pressed rat wore red jodhpurs, warthog a striped tie.
Between them, they carried a three-legged sack,
Went straight round the corner and never came back.
Pressed rat and warthog have closed down their shop.
The bad captain madman had told them to stop
Selling atonal apples, amplified heat,
And pressed rat's collection of doglegs and feet.
The bad captain madman had ordered their fate.
He laughed and stomped off with a nautical gate.
The gate turned into a deroga tree
And his pegleg got woodworm and broke into three.
Pressed rat and warthog have closed down their shop.
They didn't want to; 'twas all they had got.
Selling atonal apples, amplified heat,
And pressed rat's collection of doglegs and feet.
One of the first albums I ever bought was in the summer of 1967 was Cream’s debut album ‘Fresh Cream’. I had heard it only once in its entirety before hand, but heard a few songs on FM radio. Cream was known as a “power trio” and featured Eric Clapton on lead guitar, Jack Bruce on bass & lead vocals and Ginger Baker on drums. They were also known as a supergroup, although I hadn’t known much about them beforehand. It turned out that Mr. Clapton was previously in the Yardbirds and is featured with John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers first album. Mr. Bruce and Mr. Baker played previously with the the Graham Bond Organization, an early jazz/rock/R&B outfit with John McLaughlin and Dick Heckstall-Smith. The Graham Bond band were influential in the UK but not very well known here.
Cream were something else and I knew they were unique from the very beginning in 1966. Considering that both Mr. Baker and Mr. Bruce had studied & played jazz, as well as R&B, blues and rock, Cream were one of the first jam bands and were immensely influential. Ginger Baker takes a long drum solo on “Toad” from the first album, showing himself to be a force to be reckoned with. Each of the five albums by Cream (from 1966-1968) are essential to those who love sixties rock. Another great thing about Cream is that most of their lyrics were written British jazz poets: Pete Brown for Jack Bruce and Mike Taylor for Ginger Baker. The above song appears on ‘Wheels of Fire’, a double album by Cream from 1968. Ginger Baker does the spoken words, doing a marvelous job. Check it out, as well as his other song from that record, “Passing the Time”.
When Cream split up, Clapton and Baker started Blind Faith with Stevie Winwood and Rick Grech, another great band that lasted just a year. I caught Blind Faith at Madison Square Garden in 1970, with Delaney & Bonnie & Friends and Free opening. The concert was staged in the round, so the stage was in the middle of the audience and went around in slow circles. Not a good idea. The stage was surrounded by a circle of cops to protect the band. During Mr. Baker’s drum solo, he dropped a stick and it rolled to the edge if the stage. A man in the front row reached up and grabbed it from the edge of the stage. One the cops grabbed it out of his hand and knocked the man back into his seat. Ginger Baker got up from the drums, walked right up to that cop and punched him out, knocking him down. The crowd roared in approval and the concert ended, the band escorted from the stage. The audience kept chanting for let them back and after 15 minutes, Blind Faith came back and did an encore. It was the first and only tour.
I have been a fan of Ginger Baker ever since his days in Graham Bond and Cream. He was an incredible drummer and a difficult person to deal with as well. After Blind Faith, he organized his own band Airforce, collaborated with Fela Ransome Kuti before most folks had heard of him, played with the Baker/Gurvitz Army, made a number of great records on different labels, worked with Bill Laswell for two great albums, had a trio with Charlie Haden & Bill Frisell, moved to Colorado in the nineties and worked with musicians there. I collect and dig everything he has appeared on. And yes, he could be harsh to deal with, check out that documentary about him released a few years back. I caught the Cream reunion at MSG a while back and they still sounded great more than 40 years later! A special toast to one of the greatest drummers of them all - Ginger Baker! - BLG/DMG
The Downtown Music Gallery 28th Anniversary Celebrations began on May 1st & Continues! Every In-store This Summer Helps Celebrate the Spirit of Creative Music Performed Live.
Sunday, October 13th:
6pm: ROSS HAMMOND - Solo Resonator Guitar
7pm: RAF VERTESSEN / HANS TAMMEN / KEISUKE MATSUNO -
Drums / Buchla Synth / Guitar
8pm: MICHAEL VATCHER / SEAN CONLY - Drums & ContraBass!
Sunday, October 20th:
6pm: DOWNTOWN IMPROV CELEBRATION for STEVE DALACHINSKY!
Downtown Poet Laureate Steve Dalachinsky passed away suddenly on September 16th, a tragic loss to the Downtown Community and Creative Music Scene worldwide. On this night, we will celebrate his life, his poetry and his influence. A half dozen Downtown musicians will play Free Music in his honor, as well as reading his Poetry and other rememberances. There will be some snacks and friendly faces so please come on down and help us to remember!
Sunday, October 27th:
6pm: DAVID GROLLMAN and KENNY MILLIONS - Snare Drums and Whatever He Does!
7pm: SEAN ALI & SANDY EWEN - Contrabass and Guitar-on-lap!
Sunday, November 10th:
6pm: NOAH BECKER and MICHAEL ATTIAS - Two Saxists!
7pm: MYSTERY GUITARIST
DMG is located at 13 Monroe St. (between Catherine & Market Sts) in a basement below a small gallery. Take the F train to East Broadway or the 6 train to Canal or the B or D to Grand, or the M-15 bus to Madison & Catherine. Come on Down, the Sunday Music Series is Always Free & the Vibes are Always Cosy. You can check the weekly in-store sets through our Instagram feed
This Week’s Sonic Delights starts with Two Discs featuring Joe Fonda!
SATOKO FUJII & JOE FONDA - Four (Long Song Records 151; USA) Featuring Satoko Fujii on piano and Joe Fonda on contrabass with Natsuki Tamura added on trumpet for two tracks. This is the fourth collaboration with Ms. Fujii and Mr. Fonda in the past four years. This disc was recorded at concerts in Japan in September of 2018. Aside from being immensely prolific, Satoko Fujii’s level of excellence over her many discs is quite remarkable. Contrabass legend, Joe Fonda, remains one Downtown’s best over his many years as a creative musician. This live disc was superbly recorded, the sound is warm, clean and consistently inspired. The first piece, “Painted by Moonlight” has a rich, lush, sort of majestic sound, a superb blend of elegant piano and austere bowed bass. Mr. Fonda switches to flute on the second piece and sounds fine while Ms. Fujii rubs the strings inside the piano. Things mellow down for the midsection here and slowly build up do a most dramatic intersection and then erupting into more powerful sections as well. Ms. Fujii’s longtime music partner and husband, Natsuki Tamura jumps in on the last two long pieces, adding his own feisty lines, as well as concentrating on some fascinating lower case-like sounds.
CHRISTOPHE ROCHER / JOE FONDA / HARVEY SORGEN - New Origin (Not Two 985; Poland) Featuring Chistophe Rocher on clarinets, Joe Fonda on contrabass and Harvey Sorgen on drums. Earlier this year I caught this trio at a loft space in Soho and was knocked out by their set. This was my first time checking out French clarinetist, Christophe Rocher, whose name I vaguely recognized. After some research I found out the Mr. Rocher is a member of the Third Coast Ensemble (CD on Rogue Art), whose members are split between French and Chicago based musicians. I bought several CD’s from Mr. Rocher at that gig, although I knew little about most of the musicians that he was working with except for Edward Perraud (from Hubbub) and Olivier Benoit. No doubt you well know the two rhythm team members here, Joe Fonda and Harvey Sorgen, who have worked together for more than 30 years in a variety of settings, including some 15 discs from the Joe Fonda/Michael J Stevens Group.
This disc is dedicated to the late, great Downtown clarinetist, Perry Robinson, who passed away in December of 2018 and was a great influence on creative clarinetists from around the world. This disc consists of several group improvs, a few pieces composed by Joe Fonda or Mr. Rocher, as well as one cover by Ornette Coleman. Things begin with an intricate song by Joe Fonda called, “Read This”. This piece is tightly played and filled with a series of hairpin turns. One of the highlights here is a piece called, “African Roll Mops”, (written by Rocher & others), which has an infectious African-like groove. Yeah, this does feel great! “For Perry” is an intense, free-wheeling piece which erupts quickly and then calms down by the end. The one cover here is Ornette Coleman’s “Broken Shadows”, the title track from his 1972 Columbia album. It is stripped down to its bare essentials with some sublime yet twisted clarinet from Mr. Rocher. On “Song for My Mother”, Mr. Fonda’s bass is featured and runs a thread through the entire 11 minute work-out, the trio navigates it tight waves, like a raft quickly going down the rapids. Near the end, Mr. Rocher plays a solemn, haunting melody which is most touching. The four written pieces by Mr. Fonda show that the trio can balance the more the restrained sections with the occasional free blasts perfectly, blending the extremes just right. Mr. Fonda even lays out a great funky bass line on “Me”, which gives the clarinet a chance to pulls off a great solo. This is an outstanding effort on all fronts so…. don’t miss it! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
Three More New Discs from AARON NOVIK:
AARON NOVIK with KASEY KNUDSEN / LISA MEZZACAPPA / DINA MACCABEE - The Hotel of Thirteen Losses (Avant LaGuardia 003/004; USA) Featuring Aaron Novik on clarinets, bass clarinet, field recordings & compositions, Kasey Knudsen on alto sax, Dina Maccabee on violin, Marie Abe on accordion, Lisa Mezzacappa on bass and Jamie Moore on drums. When Aaron Novik played his residency at The Stone a few months ago (July of 2019), I didn’t know how vast his his vision was, which was based on a handful of CD’s that I hadn’t heard in a long while. I reviewed 3 or 4 of his earlier discs since then and caught several nights of his residency. Since then, Mr. Novik has released a handful of CD’s or CD-EP’s, one last month and three this month.
