“Willin’” written by Lowell George
Recorded by Little Feat, Seatrain & Linda Ronstadt
I been warped by the rain, driven by the snow
I'm drunk and dirty, but don't you know
I'm still willin'
Out on the road, late at night
I seen my pretty Alice in every headlight
Alice, Dallas Alice
And I been from Tucson to Tucumcari
Tehachapi to Tonopah
Driven every kind of rig that's ever been made
Driven the back roads so I wouldn't get weighed
And if you give me...
Weed, whites and wine
And you show me a sign
I'll be willin'
To be movin'
I been kicked by the wind, robbed by the sleet
Had my head stove in, but I'm still on my feet
And I'm still willin'
I smuggled some smokes and folks from Mexico
Baked by the sun
Every time I go to Mexico
And I'm still
And I been from Tucson to Tucumcari
Tehachapi to Tonopah
Driven every kind of rig that's ever been made
Driven the back roads so I wouldn't get weighed
And if you give me...
Weed, whites and wine
And you show me a sign
I'll be willin'
To be movin'
The above song, “Willin’” was written by a the little known LA singer/songwriter named Lowell George in the late sixties. Lowell was a member a the Mothers of Invention for several months during that period and played the song for their leader Frank Zappa. Zappa allegedly said that it was a great song but that he wouldn’t record it with the Mothers since there were too many drug references (“weed & whites”, which were uppers or speed). He told Lowell that he should start his own band and record the song with them. That’s just what Lowell did. With two members of an obscure LA psych band called Fraternity of Man (whose song, “Don’t Bogart that Joint”, was released on the soundtrack for ‘Easy Rider’), and former Mothers bassist, Roy Estrada, Lowell formed Little Feat in 1970 and recorded two versions of “Willin’” on the first two Little Feat albums. The version that I heard the most was by Seatrain from the same period and later made more famous by Linda Ronstadt. Although I had become a jazz/fusion/prog/Canterbury snob while at college from 1972-1976, there were just a few regular rock & soul bands that I still dug at the time: the Stones (until 1972), Neil Young (ditto) and the Dead, Stevie Wonder, David Bowie & John Lennon, it was Little Feat who became my favorite rock band in the seventies. No one else combined rock, soul, funk, psych, New Orleans and other colossal grooves in the same way. Their first five albums are all essential feel good, party-time music at their best. My favorite one is called, ‘Feats Don’t Fail Me Now’ and we still play it here at DMG on Fridays along with some funky Fela to make us and anyone in the store feel better. I have caught Little Feat live perhaps a dozen times throughout their long reign and they are always great live. Little Feat broke up in 1979 due to some internal squabbles between the members and Lowell recorded and released his first and only solo record, ’Thanks, I’ll Eat it Here’, yet another wonderful, tasty gem (released in 1979). I had tickets to check out Lowell George for his first solo tour at the Bottom Line in NYC but he suddenly passed away the week before he got to NY. I had heard that he had drug, alcohol and other problems with assorted indulgences but his death remains a mystery. Time to put on my ‘Sailin’ Shoes’ tonight and dance the night away to (Little) ‘Feats Don’t Fail Me Now!’ - BLG/DMG
SIMON H. FELL, Great British Bassist and Composer, passes at 61
British bassist, composer & label head, SIMON H. FELL, is someone I’ve long admired. As a Keith Tippett fan addict, I had long searched for an album called, “Two Steps To Easier Breathing: A South African Suite”, which was released on a label called Bruce’s Fingers and was recorded in 1988. The leader on that date was a bassist named Simon H. Fell and it was released on Mr. Fell’s own label. It took me nearly 20 years to locate a copy and it was well worth the long wait. In the early 1990’s Mr. Fell was part of a trio with Alan Wilkinson on bari, soprano & alto sax and Paul Hession on drums. That trio had several discs out on Ecstatic Peace! (Thurston Moore’s label) and Shock, both labels more involved with brutal punk rock or hardcore improv. Those discs still sound bristling with intensity and adventure today, thirty years later, I listened to them earlier this week. Mr. Fell seemed to have an affinity with strong saxists, recording spirited discs with Simon Rose, Mick Beck and Charles Wharf, all European, but none very well known here. From the late nineties to the the mid 2000’s, Mr. Fell concentrated on compositions for larger ensembles. I have a half dozen of these discs, ‘Composition for 10(0)’, ‘Composition No. 12.5’ and ‘Composition 30’ are my favorites and each one is brilliant, often dense and it takes time to fully absorb these gems. I have listened to them all the past week and remain astonished at their ingenuity. In 2001, Mr. Fell recorded a duo CD with Derek Bailey, another extraordinary disc which was released on the Confront label. Mr. Bailey and Mr. Fell continued to collaborate with several discs on Incus & Confront. Mr. Fell was part of a trio called IST with Rhodri Davies on harp and Mark Wastell on cello. That trio emerged during a period of time when a number of musicians started to play very quietly and that became part of their sound.
In April of 2001, Derek Bailey and John Zorn organized a Company Fest at Tonic (a club) in NYC. Mr. Bailey invited the three members of IST who played as a trio as well as doing improv with Mr. Bailey and Downtowners like John Zorn & Joey Baron. This was during the time when I was still taping every concert I attended, and I recorded a set with IST and Mr. Zorn, which was later released on Confront, the label is still run by Mark Wastell. What I found most interesting about Mr. Fell was that his first recordings started out with an over-the-top avant/jazz trio and ended with another trio which was often just the opposite, extremely restrained. Unfortunately when North Country Distribution went under a couple of years ago, there was no one left to distribute Mr. Fell’s own Bruce’s Fingers label, which released nearly 50 CD’s of his. There are a few labels that still exist like Discus, Confront and Red Toucan, that still have some of Mr. Fell’s releases. We have practically none of them in stock but do have a few of the Red Toucan CD (‘Four Compositions’, #9326) on its way. Perhaps Mr. Wastell will get copies of some of those discs on Bruce’s Fingers to distribute if there any left. I did get a chance to speak with Simon H. Fell at one of those sets at Tonic, telling him how much I dug his work, “Composition No. 30”. I had heard about Mr. Fell’s passing from Mark Wastell last week, I had heard of his ill health in the previous months. I have been listening to his music for the past week and want to dedicate the this week’s newsletter to his vast creative spirit and life. Search out his music if you want to be challenged! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG - 7/2/20
Over the past few months, since the pandemic has forced DMG founder Bruce Lee G. to stay home and be safe, our manager, FRANK MEADOWS, has been keeping DMG ocean-liner/raft afloat and taking care of most of the mail-order. Although I am back two days a week (Tuesdays & Fridays), we all should thank Frank for his hard work over the past few months! Frank is also a musician, composer, occasional gig & musician manager, so here is a project that he is currently working on:
Asheville NC based Library of Babel (Shane Parish, Frank Meadows Emmalee Hunnicutt) will be hosting a livestream tonight (July 2nd) at 8pm to celebrate the release of their new album “Sing To Me Of..” out the following day on digital platforms via Hypnic Jerk Tapes, featurimg performances by Durham NC’s Magic Tuber String Band, and Philly’s Michael Cormier (Friendship, Hour). Donations will be accepted on the stream on behalf of BEAM and Southerners on New Ground
Stream Link: starts 8pm EST
NEW THINGS FOR THIS WEEK BEGIN WITH:
BARRE PHILLIPS - Thirty Years in Between (Victo 132/08; Canada) This disc features two sets from contrabass master Barre Phillips thirty years apart, both sets were performed at the FIMAV (Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville) in Quebec. Both sets were solo contrabass, the first from May of 1989 and the second one from May of 2019. While attending college in London (9/1975-1/1976) for one semester, I purchased over 100 albums of mostly British progressive rock and avant-jazz. Two albums, both of which were released in 1970, completely blew me away and made me realize that the British Creative Music Scene was the best of all the different scenes, bands, musicians and composers, that I had heard so far. The two albums I am referring to were: Keith Tippett Group - ‘Dedicated to You but You Weren’t Listening’ and ‘The Trio’ 2 LP set (on Vogue) with John Surman, Barre Phillips & Stu Martin. Both of those records still sound astonishing to me today, 40 years after they were released! The Trio records featured John Surman on bari & soprano saxes & bass clarinet, Barre Phillips on double bass and Stu Martin on drums. I has already heard of John Surman from his playing on John McLaughlin’s first album, ‘Extrapolation’ (1968), but I hadn’t heard of Mr. Phillips or Mr. Martin before then. It turned out that both Phillips and Martin were both Americans who had found their way to Europe in the late sixties and wound up working with bari sax giant John Surman. Word is that The Trio played all over Europe during their 2 years, playing many festivals & concerts, blowing away any & all avant/jazz players wherever they went. If you don’t own The Trio’s ‘Incantation’ double disc, you best find one and give it a spin ASAP!
