There was two old maids, layin' in the sand
Each one wonderin' if the other was a man
(Alternative: Each one wishing that the other was a man)
Ain't it crazy, ain't it crazy
Ain't it crazy one day, to keep on rubbin' at that thing
During my ongoing listening session of checking out (at least) one hour of live Grateful Dead sets in chronological order every other night, which I’ve done going on for the past year, I’ve discovered evolving versions of many songs that the Dead have either written or have covered. Songs that change every time they are played. I’ve just passed the 200th gig mark and am working my way through 6 nights in a row at the Fillmore East in April of 1971. I never really thought too much about Pigpen, the Dead’s occasional frontman, lead singer, organist & harmonica player. It turns out that Pigpen, who died mainly from drinking too much alcohol in 1973, was an integral part of many Dead shows from their beginning in 1965 until his demise. Pigpen had a great voice for singing the blues, R&B and funk songs, played great blues-harp (harmonica) and had a way of getting the Dead’s audience to sing, dance and get along in a most communal way. Pigpen often chides the men in the audience to take their hands out of their pockets and introduce themselves to the women who are standing close-by, bringing people together in his won way. I am working on a Pigpen best-of comp and have been really enjoying his different versions of “Hard to Handle”, “I’m a King Bee”, “It’s a Man’s, Man’s, Man’s World” and the above song which is called “The Rub” or “Ain’t It Crazy”. I find this song to immensely funny, I keep crackin’ up every time I hear it. It is a ridiculous song with probably not much meaning but still it does make me laugh out loud. And this is something we all need to do during these ridiculous times. - MC BruceLee, DMG
Saturday, March 12th: The GAUCI-MUSIC Series Continues with: TRIPLE CD Release Concert!
6:30pm: ELI WALLACE - synth / STEPHEN GAUCI - tenor sax
7:15pm: KEVIN SHEA - drums / STEPHEN GAUCI - tenor sax
8pm: STEPHEN GAUCI - tenor sax / ELI WALLACE - synth / KEVIN SHEA - drums
Tuesday, March 15th:
6:30: s0nic 0penings with PATRICK BRENNAN / HILLIARD GREENE / MICHAEL TA THOMPSON
7:30: MICHAEL FOSTER / KYLE MOTL - Tenor Sax / Contrabass
RARE Sunday, March 20th Event:
6:30 THOLLEM McDONAS / MICHAEL WIMBERLEY - Synth / Percussion!
New Discs for This Week’s Serious Listeners:
TYLER MITCHELL with MARSHALL ALLEN / CHRIS HEMMINGWAY / NICOLETTA MANZINI / ELSON NASCIMENTO / WAYNE SMITH - Dancing Shadows (Mahakala 020; USA) Featuring Marshall Allen on alto sax & EVI, Chris Hemmingway on tenor sax, Nicoletta Manzini on alto sax, Tyler Mitchell on contrabass, Elson Nascimento on percussion and Wayne Smith on drums. It seems hard to believe that the unstoppable Free/Jazz sprit/fire saxist Marshall Allen will turn 98 in May of this year or that he has been leading the Sun Ra Arkestra since Mr. Ra’s passing in 1993, nearly 30 years later. Considering that there’ been well over 100 members of the Arkestra, which began around 1956, a number of these avant/jazz giants have run their their own bands and/or played with many other jazz greats. Bassist Tyler Mitchell has worked with Steve Grossman, Art Taylor & Spike Wilner and has a leader date from 2012. I am not so sure on how long that Mr. Tyler has been with the Arkestra, but he obviously has made friends with the other members. The other members of the sextet here include Arkestra members: Elson Nascimento and Wayne Smith. I hadn’t heard of Italian saxist, Nicoletta Manzini, before now although she has recorded with Steve Grossman as part of a sextet led by Luciano Fabris.
The spirit of Sun Ra is palpable throughout this disc as the sextet covers six Sun Ra songs, one by Thelonious Monk, two by Ms. Manzini and 3 by Tyler Mitchell. In essence, this band sounds like a smaller version of the Su Ra Arkestra. One of the things that Sun Ra doesn’t get enough credit for is his vast catalogue of great songs, covering the history of jazz. “Interstellar Low Ways” opens things with a sublime, laid back groove and some opening fireworks from Marshall Allen’s trusty alto sax plus a couple of lovely solos from Ms. Manzini and Mr. Hemmingway. Ms. Manzini’s “Spaced Out” is aptly titled and sounds like a calm version of space music with Mr. Allen adding his EVI (electronic valve instrument) to the blend. “Angels and Demons at Play” is an early Sun Ra composition and here it gets a lovely, sumptuous reading with Mr. Mitchell’s acoustic featured at the center. Thelonious Monk’s classic, “Skippy” also gets a fine rendition here with a great, slightly bent solo from Marshall. “Dancing Shadows”, another Sun Ra comp, is played a furious tempo and keeps the adrenalin pumping throughout, with all three saxes spinning a tense web together. One of the main things that makes this disc so great is the way Mr. Mitchell has arranged the three saxes with two usually playing the thoughtful arrangements while the other solos on top. “Enlightenment” is one of my fave Sun Ra tunes and I still hear him & June Tyson singing it in my head. There is most uplifting instrumental version with some inspired Marshall Allen honking go on. What I really like about this disc is this: unlike some of the more far out, outer space/free-jazz Sun Ra insanity, this disc has a strong, inner flame that is heartwarming and feisty at the same time. If space is really the place, there perhaps it is time to take out for Other Worlds as the Planet Earth seemed doomed. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
IVO PERELMAN QUARTET with CHRISTOPHER PARKER / WILLIAM PARKER / CHAD ANDERSON - Magic Dust (Mahakala 024; USA) Featuring Ivo Perelman on tenor sax, Christopher Parker on piano, William Parker on contrabass & shakuhachi and Chad Anderson on drums & graphic CD design. I was pleased to hear from Steve H from ESP-Disk recently, offering us 30 titles by Ivo Perelman for a recent sale. Most of these discs are on the Leo label and usually sell for $16 or $17 each. Mr. Perelman has some 80 discs released over the past decade and we rarely sell more than handful of copies of each. We’ve sold over a hundred copies in the past few weeks and the sale continues. To say that Ivo Perelman is prolific would be putting it mildly, plus he rarely has discs on labels other than Leo, just ESP, Listen! Foundation and now Mahakala. Last year Mahakala released a trio CD with Mr. Perelman, Matt Shipp & Joe Morris. This year Mahakala has released a quartet disc with pianist Chris Parker, bassist William Parker and drummer Chad Anderson. Pianist Christopher Parker has a recent leader date on this same label (listed below) and it is an extraordinary effort. Bassist/composer/multi-instrumentalist, William Parker, certainly needs no intro here. I don’t know much about drummer Chad Anderson, although he did play on a disc by saxist Henry P Warner back in 2015 with Chris Parker agin on piano.