‘The Hotel of Thirteen Losses’, is broken into tow sections. Mr. Novik plays clarinets & field recordings on the first suite. The first half consists of some 7 parts of a suite, each named after a loss of some sort. The feeling of loss permeates each of these pieces. Mr. Novik’s lone clarinet sounds like a wandering ghost with different ambiance on each track. Novik’s klez-like clarinet sound drifts in while the eerie sounds of the field recordings provide a sense of place: church bells, distant voices, the wind, like lost memories. The second half this disc is called “Rotterdam” and sounds again like suite. The music is performed by a sextet, most (all?) of whom are Bay area-based musicians that played at Mr. Novik’s residency. The one player I know well previously is bassist Lisa Mezzacappa, who has played at DMG a number of times and whose 1/2 dozen discs feature a number of under-recognized gems. The music is mostly solemn, chamber-like music, also evoking a sense of loss or perhaps sadness. I dig the lush, somber, quaint harmonies here, stripped down yet still filled with feelings of longing. Today is Yom Kippur (10/9/9), a Jewish holiday known as the ‘Day of Atonement’, a day of fasting and thoughts of our sins. It is a bit cold and grey outside. The music here seems to capture that same sad vibe just right. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
AARON NOVIK with KYLE BRUCKMANN / MATT NELSON / MICHAEL COLEMAN / LISA MEZZACAPPA / et al - Berlin / O 0 (Avant LaGuardia 005/006; USA) Former Bay Area clarinetist & composer, Aaron Novik, present two different groups here, a quintet and a septet. The first half of this disc features the quintet with Mr. Novik on bass clarinet, Kyle Bruckmann on oboe & english horn, Crystal Pascucci on cello, Lisa Mezzacappa on bass and Jordan Glenn on drums. You should recognize a few of these names: Kyle Bruckmann, who worked with Anthony Braxton & has a a dozen discs as a leader, Lisa Mezzacappa, another indispensable leader/collaborator with discs of her own and Jordan Glenn who is a ember of the Fred Frith Trio. This quintet is the strangest of the several units I’ve heard today. Starting on “Garnelen”, both reeds intertwine one way while both strings also interact on a different level with Mr. Glenn adding punctuation on hand percussion. The music here sounds more like slightly disorienting chamber music, both fascinating and unsettling, stripped down yet focused. Occasional quirkily solos pop up when you least expect them like when Ms. Pascucci’s cello & one the reeds bend notes together midway through the first group of short connected pieces. The subtley and restraint here take some patience to get adjusted to, but the rewards are well worth your time. It sounds as if we are in a slow motion, dream-like state.
The septet features Novik on clarinet, Matt Nelson on tenor sax (from Battle Trance), Evan Francis on flute, Mark Clifford on vibes, Michael Coleman (Ben Goldberg collaborator) on piano, Lisa Mezzacappa (multi-bandleader & composer) on bass and Tim Bulkley on drums. When the second section begins, we first hear an odd, understated electric piano solo from Mike Coleman and then some quirky three reed (clarinet, tenor sax & flute) chamber work. The band is split between three reeds and piano/vibes/bass/rums rhythm team, both playing intricate overlapping lines. Young master, Matt Nelson, who works with everyone from Weasel Walter to Amirtha Kidambi to Battle Trance (tenor sax qt), takes the first furious solo here while the rest of septet swirl tightly around him. The septet do a fine job of keeping several interconnected lines swirling tightly around one another. Acoustic bassist Lisa Mezzacappa is in fine form here, playing quick, tight, complex lines in one part before taking an inspired bowed bass solo later. Although everyone here gets a chance to stretch out, it is Mr. Novik’s clarinet that holds things together, keeping those complex circular lines focused. The final drums solo is also a highlight, long & story-like. Araon Novik just released 3 discs at the same time, each with 1 or 2 different ensembles, each one completely different from the others. No small feat, I can assure you. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
AARON NOVIK With JEREMIAH CYMERMAN / AVA MENDOZA / MATT HOLLENBERG - No Signal (Avant LaGuardia 007; USA) Featuring Aaron Novik & Jeremy Cymerman on clarinets & electronics and Ava Mendoza & Matt Hollenberg on electric guitars. This unique 2 clarinets & 2 guitars quartet, might seem odd at the first glance but each of the five ensembles from the three new CD’s just released at the same time, is completely different in their sound and approach. Both Mr. Novik and Mr. Cymerman discs out on the Tzadik label and play clarinet in their own unique way. Ms. Mendoza leads a post-punk trio called Unnatural Ways, while Mr. Hollenberg plays lead guitar with Philly post-metal band Cleric, as well as Simulacrum , a trio with John Medeski & Kenny Grohowski. All the above mentioned bands also have discs out on the Tzadik label.
This disc consists of three parts, titled A, B & C. “Part A” begins with a series of unsettling drones, notes being bent slightly, expanding in an uneasy haze. It sounds like just the clarinets at first but soon another eerie drone/line appears, an e-bow guitar, perhaps. Several layers of clarinet and sustained guitar drone all hover together in disorienting lines. The guitars eventually break free of the drone and start to play a series of hypnotic, strummed chords. Each line is carefully manipulated, as the guitars & clarinets pull apart and different solos and altered sounds are interwoven. The various layers are well shaped and seem to tell a tale and evoke a host of related spirits. The strumming and pace picky up nearly the last section, the integrated layers all churning together and taking us along with them. This makes for a grand conclusion as we all soar together higher and higher. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
TYSHAWN SOREY / NADAV REMEZ / ANTONIN TRI HOANG - ELK3 (OutNow 038; USA) Featuring Tyshawn Sorey on drums & piano, Nadav Remez on guitar and Antonin Tri Haong on alto sax & bass clarinet. It has been a great year for percussionist & composer Tyshawn Sorey, who received a MacArthur Genius Award, is now a professor at Wesleyan University and whose last few releases show to be quite diverse in his chosen musics to work with. This trio features multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey on drums & piano, Israeli guitarist Nadav Remez and Antonin Tri Hoang on alto sax & bass clarinet. I first heard of guitarist Nadav Remez when I reviewed a CD of his for the BJU label in 2011. I can’t say that I know very much about reeds player Antonin Tri Hoang aside from that he is French and has spent time in Paris. This disc was recorded at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada in April of 2014. Mr. Sorey is a master drummer and right from the opening salvo, he is whipping up an intense whirlwind of power. Guitarist Remez also hits a series of fractured chords in perfect sync while the sax also erupts but with a bit less volume in the distance. The trio strip things down to bare essentials for the third piece, which slowly builds up again with some tight swirling interaction. Although this trio sounds mostly free, the are tightly connected and erupt together with passion and brutal force. Saxist Tri Hoang varies his sound with some Zorn or Pitsiokos-like fractures while guitarist Remez keeps shifting between some over-the-top and some more restrained sections. What I find most interesting is this: guitarist Nadav Remez plays a number of powerful, brain-blasting solos here. Where has this guy been? I know of just one disc from eight years ago. Does he still live in NYC? Mr. Sorey, who is a big fan of minimal composer Morton Feldman, balances things here with some well-placed minimalist improv as well. Mr. Sorey is also a fine pianist and here gets to stretch out play some spirited prepared piano. This disc is a solid effort of free improvising at its best. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CURTIS WHEELER CURTIS NOAH GARABEDIAN VINNIE SPERRAZZA - New Year (Outside In Music 1918; USA) Featuring Caleb Wheeler Curtis on alto sax, Noah Garabedian on double bass and Vinnie Sperrazza on drums. Over the past few years, I’ve noticed NY-based drummer, Vinnie Spearrazza playing in several bands with Jacob Garchik, Jacob Sacks, Noah Baerman and Sean Moran, as well as leader a few of his own bands. I know bassist Noah Garabedian from his work with Kenny Warren, Sebastian Ammann and Ryan Pate. I can’t say that I’ve heard of their saxist, Caleb Wheeler Curtis before now. Each ember of the trio contributed two or three songs plus a trio improv and a traditional song. This disc starts with a lovely, soft, earthy, sort of funky piece, stripped down yet still hypnotic. Mr. Curtis has a strong, warm, relaxed, thoughtful tone on his tenor, a quiet fire is burning at the center of the trio. This disc reminds me of a Bennie Wallace Trio album from way back when (mid-seventies), unassuming yet somehow magical at the same time. The trio are consistently united as one force, tight and free at the same time. The trio push things further out on “Lose Ourselves in Artifice”, an improv piece where Mr. Curtis bends every note inside out (Jim Hobbs-wise) for the first half of the piece with ghosts-in-the graveyard like howls. This disc ends with a splendid version of the traditional song “In the Pines”, which I’ve heard bluegrass and folk versions of in the past. It seems like a great way to end this disc with a soft, sad, ancient melody that will linger in our collective memory for a we next meet at a bluegrass fest up in New York state or elsewhere. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
FLIN VAN HEMMMEN With TODD NEUFELD / EIVIND OPSVIK - Casting Spells (NeitherNor Records 012; USA) Featuring Todd Neufeld on acoustic guitar, Eivind Opsvik on double bass & glockenspiel and Flin van Hemmen on piano, Farfisa organ and percussion. Dutch drummer Flin van Hemmen has been living in NY since 2008 and has played at DMG a half dozen times in the past few years with: Thoomas Heberer, Daniel Levin,Kenny Warren & Michael Foster. This is his second disc with this particular trio and was recorded in Brooklyn in April of 2017. I know guitarist Todd Neufeld form his work with Tyshawn Sorey, Jon Irabagon ad Samuel Blaser. Norwegian bassist, Eivind Opsvik, has also been living in NY for quite a while and working with David Binney, Harris Eisenstadt, Tony Malaby & Nate Wooley, plus his own band Overseas is one of Downtown’s best kept secrets. It turns out that Mr. Van Hemmen also plays keyboards, which is what he plays mostly here, as well as the composing.