What made to The Trio so incredible is that all three members were at the heights of their creative powers and are integral to the focused trio sound. I recall just listening to the contrabass on this recording and hearing sounds, bowed, plucked & otherwise, that I had not heard from any other bassist at that point. It turned out that Barre Phillips has been on a long journey of exploration, recording his first album of solo contrabass in 1968, one of the first albums of its kind. Mr. Phillips has continued to record albums of solo bass ever since, many of which are entitled, ‘Journal Violone’. I have collected all of these and have had the opportunity to hear Mr. Phillips live numerous times, both in solo sets (once here at DMG!), as well as with Joe McPhee, Urs Leimgruber, Catherine Jauniax, Joelle Leandre and William Parker. The solos sets are my favorites and this discs features two, both from the Victo Fest, thirty years apart!
The FIMAV Festival started in 1983 and has been an ongoing annual festival of Creative Music & Other Arts, an important vacation for serious music listeners worldwide and unique in it scope. I have been attending every year since 1987 and find it to be an essential experience. The first set here is from May of 1989 and solo sets for contrabass were still relatively rare at that point. Listening to the earlier disc, I can still see & hear Mr. Phillips in my mind’s eye, caressing the bass, bowing certain notes and creating music/magic at every turn. Mr. Phillips does a wonderful job of stretching out certain notes by holding down and bending the strings, it seems as if I can hear some ghosts emerging from these sounds. It sounds like Mr. Phillips has matured or evolved past some of those eerie/odd sounds that were part of his sound with The Trio. His playing seems more calm, thoughtful, exploratory but without pushing things out too far. Like most Victo discs which were recorded at the festival, the sound here is superb, warm, rich, clean and with no excess reverb of any sort. Throughout this set, Phillips works his way through different types of extended techniques, stretching out notes, banging on the strings with a bow, letting certain notes buzz or drone but keeping everything somehow musical. Both sets are extraordinary, different yet somehow connected. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
2 CD Set $20
BACK IN STOCK:
THE TRIO [JOHN SURMAN / BARRE PHILLIPS / STU MARTIN] & MIKE OSBORNE / ALAN SKIDMORE / MARC CHARIG / KENNY WHEELER / CHICK COREA / NICK EVANS / HARRY BECKETT / JOHN MARSHALL / et al - Incantation: The Dawn Recordings (Esoteric Antenna 22635; UK) Esoteric Recordings are pleased to announce the release of a remastered 2 CD anthology comprising all the recordings made for the Dawn label by the ground-breaking Progressive Jazz ensemble, THE TRIO. Coming together in 1969, The Trio featured JOHN SURMAN (baritone & soprano saxes, bass clarinet), BARRE PHILLIPS (contrabass) and STU MARTIN (drums). All three musicians had earned fine reputations for excellence in the Jazz world and had a desire to push musical boundaries in their work and had a desire to appeal to the emerging "progressive" music scene. Performing on bills with rock acts such as Captain Beefheart and Yes, The Trio signed to Pye Records' newly formed progressive imprint, Dawn Records in 1970. Their self-titled double album was produced by Peter Eden and released in July of that year. Aimed squarely at a progressive audience, The Trio was critically acclaimed. The 1971 album Conflagration saw the three musicians joined by a host of celebrated musicians for the sessions at Pye Studios in Marble Arch, London. Notable guests included Chick Corea, Dave Holland, John Marshall and Mark Charig among others. This new 2 CD anthology has been re-mastered from the original Dawn Records' tapes and includes a booklet with an essay by Sid Smith featuring exclusive interviews with JOHN SURMAN, BARRE PHILLIPS and producer PETER EDEN.
2 CD Set $25
MORE DISCS FROM THE GREAT LISTEN! FOUNDATION LABEL:
GUILLERMO GREGORIO / JOE FONDA / RAMON LOPEZ - Intersecting Lines (Listen! Foundation FSR07 2020; Poland) Featuring Guillermo Gregorio on clarinet, Joe Fonda on contrabass and and Ramon Lopez on drums. This session was recorded at Tedesco Studios in NJ in December of 2018. The pieces on this disc were either written by Guillermo Gregorio (3 pieces) or are trio improvs (five). Of the many hundreds of musicians that have played here at DMG throughout our history, there are a handful who stand out at creating challenging, fascinating music whenever they play here. Near the top of that list is clarinetist, Guillermo Gregorio, who has brought a wide range of musicians and newly written music on each occasion. This trio features contrabass great Joe Fonda and Spanish drummer Ramon Lopez, who rarely comes to the US but play here that same month with Mr. Gregorio and Mexican guitarist Omar Tamez.
The first piece is appropriately called, “The Opener”, and it is exquisite, laid-back, sublime. The trio get more intense on “When I Meet You”, slowly taking off, the temperature slowly rising to boiling point midway. All three musicians here are gifted players, everything sounds well conceived and played. The written are piece are where the trio must navigate some thoughtful twists and turns. It seems as if the clarinet and bass are moving in opposite directions yet they are connected by those written phrases with the drums adding rhythmic punctuation and subtle shades. Mr. Gregorio’s “Cosa Rara” and “Tres”, both remind me somewhat of early Braxton writing which seems to move between some quick interaction with slowed down more contemplative sections in between. There is quite a bit going on here if you do listen closely, some interaction is going on below the surface. You might not notice it until listen to this several times, I hear much more going on the second and third time I did listen. Time to listen again and hear even more. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
ALISON BLUNT / ACHIM KAUFMANN / GIANNI MIMMO / HARRI SJOSTROM / VELI KUJALA / IGNAZ SCHICK - Sestetto InterNazioNale - Live in Munich 2019 (Listen! Foundation FSR01 2020; Poland) Personnel: Alison Blunt on violin, Achim Kaufmann on piano, Veli Kujala on quarter-tone accordion, Gianni Mimmo on soprano sax, Harri Sjostrom on soprano & sopronino saxes and Ignaz Schick on turntables & sampler. “Six sounds, six perspectives, six personalities. This is a most fascinating sextet with six musicians from very varied backgrounds: soprano saxists Harri Sjostrom is Finnish and has worked with Cecil Taylor on several discs while Gianni Mimmo is Italian, runs the Amirani label and has worked with: John Russell, Vinny Golia and Garrison Fewell. Alison Blunt is London-based and has worked with Trevor Watts & Evan Parker, while pianist Achim Kaufmann has collaborated with Michael Moore, Ingrid Laubrock and Axel Dorner. Veli Kujala hails from Finland and plays the rare quarter-tone accordion, working with Kalle Kalima and Mikko Innanen. I recall checking out Bavarian turntable & sampler player Ignaz Schick at the Victo Fest I believe as well as hearing him on record with Phosphor and Martin Tetreault. This disc was recorded live in Munich, Germany in January of 2019.
This is high-end improv, blending five acoustic instruments with turntables and/or sampler. The sextet was captured live and the sound/balance is superb. The two soprano saxes, which are located in different places, violin, piano and accordion all swirl tightly together while the turntable/sampler player adds his own sonic punctuation and colors. The music rarely gets too dense, there is often some breathing room or spaciousness involved. No one seems to be in a hurry to get anywhere, so there is a nice sense of calm or contemplativeness at the center. The opening piece, “Quasars #1” is pretty long (nearly 37 minutes), and covers alot of ground, duos turn into trios or quartets and a variety of combinations keeps things interesting as the focus keeps shifting somewhere else. There is quite a bit of fascinating interplay going on throughout, as one or more instruments seems to turn into another instrument. The central section of this disc is comprised of three duos which gives all six musicians their chance to stretch out and work with just one other player. Of the more than half dozen improv discs I’ve heard this week, this one is the best. Word! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CLIFF TRIO with PANDELIS KARAYORGIS / DAMON SMITH / ERIC ROSENTHAL - Precipice (Listen!Foundation FSR09 2020; Poland) The Cliff Trio feature Pandelis Karayorgis on piano, Damon Smith on bass and Eric Rosenthal on drums. Longtime Boston-based pianist, Pandelis Karayorgis, has been working with Mat Maneri, Jorrit Dijkstra and Guillermo Gregorio. For this disc, Mr. Karayorgi organized a fine trio with two other Boston area-based cohorts: Damon Smith (formerly Texas & Bay Area-based bassist) and drummer Eric Rosenthal (Naftule’s Dream, Paul Brody’s Sadawi & duo with Taylor Ho Bynum). This disc was recorded live at the Lilypad in Cambridge, MA in March & June of 2019. The sound of this trio is superb, perfectly balanced so that each member of the trio in integral to the focused trio sound. The first piece, “Precipice”, is nearly 22 minutes long and soars right from the opening blast. Higher and higher and eventually sailing back down calm landing midway. Even when tings mellow out a bit, there is always something compelling going one here, the trio always navigating the rapids as they go. Master-contrabassist Damon Smith is often at the center of the storm here, bowing, plucking and coming up with all sorts of cosmic sounds, balancing the currents provided by the piano and drums which are constantly weaving their way around one another like free spirits cut loose. There is a section on “Notch” when the trio really take off and Mr. Korayorgis moves into Keith Tippett-land with an intensity approaching full boil. Wow, it feels exhausting just to go along for the roller coaster ride. There is organic flow going on here, everything feels connected, one episode after another all as one story or journey. This is a magnificent piano trio! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
THE CROAKS with MARTIN KUCHEN / MARTIN KALPPER / ROGER TURNER - One of the Best Bears! (Listen! Foundation FSR 08-2020; Poland) Featuring Martin Klapper on amplified objects, toys & electronics, Martin Küchen on sopranino & soprano sax, snare drum resonator & metal objects and Roger Turner on drums, small cymbals, metal & plastic. ”The croaks almost stumbled across each other after failing to attend a speech given by a dear lost friend. Actually it wasn’t a speech, more the reading of a short letter, and because this reading wasn’t made publicly, attendance was difficult to plan.