When I first put on Disc One, the pianist had a Matt Shipp sort of sound, Mr. Shipp being Mr. Perelman’s most consistent collaborator. Each of these two discs consist of two long pieces. I soon noticed both here and on Chris Parker’s recent disc for Mahakala, that Mr. Parker is an extraordinary free/jazz/spirit/music pianist, one of the best I’ve heard in recent memory. Ivo Perelman always chooses musical partners who can listen and connect with on different levels. This is powerful Free/Spirit/Music and reminds me at times of the great David S Ware Quartet. There is a wonderful organic flow going on here, it is like we’ve entered a dreamworld, where our thoughts are connected. At times, Mr. Perelman plays with a tone not unlike Sonny Rollins although his playing is freer. Ivo Perelman reaches deeply here tapping into that Free/Jazz/Music sound and unleashing torrents of energy. It sure feels good to be in his audience surfing on the waves of sound, balancing ourselves on the head of a pin. This is well-needed Cosmic Music for a better look at our present and future. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
2 CD Set $16
CHRISTOPHER PARKER and THE BAND OF GUARDIAN ANGELS with DANIEL CARTER / JAIMIE BRANCH / KELLEY HURT / WILLIAM PARKER / GERALD CLEAVER - Soul Food (Mahakala 016; USA) Featuring: Christopher Parker on piano & compositions, Daniel Carter on wind instruments, Jaimie Branch on trumpet, William Parker on bass, Gerald Cleaver on drums and Kelley Hurt on vocals. I’ve been noticing the name and playing of Christopher “Chris” Parker for the last decade or so, playing with folks like Henry P Warner, Andrew Lamb, Kidd Jordan and Dennis Gonzalez. The Band of Guardians features a number of Downtown’s best players: Daniel Carter, Jaimie Branch, William Parker and Gerald Cleaver. The only name here I didn’t recognize was vocalist Kelley Hurt, who did play play in the Dopolarians with Kidd Jordan & Alvin Fielder. Ms. Hurt also has her own disc as a leader covering the music of Frank Lowe, on the same label as this and released this year (2022).
“Morning Ritual” is restrained, eerie sounding with all the musicians and vocals floating together in a dreamlike haze. Ms. Hurt has a rich yet subdued voice and reminds me of Ellen Christie or Lisa Sokolov, two of Downtown’s best free/jazz vocalists. This session was superbly recorded by Jim Clouse at Park West Studios in Brooklyn. The tempo and intensity is turned up on the title track/band name, “Guardian Angels”. This free spirit music at its best, the sextet flying high and soaring together higher and higher. Midway through this piece, Jaimie Branch’s trumpet and Chris Parker’s piano take off together with some powerful interplay going on. Then relaxed sense of calm at the center of the band is special, it is free yet it always sounds connected. Chris Parker sounds especially impressive on “Truth & Fiction”, his piano playing sweeping and harp like, creating wave upon wave while everyone swirls tightly around him. This is indeed magic music, the playing is something else quite special. None of the musicians involved sound quite like the way they usually play. This is more of a combined group effort. Consistently superb. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
GORDON GRDINA’S HARAM with MARC RIBOT / JOSH & JESSE ZUBOT / FRANCOIS HOULE / et al - Night’s Quietest Hour (ABG Records 3; Canada) Haram currently features Gordon Grdina on oud, Marc Ribot on guitar, Francois Houle on clarinet, Josh & Jesse Zubot on violins. Vancouver-based guitarist & oudist, Gordon Grdina runs several bands simultaneously. His band Haram have earlier disc on Songlines from 2013. The version here has 12 members and is perhaps, Mr. Grdina’s most ambitious project yet. The ensemble here includes ethnic instruments like ney (end-blown flute), darbuka middle-eastern goblet-shaped drum) and riq (Arabic tambourine). All five compositions were composed by varied Arabic composers, as well as two traditional songs. I am not so sure how Downtown guitar great Marc Ribot got involved but her certainly sounds like an integral part of this wonderful ensemble. This disc opens with “Longa Nahawand”, which has a most sensual, hypnotic, middle-eastern sound with several layers (strings, reeds & extended rhythm team) all swirling superbly together. While the guitar & oud play the central theme, different members or subgroups (violins, horns & percussion) solo or interact together, with occasional solos stretching above the ensemble playing. The overall sound is like a middle-eastern orchestra, similar at times to Amir ElSaffar’s Two Rivers Ensemble. “Sala Min Shaaraha A-Thahab” actually has an intoxicating rock-like backbeat and minimal, sly vocals by Emad Armoush. Both Marc Ribot and one of the Zubot bros get a chance to solo/stretch out here and both do a great job. Mr. Grdina’s oud is featured on “Dulab Bayati”, another traditional piece. Grdina solos at length while different members of the ensemble interweave other their own parts to the large unit. What makes this disc so great is the way Mr. Grdina had blended traditional middle-eastern melodies with both solos and infectious ensemble work which bring our an inner flame which will reach those who are listening and need to take a trip to another place outside of our usual day’s experiences. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
GORDON GRDINA // TIM BERNE - Oddly Enough - The Music of Tim Berne (ABG Records 4; Canada)
Featuring Gordon Grdina on electric & Midi guitar, classical & acoustic guitar, oud & dobro. Over the past decade three different musicians have covered the music of saxist/composer Tim Berne. First keyboardist Matt Mitchell approached Mr. Berne to do some arrangements of his music, asking to see Tim Berne’s charts. Mr. Berne told Mitchell that there were few charts to see since his music is based on writing just a line or two and then repeating the line over & over, improvising on the line as the piece evolved. Mr. Berne & Mr. Mitchell ended up becoming friends and collaborating with Mitchell joining Mr. Berne’s band Snakeoil. Matt Mitchell eventually recorded a solo CD of Tim Berne’s music as well as doing a duo CD with Berne. Next, Mr. Verne was approached by a guitarist named Gregg Belisle-Chi, who recorded a disc of Berne’s music (on Relative Pitch) as well as doing a duo disc (on Intakt, earlier this year - 2022).