The first CD is titled “Casting Spells” and it is one long piece of around 43 minutes. The music is mostly acoustic and spacious, subtle and often ethereal. The minimal piano floats in and hovers in the distance. The center remains calm with a series of careful notes from the acoustic guitar, bass, piano, organ or minimal percussion, slowly interwoven, in a hushed dream-like haze. Eventually a solemn repeating phrase appears, which repeats in fragments with other minimal lines floating within. The are segments when it sounds as if the musicians are playing in another room not too far away, the ghost-like melodies somehow familiar yet obscured by a soft haze of echoes. Eventually things speed up a bit with harp-like flourishes on the guitar, somber rumbling piano and cautious plucked strings on the acoustic bass. There is a short section of a poem being read quietly near the end of the first disc which helps to bring this disc to a somber close. These discs seem to make time feel elastic as it is stretched out and things appear to slow down. Patience is required to absorb fully the nearly 90 minute journey, drifting on a raft on a tranquil ocean, rocking up and down slowly. Drifting and drifting… - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
2 CD Set $16
BILL ORCUTT - Odds Against Tomorrow (Palilalia 056; USA) "After two LPs and over half a decade spent toiling in the margins of the American Songbook, Bill Orcutt returns to original composition and the blues with his latest LP, Odds Against Tomorrow. Taking its title from Robert Wise's 1959 film noir, Odds Against Tomorrow retrofits familiar folk/blues forms to the unique sound of Orcutt's guitar and the result crackles with a freshness and authority that nostalgic retreads cannot deliver. Odds Against Tomorrow is more than an expansion of the territory charted by Bill Orcutt, his eponymous 2017 studio electric debut, although it's certainly that. With its nods to existing musics, half-step fluctuations, and near-songwriter-ly manipulations of tension/release, Odds Against Tomorrow is a rock record -- almost. Clearly and simply recorded through a clattering Fender Twin in Orcutt's living room and lovingly mixed by Bay Area neighbor and pedal-steel savant Chuck Johnson, no one would mistake it for any era's radio fodder, yet the precision of its technique and the swaying Child-ballad logic of its gentler improvisations comfortably seats it between John Mayall and Richard Thompson in your Ikea Kallax. Three songs ('Odds Against Tomorrow,' 'The Writhing Jar,' 'Already Old') are multi-tracked, an innovation that, for guitar buffs familiar with Orcutt's stripped-down vernacular, jumps out of the grooves like a Les Paul sound-on-sound excursion in 1948, or a Jandek blues rave-up in 1987. Specifically evoking John Lee Hooker's double-track experiments on 1952's 'Walking the Boogie,' the steady chord vamps of 'Odds Against Tomorrow' and 'Already Old' form a harmonic turf on which Orcutt solos with lyrical abandon . . . For the more 'contemporary-minded,' 'The Writhing Jar''s crashing overdubs recall the brassy six-string voicings of This Heat or Illitch. With the exception of the unreconstructed Elmore James-isms of 'Stray Dog' and the 'Layla'-finale-like haze of 'All Your Buried Corpses Begin To Speak,' the remaining non-overdubbed tracks dovetail snugly with Orcutt's previous solo output, reeling gently in a Mazzacane-oid mode or vibing up the standards ('Moon River'). On their own, these tracks would still be an important contribution to Orcutt's canon. As part of Odds Against Tomorrow's greater whole, they provide a through line, connecting the idiosyncrasies of Orcutt's past explorations with the scrambled tropes of his present work. Odds Against Tomorrow challenges contemporary solo guitar practice in a way that simultaneously nullifies hazy dreams of folk purity and establishes a new high-water mark for blues-rock reconstruction." - Tom Carter
THRENODY with MARTIN KUCHEN / JOHAN BERTHLING / STEVE NOBLE - A Paradigm Of Suspicion (Trost 191; Austria) Threnody is the unmissable force from three prominent improvising musicians: Martin Küchen (saxophone), Johan Bertling (bass), and Steve Noble (drums). Previously established as a trio formation under their full names, the trio has released their first album Threnody, At The Gates on Trost in 2017 (TROST 156CD/LP) and now call themselves Threnody. Personnel: Johan Berthling - double bass; Martin Küchen - retardophone, sopranino-, alto-, and tenor saxophone; Steve Noble - drums. Recording by Daniel Bengtsson at Studio Rymden Stockholm in January 2018. Mixed by Andreas Werliin. Mastering by Martin Siewert.
Free Jazz Blog on Threnody, At The Gates: "The album shows the trio in an explosive, highly rhythmic mode. The tight, massive rhythm section of Berthling and Noble keeps spiraling around Küchen imaginative attacks, never letting the heated tension to subside even for a second. The second and longest piece, is a brilliant highly intuitive improvisation, shifting fast between dynamics, from loose, free-associative ones, stressing the distinct vocabularies of all three musicians, to faster, muscular ones. All with deep intensity and great focus on the details. Surprisingly, this intensity still lets Küchen articulate a strong, clear theme even within the segments where he investigates his horn's timbral distortion."
KODIAN TRIO - III (Trost 188; Austria) “Kodian Trio's third studio album -- apply titled III -- and their second for Trost Records, was recorded in one intense live session at the White Noise studio in The Netherlands during a day-off on a European tour. The shared experiences of the road, studio, and travel evinces a group sound which is constantly shifting, solidifying, and disappearing completely -- true to the essence of free improvisation. On this album the trio shows the core strength as a unit gained from their live experiences, and a band in top shape. Yet within the turmoil there is also a sense of joy, and most importantly a perfect dialogue. Kodian Trio combine free jazz aesthetics with modern experimentation. Personnel: Andrew Lisle - drums; Dirk Serries - electric guitar; Colin Webster - alto sax. Recording at White Noise Studio, Winterswijk, NL 2018. Mixing and mastering by Marlon Wolterink. Artwork by Lasse Marhaug.”
SOUND AMERICAN - No. 22, The Lee Hyla Issue (Sound American; USA) Edited by Nate Wooley, this is a fascinating 145 page book/magazine for New Music. 16 musicians get their chances to discuss a variety of challenging musics. The musicians include Jerome Harris, Stephen Drury, Colin Stetson, Sam Amidon, Claire Chase, Kate Soper and Eric Wubbels. The composers discussed featuring several articles on Lee Hyla, Jaki Byard, Stephen Malkmus and Henryk Gorecki. What I love about this periodical is this: the pieces are rather short: 2-10 pages, at most and they give us just enough to think about without overdoing it. I can often relate to many of the referenced recording artists & composers like the Mothers, Captain Beefheart, Neil Young, Pavement, James Brown, etc. Although, I’ve only listened to a couple of discs by Lee Hyla, I still found all of the articles about him to be consistently fascinating. Highlights include Claire Chase being interviewed by Nate Wolley and Rick Moody’s in depth study of Pavement’s Stephen Malkmus. Time to start working my way through the back issues of this important magazine/small book. - BLG/DMG
Book $16 [145 pages]
MARYANNE AMACHER - Petra (Blank Forms 005; USA) Maryanne Amacher (1938-2009) was a composer of large-scale fixed-duration sound installations and a highly original thinker in the areas of perception, sound spatialization, creative intelligence, and aural architecture. She is frequently cited as a pioneer of what has come to be called "sound art", although her thought and creative practice consistently challenge key assumptions about the capacities and limitations of the genre. Amacher's work anticipates some of the most important developments in network culture, media arts, acoustic ecology, and sound studies, yet due to its expansive interdisciplinary nature, it has rarely been documented. Following two CDs for Tzadik and her inclusion in the monumental collection OHM: The Early Gurus Of Electronic Music (1948-1980), this publication of Amacher's 1991 piece Petra marks her first commercially available instrumental work. Petra was originally commissioned for the ICSM World Music Days in Boswil, Switzerland. Written for two pianos, the piece is a unique example of Amacher's late work, a direct extension of her working methodologies for electronic composition taken into an acoustic realm that alludes to the music of Giacinto Scelsi and Galina Ustvolskaya. Petra is a sweeping, durational work based on both Amacher's impressions of the church at Boswil and science-fiction writer Greg Bear's short story of the same name, in which gargoyles come to life and breed with humans in a post-apocalyptic Notre Dame. This solemn interpretation of Petra was recorded at its 2017 American premiere at New York's St. Peter's Episcopal Church with pianists Marianne Schroeder, who originally performed the piece alongside Amacher in 1991, and Stefan Tcherepnin, who performed it alongside Schroeder in 2012 at Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin. Weighing tranquilizing passages of glacially-paced serenity against stretches of dilapidated, jagged dissonance, the recording illuminates a crucial node in the constellation of Amacher's enigmatic oeuvre. Artistic director of the Giacinto Scelsi Festival in Basel, Marianne Schroeder is a Swiss composer and pianist specializing in the interpretation of New Music. She has collaborated with and premiered work by John Cage, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Dieter Schnebel, Anthony Braxton, Morton Feldman, Pauline Oliveros and Giacinto Scelsi, with whom she studied. She is currently a professor at Hochschule der Künste Bern. Stefan Tcherepnin is an American electronic music performer, contemporary artist, and composer in fourth generation, continuing the family heritage of his great-grandfather Nicholas, grandfather Alexander, and father Ivan Tcherepnin.
CD $14 / LP $24
DANIEL LENTZ // TWILIGHT STRING ORCHESTRA - Ending(s) (New World Rrcords 80815; USA) While certain recognizable fingerprints are found throughout the body of Daniel Lentz’s (b. 1942) work, he has never been content to settle within one particular style or mode of music for long, moving ever forward in an evolutional continuum, an overriding arc that defines his growth as a composer—beginning with traditional music, diverting into electronic music, moving into performance art pieces for his various touring groups, then sallying into minimalism, followed by work distinguished for its revolutionary use of live multi-track recording in performances in the 1980s and 1990s, and finally evolving into his own brand of modern romanticism.
Perhaps the most important aspect of Lentz’s compositions is that they immediately connect to the listener. This is because he started out as a performer, not as an academic, and from his first jazz band through years of touring his music with multiple groups, he never lost sight of whom he was writing for—the listener. This simple intention permeates his music. Never pandering or soft-peddling his message, never compromising his artistic integrity, Lentz has gone straight for the listener all his life, and his music connects in ways that are simultaneously intellectual and emotional.
Continental Divide (2003) (for string orchestra) is traveling music. And as the piece progresses the listener is swept along across this massive line of demarcation—a line dividing perhaps more than just the west from the east, or one way of life from another. Lentz wrote the music as a testament to the many road trips he took across the American landscape, and it captures stark granite formations, the lushness of desolation, the beauty of sky and rock, and the exhilaration of giddy peaks traversed.
“Ending(s)” (2018)(for tenor and double string quintet) is protest music at is best, music that champions life over those things that try to rip apart the fabric of the country, the society, the self.
KATHLEEN SUPOVE // MARY ELLEN CHILDS / NICK DIDKOVSKY / GUY BARASH / RANDALL WOLFF / DAFNA NAPHTALI - Eye to Ivory (Starkland 233; USA) I have been a longtime fan of keyboardist Kathleen Supove, considering that she has been the keyboard player for Dr. Nerve, the longest running New York progressive band led by Nick Didkovsky. I’ve also caught Ms. Supove live on a few other occasions, both improvising and playing challenging New Music compositions. This is the fourth disc of Ms. Supove playing the difficult music of several well-chosen composers, her previous discs on labels: CRI and Koch, all long out-of-print. This disc continues in her search for challenging music from composers she knows well. The first piece is by Mary Ellen Childs and it is the title work. I recall the work of Ms. Childs from her discs on the Innova & XI labels. This piece starts off dark and rumbling with some dense bottom-of-the-ocean chords being pounded out. The piece explores different regions of the piano keyboard, from the darker, low-end to the higher, no less intense end of the piano. This piece requires quite a bit of virtuosic playing as it evolves over more than 15 minutes and keeps shifting through different scenes or parts of a story. The second piece is by Guy Barash who also has a disc on Innova. Mr. Barash also does the digital processing on his piece, called “Talkback IV”. The processing adds another layer of assorted effects, like the sounds of playing prepared piano and then twisted even further. Aside from founding and running Dr. Nerve, Nick Didkovsky has also worked hard at being a composer and playing in contemporary metal bands. His piece here is called, “Rama Broom”, which includes a spoken word section, performed by Ms. Supove, repeating the phrase, “times up”. The words flow slowly, cautiously adding an aura of an inner sense of dread. The slower pace of this piece only add to its sense of brooding. Another highlight here is Randall Wolff’s In the Privacy of My Own Home” which featured the repeated (sampled) laughter of Ms. Supove, which is manipulated while the piano sets a series of strange scenes. The final piece, “Landmine”, is by Dafna Naphtali, who also does the digital processing. This piece has evolved over the nearly two decades that Ms. Naphtali has worked on it, the processing changes over time. The processing adds several layers of unexpected effects which keep the listeners on the edge of their seats as things continually change. This piece is a masterwork and no doubt challenging for Ms. Supove as well as the listeners. This disc shows Kathleen Supove at her best so take some time to fully absorb its many riches. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
More New CD’s from the Neos label:
JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH - Bach today: Stefan Keller & Beda Ehrensperger play Bach and beyond (Neos 41901; Germany) Bach today, "Baroque classics in a groovy jazz style". Bach today offers a colorful, versatile and multifaceted program. Well-known works for the flute by J.S. Bach and his son C.P.E. Bach form the basis for the CD. Through the filigree groovy background of the highly virtuosic baroque pieces by the experienced percussionist and enriched with astonishing improvisations, these "baroque classics" appear in a completely new light and are very contemporary.