The letter wasn’t in fact from a close friend either, though we are sure he would fully understand the nature of distance and how close we might almost have been. The letter contained a poem written under the title : recent croaks---please find enclosed recent croaks ---- and was accompanied by a small cheque made out to a small literary organization in the u.k. The letter was handed to a member of the trio, and unforgettable in its offhand rigour was passed on as a band title. The poem was very short and signed sam.”
ROLAND DAHINDEN / HILDEGARD KLEEB / CAMERON HARRIS - Dancing A Stone (Listen! Foundation FSR12 2020; Poland) “There is a good chance that inimitable trombonist Roland Dahinden and pianist Hildergard Kleeb, and electronics wizard Cameron Harris never met legendary Brasilian poet Manoel de Barros whose deeply meditative, often surreal poetry celebrates life in all its glorious form. But a seminal connection between the musicians and De Barros is unmistakable. The Brasilian published an iconic book of poems Gramatica Expositiva do Chão (Poesia quase toda) [Descriptive Grammar of the Ground (almost complete poems)]. To understand the connection between the musicians and the poet let’s look at what the latter describes as the “Matter of Poetry”. “Things that have no claims, such as for instance stones that smell the water, men who go through periods as trees, are good for poetry…”
On Dancing the Stone, these improvising musicians have something eerily similar to say. On this repertoire Dahinden, Kleeb and Harris create breathtaking sonic poetry that describes imaginary and concrete landscapes. In a sweeping musical procession songs become landmarks of ever-changing musical scenery viewed from constantly evolving perspectives. Like De Barros’ descriptive grammar of the ground, their descriptive grammar dwells in the poetry of music. Notes leap and fly off the page they dance and sing, and glimmer redolent of the poetry of sound bouncing off architectural landscapes, diaphanous fabric, whispering flowers and stones that dance.
The abstract romance of the melodic line is described in loping parabolas, and leaping and falling sonic spikes and dips, all of which collide in delightful harmonic whimsy. Throughout, Dahinden’s growling, bleating trombone is entwined in fluttering right hand lines and stabbing chords of Kleeb’s pianism, while Harris, examining the inner life of sound, reincarnates it all in tumbling loops and jabbering electronic sounds. Thus, a new improvised music palimpsest is formed, defined by a sophisticated attitude to rhythm and musical time. In Dancing the Stone a mathematical and the lyrical sonic patina fuses like a brilliant jigsaw puzzle of brightly coloured fragments reassembled in constantly shifting patterns of sound poetry. - Raul da Gama, Milton, Ontario, 2020
MIKE COOPER - Tropical Gothic (Discrepant 058; UK) Double-CD version of Mike Cooper's now classic 2018 release Tropical Gothic -- now released with a bonus live performance recorded at London's Café Oto. On Tropical Gothic, Mike Cooper studies different approaches to his method of uniting guitar and field recordings into a constant stream of sound, where he delivers chaos and melody -- not necessarily in that order. A series of shorter pieces open the album. Each of them offering a myriad of images and sensations, between the enigmatic and terror ("The Pit"), joy, happiness, and freedom ("Running Naked"), or pure contemplation ("Onibaba"). The album closes with its 18th minute magical piece "Lelong & Gods Of Bali". A mix of ambient exotica music, silent film soundtrack, and distorted rhythms that dance around Mike's guitar. It keeps reinventing and transforming itself throughout those eighteen minutes, summing up the dexterity and muscle of Mike Cooper's music of the last two decades. Tropical Gothic - Live At Cafe Oto was performed as a live improvised version of Mike's release of the same name. Joined on stage by Clive Bell and Sylvia Hallet and performed alongside three of Mike's videos -- "Ko Lanta", "Walking In Ubin", and a mash up containing excerpts from some of Mike's favorite "tropical gothic" films -- Onibaba (1964), Opera Jawa (2006), Kwaidan (1964), Tabu (2012), and White Shadows In The South Seas (1928). Both Clive and Sylvia play an array of Asian and "exotic" instruments; both are improvisers and have been playing together on and off over many years. Sylvia had collaborated with David Toop on his opera Star Shaped Biscuit, a work that might also be considered tropical gothic and Clive Bell, an international traveler, writer, and expert player of the Japanese shakuhachi flute, as well as other Asian blown instruments, is very familiar with Mike Cooper's musical excursions into ambient/electronic/exotica. Personnel: Mike Cooper - lap steel guitar, iPhone, Zoom sampletrack, Kaos Pad, Mini Kaos Pad, Mini Disc, Pitch Shifter Delay, Video; Sylvia Hallett - violin, bowed bicycle wheel, saw, sawn-off lampshade, jaws harp, mbira, delay pedal, pitch shift pedal, looper pedal; Clive Bell - shinobue, shakuhachi, khene, pi saw flute, Cretan pipes. Recorded Live by James Dunn at Cafe Oto on September 28th, 2018. Disc 1 mastered by Rashad Becker. Disc 2 mastered by Emmet O'Donnel.
2 CD Set $16
BONJINTAN with AKIRA SAKATA / JIM O'ROURKE / GIOVANNI DI DOMENICO / TATSUHISA YAMAMOTO - Dental Kafka (Trost 197; Austria) Jim O'Rourke (of Gastr del Sol and Sonic Youth fame) plays a lot with Japanese free jazz legend Akira Sakata in various formations. Together with Italian composer and pianist Giovanni di Domenico and the drummer Tatsuhisa Yamamoto they form this powerful band. Their second release combines contemporary avantgarde and free jazz in a beautiful way. Personnel: Akira Sakata - sax, clarinet, voice; Jim O'Rourke - double bass; Giovanni Di Domenico - piano, Hohner pianet; Tatsuhisa Yamamoto - drums. Recorded at Hoshi to Niji studio June 30th, 2018; Recorded by Jim O'Rourke.
CD $17 or LP $22
DAVID FIRST & THE WESTERN ENISPHERE - The Consummation of Right and Wrong (Important Records Imprec 490; USA) David First likes to use the phrase "the virtuosity of slowness" to describe his musical philosophy. In The Consummation of Right and Wrong, he and his eight-piece ensemble, The Western Enisphere, practice this virtuosity to great effect in closely examining the universes that fall between the cracks of convention, reflecting a wide continuum of complex relationships, all the while creating music that is simply ravishing to listen to. This is "drone music" as dynamic organism, moving from compact and ruminative to spacious and serene and back. In this triple-CD, two-and-half-hours of sonic tessellation, First has alchemized his own personal opposites like never before, combining and transmuting his free-jazz experience with avant-legend Cecil Taylor, his influential noise-rock n' roll band Notekillers, his long-abiding love for minimalist, mathematical excavation on dozens of instruments, and a highly refined ear for pop-melodic architectures into a singular, epic set of vibrational possibilities that leaves very few stones unturned in his ongoing quest for the resolution of all extremes.