Just released is yet another disc with Vancouver-based guitarist & oudist, Gordon Grdina, covering the music of Tim Berne. Mr. Grdina is a master guitarist/oudist, as well as a fine composer and multi-bandleader. Mr. Grdina has become most prolific in recent times and this is his 8th release in the past year, all with different personnel & concepts. While doing some research for this disc, I found that most of these songs haven’t appeared on any the previous 30 Tim Berne discs. Perhaps Mr. Berne did indeed send some of these pieces to Mr. Grdina to work with. Starting with the title piece, “Oddly Enough”, Mr. Grdina plays several layers of guitars simultaneously through overdubbing. There is of course that Berne-like repeating figure with added guitar, oud or dobro accompaniment. Since there is no drummer on this, it sounds like Mr. Grdina is triggering a drum sample underneath for rhythmic support. “I Don’t Use Hair Products” was co-composed by Bill Frisell, who used to work with Berne in the mid-to-late 1980’s. This piece is played by one electric guitar and it is subdued and immensely haunting. “Trauma-One” has several layers of acoustic & electric guitars, the harmonies between all of them is somewhat skewered yet focused overall. Grdina also seems to be using a triggered bass part on “Lost in Redding”, which appeared on Snakeoil’s second album. This piece is skeletal sounding, yet still suspense-filled. Mr. Grdina switches to an oud on “Enord Krad” which is “Dark Drone” backwards. Grdina does add some haunting drone-like sounds to his oud which is playing a theme slowly and cautiously. I dig the way that Grdina adds a spooky mutated (processed) el guitar part to the second half of this piece, before adding a quaint dobro played final section. What makes this disc so compelling is this: Gordon Grdina has obviously thought out how to make each piece complete by adding different parts to enhance the themes with varied parts played & layered one or two upon another. This is as strong, successful undertaking which also captures the unique spirit/sound of Tim Berne’s large music catalogue. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
LISA ULLEN / ELSA BERGMAN / ANNA LUND - Space (Relative Pitch 1136; USA) Featuring Lisa Ullen on piano, Elsa Bergman on double bass and Anna Lund on drums. Recorded at Fylkingen Studio in Stockholm, Sweden in January of 2021. The Relative Pitch label casts a wide net over Creative Musicians from around the world, often coming with many new names who are often under-recorded and under-recognized. I do know pianist Lisa Ullen from her great debut disc on Nuscope (from 2014) and from a Swedish quartet called Festen who had a great disc out on Clean Feed (2016). It turns out that bassist Elsa Bergman was also a member of Festen as well as working with Per-Ake Holmlander, for his triple CD on Not Two (2019). Drummer Anna Lund is a new name for me. Right from the beginning there is a calm yet cosmic flow of free-wheeling spirits embracing us, the serious listeners. Ms. Ullen moves between playing inside the piano, muting strings and playing the keyboard seamlessly while the contrabass and drums both interweave as one freer, connected spirit trio. The flame is turned up higher on “Circle of Security”, the playing more agitated and intense. The room is vibrating on “Joint Attention”, the suspense is growing, the piano is throbbing, playing that one dark, sinister chord over and over, over and over. The rhythm team also pulsating in waves. There are sounds here I readily recognize like when the bassist taps in between the strings below the bridge with the end of their bow, as well as some spooky sounds which work well to cast a spell on us. When things are stripped down and sparse, we fill in the space with our own expectations or just enjoy the space. The cosmic soup goes from simmer to boil on “Tempest”, some of those low end bass notes make my kitchen cabinets buzz. Things erupt again on “the final piece, “Core”, a free/music piano trio at its best, who could ask for anything more?!? - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MATTHEW BOURNE / EMIL KARLSEN - The Embalmer (Relative Pitch 1139; USA) Featuring Matthew Bourne on piano and Emil Karlson on drums. There has been a number of great keyboardists popping up in the UK over the past decade, each one ambitious and diverse in the interests and abilities. The three that come to mind are Alexander Hawkins (check out Decoy or his work with Louis Moholo), Dave Stapleton (runs the Edition Records label & has several bands. I’ve been aware of Matthew Bourne for a while now, especially since he has worked with Paul Dunmall, Keith Tippett (amazing duo CD from last year!) and Franck Vigroux. I don’t know much about drummer Emil Karlsen although his does have a duo record with UK saxist Ed Jones on the FMR label. This being the Relative Pitch label, we know something special must be in store for this disc. This disc starts off quietly, the duo slowly adding sparse yet eerie sounds. The duo create a mysterious, ghost-like flow with some quick, frenzied, spiraling Keith Tippett-like lines by Mr. Bourne. It sounds as if both of these musicians have been working together for a while since they sound connected on varied levels. Mr. Bourne appears to take one theme or line at a time, play it over & over as the piece evolves with Mr. Karlsen adding his own flourishes. I like the way this session was recorded, the sound is warm, clean, acoustic and well-balanced. The tempo and intensity picks up by “Fool”, pushing the duo into a more bristling section of hard-core improv. Overall this is wonderful duo collaboration on several levels so dig in now! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
* ELI WALLACE / STEPHEN GAUGI - Pandemic Duets (GauciMusic 04441; USA) Featuring Eli Wallace on keyboards & synth and Stephen Gauci on tenor sax, recorded at Scholes Street Studio in August of 2020. I’ve had my eye and ear on young keyboardist Eli Wallace for the past several years, ever since he worked here at DMG for a short spell. I’ve caught Mr. Wallace play around a half dozen times, both live and on record and have been knocked out by each gig or disc. His self-produced solo disc ‘Barriers’ from last year (2021) remains an undiscovered gem from the current Downtown Network. Tenor saxist Steve Gauci has a monthly series here at DMG of two duos & one trio per month plus releasing a deluge of Pandemic Duos & studio or live trio efforts. Gauci picks his many collaborators well and adjusts his playing for each of his many musical partners. Eli Wallace is playing piano when this disc begins, slowly playing those dark chords with the piano pedal held down and also rubbing or tapping some utensils inside the piano while Gauci concentrates on bending each notes carefully. The duo has a somewhat scary, brooding sound that is most effective on the first piece. I dig the way Mr. Wallace keeps changing his approach, playing a variety of twisted lines which seems to evolve in unexpected ways, thus keeping Gauci on his toes as he also shifts through different squawks, high-end bent notes of different sorts. Mr. Wallace often plays some dark bass notes at the low end of the piano while he switches between hand-muted notes with his right hand or fanning the strings with some object(s). Mr. Gauci has a tendency to blow hard depending on who he is playing with, especially drummers. Here he lays back a bit which works well with Mr. Wallace’s evolving piano explorations. This duo works especially well together since they listen closely and respond sympathetically, creating a focused duo that sounds like one creative force. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, D
* ELI WALLACE & STEPHEN GAUCI will be playing here at DMG in a duo & trio with Kevin Shea this Saturday, March 12th, starting at 6:30
MORTON FELDMAN // ALFONSO GOMEZ - Late Works for Piano (Kairos 15106; EEC) Feldman's music is gentle and beautiful. Feldman's music shines. It is music that surrenders itself completely to beauty and preserves the second concept of beauty. With this three-CD set, Alfonso Gómez continues his exploration of contemporary classics of the second half of the 20th century for KAIROS. Feldman's monumental Triadic Memories and For Bunita Marcus frame the popular Palais de Mari, his last work for piano. Feldman's music can be contemplated in beautiful tranquility and by us together with our ears; and it is music in which we may wonderfully lose ourselves.