Stefan Keller is an internationally active flutist. He plays a broad spectrum of music styles on different instruments, as is apparent from his wide-ranging projects and invitations to flute festivals. Boundary-crossing offerings like "Under Water", "Carpenter", "Factory", and others attest to his rich variety of concert music and performance activities, from a yodel choir in a carpentry workshop, to computer animations in the church, to a welder in a factory, or an indoor swimming pool in "unter Wasser". Unusual combinations such as flute and contrabass, flute and percussion or flute and live electronics also appear. Keller's artistic work has been generously supported by the Aargauer Kuratorium multiple times. He has had residencies in Aargau's ateliers in Paris and Berlin. As a flutist, he specializes in low and extremely low flutes like the alto, bass, contrabass and subcontrabass.
At the tender age of five, Beda Ehrensperger was already honing his drumming skills on his mother's pots and pans. He began his first lessons after his uncle gave him a percussion set as a present. At eight he had his first band. During his studies at the Zurich University of the Arts, Ehrensperger dedicated himself to Jazz, which provided him with a link to African rhythms. He felt compelled to move to Ghana, where he worked with master drummer Kofi Missiso and the "Ghana Cultural Ballet" and assimilated African music. Once he was back in Europe, he became firmly established in the European reggae scene with The Dubby Conquerors and proved his versatility as a rhythmic jack-of-all-trades in jazz and African music projects, choirs, classical ensembles, improvisation, and solo works. These days, he lives in Ghana and presents his own compositions under the name Beda Massive Tribe.
RUDOLF KELTERBORN - Ensemble-Buch I - Musik mit 5 Trios - Gesange zur Nacht (Neos 11903; Germany) “Rudolf Kelterborn has had a significant influence on contemporary music making in Switzerland for many decades. In addition to his extensive teaching activities, he has served as the chief editor at Schweizerische Musikzeitung, director of the Musik-Akademie Basel, and head of the music department for the Swiss-German radio service. His compositional oeuvre is wide-ranging, internationally recognized, and has been awarded numerous prizes and distinctions. This CD contains "Ensemble-Buch I" (Ensemble-Book I) (1990) and "Gesänge zur Nacht" (Songs to the Night) (1978), two important vocal works based on texts by Erika Burkhart and Ingeborg Bachmann. Kelterborn composed "Musik mit 5 Trios" (Music with 5 Trios) in 2016/17 for Musikkollegium Winterthur, dedicating the work to the ensemble's chief conductor, Pierre-Alain Monot.
CHRISTIAN OFENBAUER - Zwei Frankfurter Preludes (Neos 11905; Germany) Zwei Frankfurter Préludes (Two Frankfurt Préludes) presents a live recording of the twos première given on November 19, 1999 with the hr Sinfonieorchester conducted by Arturo Tamayo. The titles of these works are nearly identical ("Two Cranes and Clouds" and "Two Cranes and Clouds / Double") and are conceptually related, though they could hardly be more different. One is based on an extreme accumulation of density over about a minute and a half, while the other explores a radical expansion in both time and space. Each work is scored for large orchestra and the second of them, which lasts some 50 minutes, positions the musicians along a diagonal line that bisects the performance space.
AGOSTINO DI SCIPIO - Works for Strings and Live Electronics (Neos 11910; Germany) Italian composer Agostino di Scipio closely investigates ways to incorporate electronics with music. He is primarily interested in mutual influences between instrument, live electronics, and space. To process sound, he uses a variety of methods, in which conventional analog technologies can play as much of a role as cutting-edge computer programs, electronic sound processing of a simple pitched pizzicato sample, or experimental playing techniques on string instruments. Di Scipio is a professor of electroacoustic composition in L'Aquila. His compositions and sound installations are presented worldwide and are internationally recognized as outstanding contributions to current experimental music and sound art.
ROLAND CHADWICK - The Beast of Many Colours (Neos 11916; Germany) Roland Chadwick began to compose for his instrument, the guitar, during his youth. Today his works are played around the globe and many of his recordings have achieved cult status. The fact that German guitarist Detlev Bork has now gone into the studio to record Chadwick's most important compositions is a real gift, with a number of world première recordings that provide invaluable perspective over nearly 40 years of the composer's work.
MUSIQUE AMBIANTE FRANCAISER - Vol. 2 (TigerSushi 036; France) “While the first volume of Tigersushi's new compilation series, Musique Ambiante Francaise, showcased a rather cosmic and synth heavy side of all things ambient, this Vol. 2 goes in many new directions, with more experiments towards electroacoustics and musique concrete, another side of ambient that has a long French lineage. The term musique concrete, a type of "acousmatic" music, was invented by pioneer Pierre Schaeffer in 1948 who influenced numerous other French composers such as Pierre Henry, Laurent Bayle, etc. Once again, Tigersushi asked artists across the electronic music spectrum, not necessarily familiar with ambient music, to create a track for the compilation: some are already famous for their avant-garde work like Felicia Atkinson, Le Comte, Smagghe & Cross. Others come from very different backgrounds and made their first beat-less track: Bambounou, Pierre Rousseau (ex Paradis), Destiino (aka Yuksek). The sound ranges from analog synth bliss (Le Comte, Pierre Rousseau, Destiino) to anxious electronics (Bambounou, Ashburn County), from emotional minimalism (Trypheme, Bun) to neoclassical electro acoustic experiments (Ojard et Jean Ray, Villeneuve & Morando, Jackson and His Computer Band). The human voice makes an appearance here and there too (Felicia Atkinson), A long journey awaits you, be patient, take your time, disconnect. Double-CD version also features Louisahhh!!!, 67Yarc, Numerus Aurus, Abstraxion, DyE, Sonic Haiku, and Dark Mark.
2 CD Set $18
Archival, Historic and Reissued Recordings:
THE BAKERSFIELD SOUND - Country Music Capital of the West 1940-1974 (Bear Family Records 16036; Germany) "Including a larger number of previously unreleased studio and live recordings, radio recordings and demos. A treasure trove of Bakersfield history presenting country music stars Merle Haggard and Buck Owens, guitar hero Don Rich and dozens of artists like Ferlin Husky, Dallas Frazier, Jean Shepard, Wynn Stewart, Tommy Duncan, Red Simpson, Kay Adams, Duck Curless, Joe Maphis, David Frizzell, The Gosdin Brothers, Clarence White a.m.o. From hits to deep cuts to alternate takes to album tracks to live material, this set dives deeper into the Bakersfield Sound than ever before. Full-color illustrated 220-page hardcover book with a plethora of photos, many shown here for the first time, and track-by-track commentary. In depth analysis by Grammy-nominated Bakersfield Sound historian Scott B. Bomar. Foreword by Foo Fighters guitarist Chris Shiflett. Buck Owens and Merle Haggard emerged from the dim lights, thick smoke and loud, loud music of Bakersfield, California's thriving honky-tonk scene of the 1950s and '60s and changed country music forever. But what is the 'Bakersfield Sound?' While twanging Telecasters and crying steel guitars come to mind, the music that emanated from Central California in that era reflected a variety of influences that was expressed in myriad ways. 'We represent the end results of all the years of country music in this town,' Haggard once remarked about the California city that served as home base for the two Country Music Hall of Fame inductees. But how did the musical world from which Buck and Merle emerged come to be? How were the twin pillars of the Bakersfield Sound shaped by the city's larger musical community? Who were their influences, and what were the musical markers along their paths to success? In what ways did their achievements reshape the local scene from which they emerged?"
10 CD Set $245 [to be released at the end of October, $10 off if ordered before they arrive]
C’MON C’MON - The Roots of Scottish Rock and Pop 1963-1970 (Particles PartBox 013; UK) “With over 125 rare tracks, C'mon! C'mon! represents the first ever boxed anthology of Scottish beat music. Tracing the roots of the Scottish pop and progressive music scenes during its halcyon 1963-1969 period, C'mon! C'mon! highlights a lesser-known history that would richly contribute to the more widely acknowledged British 1960s music scene overall. While Lulu and Donovan may have made the successful journey to pop stardom, later iconic names such as the Average White Band, Stone The Crows, and the Sensational Alex Harvey Band would have their roots firmly placed in their native music scenes from Glasgow to Falkirk, Dundee, Edinburgh, Aberdeen, and the Orkneys. Boasting analytical liner notes, original memorabilia, and extensive, archival period photos, C'mon! C'mon! offers an exciting journey through the history of Scottish rock and pop. Full-color 96-page, perfect bound booklet with detailed liner notes and rare images.”
Features The Golden Crusaders, The Tremors, The Athenians, The Blues Council, Alex Harvey and the Soul Band, Bobby Patrick Big Six, Take Five, The Phantoms, The Sabres, The Black Ring, Isabel Bond, The Echo Sounds, The Mark Five, The Boston Dexters, Campbelltown Zodiacs, The Nomads, The Jaguars, The McKinleys, Johnny Deen and the Deacons, The Anteeeks, The Hi-Fi's, The Luvvers, The Poets, The Poor Souls, The Chevlons, The Maverix, The Profile, The Road Hogs, Studio Six, The Buzz, Alex Harvey, The Senate, The Beatstalkers, Gidian with Chris Lamb and the Universals, The Scots Of St. James, John Deen and the Trakk, Johnny and the Copycats, Karl Stuart and the Profiles, The Fifth Column, Dean Ford and the Gaylords, The Vikings, James Galt, The Big Six, One In A Million, O'Hara's Playboys, The Voice, The Stoics, The Scenery, Jason's Flock, The Pathfinders, Hopscotch, My Dear Watson, The Marmalade, The Societie, Cartoone, Chris McClure, Grapefruit, Lee Drummond, The Humblebums, Alex Campbell, Spiggy Topes, Alan Trajan, White Trash, Tam White, House Of Lords, Trash, Writing On The Wall, Clouds, The Human Beast, Charles Brutus McClay, and N.S.U..