3 CD Set $18
TWO NEW GOODIES FROM THE RUNE GRAMMOFON LABEL:
MASTER OOGWAY - Earth And Other Worlds (Rune Grammofon 2213; Norway) Rune Grammofon introduce a new name to their roster. Master Oogway are four young musicians aged between 23 and 26. They met at the Norwegian Academy of Music in 2015 with a common desire to play vibrant, improvised music with strong themes and room for spontaneity at a high energy level. Like many players on the young, Norwegian progressive jazz scene their instrumental skills are already highly developed but never used to show off. Earth And Other Worlds is the quartet's second album, their debut was released on the Clean Feed label in 2018. Their new effort is more dynamic and varied and shows more mature and accomplished songwriting, not to mention the stronger group interactions and the impressive solo stretches from sax player Lauritz Lyster Skeidsvoll and guitarist/composer Håvard Nordberg Funderud. While it's fair to say that they operate in much of the same musical landscape as Bushman's Revenge or Kokofant, it's equally fair to note that their general approach and attitude comes with a slightly stronger emphasis on jazz. Håvard Nordberg Funderud finished his bachelor at the Norwegian Academy of Music in 2018 and has also studied in Gothenburg and Copenhagen. He is involved in several projects, but Master Oogway is his priority. Lauritz Lyster Skeidsvoll and Karl Erik Horndalsveen have both finished their education at the same academy as Funderud. Martin Heggli Mellem is currently finishing his bachelor at the jazz program at NTNU in Trondheim. Personnel: Håvard Nordberg Funderud - guitar; Lauritz Lyster Skeidsvoll - saxophone; Karl Erik Horndalsveen - double bass; Martin Heggli Mellem - drums.
I LIKE TO SLEEP - Daymare (Rune Grammofon 2214; Norway) Rune Grammofon introduce I Like To Sleep to their roster. Taking their name from a Thelonious Monk quote, I Like To Sleep are three young Norwegian musicians, all 22 years old. Nicolas Leirtrø and Øyvind Leite first met in high school in Trondheim before they joined up with Amund in a youth big band. It soon became apparent that they shared the same musical background centered around '70s progressive rock, classical music, jazz, and improvisation. Soon after the trio was formed, first for fun, but soon with higher ambitions, they won the prestigious "Young Jazz Musicians of the Year" award in 2018. Daymare is the trio's second album, their debut was released on the small All Good Clean Records label in 2017. While their debut showed a lot of quality and promise, their new effort is a huge step forward on all accounts, especially considering their young age. The lazy way would be to place I Like To Sleep with certain other Rune Grammofon "power jazz" groups, but their unique instrumentation, natural openness and youthful curiosity place them apart from the rest. All three members are currently in the middle of their jazz studies at NTNU in Trondheim. They are active as composers, freelancers and in other projects, including concert booking on the city's vibrant music scene. In case you recognize the name, Amund Storløkken Åse is the son of Ståle Storløkken who as a member of Supersilent appeared on Rune Grammofon's very first release back in early 1998, and later on several more records with Supersilent, Humcrush, Elephant9, and a couple of times with Motorpsycho. The circle is closed. Personnel: Amund Storløkken Åse - vibraphone; Nicolas Leirtrø - baritone guitar; Øyvind Leite - drums.
MHZ - Function (Important Records 332; USA) “Function is an aesthetic exploration of digital audio at an elemental level: a sequence of quantized amplitude values. The entire sonic material in this series are generated through a custom-designed program that takes a mathematical function as input, and based on a set of pre-defined criteria, outputs the function as a digital waveform. Accordingly, each track in this series is named after one mathematical function, where the function itself is used as the only sound-generating engine. These raw sonic materials are then processed through a number of common audio effects, and organized and structured into a compositional form. Function builds on an ongoing investigation into realization of Brutalist aesthetics through sound and audiovisual media. Through a reductionist approach towards its distinctly digital sonic structures, the work embraces the crude limitations of its medium as the primary aesthetic construct. It uses mathematically constructed tonal and rhythmic structures to allow for a celebratory exposure of its "anti-beautiful" raw material. In doing so, it projects an uncompromising clarity of structure, a conscious negation of interpolation, and a steadfast refusal to hide the machine's footprint. Mo H. Zareei, aka mHz, is an Iranian electronic musician, sound artist, and researcher, based in Wellington, New Zealand. mHz is the acronym for millihertz. Using custom-built software and hardware, his experiments with sound cover a wide range from electronic compositions to kinetic sound-sculptures and audiovisual installations. Regardless of the medium, Zareei's work aims to highlight the beauty in the basics of sound and light production and reductionist audiovisual elements that draw inspiration from physical and architectural principles. Over the course of his PhD, he developed a portfolio of works focused on the intersections of sound art and Brutalism. His Brutalist Noise Ensemble has been featured on platforms such as Creative Applications, Streaming Museum, and Fast Co. Zareei has presented his work at international venues and festivals such as SETxCTM Festival (Tehran), New Zealand Festival (Wellington), the International Symposium on Electronic Art (Vancouver), and New Interfaces for Musical Expression (London), to name a few. His installation "Rasping Music" was the recipient of the 1st prize in Sound Art category of the international Sonic Arts Award 2015 (Italy).
WINDY & CARL- Allegiance And Conviction (Kranky 226; USA) "Legendary Dearborn duo Windy & Carl have been crafting inner space electric guitar and bass vistas for nearly three decades now, but their latest feels as vital and vaporous as any peak opus in their vast catalog. Written and recorded across six years, the songs swirl between shoegaze minimalism and stargaze drift, over which Windy Weber whispers veiled poetic narratives of transformation, isolation, and escape. Allegiance And Conviction is their first album since 2012's We Will Always Be. The six compositions are something of outlier in their catalog, shorter in nature than most on their previous releases. All of the tracks are saturated with Carl Hultgren's signature guitar work, intimate constructions of murmurs, drones and his trademark layered filigree, gently amassed into alternately lighter and heavier than air atmospheres. Despite being their first full-length in more than half a decade, the album fully belongs to the bewitching galaxy of sound Windy & Carl innovated and within which they remain the sole occupants: music of thresholds and peripheries and eternities. Allegiance And Conviction is the multifaceted, contemporary take on their sound."
JOHN CAGE // DAVID TUDOR - Lollipops (El Records Acme 352; UK) JOHN CAGE (1912-1992) was an American composer, philosopher, poet, music theorist, artist, printmaker, and amateur mycologist. A pioneer of percussion, chance, and electronic music. Cage was one of the most influential American composers of the twentieth century. His influence on the popular arts of the 1960s was considerable; the Beatle Paul McCartney and Frank Zappa of the Mothers of Invention being numbered among his disciples. He was also instrumental in the development of modern dance in America, mostly through his association with choreographer Merce Cunningham. Cage is perhaps best known for his 1952 composition 4' 33", the three movements of which are performed without a single note being played. The late '50s, early 1960s was the period in which the works of John Cage first began to be represented by a quantity of recordings. This edition combines two important large-scale performances, the indispensable 25-Year Retrospective Concert, which so admirably showcased the composer's broad spectrum of interests (and the first recording to include audible audience disagreement since the riot at the premiere of Déserts by Edgard Varèse in Paris in 1954), with Indeterminacy: New Aspect of Form in Instrumental and Electronic Music, which finds Cage reading 90 short Zen-like stories, each punctuated by piano and tape interjections by his long-time musical collaborator, David Tudor. These works are complemented by the original tape realisation of the Fontana Mix sound collage, assembled by the composer in Italy; Double Music, which explores the percussive qualities of metal; and the challenging Cartridge Music, a manipulation of phonograph cartridges, where, Cage warns, "all sounds, even those ordinarily thought to be undesirable, are accepted."
3 CD Set $24
HAROLD LAND with KENNY DORHAM / CARMELL JONES / FRANK STRAZZERI / HAMPTON HAWES / SCOTT LeFARO / RED MITCHELL / et al - The Early Albums (Enlightenment 9185; EEC) American hard bop and post-bop tenor saxophonist, Harold Land developed his playing style with the Max Roach/Clifford Brown band into a personal, modern style; often rivaling Clifford Brown's instrumental ability with his own inventive and whimsical solos. His tone was strong and emotional, yet hinted at a certain introspective fragility. Land had an inimitably dark tone within the hard-bop and modal jazz paradigms. Over time this would contrast more and more with the brighter tonalities of John Coltrane-influenced saxophonists, although Land started to implement Coltrane's musical innovations. Land's "dire, brooding tenor sound began somewhere between rhythm and blues and Coleman Hawkins, and after the early 1960s owed more and more to Coltrane's harmonies, phrasing and experiments with modalism." This 4CD collection brings together eight of Harold Land's very finest albums, all released between 1954 and 1963 - the period during which this incredible musician, band leader and composer was at his absolute musical peak. Still criminally underrated and little known outside jazz circles, this compilation hopefully goes some way in reversing this trend, as it acts as both a fine introduction for beginners to his music and a perfect reminder of this great musician's sound for the rest of us.