3 CD Set $21
CATHERINE LAMB // JACK QUARTET - Aggregate Forms (Kairos 18010; EEC) "The radically mind-expanding challenges of Catherine Lamb's string, quartets have given me great joy and satisfaction. Imagining and creating the sonic relations yields an integration of number and sound, offering a pathway toward ultimate oneness. Opening ears and mind to infinitely rich patterns, these resonances penetrate deeply to the core. The recording is not an endpoint, but part of a broadening process, a continuous evolution of abstract relationships becoming concrete, erasing artificial divisions between melody, harmony, and timbre, between body, mind, and spirit." (Christopher Otto, JACK Quartet) With her deft explorations of harmony via justly tuned intervals, Lamb's music lifts the veil of the world, letting us hear the plenitude that's just on the other side of our everyday hearing.
2 CD Set $26
KEN IKEDA / MASSIMO MAGEE / EDDIE PREVOST / JOSHUA WEITZEL Easter Monday Music (577 Records 5907; USA) This sneakily caustic music may not serve any resurrectionist purpose, but it’s not as if the participants didn’t imbue the proceedings with considerable spiritual gusto. Recorded at the venerable UK performance space Cafe Oto in the spring of 2019, this release consists of two lengthy pieces of electric improvisational dramaturgy, sporting some genuinely experimental motifs realized with boundary-less hard- and soft-ware. The twenty-two minutes of “Easter Monday Prelude” finds the duo of electronics-player/saxophonist Magee duking it out with the three-string Japanese instrument shamisen mangling of Weitzel. Despite what seems like an incongruous mixture, the performer’s tools of the trade make for a decidedly obtuse yet captivating earmeld. Magee’s electronic template prefers random, low-end loudpseaker distortions and a literal rending of the surrounding soundstage that decorates his saxophone air/outbursts dramatically, while Weitzel’s minimalist plinks and plonks, redolent of Tetuzi Akiyama's similarly nimble stylings, tears the digital overlay up like brittle branches snapping in the bone-dry air. Weitzel’s juxtaposition of this traditional Asian instrument might well be anathema in such avantist contexts but somehow its oil-and-water mashup works wonders here. The duo’s approach becomes something more heavily concentrated once they’re joined by Ikeda and Prevost on the half-hour long title track. Synthesist Ikeda began his career making some of the most innovative and spellbinding post-ambient music around for such notable labels as Touch and Spekk; he seems to have found a second career working as a fleet improviser in the outfits KILT and London Experimental Ensemble, in addition to numerous other collaborations. Percussionist Prevost needs no introduction, and his AMM lineage serves him well on this date, his taciturn approach lending just the right gravitas where needed. As it is, the quartet examine numerous microscopic strands of the electroacoustic interface, setting up faux-industrial rumblings lit by fizzing blue lightning storms and haunted-factory atmospheres, the sounds first coming on little mice feet, then fast and furious as the players flit, poke, and pull at their machinery. It must have been glorious to witness this foundation shaking in person; those unable to attend will surely covet this obscure object of desire, its errant noises bold enough to wake the dead. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
ROBBIE LEE / LEA BERTUCCI - Winds Bells Falls (Telegraph Harp TH-015; USA) Robbie Lee’s a contemporary multi-instrumentalist who, on this release, acquits himself admirably on such ’traditionalist’ equipment as celeste, baroque flute, gemshorn, contrabass recorder, and orchestra chimes. Lea Bertucci, every bit his foil, is credited as bringing to the party ’tapes and electronics’. It’s hardly that simple. These two downtown experimentalists have many a trick up their sleeves, and lest you think this is all but a directionless free music date, think again. The inventiveness and sheer bravado on display is dazzling. Essentially, Lee engages in a sort of telepathic duel with Bertucci, stretching the very limits of his instruments while Bertucci’s electronic gimcrackery and processes make for some genuinely altered states. The opening “Glitter and Gleam”, with its warped alien bell tones and intergalactic sparkles, could be transmissions intercepted from parallel dimensions, such is the strange and awry visions it augurs. Conversely, on the superbly titled “Image Mirror”, Lee’s earthbound flute, blowing brisk gusts into the parched studio air, finds itself morphing into something wholly inimical, Bertucci time-stretching Lee’s already taut lines into an octopus of glitchy silly-putty. “Division Music” finds Bertucci applying the same arch methods of sonic corruption to Lee’s ancient gemshorn, and not a more tornadic maelstrom of spunk, spasticity, and spittle can be totally recalled. All of this unparalleled vibrato comes to a head within the eleven-minute spectacle of “Azimuth”, a fever dream of denaturalized contrabass recorder that turns the instrument’s pitches in on itself, a tumbling assortment of wheezes, dribbles, hues, and cries that simultaneously distresses, disturbs, and delights. Mastered by the ever-omniscient Elliott Sharp, whose adroit studio affinity brings out the sharper points in an already sublime mix. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