5 CD Set $47
MAGIC IN THE AIR - Volume 1, 1966-1970 The Birth of Cool Britannia (Rubble 011; UK) From the original authors behind the groundbreaking Piccadilly Sunshine compilations, this compelling new series seeks to embrace the adolescent mindset at work at the dawn of an unprecedented era in modern culture, in which everything seemed possible. Magic In The Air attempts to capture a wider perspective of the cultural revolution unfolding in Britain during that decade, and the vibrant nature of a generation caught in the post-war gap. Featuring over 100 original recordings revisited and lovingly restored for your listening pleasure. Spanning three discs with analytical liners, rare archival imagery with previously unreleased material.
Features Peter Anathan, James Tamlin, Michael Leslie, The Orange Bicycle, Tales Of Justine, Anan, The Loot, The Herd, 1984, Dave Andrews & The Sugar, Cats Pyjamas, The Bunch, Nicky Scott, Virgin Sleep, The Deejays, Three Good Reasons, The Cortinas, Paul Korda, Kenny Bernard, Elmer Gantry's Velvet Opera, The Pyramids, Whichwhat, Geno Washington & The Ram Jam Band, The Californians, The Sound Network, Sweet Feeling, James And Jeremiah, Eden Kane, Blossom Dearie, Justin Hayward, Keith Relf, Geneveve, Nick Garrie, Two & A Half, The Koobas, Ronnie Bond, Peter Sarstedt, Jerry Page, Force West, Rainbow Ffolly, Chris Britton, The Purple Gang, Kippington Lodge, Roy Everett, The Idle Race, Clive Sands, Peter Lincoln, The Alan Bown, Nicole Croisille, The Attack, The Herbal Mixture, The Pirates, The Barron Knights, Happy Magazine, Tangerine Peel, Second City Sound, Peter & Gordon, The Academy, Del Shannon, Pete Kelly's Solution, Anita Harris, Malcolm Rabbitt, Timon, Sun Dragon, Apple, Spice, Pesky Gee, Scrugg, Czar, Harmony Grass, Blossom Toes, and Jon Plum.
3 CD Set $46
Two Great Discs from the L.A.-based trio now back in stock:
EVIL GENIUS With MAX KUTNER / STAFEN KAC / MIKE LOCKWOOD - Experiments on Human Subjects (Orenda 052; USA) This is the second disc from Evil Genius, an LA-based trio who feature Max Kutner on guitar & bass, Stefan Kac on tuba and Mike Lockwood on drums. All of the pieces on this disc were written by members of the trio: 6 by Mr. Kac, 4 by Mr. Kutner and one by Mr. Lockwood. The first thing I noticed about this disc is that the some of the song titles are ridiculous: “Skateboarders versus Security Guards: Double Agents in a Proxy war Between the Forces of Good and Evil”. Like their first disc, this trio is tight, ferocious and often intense. They remind me at times of the Minutemen, legendary Southern California hardcore punk power trio known for their untra tight, short, prog-like & political songs. On the opener, “Skateboarders…”, the tuba and guitar double up their lines together while the trio navigate some quick changes. I really like the intense, nervous energy going on here. It is pretty rare to hear a group led by a tuba player but this what makes this band so special. The guitarist is also strong and has to play a series of intricate lines with the tuba player, both are part of a tight knit interwoven tapestry. On “Whole Wheat Heroes”, the trio slows down to a swell marching groove with some mighty fine tuba soloing. Both Kutner’s guitar and Mr. Kac’s tuba get loose on the fast-paced punk/prog/rocker called, “Art Lande’s Sound of Love”. Strangely enough, for the last three songs, Evil Genius slow down and show another side to their sound. The piece features some tasty, post surf guitar which sounds great While Vinny Golia’s (LA-based) Nine Winds label has been releasing discs sporadically, newer labels like Orenda and pfMentum have taken up the slack. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
EVIL GENIUS With MAX KUTNER / STAFEN KAC / MIKE LOCKWOOD - Bitter Human (Orenda 022; USA) Featuring Max Kutner on guitar, Stefan Kac on tuba and Mike Lockwood on drums. Over the past year or so, we have gotten a half dozen promos from the LA-based Orenda label. Each one has knocked me out. This disc by Evil Genius came a while ago and again I was blown away. The only member of the trio with whom I was previous familiar is drummer Mike Lockwood who is in a couple of bands that I’ve reviewed: Grampus and Logan Hone’s, both from the LA area and both great. Evil Genius is trio with a unique combination of instruments: guitar, tuba and drums. Even with just these three instruments, this trio sounds fully formed, tight, intense and explosive at times. There is a manic, infectious energy here that reminds me of the Minutemen on occasion. The songs keep shifting into unexpected areas, the trio starting, stopping any turning on a dime again & again. I like the way they calm down for “Another Ale for the Gesture Urn”, again playing intricate twists and turns without breaking a sweat. Guitarist Kutner, switches to some tasty acoustic guitar for “For No Particular Reason”, which is laid back and features an exquisite tuba solo. Kutner plays some restrained Hendrix/McLaughlin-like licks on the amazing “(Share in a) Regional Meat Vision”, which ends with another tuba solo. Some songs start one way and then evolve into something else entirely. There are way too many twists and turns, shifts and strategies to report so it will take some time to absorb the richs found within. Time to search for the rest of the promos from Orenda that we got in and check them out again. A great new label that is well-worth checking out. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
IKUE MORI TZADIK CD LABEL SALE:
Ikue Mori is one of the founding members of the Downtown Scene. Ms. Mori once played drums in the brutal/no wave band DNA. In the early eighties she started to collaborate with John Zorn and other members of the early Downtown Scene, soon switching to drum machine or sampler. She has since become a master of the laptop and has worked with many Downtowners & other international improvisers: Fred Frith, Christian Marclay, Evan Parker, Zeena Parkins, Catherine Jauniaux and many others. Here are a dozen Tzadik discs featuring Ikue Mori, all are worthy of your time and efforts.
Here’s the deal:
take 3-5 CD’s and pay $12.50 each
take 6 or more and pay $12.00 each
IKUE MORI With THEO BLECKMAN / ANTHONY COLEMAN / ERIK FRIEDLANDER / EYVIND KANG / KATO HIDEKI / MAKIGAMI KOICHI - One Hundred Aspects of the Moon (Tzadik 7055; USA) "Featuring Eyvind Kang, Erik Friedlander, Anthony Coleman, Theo Bleckman &a bit of Makigami Koichi. Sampler wizard and sound manipulator - Ikue Mori - continues to amaze us with her depth/vision of bizarre soundscape collaborations. This is her fifth release as a leader for Zorn's labels, not forgetting the two CD’s by the cosmic trio - Death Ambient with Fred Frith & Kato Hideki. She is also an important member of ensembles led by Zeena Parkins, Dave Douglas and Jim Staley, that scary live trio with Zorn & Mike Patton and she has wowed us with her duo gig with Jim O'Rourke a couple of months back. She seems to work well with weird vocalists who push the boundaries outwards like Arto Lindsay, Catherine Jauniaux, Tenko & Patton and on this wonderful release, she utilizes the talents of Theo Bleckman. 'One Hundred Aspects' was inspired by the woodblock prints of Japanese Ukiyoe master - Tsukioka Yoshitoshi and they adorn the cover & inner booklet. The music here is cinematic, filled with suspense, dark ambient, mysterious and marvelous. Textures unfold slowly with subtle grace, Theo's vocals are used more for their soft seasoning, as are Makigami's jaw-harp peppering. Eyvind's & Erik's strings add a melodic & haunting chamber ensemble lusciousness that is quite touching throughout. What often stands out here is the occasional thick, throbbing el. bass from Kato underneath Ikue's swirling nest of samples weaving with the strings. Anthony's piano & organ are often minimal, adding a delightful somber center to the proceedings. This is a completely enchanting work that flows most naturally from beginning to end. Amen." - BLG
IKUE MORI - Garden (Tzadik 7020; USA) Ikue Mori, a legend on the New York music scene, has played regularly with the world's top improvisers since 1979, as well as in the groups DNA, Tohban Djan, Death Praxis, Fukuko, Worlds of Love and Death Ambient. Mori has developed a personal and innovative technique of playing samplers triggered by adapted drum machines. Garden, her first solo recording, is a textbook in compositional economy, displaying her amazing approach to an instrument she has made her own. Ikue Mori: drum machines, sampler, effects, bamboo TZADIK COMPOSER SERIES
IKUE MORI - Labyrinth (Tzadik 7068; USA) "Ikue (pronounced ick away more ee) Mori seems to get busier each year as she collaborates with more of downtown's finest composers and players. In just the past year she has been seen/heard with Zorn & Derek Bailey in Company, in Fred Frith's 'Traffic Continues' live in Europe, Dave Douglas' 'Witness' gigs and recording, as well as with numerous improvisers - Jim Staley, Susie Ibarra & Sylvie Courvoisier, Jim O'Rourke & Tim Barnes, Kim Gordon & DJ Olive and most recently in an engaging duo with cellist Okkyung Lee. The highlight of the recent documentary 'Downtown '81' was the live performance from Ikue's first (no/noise New York) band - DNA when she had just picked up the drums. Over the past fifteen years, she has become the favored player of the drum machine and sampling wizardry. She purchased an Apple PowerBook computer over the past year, which has added to her ever-growing arsenal of fascinating sounds. This is Ikue's sixth release Zorn's labels and her second solo effort for Tzadik and once again she has created a captivating world of electronic soundscapes. Beginning with "The Gaze of Basilisk" Ikue turns sounds inside-out and things appear to move backwards - humming and droning, eerie and filled with suspense. "Quetzalcoatl #1" has fragmented rhythms like a clock that is winding down. Most of the pieces are short, so that Ikue can work with a few ideas at a time. "Fox Tail" is quite restrained - little sonic nuggets that manipulated softly. The title track has samples of bells or gongs which speed up and then slow up - the textures are dense in spurts and then bubbling distantly - time slows like a funhouse mirror reflecting warped images. What Ikue does best is take a few sonic fragments and gently manipulate just certain parts of the sound soup so we can focus on the way things are altered. Things get much busier on "Quetzalcoatl 2" which spins quickly and kaliediscopically, weaving those high-end chirps like electronic birds. "Pulse" does have a fast pulse which begins quickly and then mutates as it slows down also like clockwork breaking down. The best and most mysterious piece is "Peony Lantern" where the strange squiggles sound like they are melting and softly moving in waves. Things slow down on "Kismet" where microscopic sonic images are magnified and manipulated, but never rise to the surface or expand too much. 'Labyrinth' is more of a study in moving and slightly altered textures and would certainly be at home on the Erstwhile label." - BLG