4 CD Set $16
RANDY HOLDEN - Population II (RidingEasy Records Ezrdr 116; USA) "'Godzilla just walked into the room. People just stood there with their eyes and mouths wide open.' To hear Randy Holden describe the audience's reaction in 1969 to his solo debut performing with a teeth-rattling phalanx of 16 (sixteen!) 200 watt Sunn amps is about as close as one will get to truly experience the moment heavy metal music morphed into existence. However, at last Riding Easy have unearthed the proper fossil record. Population II, the now legendary, extremely rare album by guitarist/vocalist Holden and drummer/keyboardist Chris Lockheed is considered to be one of the earliest examples of doom metal. Though its original release was a very limited in number and distribution, like all great records, its impact over time has continued to grow. In 1969, Holden, fresh off his tenure with proto-metal pioneers Blue Cheer (appearing on one side of the New! Improved! Blue Cheer album and touring for the better part of a year in the group), aimed for more control over his band. Thus, Randy Holden - Population II was born, the duo naming itself after the astronomical term for a particular star cluster with heavy metals present. 'I wanted to do something that hadn't been done before,' Holden explains. 'I was interested in discordant sounds that could be melodic but gigantically huge. I rented an Opera house for rehearsal, set up with 16 Sunn amps. That's what I was going for, way over the top.' And over the top it is. The six-song album delves into leaden sludge, lumbering doom and epic soaring riffs that sound free from all constraints of the era. It's incredibly heavy, but infused with a melodic, albeit mechanistic, sensibility. Troubles with the album's release bankrupted Holden, who subsequently left music for over two decades. It was bootlegged several times over the years, but until now hasn't seen a proper remaster and has yet to be available on digital platforms. 'The original mastering just destroyed the dynamics of it,' Holden says. 'They flattened it out. Now we got a really nice remaster that should be the closest thing to the original recording.'"
ELIANE RADIGUE - Transamorem - Transmortem (Important Records 337; USA) Restocked. "Transamorem - Transmortem was premiered on March 9, 1974 at The Kitchen in NYC, where the music programmer at the time was Rhys Chatham - this was right before his guitar phase. During this period, Transamorem - Transmortem was presented along with other compositions by Eliane Radigue in a linear mode of listening, although the piece had originally been conceived, during its composition, as a sound installation. Of course, both modes of listening are possible, and each works marvelously in its own way."
ELIANE RADIGUE - Adnos I-III (Important Records 028; USA) Restocked. "Eliane Radigue's Adnos trilogy was composed between 1973 and 1980 and is among her finest compositions. Adnos is a deeply meditative work of infinite depth and sensitivity; one of the high points of modern minimal electronic composition. Packaged in a heavy duty 3-CD jacket much like the recent Eleh releases and containing extensive archival materials."
3 CD Set $40
BACK IN STOCK SALE CD SECTION:
The below list are CD’s which have recently come back in stock, some more recent, some not so recent. If you take 3 or more of any of the discs listed below, you can take $1 off of each one. There are four labels featured here: NoBusiness, Listen! Foundation, Fou Records and Victo, plus a couple of stragglers:
EVAN PARKER / BARRY GUY / PAUL LYTTON - Concert in Vilnius (NoBusiness 123; Lithuania)
SAM RIVERS QUINTET with JOE DALEY / DAVE HOLLAND / BARRY ALTSCHUL / CHARLIE PERSIP - Zemith (NoBusiness 124; Lithuania)
STEVE SWELL / ROBERT BOSTON / MICHAEL VATCHER - Brain in a Dish (NoBusiness 121; Lithuania)
KAORU ABE / SABU TOYOZUMI - Mannyoka (NoBusiness 107; Lithuania)
SABU TOYOZUMI / YONG YANDSEN / RICK COUNTRYMAN / SIMON TAN - Voices of the Spirit (Chap-Chap Records CPCD-016; Earth)
EVAN PARKER / LOTTE ANKER / TORBEN SNEKKESTAD - Inferences (Listen! Foundation FSR 14-2019; Poland)
PETER EVANS / AGUSTI FERNANDEZ / BARRY GUY - Free Radicals at DOM (Listen! Foundation FSR 15; Poland)
EDDIE PREVOST / EVAN PARKER - Tools of Imagination (Listen! Foundation FSR 05/2018; Poland)
JOE MORRIS & EVAN PARKER - The Village (Listen! Foundation FSR13 2019; Polan)
DEREK BAILEY / JOELLE LEANDRE / GEORGE LEWIS / EVAN PARKER - 28 Rue Dunois Juillet 1982 (Fou Records 06; France)
DAUNIK LAZRO / JOELLE LEANDRE / GEORGE LEWIS - Enfances 8 Janv. 1984 (Fou Records 18; France )
WILLEM BREUKER KOLLEKTIEF with ROY RAAYMAKERS / WILLEM VAN MANEN / BERNRAD HUNNEKINK / BOB DRIESSEN / MAARTEN VAN NORDEN / HENK de JONGE / ARJEN GORTER / ROB VERURMEN - Angouleme 18 Mai 1980 [2 CD Set] (Fou Records 09 & 10; France )
2 CD Set $24
URS LEIMGRUBER & JEAN MARC FOUSSAT - Face to Face [2 CD Set] (Fou Records 32/33 ,France)
2 CD Set $24
SOPHIE AGNEL / DAUNIK LAZRO - Marguerite d'Or Pâle (Fou Records 21; France)
JEAN-MARC FOUSSAT / SYLVAIN GUERINEAU / JOE McPHEE - QUOD (Fou Records 05; France)
JEAN-MARC FOUSSAT / JEAN-LUC PETIT - D'Ou Vient La Lumiere! (Fou Records 13; France)
THE VICTO LABEL:
BORBETOMAGUS - Both Noises End Burning (Victo 106; Canada)
ANTHONY BRAXTON With MARILYN CRISPELL / MARK DRESSER / GERRY HEMINGWAY - Quartet (Victoriaville) 1992 (Victo 021 ,Canada)
ANTHONY BRAXTON With EVAN PARKER/PAUL SMOKER/GEORGE E LEWIS/BOBBY NAUGHTON/JOELLE LEANDRE/GERRY HEMINGWAY - Ensemble (Victoriaville) 1988 (Victo 007; Canada)
ANTHONY BRAXTON DIAMOND CURTAIN WALL TRIO With TAYLOR HO BYNUM/MARY HALVORSON - Trio (Victoriaville) 2007 (Victo 108; Canada)
ANTHONY BRAXTON - Solo (Victoriaville) 2017 (Victo 130; Canada)
PETER BROTZMANN/ & With TRIO ROMA [MASSIMO PUPILLO/PAAL NILSSEN-LOVE] - Solo/Trio Roma: Live At The 27th Victoriaville Festival Of New Music, 2011 (Victo 122/123 ,Canada)
2 CD Set $24
MARILYN CRISPELL - Labyrinths (Victo 06; Canada)
BILL DIXON With TAYLOR HO BYNUM/GRAHAM HAYNES/STEPHEN HAYNES/ROB MAZUREK et al - Envoi: Live At Victo 2010 (Victo 120; Canada)
FRED FRITH / EVAN PARKER - Hello, I Must Be Going (Victo 128; Canada)
FUSHITSUSHA [HAINO KEIJI] - Withdrawe, This Sable Disclosure Ere Devot'd (Victo 060; Canada)
PETER KOWALD/WILLIAM PARKER - The Victoriaville tape (Victo 088; Canada)
MERZBOW / PANSONIC with MIKA VAINIO / ILPO VAISANEN - V (Victo 089; Canada)
THURSTON MOORE With TOM SURGAL / WILLIAM WINANT - Piece For Jetsun Dolma (Victo 045; Canada)
MUSICA ELETTRONICA VIVA With FREDERIC RZEWSKI / RICHARD TEITLELBAUM / ALVIN CURRAN - Symphony No 106 (Victo 129; Canada)
EVAN PARKER ELECTROACOUSTIC SEPTET with GEORGE LEWIS / IKUE MORI / PETER EVANS / NED ROTHENBERG / OKKYUNG LEE / SAM PLUTA] - Seven (Victo 127; Canada)
EVAN PARKER / SAINKHO NAMCHYLAK - Mars Song (Victo 042; Canada)
WILLIAM PARKER & THE LITTLE HUEY CREATIVE MUSIC ORCHESTRA - For Percy Heath (Victo 102; Canada)
BARRE PHILLIPS / CATHERINE JAUNIAUX / MALCOLM GOLDSTEIN - Birds Abide (Victo 119; Canada)
BARRE PHILLIPS / JOELLE LEANDRE / WILLIAM PARKER - After You Gone: In memory of Peter Kowald (Victo 091; Canada)
CECIL TAYLOR / BILL DIXON / TONY OXLEY - Taylor/Dixon/Oxley (Victo 082; Canada)
KEITH TIPPETT - Une Croix Dans L'Ocean (Victo 031; Canada)
Here are some of the same above sale CD’s with reviews:
KAORU ABE / SABU TOYOZUMI - Mannyoka (NoBusiness 107; Lithuania) Featuring: Kaoru Abe - alto, sopranino and soprano saxes and Sabu Toyozumi - drums and percussion. Japanese free/jazz sax legend, Kaoru Abe, dies at the age of only 29 in 1978, living a fast and crazy life and dieing of a drug overdose. His entire music career was only 10 years, from 1968 to 1978. In that short period, he was well recorded with around 30 releases, ten of which are solo sax efforts, duos with guitarist Masayuki Takayanagi, bassist Motoharu Yoshizawaand drummer Sabu Toyozuma. Mr. Abe also toured and recorded with Milford Graves, Derek Bailey and Toshinori Konda in 1977 & 1978. Sadly, nothing by Kaoru Abe has been in print for many years until now… Many of his rare CD’s & LP’s go for big bucks on the resale market. This disc was recorded at two concerts in Tokyo in January and July of 1978, the year that Mr. Abe passed away. Those in the know, free/jazz freaks worldwide, should know of drummer Sabu Toyozumi from his work with Peter Brotzmann, Derek Bailey, Misha Mengelberg and Haino Keiji. ‘Part 1’ kicks things off with an immense blast with Mr. Abe on alto sax and Mr. Toyozumi on drums. Abe sounds a bit like Albert Ayler, although he plays alto & soprano saxes, bending and twisting every note in his own unique way. This duo recorded a few disc together and they sound just right working together, shadowing each other, tightly connecting no matter where they soar. If you savor what is essentially the beginning of fee/jazz in Japan, then you should really hear this disc. It is some 73 minutes long and it all flows together in powerful waves. So good to finally a disc back in distribution that captures the amazing talent & passion filled music of Kaoru Abe and Sabu Toyozumi. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
SABU TOYOZUMI / YONG YANDSEN / RICK COUNTRYMAN / SIMON TAN - Voices of the Spirit (Chap-Chap Records CPCD-016; Earth) Featuring Rick Countryman on alto sax, Yong Yandsen on tenor sax, Simon Tan on acoustic bass and Sabu Toyozumi on drums. This mighty fine disc was recorded at the Tago Jazz Cafe in the Philippines on March 1st, 2020, which was only 2 months ago. Over the few years, we have gotten in a few discs from an American-born, Philippines-based alto saxist named Rick Countryman. Mr. Countryman has been hooking up with the legendary Japanese free/jazz drummer, Sabu Toyozumi, an old master who has worked with many other giants: Kaoru Abe, Peter Brotzmann, Misha Mengelberg and Paul Rutherford. The other two members of this quartet I know very little about aside from bassist Simon Tan being on a couple of other discs with Mr. Countryman. The tenor player here, Yong Yandsen, also recorded with Paal Nilsson-Love for a trio CD which was released a few months ago (March of 2020). The first thing I noticed about this disc is how well it is recorded. Considering that it is recorded live, it has perfect, well-balanced sound! The quartet is/are on fire right from the opening salvo, both saxists are in fine form, consistently burning with scorch/fire intensity/spirit. Considering that the production is so good, we can hear the way all four members work together. Even when both saxists are blasting at the same time, we hear the way the rhythm team must balance & connect the two free spirits as they soar. When things finally calm down midway, the saxists do a great job of more relaxed note-bending calesthenics. I can hear some of the John Zorn/Tamio extreme high-end bent-note weirdness in what Countryman does from time to time, although both saxists here are restless explorers who rarely stay in one tonal or textural place for very long. Midway through “Unity of Opposites” the quartet calm down to a more somber simmer which feels so good after taking us to the top of the mountain. Tenor saxist Yandsen does a bit of vocalizing through his sax at times which gives him a Brotzmann-like sound although it doesn’t last very long. During the past month (April of 2020), I have stuck at home and listening to quite a bit of vinyl that I’ve never heard. It is a diverse menu and I haven’t heard much completely free music in a while. This disc makes me realize how much I miss me weekly dose of cosmic/free/music. So good to heart this again! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
URS LEIMGRUBER & JEAN MARC FOUSSAT - Face to Face [2 CD Set] (Fou Records 32/33 ,France) Featuring Urs Leimgruber on soprano & tenor saxes and Jean-Marc Foussat on AKS synth & voice. Last week (5/31-6/3/19), I had the opportunity to hear Swiss saxist, Urs Leimgruber, play live on three separate occasions, playing solos & duos with Jessica Pavone & Brandon Lopez. Each set was superb, but in very different ways. I have long followed & enjoyed the work of Mr. Leimgruber whose career reaches back to the mid-seventies with the great quartet Om, as well as working with John Wolf Brennan, Joe McPhee and Quartet Noir. Mr. Leimgruber has recorded a number of solo sax discs throughout his evolution and it seems as if he has recorded/performed even more in the duo context: Fritz Hauser, Thomas Lehn, Evan Parker and Vinny Golia. For this 2 CD set, Mr. Leimgruber collaborates with the French recording engineer/producer/archivist Jean-Marc Foussat. Mr. Foussat plays an AKS synth here, uses his voice and recorded these two sessions in two towns in Switzerland, Zurich and Lucerne, on October 19th & 26th of last year (2018). After hearing Mr. Leimgruber play in three very different settings, I see/hear how he adapts to the room & person he is playing with. On Disc one, ‘Rive de Reves’, the duo take their time with breath-like radiator hissing sounds, the rhythmic tapping of the keys, subtle electronics, squeaks and other carefully bent notes. Mr. Leimgruber twists those notes inside out, the tension ever expanding. Mr. Foussat sounds as if he has sampled voices (a suspenseful chorus) and other odd sounds, also bending the samples to work well with variety of sax & mouthpiece sounds. Eventually it sounds as if Mr. Leimgruber’s sax is being played through the synth and manipulated in part. Mr. Foussat is a fine collaborator and consistently finds ways for adding a variety of haunting or disorienting sounds to Mr. Leimgruber’s sax playing. When Mr. Leimgruber switches to tenor sax, his sound is even more impressive, expansive, intense and explosive at times. The second was recorded in another hall, a week earlier. Again, we hear the way Mr. Foussat adds right amount of sonic seasoning to the solo sax work of reeds wiz Urs Leimgruber. If you are patient and listen closely, you will hear layers of subtle electronics, samples and sax explorations. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
2 CD Set $24
SOPHIE AGNEL / DAUNIK LAZRO - Marguerite d'Or Pâle (Fou Records 21; France)French pianist Sophie Agnel and sax player Daunik Lazro can create a whole sonic universe every time they touch their instruments. Weird and intriguing universes that refuse to conform to any familiar musical convention yet offer profound and arresting poetic sensibility and inventive game-like plays. These two master improvisers began to collaborate a decade ago in Lazro short-lived quartet Qwat Neum Sixx (that has released only one album, Live at festival NPAI 2007, Amor Fati, 2009), but continued to perform as together in other formats, often with double bass player Paul Rogers or guitarist Olivier Benoit. These shared experiences enriched Agnel and Lazro vocabularies and perfected their immediate interplay. ‘Marguerite d'Or Pâle’ captures the duo of Agnel and Lazro performing live at the Dom club in Moscow on June 2016. The title of the album, as well as the titles of the improvisations, draw their inspiration from the classic novel of Russian writer Mikhail Bulgakov ‘The Master and Margarita’. These improvisations sound as consciously corresponding with the amused, mysterious and often subversive spirit of Bulgakov imaginative plots. The six improvisations enable both Agnel and Lazro to employ their highly personal approaches in ways that suggest haunting, kaleidoscopic atmospheres. Agnel sets the outlines for the ethereal, adventurous structures of these improvisations, wisely charging these pieces with restrained dramatic tension, while Lazro balances her playful juggling with forms with intensive flow and occasional eruptions of colorful ideas. Lazro, who focuses here on his tenor sax more than his baritone sax, demonstrates his impressive breathing techniques, whispers and speaks unintelligible words through the mouthpiece. Agnel adds extensive preparations to the piano strings, transforming the keyboard into an instrument that produces abstract, sensual and sometimes even beautiful-disturbing sounds.”