CHRIS P. THOMPSON - True Stories & Rational Numbers (Grin Agog AGOG-301; USA) Keyboardist Thompson is striving for something unique and different here, and judging by the results, a new, postmodern classical music may just have arisen. According to the album’s Bandcamp page notes by Sarah Feldman, “pitch and rhythm are not distinct categories; in fact, the only thing that differentiates pitch and rhythm is speed.” Well, in transcribing what was originally created as electronic music into a more ‘acoustic’-based environment, Thompson uses a musical theory known as arithmetic ratio, which (distilling this down to its essence in very broad layman terms) divides notes into equal intervals in order to produce a varying degree of both complimentary and conflicting effects. The very notion of speed becomes almost moot, the notes changing and evolving at such differing rates that time accelerates and de-accelerates dizzyingly at the same time. To our ears, this means that Thompson manages to be in two places at once, deftly accompanying and berating himself. As written for four electronic keyboards, the patterns that emerge seem to court cacophony as well as polyphony. Cascading torrents of notes trip ass over teakettle on the seven-minute “Five ’Til”, while “Splitting" suggest some unholy meeting between Cecil Taylor and Conlon Nancarrow while John Cage hides stage-left, softly conducting and smiling mischievously. Thompson’s works reveal no small measure of wit, either: the percolating higher-register notes spread across “Fractionally-Souled Beasts” burst with summery tonal colors and a pronounced bounce to its step that lay waste to those who chastise such musics as being cold and calculating. Something bright, cheerful and radiant enough to wash away even the bluest of moods. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
* NICK PANOUTSOS - Monos (Slow & Steady; USA) Arriving in New York via San Francisco, CA., bassist-composer extraordinaire Nick Panoutsos has distinguished himself by employing a combination of imaginative improvisational skills, remarkably big ears, and a beautifully rich and evocative upright bass tone and technique. With "Monos", his debut solo bass recording, all previously outlined accolades and characteristics are brought into complete fruition. Inspired by the Greek folk and pop melodies passed down from his "yia-yia" (grandmother) whilst coming of age in San Jose, Mr. Panoutsos transforms and or reinterprets these melodies with robust depth, imagination and genuine affection.
Beginning with "Theios" Mr. Panoutsos outlines a fundamental yet delicate theme rich in spirit and aching pathos. His masterful use of glisandi, nuance and resonant articulation is extraordinary; a welcoming hand which extends throughout all eight gorgeous and artful vignettes. Mr. Panoutsos juggles the myriad musical constructs of melody, harmony, and rhythm with equal aplomb and sensitivity; forming a complete yet open landscape where parts interchange and support each other, sometimes independently, sometimes all at once. On "Tis Triantafillas ta Filla (The Leaves of the Rose)", Mr. Panoutsos' bass "sings" this traditional melody with all the delicacy and thoughtfulness of a poet contemplating just the right turn of a phrase. The original composition "Smokey Says" is a picturesque tribute to the inspiring Santa Cruz mountains at the peak of summer; it's theme building and building..layer upon layer of motivic development. The "solo" instrumental setting is one of the most challenging yet most rewarding contexts for both performer and audience. With "Monos" Nick Panoutsos contributes an evocative, virtuosic yet approachable stunning addition to this rich legacy..highly recommended! - John Mori for DMG
* NICK PANOUTSOS will be playing a solo contrabass CD release performance here at DMG on Tuesday, April 5th at 6:30
A MORE COMPLETE LIST OF OGUN & CADILLAC TITLES We Just got back in, all in stock right now! All are highly recommended by yours truly & I’ve included some reviews further down below…
HARRY BECKETT with RAY RUSSELL / BRIAN MILLER / DARYL RUNSWICK / NIGEL MORRIS - Joy Unlimited (Cadillac SGC 017; UK)
BLUE NOTES with CHRIS McGREGOR / DUDU PUKWANA / JOHNNY DYANI / LOUIS MOHOLO - Before the Wind Changes, Live in Waregem 1979 (Ogun 037; UK)
EDQ with ELTON DEAN With KEITH TIPPETT / LOUIS MOHOLO / CHRIS LAURENCE - They All Be On This Road Bonus Tracks (Ogun 048; UK)
JOHNNY DYANI OKAY TEMIZ / MONGEZI FEZA WITCHDOCTOR'S SON With DUDU PUKWANA et al - Rejoice Together (Cadillac 12/13; UK)
2 CD Set $20
HARRY MILLER'S ISIPINGO With MIKE OSBORNE/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS or MALCOLM GRIFFITHS / CHRIS McGREGOR or KEITH TIPPETT/LOUIS MOHOLO - Different Times - Vol 1 (Ogun 041; UK)
HARRY MILLER With KEITH TIPPETT / TREVOR WATTS / LOUIS MOHOLO / ALAN WAKEMAN / ALAN TOMLINSON / DAVE HOLDSWORTH / et al - Different Times - Vol 2 (Ogun 045; UK)
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO’S VIV LA BLACK with SEAN BERGIN / CLAUDE DEPPA / PAUL ROGERS / STEVE WILLIAMSON / FRANKIE DOUGLAS - Exile (Ogun OGCD 03; UK)
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO UNIT with ALEXANDER HAWKINS / JASON YARDE / HENRY LOWTHER / ALAN TOMLINSON / JOHN EDWARDS / et al - For The Blue Notes (Ogun 042; UK)
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO / CANTO GENERAL with PINO MINAFRA / ROBERTO OTTAVIANO / ROBERTO BELLATALLA - Rebel Flames (Ogun 044; UK)
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO UNIT with JASON YARDE / ORPHY ROBINSON / JOHN EDWARDS / et al - An Open Letter to My Wife Mpumi (Ogun 031; UK)
CHRIS McGREGOR'S BROTHERHOOD OF BREATH With DUDU PUKWANA/EVAN PARKER/MIKE OSBORNE/HARRY BECKETT/BRUCE GRANT/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS/RADU MALFATTI/HARRY MILLER/JOHNNY DYANI/LOUIS MOHOLO - Procession - Live in Toulouse - Expanded Edition (Ogun 040; UK)