IKUE MORI With CATHERINE JAUNIAUX/ZEENA PARKINS/KATO HIDEKI/JOHN ZORN/HAHN ROWE/DAVID WATSON/JIM STALEY - Hex Kitchen (Tzadik 7201; USA) One of New York's most exciting improvisers and composers, Ikue Mori has developed a personal and innovative technique of playing samplers triggered by adapted drum machines. Hex Kitchen, which includes the soundtrack to Abigail Child's 8 Million Ways To Die, features both Mori solos and performances with an all-star line-up of creative musicians. Playing with musicians such as Fred Frith, John Zorn, Zeena Parkins and Jim Staley, Ikue Mori has proven herself as one of the world's most inventive and unpredictable avant-garde improvisers. Her most recent albums are Painted Desert (on Avant) with guitarists Marc Ribot and Robert Quine, Death Praxis (on Nonsequitor) with vocalist Tenko, and Vibraslaps (Rec Rec) with singer Catherine Jauniaux. She has also recorded as a member of the groups Fukuko, Tohban Djan, and The Worlds Of Love (with David Garland and Cinnie Cole). Mori was a member of the legendary late '70s "No Wave" group DNA (with Arto Lindsay) who can be heard on albums on Avant and American Clave, and on the Brian Eno-produced No New York compilation on Antilles. Featuring: Ikue Mori: drum machines, sampler David Watson: bagpipes, guitar Hideki Kato: bass Catherine Jauniaux: vocal Zeena Parkins: electric harp, keyboard, accordion John Zorn: clarinet Hahn Rowe: guitar Jim Staley: trombone. TZADIK NEW JAPAN SERIES
IKUE MORI With KATO HIDEKI/ZEENA PARKINS/ANTHONY COLEMAN/ERIK FRIEDLANDER/ANDY HAAS / et al - B/Side (Tzadik 7508; USA) For her third Tzadik release, Ikue has assembled a varied collection of her most interesting tracks originally recorded for use in the films of award winning avant garde filmmaker Abigail Child. Erik Friedlander, Zeena Parkins, Anthony Coleman and Kato Hideki are just a few of the musicians featured in this remarkable recording. Latin rhythms, ambient soundscapes, industrial intensity and infectious melodies from one of the world's greatest musical innovators. Ikue Mori: sampler, drum machines Anthony Coleman: organ Erik Friedlander: cello Andy Haas: didjeridu Kato Hideki: basses Zeena Parkins - accordion, electric harp, sampler Tenko: vocal David Watson: guitar. TZADIK FILM MUSIC SERIES
IKUE MORI - Class Insecta (Tzadik 7629; USA) One of the pioneers of laptop electronics, Ikue Mori has been breaking new ground on the musical frontier for three decades. From her early days in the landmark No Wave band DNA, to her years as a regular in the downtown improvisation community and more recently as one of the epicenters of the international laptop electronic scene, Ikue has become an underground hero - yet her work is still sorely under-appreciated. This newest solo CD features Ikue's idiosyncratic take on contemporary dance rhythms and electronica. Fascinating ambient textures, detailed improvisations and pulsing hypnotic rhythms clash and combine in this complex and charismatic electronic masterpiece. TZADIK KEY SERIES
IKUE MORI With SYLVIE COURVOISIER / OKKYUNG LEE / JIM BLACK - Obelisk (Tzadik 4018; USA) Universally acclaimed as a pioneer in live laptop electronics, Ikue’s signature style is still uniquely her own and has influenced two generations of laptop performers. Her new band project Obelisk is a super-band featuring three of the most acclaimed and original players in the Downtown scene: Sylvie Courvoisier, Okkyung Lee and Jim Black. Ikue’s startling compositions blend gorgeous melodies with hypnotic rhythms and evocative soundscapes. Strange and beautiful music from a legendary master of laptop improvisation!
CRAIG TABORN and IKUE MORI - Highsmith (Tzadik 4017; USA) Two of the most creative, elusive and modest musicians in the Downtown scene in an intimate and free wheeling duo session. Mutual admirers for well over a decade, Ikue and Craig first performed as a duo at the Village Vanguard in December 2016 and now step into the recording studio for an astonishing session of duo improvisations. Inspiring and dynamic music for piano and electronics that explode every expectation. Essential listening for all interested in music that defies ALL categorization.
PHANTOM ORCHARD [ZEENA PARKINS / IKUE MORI] With MAJA S K RATKJE/MAKIGAMI KOICHI/CYRO BAPTISTA / et al - Orra (Tzadik 7718’ USA)Friends and colleagues since 1988, Ikue Mori and Zeena Parkins are two of the strongest musical voices out of the downtown scene. Lynchpins of bands as diverse as DNA, Skeleton Crew, Electric Masada, Hemophiliac and Bjork, their duo project Phantom Orchard is the perfect outlet for their unique and personal musical languages and their rapport is evident in each and every track. Here they create eleven compositions of unique cutting edge music with the help of some of the brightest lights in improvised music. Mystery, lyricism and electronic soundscapes from this most dynamic of all dynamic duos. TZADIK ORACLES SERIES Ikue Mori: Electronics; Zeena Parkins: Electric Harp, Acoustic Harp, Omnichord; with Cyro Baptista: Percussion; Makigami Koichi: Voice, Jews harp; Josh Quillen: Steel Drum; Maja Solveig Kjelstrup Ratkje: Voice, Real Time Processing
PHANTOM ORCHARD ENSEMBLE [ZEENA PARKINS/IKUE MORI With MAJA S.K. RATKJE/SYLVIE COURVOISIER/SARA PARKINS/MAGGIE PARKINS] - Through The Looking-Glass (Tzadik 4003; USA) Expanding their duo into a sextet with the addition of strings, piano and voice, Ikue and Zeena have created a compelling and varied soundscape inspired by fairy stories the world over. Combining plucked and bowed strings, sinuous vocals, driving percussion and Ikue Mori's trademark electronics into a balanced and unified whole, Through the Looking Glass is a kaleidoscope of exotic and beautiful sonorties filled with drama, mystery and a modern orchestral sweep. Three years in the making, Through the Looking-glass is Phantom Orchard's most ambitious and accomplished production yet. TZADIK SPECTRUM SERIES
DEATH PRAXIS with TENKO / IKUE MORI - Mystery Death Praxis (Tzadik 7217; USA) For over twenty years, Ikue Mori and Tenko have been on the forefront of new music, both here and in Japan. Veterans of countless classic bands from DNA to Dragon Blue, and collaborations with just about every musicians in the new music underground, from Kim Gordon and Arto Lindsay to Bill Laswell, Derek Bailey, the Boredoms, Haino Keiji and Fred Frith. Their newest collaboration is a tribute to the world's greatest writers of suspense stories. Mystery brings these two masters of musical suspense together with many special guests to create a new collection of sound compositions for voice and modern ensembles. Also included as bonus tracks (#'s 13-22): their first duo recording from 1990, Death Praxis, unavailable for years. Tenko: vocal Ikue Mori: drum machines, sampler Eyvind Kang: violin Anthony Coleman: organ Erik Friedlander: cello . TZADIK NEW JAPAN SERIES "This is the second release from Death Praxis-an amazingly weird duo of vocalist Tenko and downtown's finest sampler hero-Ikue Mori! The first release was done in '92, has been long out of print, so a healthy portion [10 of the 17 tracks] is included as bonus cuts with this new cd-making it well over 70 minutes. While the first DP was just the duo, this time guests include Eyvind Kang violin monster, Erik Friedlander cello extraordinaire and Anthony Coleman keyboard wit & wiz. Tenko's voice explores an infinite cast of characters, invented languages and just plain songs-sort of. It is also Ikue's ever changing scenery, bizarre beats and endless flow of sounds-that also takes us away. There are moments of quiet relief followed by thick primo beats coming up through the floorboards from the knuckleheaded kids who live below my apt. or it is that Ikue pounding it out?!? This is followed by the bliss and abandon of mind-swirling electronics and then comes that somewhat familiar pop tune in Japanese!?! Friedlander, Kang & Coleman also add their magical spices to the mix. All in all, a completely engaging and wonderful trip through Death Praxis' universe of wacky vocals and assorted collection of selective sampled sounds. " - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MUSIC IMPROVISATION COMPANY with DEREK BAILEY / EVAN PARKER / HUGH DAVIES /JAMIE MUIR] - 1969, 1970 (Honest Jon’s Records 209; UK) "The original concepts of vocal and instrumental music are utterly different. The instrumental impulse is not melody in a 'melodious' sense but an agile movement of the hands which seem to be under the control of a brain center totally different from that which inspires vocal melody. Altogether, instrumental music, with the exception of rudimentary rhythmic percussion, is as a rule a florid, fast and brilliant display of virtuosity... Quick motion is not merely a means to a musical end but almost an end in itself which always connects with the fingers, the wrists and the whole of the body."
The inclusion of the above passage from Curt Sachs's The Wellsprings of Music with this album, the recording of which predates the Music Improvisation Company's only other release, the eponymous ECM outing, indicates a clear intention to stake out territory for European free improvisation markedly different from that of the (American) free jazz it sprang from. The African-American heritage that led to jazz was melodious, vocal, field holler/church-inflected, and the Germans and the Dutch never made any secret of their affection for it, but British free improvisers in the late 1960s were looking elsewhere. Even so, and though the music press made a big deal a while back about the release of a 1965 rehearsal tape by Derek Bailey's earlier Joseph Holbrooke trio (with Gavin Bryars and Tony Oxley), their early efforts were mere tentative steps along a cliff edge wearing a line safely attached to Coltrane, and there's still a faint but distinct aftertaste of jazz in Bailey and Parker's work with the Spontaneous Music Ensemble up to and including 1968's Karyōbin (1993). But with the addition of Jamie Muir -- the first great free improvising percussionist who didn't start out as a jazz drummer -- and Hugh Davies and his electronics from way out leftfield in the avant-garde/experimental world, the MIC leapt right off that cliff. As Nina Hagen screamed later, "1968 is over! Future is Now!" These six tracks -- tight, electric, pointillistic, brilliant, uncompromising and exhilarating -- sound like nothing else that came before. In a word, seminal. Housed in a gatefold sleeve.