JEAN-MARC FOUSSAT / SYLVAIN GUERINEAU / JOE McPHEE - QUOD (Fou Records 05; France) Featuring Sylvain Guerineau on tenor sax, Joe McPhee on soprano sax and Jean-Marc Foussat on synth & samples. This disc was recorded at Studio Pyjama in France in March of 2010. There is a large underground of creative musicians in France, often in & around Paris, but also in other lesser known cities in France like Lille. Paris-based, Jean-Marc Foussat is an engineer & producer & longtime documenter of the French Creative Music Scene, as well as play synth, electronics and his sonic experimental sounds. Mr. Foussat’s own label, Fou Records, has some 20 releases, found a great job of capturing many great live and studio performances. Since around 2007, I have been checking out the playing of tenor saxist, Sylvain Guerineau, from his work with Paul Rogers, Benjamin Duboc, Kent Carter & Itaru Oki. Mr. Foussat and Mr. Guerineau have two previous duo records on the Leo and Nashazphone labels. New York-based multi-instrumentalist, Joe McPhee, might just be the most prolific improvising musician and world traveler, as far as recordings and concerts go. He seems to be everywhere in the US and in Europe playing with just about every great player from the ever-evolving international scene. So, you may ask, what does two saxes, electronics and voice sound like..? The tenor sax and synth sound particularly good together, often sharing a note, the sounds blend together as one. The music is spacious, somewhat dark of filled with suspense. When Mr. McPhee enters on soprano sax, he seems to be at the other end of the spectrum, the tenor sounding more like a baritone at times. The trio take their time, moving cautiously around one another. Mr. Foussat sounds like he is playing an old analog synth and often uses it sparingly. While both saxes buzz around one another sending notes back and forth, creating a conversation, Foussat adds selective electronic shades and colors which enhance the sound of the saxes. Sometimes Mr. Fousset will take either sax and add synth effects, never pushing things too far out, which is often a problem with modern synth, sampler of computer players. In one section we hear a dog barking (sample?) in the background, adding an odd yet somewhat familiar ghost in the distance. One the second long piece, “The Forgiven”, both saxes calm down to a more lyrical sense of calm with occasional electronic shades or sprinkles. Eventually both saxes & synth increase in tempo, with repeating phrases. It reminds me of an album I listened to last night (3/24/20) by Urban Sax, a great French prog/jazz/experimental ensemble which usually features up to a hundred saxists playing in odd costumes in odd settings. Mr. Guerineau plays a old, haunting traditional sounding melody in one of the later sections, which gives this a charming change for a short bit. Things then expand as the saxes bend their notes slowly around one another while the synth creates some quietly disorienting sci-fi sounds. An at times austere yet mysterious soundtrack for the strange times we are currently living in. At the same time, evoking a fifties (sci-fi soundtrack) or seventies (Barney Wilen w/ 3 synth players), sort of sound. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
JEAN-MARC FOUSSAT / JEAN-LUC PETIT - D'Ou Vient La Lumiere! (Fou Records 13; France) “Today, another invigorating aural outing from Fou Records (FR-CD13), namely Jean-Marc Foussat & Jean-Luc Petit in the epic album . . . D'Ou Vient La Lumiere! It is a sprawling, almost orchestral set with Foussat's live electro-acoustics and Petit's contrabass clarinet, soprano and alto saxes combining for a new-music oriented, free-jazz improvised extravaganza. What strikes one on first hearing is the nicely realized combination of reeds and electronics, how they work in synchrony and evolve organically with vivid sound panoramas that retain a poetic quality and unfold with a linear thrust. The multi-layered Foussat electro-acoustics form ever-varying dramatic platforms against which Petit's limber and aurally sophisticated reed sonics comment and complement the proceedings creatively and with vivid character. Each of the four mostly long pieces forms an acoustically advanced poetic whole that has a concerted flow and a conversational agility, a cosmic sound depth, an evenamental thrust, a marked periodicity. It reminds us that Jean-Marc Foussat is one of the significant leaders and innovators in electro-acoustic improvisational new music today, but also that Jean-luc Petit is a wind-master with a full sound-color pallet and a fertile improvisational imagination. Get this one for a full-blown journey into the outer realms. There is a consistent realization of long-formed outness that retains your interest and satisfies your craving for the new and futuristic sounds of today! Very recommended.” - Grego Applegate Edwards
DAUNIK LAZRO / JOELLE LEANDRE / GEORGE LEWIS - Enfances 8 Janv. 1984 (Fou Records 18; France )”Amazing to think that 30 years of Joëlle Léandre’s many collaborations with Daunik Lazro and George Lewis began with a recording we’ve never heard in full before now. As I’ve been soaking in all the writing this week, I revisited a couple of seminal albums also recorded in the 1980s, particularly the Intakt releases The Storming of the Winter Palace (the epic quintet featuring Léandre, Lewis, Maggie Nicols, Irène Schweizer, and Günter Sommer) and Paris Quartet (Léandre’s album with Lazro, Schweizer, and Yves Robert). A portion of this trio performance appeared on Lazro’s HatHut set, Sweet Zee, but if I’m not mistaken, this is the first release of the complete session. Thinking about how this is likely the first recorded meeting of these three, the clarity of the recording would be enough to recommend it, for its historical value. But the real prizes here are the vibrancy and ingenuity of three great improvisers in collaboration. The opening 30 seconds of “Enface 1” contain a scattering of percussive noises (think Art Ensemble of Chicago-style little instruments), Léandre’s voice, and the briefest tease of Lazro’s sax. A minute later, the trio is fully awoken. Lazro and Léandre have long been collaborating, and the genesis of their partnership illuminates how well matched they’ve been since the beginning. All three musicians boast tremendous talent and commitment to the moment, but there’s also sly humor and a passionate drive to urge listeners to out of their traditionally passive role. “Enfance 4” is a wonderful examples of this, with Léandre’s arco solo suddenly interrupted by Lewis and Lazro’s riffs and squaks. “Enface 5” is something of preview of the past 30 years in retrospect. Early on, Lazro takes a lyrical solo, which Léandre quickly picks up on bass. The two continue moving forward, somewhat hesitantly, before ceding the floor to Lewis for an extended solo. The three come together in a swirling passage of singing, bass, trombone, and sax, which contrasts staccato passages with brassy outbursts. Hearing it all hang together in synchrony, I was somewhat on edge, waiting to hear how long the passage would sustain itself. With most of the tracks clocking in at sub-4 minutes, the 20-minute “Enface 5” and 12-minute “Enface 6” form the centerpiece of the album. Toward the middle of “Enface 6” is a Lazro/Lewis duet, with the two weaving their lines together into a dense run. Gradually, Léandre joins, then quickly takes centerstage for a solo that sets the path forward for the piece’s conclusion. The final track, “Enface 10,” plays like a strident plea that could be a call for peace, a call to action, or a call simply echoing out into space, perhaps never to be answered.” - Lee Rice Epstein, FreeJazzBlog
BORBETOMAGUS - Both Noises End Burning (Victo 106; Canada) I just got back from another incredible Victoriaville New Music festival in Quebec and I feel invigorated with some 24 sets of challenging music from around the planet. This disc is the latest installment of live-from-Victo CD's from the previous fest in May of 2006. That fest was a particularly noise-filled one with the likes of Sunn)))) O, Haino Keiji, KK Null Trio, Mike Patton & ZU and Fe-Mail. This disc captures perhaps the ultimate collaboration between two monsters of noise: Borbetomagus (from Nyack, NY) and Hijokaidan from Japan. The long-running and legendary Borbetomagus continue to feature Jim Sauter & Don Dietrich on saxes with plastic tube extensions and Donald Miller on electric guitar. The equally legendary Hijokaidan feature Mr. Jojo Hiroshige on electric guitar, Ms. Unko Hiroshige on voice, Mr. Toshiji Mikawa on electronics and Ms. Nao Shibata on drums. This captured the entire nearly 72-minute set in all of its intense glory. There was a good deal to take in visually as both groups launched into their over-the-top noise-making din and you can see some nifty pix in the booklet. I remember the gig itself to be pretty fucking loud and hilarious to watch at times, sort-of like a Godzilla versus King Kong type of flick. They worked hard on the sound of this disc so you can hear diversity of noise up close, but we have control of the at-home volume. At nearly 72-minutes, without any indexing, this disc can be an overwhelming task, yet, it will be appreciated by a new and old audience of heavy noise fans. Blistering, screaming, blast-furnace, industrial-strength explosion of metallic shrapnel, vocal screams, electronic blitzkrieg insanity. Is too much not enough?!? My brain is melting! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
ATTENTION ALL CREATIVE MUSICIANS OUT THERE, Around the world.
If you have a link, for some music that you are working on and want to share it with the folks who read the DMG Newsletter, please send the link to DMG at DMG@Downtownmusicgallery.com. Many of us are going stir crazy staying at home so if you want to inspire us and help us get through these difficult times, please show us what you got. I listed some these last week but have also a few more.
MORE THINGS TO DO WHILE YOU ARE WAITING AROUND FOR THE WORLD TO END OR GET BETTER:
STILL STIR CRAZY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS!
This is the section where I usually recommend upcoming concerts in the NYC area. As far as I can tell there are no upcoming shows anywhere around here, except perhaps on-line. All places I usually frequent are now closed for the foreseeable future. And everyone is worried about the near future, their health and their sanity for their friends and family. I am trying to come up with something inspirational to put out there but I am also very worried about myself, the store, all of the creative musicians that we need and support, as well as everyone else who has lost their jobs.