CHRIS McGREGOR'S BROTHERHOOD OF BREATH With DUDU PUKWANA/MONGEZI FEZA/EVAN PARKER/GARY WINDO/HARRY BECKETT/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS/RADU MALFATTI/HARRY MILLER/LOUIS MOHOLO - Live at Willisau (Ogun 001; UK)
HARRY MILLER'S ISIPINGO With MIKE OSBORNE/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS or MALCOLM GRIFFITHS/CHRIS McGREGOR or KEITH TIPPETT/LOUIS MOHOLO (Ogun 041; UK)
HARRY MILLER With KEITH TIPPETT / TREVOR WATTS / LOUIS MOHOLO / ALAN WAKEMAN / ALAN TOMLINSON / DAVE HOLDSWORTH / et al - Different Times - Vol 2 (Ogun 045; UK)
MIKE OSBORNE: TRIO & QUINTET With HARRY MILLER/LOUIS MOHOLO/MARC CHARIG/JEFF GREEN/PETER NYKYRUJ - Border Crossing / Marcel (Ogun 015; UK)
MIKE OSBORNE TRIO With HARRY MILLER / LOUIS MOHOLO - All Night Long (Ogun 029; UK)
MIKE OSBORNE TRIO - The Birmingham Jazz Concert, November 7 1976 [2 CD set] (Cadillac 10/11; UK)
2 CD Set $20
EVAN PARKER QUARTET with ALEXANDER HAWKINS / JOHN EDWARDS / PAUL LYTTON - All Knavery & Collusion (Cadillac 018; UK)
STAN TRACY & MIKE OSBORNE - Alone & Together - Wigmore Hall 1974 (Cadillac 014/015; UK)
2 CD Set $20
STAN TRACEY With ANDREW CLEYNDERT / CLARK TRACEY - Solo: Trio (Cadillac 06; UK)
STAN TRACEY NEW QUARTET - For Heaven’s Sake (Cadillac SGCCD 04; UK)
MIKE WESTBROOK CONCERT BAND with JOHN SURMAN / MIKE OSBORNE/ BERNIE LIVING / GEORGE KHAN / PAUL RUTHERFORD / MALCOLM GRIFFITHS / DAVE HOLDSWORTH / HARRY MILLER / ALAN JACKSON - Last Night at The Old Place (Cadillac 016; UK)
HISTORIC & ARCHIVAL RECORDINGS, REISSUES & RESTOCKS ITEMS:
ROBERT ASHLEY with JILL KROESEN / “BLUE” GENE TYRANNY / DAVID VAN TIEGHEM / PETER GORDON - Perfect Lives (Lovely Music 4917; USA) New reissue, now in digipak, with new cover art. Robert Ashley's Perfect Lives has been called "the most influential music/theater/literary work of the 1980s." At its center is the hypnotic voice of Robert Ashley. His continuous song narrates the events of the story and describes a 1980s update of the mythology of small town America. Perfect Lives is populated with myriad characters revolving around two musicians - "R", the singer of myth and legend, and his friend, Buddy, "The World's Greatest Piano Player". They have come to a small town in the Midwest to entertain at the Perfect Lives Lounge. As Robert Ashley describes in the opera synopsis, "they fall in with two locals to commit the perfect crime, a metaphor for something philosophical: in this case, to remove a sizable about of money from The Bank for one day (and one day only) and let the whole world know that it was missing." The eloping couple, Ed and Gwyn, the old people at the home, the sheriff and his wife (Will and Ida) who finally unravel the mystery, and Isolde, who watches the celebration of the changing of the light at sundown from the doorway of her mother's house, are some of the characters who journey through the seven episodes of the opera. Derived from a colloquial idiom, Perfect Lives transforms familiar material into an elaborate metaphor for the rebirth of the human soul. It has been called a comic opera about reincarnation. Personnel: Robert Ashley - solo voice; Jill Kroesen, David Van Tieghem - chorus; "Blue" Gene Tyranny - keyboards; David Van Tieghem - non-keyboard percussion; Peter Gordon - music producer; Paul Shorr - soundtrack producer.”
3 CD Set $35
MYTHOS - Mythos (Ohr 2021100CD; Germany) "The first album by Mythos in 1971 originally on the Ohr label. Featuring: Stephan Kaske (G, Vo, Sitar, Synthesizer...etc), Harald Weisse (B, G, Effect), Thomas Hildebrand (Dr, Per). Produce: Dieter Dierks. Reissue with elaborate miniature paper sleeve of the original LP (full color print, gatefold sleeve). 2008 digital remaster version, limited to 1,000 copies!" Mythos' first LP starts with a rock-meets-classic interpretation of Georg-Friedrich Handel's "Feuerwerksmusik" with Stephan Kaske playing the melody on the flute. "Oriental Journey-Hero's Death" presents Middle Eastern percussion, acoustic guitar, and flute. Sitar and Mellotron sounds add a psychedelic mood to the song. Like the following track, it paints a dark and pessimistic picture of the past and the future of the world. "Encyclopedia Terrae" is the highlight of the album and mixes quiet parts with power drumming, hard guitar riffs with sounds of war like marching soldiers, sirens, and bomb detonations. The text on the final sequence is inspired by H.G. Wells' novel The Time Machine. A man travels 3,300 years into the future to find a better world, only to discover a dead and destroyed planet at the end. Stephan Kaske sings in a proclaiming style, the voice treated with excessive use of reverb and phasing effects. By the way, this is an early production of Dieter Dierks, who later worked for bands like the Scorpions. - Klaus Kehrle, AMG
“Ohr present a reissue of Mythos' self-titled album, originally released in 1972. Mythos was formed in 1969 on the initiative of Stephan Kaske (flute, keyboards, vocals, guitar), who found two comrades-in-arms in Harald Weisse (bass) and Thomas Hildebrand (drums). Various performances impressed label boss and talent scout Rolf-Ulrich Kaiser so much that the band was able to release their debut album on the Ohr label in 1972. On Mythos the band realized a mixture of art rock and psychedelic with oriental influences in lengthy pieces. This album was also re-recorded and remastered from the original analog tapes.”
THE MOVING SIDEWALKS with BILLY GIBBONS - Flash (Rockbeat Records 3451CD; USA)The Moving Sidewalks were an American four-person psychedelic blues rock band of the second half of the 1960s, from Houston, Texas, United States. They released several singles and an album, before bassist Don Summers and keyboardist Tom Moore were drafted into the army, bringing the band to an end. Guitarist Billy Gibbons and drummer Dan Mitchell then formed band ZZ Top.