2 LP Set $32
LUCIANO BERIO / PIERRE BOULEZ / OLIVIER MESSIAEN / KARLHEINZ STOCKHAUSEN - Serenata I/Sonatine/Canteyodjaya/Zeitmasze (Fantome Phonographie 1024; Itlay) Fantôme Phonographique present a reissue of Serenata I/Sonatine/Canteyodjaya/Zeitmasze, originally released in 1958. The avant-garde composer and conductor Pierre Boulez was a titan of post-war experimental classical music. Born in the small cheesemaking town of Montrbrison in central France in 1925, Boulez studied at the Paris Conservatoire with the composer and organist Charles Messiaen and received private tuition from pianist Andrée Vaurabourg; after moving to the Marais district in 1945, he briefly studied with Schoenberg disciple, René Leibowitz, and further influence came from immersion in Balinese gamelan, Japanese classical music, and African drumming, among other sources. Earning money by playing an early electronic keyboard called the Ondes Martenot on theater productions, Boulez soon became music director of the Renaud-Barrault Theatre Company, leading to tours of Belgium, Switzerland, Britain, and both North and South America. American composer John Cage became an ally, though they subsequently clashed over Cage's commitment to the role of chance in his compositions, paving the way for an intense and lasting friendship with the German composer, Karlheinz Stockhausen, who arrived in Paris in 1952 to study with Olivier Messiaen. In July of that year, the pair attended the International Summer Course for New Music in Darmstadt, leading to contact with Italian composer Luciano Berio and other noteworthy figures. Then, in 1954, with backing from Barrault and Renaud, Boulez began staging a series of concerts of experimental music at the Petit Marigny Theatre, titled Le Domaine musical. The pieces collected on this album are all taken from performances staged for the 1957 Domaine musical season, beginning with Berio's "Serenata I", conducted by Boulez, which debuted in Paris in March of that year; arranged for flute and fourteen instruments, Berio said that the idea behind the piece was for the solo flute to be confronted by continuously interchanging elements, rather than mere accompaniments or oppositions. Boulez's own "Sonatine", composed in 1946 for flute and piano, is a 12-tone piece that evidences Messiaen's influence, with shades of Asian classical music in places; then, Stockhausen's monumental "Zeitmasze" (or "Time Measures") a serial composition for five woodwinds, played in different combinations of tempos and speed, was partly inspired by Webern's principles of homogenous and harmonic textures. Finally, Messiaen's 1949 work "Cantéyodjayâ", delivered by pianist Yvonne Loriod, takes it shape from the classical Hindu rhythms of ancient India, as with much of the composer's oeuvre. 180 gram vinyl.
CORNELIUS CARDEW - Nova Musicha No. 6: Four Principles on Ireland and Other Pieces (1974) (Mirumir 100203; Russian Mafia) Limited restock, last copies; 2012 release. Having worked closely with Karlheinz Stockhausen during the late 1950s, the Irish-born Cornelius Cardew became a major figure in the European avant-garde music scene over the following decade. However, by the early 1970s Cardew had become deeply involved in the international communist movement, which created a growing rift between himself and his colleagues (particularly after his book Stockhausen Serves Imperialism was published in 1974). As Cardew's politics changed, so did his music, which began drawing more and more from the populist roots of folk music. On Nova Musicha No. 6: Four Principles on Ireland and Other Pieces (1974) Cardew proposes a series of compositions based on the revolutionary songs of different countries (i.e. the Irish Rebellion of 1798, the Islamic Rebellion of 1937, the uprisings in West Berlin in the early seventies). It is perhaps not surprising that Cardew's new music found a home in 1970s Italy (this LP was originally released on the Italian Cramps label in 1975), as the Italian Communist Party was extremely strong during this era. 180-gram vinyl reissue. Pocket gatefold jacket with printed inner sleeve.
LUC FERRARI - Photophonie (Transversales Disques 014; France) To celebrate the 90th anniversary of Luc Ferrari's birth, Transversales Disques announce the release of Photophonie - Bandes magnétiques inédites, unpublished archives, spanning 1973-1992, revelatory collection of commercial, commission, and secret music by electroacoustic music pioneer Luc Ferrari. "Photophonie" (1989) features music for the photographic exhibition of Alain Willaume; "Il était une fois" (1973) was Commissioned by the G.M.E.B.; "Trans-Voices" (1992) was curated by the American Center, Paris; and "Leica" (1977) was used in advertisement for the Leica camera. Affiliated with French Radio's Groupe de Musique Concrète, co-founder of the GRM with Pierre Schaeffer in 1958, Luc Ferrari (1929-2005) was a major figure of musique concrète and electroacoustic music, broke away to pave his own path of individualistic expressions of minimalist music, musical theater, field recordings, orchestral music and soundtracks.
DAPHNE ORAM / VERA GRAY - Listen Move & Dance (Fantome Phonographique OME 1023; Italy) Fantôme Phonographique present a reissue of Daphne Oram and Vera Gray's Listen Move & Dance, originally released in 1962. The British composer, musician, and audio engineer Daphne Oram was a pioneering figure in the use of electronic music. Coming to prominence through her work with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, which she co-founded, Oram was one of the first British composers to feature electronic instruments in her work and has been rightly hailed as helping musique concrete to become accepted in Britain. Oram's composition "Still Point", involving two orchestras, two turntables and five microphones, was deemed too radical by the BBC, though she was promoted to studio manager in 1950, leading to the gradual introduction of electronic music and musique concrete techniques on BBC soundtracks. In 1957, she composed the music for the play Amphitryon 38, using a sine wave oscillator and homemade filters, and this and other subsequent works led to the establishment of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop the following year, but Oram soon tired of the conservative constraints of the BBC, leading to her resignation in 1959 to pursue her own vision at the Oramics Studios for Electronic Composition, located in Tower Folly, a former hop kiln located at Fairseat, near the village of Wrotham in rural Kent. "Oramics" was a radical sound composition technique that sought to transform images to music, enacted by drawing onto 35mm film, which would then be read by photo-electric cells; in addition to its use in Radiophonic Workshop material, "Oramics" was also employed for sound installations, theater productions, and feature films, such as The Innocents, though financial pressures forced Oram to seek a range of commercial engagements in addition to creating her own artistic works. The Listen Move & Dance series of BBC programs were devised as a radical new technique to help British schoolchildren learn how to dance; on the LP releases, Vera Gray arranged short adaptations of classical pieces by Bartok, Stravinsky, Shostakovich, and others, designed for "stamping, punching, kicking and jumping" movements, as well as "running lightly", "dancing on toes" and "shaking all about", which contrasted sharply with Oram's electronic abstractions, which seemed to have been beamed in from outer space. 180 gram vinyl.
OWEN MAERCKS - Kinds of Blue (Feeding Tube 478; USA) "Four decades after his last solo LP, Teenage Sex Therapist (FTR 153-2LP), Owen Maercks is back with a new one. Crazily, much of the same gang is on hand for Kinds of Blue. Guitarist Henry Kaiser was even the instigator of this project (as he so often is), suggesting it was time for Owen to cut the blues album they'd always talked about. Saxophonists Larry Ochs (ROVA) and John Oswald (Plunderphonics) are also back to blow gorgeous squalls. There's a new rhythm section in town -- Doug Sovern on bass and Scott Amendola on drums -- and they sound great, laying down whatever sounds are required as a base for the most-cracked blues wailing of Owen's guitar and vocals. The choice of cover tunes should be read as some sort of key. Lonesome Sundown's "Love Me Now" replaces some of its original swamp vibe with an approach one might liken to Bobby "Blue" Bland's sophisto-hunch. "Blue Monk" is a wonderfully fractured spin on a par with Chadbourne's visits to the Thelonious songbook. And Robert Pete Williams' "Wrong" hews to its original acoustic and violent intent, although it also manifests a few lateral spasms that might have given its author gout. The originals are similarly eclectic. "Wild Time" is a full-on blast of guitar-based zonkery. "Burnin'" is Hooker shuffle that will have your foot stomping involuntarily. "Beautiful to Me" is alternate universe songsterism in the vein of Sex Therapist. "Iceland Boogie" is the first known blues song to tackle the topic of Reykjavik's archaic gambling laws, using a somewhat Beefheartian framework to do so. And "Prayin' on Me" finishes the album with an extended display of different ways to sing and play about blowjobs, which should provide a template for any young band interested in the bj genre. Is there a coda? You tell me. How many kinds of blue can one man have? The varieties are endless, dear friends. And some of the best answers ever posited to that question are now available on this handy platter." --Byron Coley, 2019. Edition of 500.
SUN CITY GIRLS - Dawn of the Devi (Abduction 061; USA) Abduction Records reissue Dawn of the Devi, Sun City Girls' follow up album to Torch of the Mystics (ABDT 055LP). Originally released in 1991 on Majora Records, many who had discovered SCG via the preceding Torch LP were immediately alienated and blindsided by Devi and all the harshness that comes with it. Below, John Olson takes us back to 1991 when Dawn of the Devi premiered in all its glory and obscurity.