I have been at home at my old apartment in New Jersey, cleaning, reorganizing my collection, finding lots of doubles, listening to dozens of records, CD’s,cassettes and DVD’s. And working on my ongoing series of discographies and assorted music lists.
Over the past month a number of musicians have been putting up some music on-line for anyone to check out. I know that many of us are going a bit stir crazy so it is time to do some soul searching and serious listening. Here is a list of some music links to check out:
THIS IS FROM MY GOOD FRIEND JESSICA HALLOCK,
who runs the New York Noise website and helps to promote creative music from hundreds of different musicians! At the beginning of April, Jessica convinced me not to go to the store and stay at home & work from there/here. Thanks to Jessica, Frank Meadows and Charmaine Lee, I have taken their advice seriously and I remain safe and alive (at home) while the store continues to do mail-order. Thanks Jessica, I do appreciate your tough love, this is what it takes sometimes to get the elder folks to break with their usual routine or habits and think more clearly about life.
This is from Jessica Hallock, please do check it out, there is so much to explore here and I know some of you are bored and need some inspiration/distraction:
Livestreams are obviously no replacement for live shows, but they're all the community we have right now––so experimental music calendar NYC-Noise.com now provides links to livestreams (with artist / curator donation info); a roundup of local musicians' releases; COVID-19-related resources, including links to grants, petitions, & a local venue donation list; & an Instagram account (@NYC_Noise) promoting artists and releases. Please let me know about your livestreams &/or new records at www.nyc-noise.com/submit.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO TERRY RILEY - June 24th!
Here is a new version of Terry’s “In C” (Covid Version)
Organized by Benjamin Miller in Detroit
COVID ENSEMBLE: John D Morton electric Guitar Pulse, Ben Miller acoustic-electric-bass guitars, Mike Khoury violin, Molly Jones flute, Kevin Gosa alto-soprano saxophones, Roger Clark Miller jaymar toy piano, Mike List marimba, Thom Monks vibraphone, John Keith wurlitzer and Clem Fortuna accordion.
1 hour long and truly transcendent! - BLG
This was sent to us by KURT RALSKE from Todd Capp’s Mystery Train, Dissipated Face, Ultra Vivid Scene & Suburban Bohemia!
Rediscovered documentary on ALICE COLTRANE from 1970
This one comes from LEN 37 SIEGFRIED from Ecstasy Mule & Suburban Bohemia:
AMY DENIO: Vocal Exercises for Everybody and Solo Vocal(s) Performance by Amy!
THIS IS FROM GUITAR MASTER HENRY KAISER:
I have been recording video performances weekly and they get posted on Thursdays on the Cuneiform Records Youtube page.
This week it is a duo with Mike Baggetta, that just went up:
The week before it was a solo with some nice abstract animation of mine:
All of the weekly solos so far are always here:
once in a while they are historical old thangs from my video archive
and I will be doing more collaborations with other improvisors.
I plan to keep this up until there are live gigs again
so there will likely be a lot more of these
From INGRID LAUBROCK & TOM RAINEY:
Every Week for the entirety of this pandemic/lockdown INGRID LAUBROCK & TIM RAINEY have been posting a new duo offering. I have listened to every one of these as they were sent out and am much impressed by the way this duo continues to evolve and work their way through many ideas. You can check out each one here:
This comes from electric bassist, GIACOMO MEREGA:
My series is called ‘Solipsism Digest’. More vids to come!
This is from good friend DON WHITE from Texas and who goes to the FIMAV Fest every year:
Two Live Sets with Experimental Guitarist SANDY EWEN:
They Who Sound Special Delivery - Sandy Ewen, Houston, TX, 5/30/20:
Etched In The Eye with Sandy Ewen - Guitar, Objects, Danny Kamins - Alto and Baritone Saxes & Robert Pearson - Keyboards
Space HL, Houston, TX, 12/19/19: https://youtu.be/zO19zhPrQhI
STREAMING SESSIONS FROM THE EARLY GROUP:
JON ROSE / ROBERTO ZORZI / ROGER TURNER / ANDREA CENTAZZO / GERRY HEMINGWAY / ARTURO STALTERI!
A friend of mine named Mauro Stocco from Italy is co-producing a series of streaming sessions by the following musicians:
12th JON ROSE www.facebook.com/events/1520424481459326
19th ROBERTO ZORZI - DANILO GALLO
26th ROGER TURNER
03rd ANDREA CENTAZZO
10th ALVIN CURRAN
17th ARTURO STALTERI
24th GERRY HEMINGWAY
The EARLY GROUP is proud to present two unissued videos by Jon Rose, recorded specifically for this event. Due to some unavoidable bandwidth issues affecting the transmission from Australia, the videos were pre-recorded and will be streamed, instead of the live performance originally conceived.
The event will be broadcasted at two distinct times (8.30 pm for USA/Europe and 8.30 pm for Australia), to allow the audiences to follow at an acceptable daytime.
All the proceeds from this streaming session will go to the Artist. We look forward to meeting you!
Links to the Jon Rose sites:
This is from Kevin Reilly at Relative Pitch Records:
JAMES BRANDON LEWIS Live at The Spectrum, In Brooklyn:
Support your favorite artists on Friday through bandcamp.
They are waiving their revenue share.
THOMAS SAYERS ELLIS is the leader of the great Poetry/Music/Confrontation Band HEROES ARE GANG LEADERS a/k/a HAGL.
HAGL has a website that you should check out at: www.heroesaregangleaders.com
for the latest intersection of music-minded words and word-minded music and while you are there also check out The Lokotown Reverb where classic overlooked Oral Literature, Studio Recordings and Live Performances are given a fresh look!
GIANTHOLOGY is a forum for writing not whining, aesthetics not agenda, ideas not issues, vision not victimhood, GIANTHOLOGY is edited by the members of Heroes Are Gang Leaders.
Send 2 to 4 unpublished works to HeroesAreGangLeaders@gmail.com.
Geoffrey Himes’s poetry has been published by December, the Delaware Poetry Review, Salt Lick, the Baltimore City Paper, the Loch Raven Review, the Bhubaneswar Review and other publications. He has co-written songs with Si Kahn, Walter Egan, Pete Kennedy, Billy Kemp, Fred Koller and others. He has written about popular music and theater for the Washington Post, New York Times, Rolling Stone, Smithsonian, Paste, Downbeat and others since 1977. His book on Bruce Springsteen, “Born in the U.S.A.,” was published in 2005
The RUBIN MUSEUM Daily Offering:
Check it out at: https://www.instagram.com/rubinmuseum/channel/?mc_cid=0176fb37a6&mc_eid=39c235b0f4
Over the past few weeks, uncertainty has become a prominent part of everyday life. Although the unknown can be unsettling, we can find inspiration in the ways performing artists tap into impermanence to fuel their creativity.
ROULETTE AT HOME:
Roulette TV: Nick Dunston
In early 2019, Roulette TV sat down with bassist and composer Nick Dunston ahead of the first concert of his year-long Van Lier Fellowship. In addition to the interview, this episode features live performance footage of Dunston's quintet Atlantic Extraction and the world premiere of The Floor is Lava! written for five double basses. Dunston also premiered La Operación—a multi-movement composition written for soprano voice, two alto saxophones, two double basses, and two percussionists—as part of his fellowship in the same year. Check out:
https://vimeo.com/342125717?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
Playlist: Excerpts from the Black Avant-Garde - Tracks by Tomeka Reid, Reggie Workman, Diedre Murray, Anthony Davis, Amiri Baraka, Henry Threadgill, William Parker, Matana Roberts from the Roulette concert archive. - https://soundcloud.com/roulette_intermedium/sets/blackavantgarde?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
The weekly stream on WFMU features concert recordings by Roscoe Mitchell & Francesco Filidei, John Oswald/Miguel Frasconi/Marvin Green, and Wadada Leo Smith’s Nyabinghi Arkeztra from 1991 at Roulette. Tune in: 1. https://wfmu.org/playlists/shows/93933?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
2. https://roulette.org/event/wadada-selasie-leo-smith-2/?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
ARTS FOR ART Presents:
Friday, June 26, 8pm
Francisco Mela / Hery Paz / Juanma Trujillo
Oliver Lake Big Band:
Vincent Chancey Trio:
We at NATIONAL SAWDUST
are thrilled to announce the launch of the Live@NationalSawdust Digital Discovery Festival, a weekly program of free live performances, interviews, and artist development.
Check it out at: https://live.nationalsawdust.org/?mc_cid=92234165f2&mc_eid=12e3f9406e
From BOB DOWNES, amazing UK flutist, currently living in Germany:
My good friend & guitar master GARY LUCAS is playing half hour sets at his apartment in the West village every Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday at 3pm EST on Facebook. Different songs on each episode. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/gary.lucas.5836