Gibbons founded the Moving Sidewalks in the mid-1960s and they quickly drew a large following, especially among the Houston "teen scene". They recorded several singles and one full-length album, Flash. Their single "99th Floor" was well received, and topped the charts at No. 1 in Houston for six weeks. The success of this record led them to sign with Wand Records, which then released "Need Me", also a Top 10 hit for the band. The group was asked to open for many rock tours, including Jimi Hendrix and the Doors. After Tom Moore and Don Summers were drafted into the United States Army, Gibbons and Mitchell added Lanier Greig and formed the original ZZ Top.
While attending Warner Brothers' art school in Hollywood, California, Gibbons engaged with his first bands including the Saints, Billy G & the Blueflames, and the Coachmen. By 1967, Gibbons returned to Houston and formed an artfully designed band, conceptually inspired by friend and fellow musician Roky Erickson and the 13th Floor Elevators. 'The Moving Sidewalks' name was chosen, and shortly thereafter they recorded "99th Floor". Around this time Gibbons developed a camaraderie with Jimi Hendrix. As a guest on The Dick Cavett Show, Hendrix deflected the implication that he was the greatest guitarist. He did not say who the greatest guitarist was, but a myth has circulated that Hendrix considered Gibbons the best, and stated so in an interview, but no such interview has ever been located. The Moving Sidewalks continued to appear along with the 13th Floor Elevators at the short-lived yet Houston psychedelic venue, Love Street Light Circus, at Allen's Landing. One night the Elevators set was cut short by Houston Police, who arrested the band's lead singer Erickson for marijuana possession.
In January 2013, Gibbons announced the Moving Sidewalks would reunite with all original members for one show on March 30, 2013, at B.B. King's Blues Club in New York City. Since that successful sold out show and despite their single show announcement, the band played as official headliners of Austin Psych Fest on May 1, 2013, and the Charity Gala for The Deacons of Deadwood Ball on September 28, 2013, in Houston.” - Wikipedia
BON VOYAGE ORGANISATION - (Loin Des) Rivages (L’Invitation Musicale 1007: France) French composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Adrien Durand's third album. An instrumental odyssey with an ensemble of 13 musicians. Adrien Durand: "Our last album, La Course was released in 2020 during the lockdown. Inspired by the feedback from listeners, who received the music with special attention, the idea and need for (Loin Des) Rivages was born." Bon Voyage Organisation is the story of the construction of an ensemble, the quest for harmony, through music, between beings. This story has been the central leitmotif in Adrien Durand's composition and production work for almost ten years. Adrien Durand is a renowned Parisian bass keyboard player, composer, producer, and mixing engineer having worked with noteworthy projects such as Amadou & Mariam and Papooz, among others. Known for his knowledge of ensemble recording and arrangement techniques, BVO is his attempt at meticulously creating a musical dialogue around his compositions with a distinguished cast of musicians from diﬀerent backgrounds without the pressure associated with pop music recordings reminiscent of the musical ensembles of the '70s, such as Carla Bley, Soft Machine, or Irakere. (Loin Des) Rivages was recorded over five days in June 2020 at Studio Atlas, the studio of Air's Jean-Benoit Dunckel and mixed the following summer by Adrien Durand in his Parisian studio, Bureau 12. It was an orchestrated performance considering that all ten tracks of the album were played live, gathering up to thirteen musicians in the same room. The album follows what was initiated with BVO's previous album La Course, an entirely instrumental sound free from any constraints. The close collaboration between Adrien Durand and the members of the ensemble allowed for an exquisite completion. Together, they deliver the incredible energy of "Le Sentier Des Orpailleurs", the depth of melancholy of "Apacheta", and the originality of "Et S'éveillent"... Inspired by the great explorers of the soul: Sun Ra, Moondog, and Coltrane (a cover of Coltrane's "Naïma" actually opens the album), Durand mixes humanity's first instruments (percussion and the wind) with its latest ones (mixing desks and synthesizers). Thus, he continues the most interesting yet rewarding artistic journey: the journey inward, far from the standards of civilization, in the heart of what some can take for madness, reaching into a jungle of the soul so marvelously represented in Clément Vuillet's artwork. This is not an intellectual record but rather a spiritual effort, because, as Adrien Durand likes to repeat in his concerts: "Let us step into music as we step into a sanctuary."
PETER BROTZMANN / MILFORD GRAVES / WILLIAM PARKER - Historic Music Past Tense Future (Black Editions Archive 001; Earth) Black Editions presents Historic Music Past Tense Future, the first ever album to feature the meeting of Peter Brötzmann, Milford Graves, and William Parker. Three of the towering figures in the history of free jazz forge an incredibly vital free music born from lifetimes of uncompromising, ceaseless artistry. Historic Music Past Tense Future is the inaugural release by Black Editions Archive and the first in a series of records that will present previously unreleased works featuring Milford Graves.
"2002-03-29, in the front room of CBGBs, fourteen years after their last performance together, three of the defining musicians in Free Jazz history convened for a third and final time. Peter Brötzmann had once again successfully talked his way into the U.S. without a visa to play this concert (organized by Arts for Art) and concerts with a historic drummer of a different era, Walter Perkins (organized by eremite). On March 31 and April 1, Brötzmann and Perkins recorded their duo album The Ink Is Gone (2003). William Parker had just returned from concerts in Italy with the David S. Ware Quartet. On April 2 and 3 he debuted his 'Curtis Mayfield Inside Songs' project in Boston & Amherst. And he still found time to sit-in for the entire March 30 Brötzmann/Perkins Amherst Meetinghouse gig. Scarcely to be found on bandstands and an even rarer presence on record, Milford Graves was a different story, a state of affairs that in 1995 prompted Thurston Moore to proclaim Graves 'a living myth.' Between 1999 and 2015, Graves appears on just six recordings, two of those solo; Brötzmann and Parker combined made half as many records the same week as this gig . . . The eremite Mobile Unit happened to be in the house March 29. The trio performed on a small riser facing the front door of CBGBs, with Graves' hand-painted, Orisha-adorned double bass drum kit, captured in its full thunderous glory on this recording, occupying most of the available space . . . For this rather hastily set-up recording, Parker's small amp was placed on a barstool behind Graves' kit, yet you still clearly feel and hear Parker's vivid contributions. By 2002 Milford Graves was four decades into developing and refining his radical approach to drumming. Graves' unique and unbounded creativity across multiple mediums is only recently entering the early stages of wider discovery and appreciation. The music here comes from a moment of relative high visibility for the free jazz continuum. Brötzmann and Parker, among others, were taking it to the people through relentless touring..." - Michael Ehlers, founder of Eremite Records
2 LP Set LTD Edition $40
MARION BROWN with GUNTER HAMPEL / AMROSE JACKSON / BARRE PHILLIPS / STEVE McCALL - Le Temps Fou (Musique du film de Marcel Camus)(Le Tres Jazz Club 012LP; France) “Le Tres Jazz Club present a reissue of Marion Brown's Le Temps Fou (Musique du film de Marcel Camus), originally released in 1969. Marion Brown, who moved to Europe two years earlier than 1969, and records, in the legendary Parisian studio Davout, the soundtrack of the movie by Marcel Camus entitled Le Temps Fou. The movie starred Nino Ferrer was out in 1970 under the title Un été sauvage. Fallen into oblivion, Le Temps Fou was printed in very few copies and is almost impossible to find in its original pressing. Personnel: Marion Brown - alto sax, bells; Gunter Hampel - vibes, bass clarinet, tree bells; Ambrose Jackson - trumpet cow bells, tambour; Barre Phillips - contra basse, castanetes, whistle; Steve McCall - drums, triangle, tambour; Alain Corneau - claves, cow bells.”