"Sun City Girls scan your dome for what they THINK you want but code it for the opposite. If you don't have me at my 'Napoleon & Josephine' then you don't get me at my 'Valentines for Matahari.' Easy to pick and choose your course thru their ridiculous and amazing path, but to fully get verbally abused by Uncle Jim you have to ingest it ALL. In order makes even less sense. Torch is like the APPLEBEES of the SCG catalog. My sister eats there, the appetizers are *good* / they have deals. Devi is after hours dish washing shift at the 'Bees: hurry with a joint out back with the one 'Kool' manager by the grease pit/catch the 11:15pm bus to go home to your loser roommates watching midget porn as they forget to clean up yet again. Everyone wants a wild free ethno-screech RNR unit as their own to mentally catalogue but when it comes to plugging in and actually DOING experiments, all of a sudden everyone wants to be locked into the 'Rock n Roll High School.' The underground should be difficult and on shaky ground -- like your first kiss. What worth is following rules when you make them yourself? That said, Devi and the previously mentioned Matahari are MY SCG. That fucking BASS sound battling with Jim Hall on Walmart 3am desert speed thru ten watts of pure terror peppered with the ????? tin can ethno rhythm confusion of the great late Charlie G with all cylinders blaring in 'four dateless months in winter mode' is my THC in spades. Devi's sprawling anti-social etho-mess aside, the back photo says it all, in loud mid-range volumes: backs turned, duct taped third eyes, audience of three of which two are talking about how to the get the f outta the gig, the WORKS. A band photo can make a record and this is probably the biggest example of it. Like The Fall's Room to Live, everyone stares at their Chuck Taylor's when Dawn of the Devi is mentioned. Fuck, I'd get a tat of that fem-beast featured on the stark cover, thug-life stomach style in a show of prime period SCG pride but I'm puss when it comes to needles & ink son. Me and soldier Jeff Dunn circa '91 would play this sandpapered masterpiece all day and stare at that photo, placing ourselves either onstage or in the audience, fantasizing how wild the experience must have been. Can't tell you how many times I've had my grill blasted by this unholy racket. The playing is incredible and antisocial AF -- timeless but yet perf for a certain era as well beyond inspiring, musically and culturally. Of course people hated it: tuneless, raw, desperate, sprawling, LONG. It's like if SOLGER went to the ghettos of Baghdad to score black tar feedback instead of sketcher punker huts in Seattle at the dawn of HXC. Everything you need for yet another lonely night glaring into an empty closet is inside this grim long player. How it will sink into the ten second modern digital era of attention is anyone's guess but it's bound to boil and microwave one kid's brain. And I'll def be hunting said kid down to shred with. Also, the fact that I can call the two remaining GIRLS friends and jaw about Sag-nasty with em makes the cake even sweeter homeboy. LONG MAY THEY ISOLATE." - John Olson, May 2018
DR. JOHN - Gris Gris (Jackpot Records 051; USA) Repressed, green vinyl. "1968 debut album from the king of the psychedelic bayou -- the hypnotic, mystical and powerful sound of the swamp coming to life. As he became Dr. John (real name Mac Rebennack), it was his LA session work with musicians like Sonny & Cher, Canned Heat, and Zappa that allowed him to start conjuring up his visions of guitar psych-pop to walk alongside his authentic New Orleans upbringing. While Gris Gris contains moments that make it a type stamped symbol of its era, it might have well been made in outer space. Recorded in its own psychic and stylistic vacuum, the album borrows as heavily from the New Orleans' musical culture in which he grew up as it does the looming continuous pulse of war, heavy drugs, and the end of the free love/hippie movement. The album was taken under the wing of a small percentage of the 'underground' upon its release in 1968 and did not find a true following for years. Limited color vinyl, first reissue for original mono mix."
ELECTRO ACHOLI KABOOM FROM NORTHERN UGANDA - Various artists (Nyege Nyege Tapes 016; Uganda) “Nyege Nyege Tapes spotlight the charming, young style of Electro Acholi from the Luo of Northern Uganda with a compilation of zippy rhythms and ear-worm hooks by 15 artists. Electro Acholi is the plugged-in version of traditional Acholi courtship songs from the region around the cities of Gulu and Lira, in an area spanning north Uganda and southern Sudan. This compilation surveys the sound's golden years circa 2003-2008, when a brutal civil war in north Uganda meant that traditional, larger wedding ensembles of up to 25 players were too costly, and younger producers with access to Fruity Loops and video editing facilities stepped in to fill a gap in the market. Using samples and synthesis, they created custom, sped-up versions of traditional songs and performed them at the ceremonies, leading the sound to spill out into local nightspots such as the Alobo Night Club and the Opit Travellers Inn. Scaling from a balmy 106bpm in the likes of Brother Q & City Boy's slinky bumper "Can Deg Ming", to pelting up-tempo styles embellished with local instrumentation, such as Pro Lagwee's "Rwot Moo", and the quick, all-electronic backing to the call-and-response vocals of "Kolo (Dog Mix)" by Opiyo Twongweno, the set affords a privileged insight to modern Acholi music usually omitted from the "world music" racks. Now for the first time, pioneers of the style such as Bosmic Otim and the breezy swang of "Bandera Pa Kaka", Lakoc Jojo with the cracking stepper "Apiyo Nyara", or the mellifluous Lady Grace Atim and her acidic banger "Adoko Gwok" take their place alongside Otim Alpha to present the best of Electro Acholi to keen-eared dancers everywhere. Effectively a continuation of NNT's ongoing archaeology of the Luo people's sonic culture, following the roots excavation of Langi Griot and thumb piano player, Ekuka, and the branches of Otim Alpha on his single string fiddle and drum machine, Electro Acholi Kaboom is an unmissable, even rare, survey of a critical, metamorphic phase shift between ancient, analog worlds, and digitized modernism. Also features Baby Davlin, Jahria Okwera, Pan Afrique, Ojegele, Tabu Buzy Body, Zing Zang, and Jeff Korondo. RIYL: Shangaan Electro, Soca, Singeli. Clear vinyl; Mastered at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin.
2 LP Set $30
Bruce Lee Gallanter’s Recommended Gig List for October of 2019:
THE NEW STONE
Is Located at the New School’s Glass Box Theatre
55 West 13th street - just east of 6th ave
THE STONE RESIDENCIES - LAURA ORTMAN - OCT 8–12
8:30 pm - Raven Chacon (guitar, violin, voice) Laura Ortman (guitar, sampler, voice, violin)
8:30 pm - In Defense of Memory - Marshall Trammell (drums, voice, tapes) Carlos Santisteven (bass, sampler, casio, violin) Laura Ortman (4-track, violin, voice, bass)
THE STONE RESIDENCIES - WILL BERNARD - OCT 15–19
8:30 pm - TRIO - Will Bernard (guitar) Ches Smith (drums) Chris Lightcap (bass)
8:30 pm - QUARTET - Will Bernard (guitar) Ben Perowsky (drums) Jonathan Goldberger (guitar) Brad Jones (bass)
8:30 pm - TOY BOX - Will Bernard (guitar) Rinde Eckert (voice) Kenny Wollesen (drums)
8:30 pm - REVELATOR - Will Bernard (guitar) Bill Laswell (bass) Aaron Johnston (drums) Peter Apfelbaum (sax, keys)
8:30 pm - IMPROVISATIONS - Will Bernard (guitar) Ikue Mori (electronics) Brian Chase (drums) Charlie Burnham (violin) Kirk Knufke (trumpet) Mike McGinnis (clarinet, sax)
THE (NEW) STONE is located in The New School’s Glass Box Theatre
All Sets at The New Stone start at 8:30pm Tickets: $20
There are no refreshments or merchandise at The Stone.
Only music. All ages are welcome. Cash Only at the door.
A serious listening environment.
The Stone is booked purely on a curatorial basis
THE STONE SERIES at happylucky no. 1
The Stone Series: CYRO BAPTISTA
Friday, October 11th:
With John Lee, Felipe Hostins, Gil Oliveira and Eduardo Belo
CYRO BAPTISTA - percussion, vocals
JOHN LEE - guitar
FELIPE HOSTINS - accordion
GIL OLIVEIRA - drums
EDUARDO BELO - bass
Saturday, October 12th:
CYRO BAPTISTA - percussion, vocals
JOHN LEE - guitar
FELIPE HOSTINS - accordion
GIL OLIVEIRA - drums
EDUARDO BELO - bass
HappyLucky No. 1 is located at
734 Nostrand Ave, near Sterling
easy access from the A/C/2/3/4 trains
Bushwick Improvised Music Series Continues:
Monday, October 7th:
7pm Reggie Sylvester - drums
Ed Keller - guitar
Bryan McCune - trumpet/electronics
Joe Ravo - guitar
8pm Stephen Gauci - tenor saxophone
Sandy Ewen - guitar
Adam Lane - bass
Kevin Shea - drums
9pm Kevin Murray - drums
Kaelen Ghandhi - tenor saxophone
Dave Sewelson - baritone saxophone
William Parker - bass
9:45pm Tom Chess - oud
Zach Swanson - bass
Noel Brennan - drums
10:45pm Yuma Uesaka - saxophones
Raquel Klein - electronics
Joey Chang - keyboards
Nikki Pet - clarinet
Pablo O'Connell - oboe
Katherine Kyu Hyeon Lim - violin
11:30pm Gaya Feldheim Schorr - vocals
Adam O'Farrill - trumpet
Downstairs @ Bushwick Public House
1288 Myrtle Avenue in Bushwick, Brooklyn
(Across the street from M train Central Ave stop)
Upcoming Gig Information from CHUCK BETTIS!
Pet Bottle Ningen (10th anniversary show!)
Nonoko Yoshida - sax
Dave Scanlon - guitar
Dave Miller - drums
Chuck Bettis - electronics throat
w/ Salt People, Tidal Channel, Ess
140 Wilson Ave.
Ridgewood, NY 11237
L train to Halsey
October 23rd at Nublu
151 Ave. C, NY, NY
Die Trommel Fatale
Brandon Seabrook - Guitar
Chuck Bettis - Voice/Electronics
Dave Treut - Drums
Sam Ospovat - Drums
Markia Hughes - Cello
Eivind Opsvik- Bass
John McCowen - Clarinet
KILL ALTERS MUTATIONS festival - 10/10 - 10/31
at Market Hotel
10/17 - KILL ALTERS MUTATIONS #2
VISUALS CURATED BY JESSE HLEBO
-Loka DJ set
-BKDG Audio (Okotopus formerly of Dälek)
-OrbKA / John Bemis (Murderpact) / GENG (King Vision Ultra) TRIO
-Lust Sick Puppy
10/24 - KILL ALTERS MUTATIONS #3
VISUALS CURATED BY JESSE HLEBO
-Via App DJ set at doors and in between acts
-Bonnie Baxter / Hampton (Murderpact) DUO
-King Vision Ultra
-DRUM N' THROAT improvised performance feat: Bonnie Baxter, Matt (Machine Girl), Dreamcrusher, Danni (Deli Girls), GENG (King Vision Ultra), Chuck Bettis w/ drummers Hisham A. Bharoocha, Sean Kelly (Machine Girl) & Jon Bemis (Murderpact)
-Prolaps live set (Matt Machine Girl x Bonnie Baxter)
-Slauson Malone live set
10/31 - KILL ALTERS MUTATIONS #4
VISUALS CURATED BY JESSE HLEBO
-Nullbite DJ set doors and in between acts
DJs for post Halloween show rave
Kill Alters Mutations festival
at Market Hotel
1140 Myrtle Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11221
J/M/Z to Myrtle (venue under the station)
ERIC STERN’S House of Improv!
Sunday, October 20, 2019
Tani Tabbal, Michael Bisio and Adam Siegel
Brian Groder, Michael Bisio and Jay Rosen
El Barrio Artspace
Monday, October 21, 2019
Brandon Seabrook, Brandon Lopez and Gerald Cleaver
244 Rehearsal Studios
All shows are $20.00 per ticket. All start at 8:00 pm and end at 10:00 pm.
244 Rehearsal Studios is located at 244 West 54th Street, 10th Floor, NY, NY, 10019
Michiko Rehearsal Studios is located at 149 West 46th Street, 3rd Floor, New York, NY
El Barrio Art-Space is located at 215 E 99th St, New York, NY 10029