ALVIN LUCIER & JORDAN DYKSTRA - Out Of Our Hands (Important Records 492; USA) “Out Of Our Hands brings together Alvin Lucier and Jordan Dykstra who, through the hands of Ordinary Affects, have created debut recordings of two new compositions. These companion pieces have similar orbits as they were not only both composed in Middletown, CT (where Alvin and Jordan lived for a number of years), but are about Middletown, at least from a starting point. Alvin's piece -- an homage to the location of the house in which he recorded "I am sitting in a room" back in 1969 -- continues his study into slow-moving glissandi and carefully crafted beating patters by interweaving three string players within a minor third (voiced by two vibraphonists). The result is entrancing, almost psychedelic, and opens space where one didn't expect. Like much of his previous work, it is conceptual and process-based; once the wheels get turning, they go on and on, giving the listener time to approach the piece, sit with it, and then move back inward. On the other hand, Dykstra's piece "32 Middle Tones" (a pun on his Middletown street address and the harmonic microtonality utilized in the composition) is a very textural work. His piece asks the cellist to sustain pitches for extended durations -- at times quietly singing in close proximity to the stopped pitch coming from the cello -- while the rest of the ensemble (violin, viola, and two percussion) voice a sequence of chords separated by notated silences. The cello voice is sometimes alone, but never for too long as it finds itself supported from both the top and bottom in a harmonic embrace. This supportive structure involves a percussion section which colors the seemingly simple chords (major 6th, inverted minor 7th, inverted minor 2nd, etc.) with a non-traditional toolkit of bowed singing bowls, stone sheets, harmonicas, and even leaves. This is music that gently gives the listener a sense of predictability but always in an unexpected (and subtly indeterminate) shade. Pressed at RTI for maximum fidelity with a full color printed inner sleeve; edition of 500.
CLUSTER & ENO - Cluster & Eno (Bureau B 029LP; Germany) Bureau B's 2009 reissue. LP version. Originally recorded and released in 1977 on Sky Records, the first collaborative album by Brian Eno and Cluster was the first ambient record produced in Germany, and is considered the seminal, defining work of the genre. Brian Eno was certainly instrumental in creating and popularizing the concept of "ambient music" -- but it was not his invention alone. The German musicians Hans-Joachim Roedelius and Dieter Moebius (Cluster) were brothers in spirit. As so often in music, the idea of ambient was in the air -- both Eno and Cluster experimenting with the form in the 1970s, rendering any debate as to who influenced who redundant. What is certain, is that Brian Eno attended a Cluster concert in Hamburg in 1975, strategically positioning himself in the front row. Sure enough, he was invited on stage to jam with the band and, after the show, the participants arranged to meet up again. They did so two years later at the Old Weserhof in Forst, the domicile of the German duo. Eno and Cluster spent three weeks in Conny Plank's studio, resulting in two albums: Cluster & Eno and After The Heat (1978). In the liner notes, Asmus Tietchens (who also plays on the record along with Can's Holger Czukay) writes: "Clearly, all three musicians inspired each other during their three weeks together without any clash of personalities. Nevertheless, some tracks sound more like Cluster, some more like Eno. So it made perfect sense to collect the tracks with a Cluster flavor on Cluster & Eno." The importance of this record can never be overstated, nor can its elegance of diverse forms be matched. From Indian sitar and tamboura, to synth warbles and airy tributes to Western groove, it is a rare glimpse at what happens when masters meet.”
PINK FLOYD - BBC Live July 16, 1970 Paris Cinema, London (No Kidding NK 202206LP; Italy) Atom Hearth Mother-era Floyd, simply mind-bending. Track Listing: A1. “The Embryo” (9:57), A2. “Fat Old Sun” (5:09), A3. “Green Is The Colour/Careful With That Axe, Eugene” (10:46) and B1. “If” (4:23), B2. Atom Hearth Mother with Orchestra (24:48).
ORQUESTRA AFRO-BRASILEIRA - 80 Anos (Day Dreamer 002LP; UK) “Legendary Brazilian group Orquestra Afro-Brasileira are reborn for first new album in over fifty years, produced by Beastie Boys collaborator Mario Caldato Jr. Led by maverick composer Abigail Moura, Orquestra Afro-Brasileira were one of the most influential yet overlooked groups in Brazilian music history. Operating for almost thirty years until 1970, they released just two albums -- the first of which, Obaluayê, has recently been reissued by Day Dreamer Records -- and left behind a legacy of Afro-Brazilian consciousness that continues to resonate today. Combining Yoruba spirituality, folk tales, Candomblé chants and West African percussion with the instrumentation of the big band jazz tradition in the United States, the Orquestra placed Afro-Brazilian heritage in a new and vital context. Weaving emancipatory narratives into complex poly-rhythms and powerful, syncopated horn lines, the group educated and enlightened all those who saw them perform. For Abigail's protégé and percussionist on the group's 1968 album Carlos Negreiros, the message of the group's music had a profound impact: "I became aware of what it is to be black," he says, "discovering the extraordinary potential of the Afro-Brazilian culture in the making of the national ethos." Now the last remaining member of the original Orquestra, Carlos was tracked down by producer Mario Caldato Jr. to oversee the first new album of Orquestra Afro-Brasileira material since 1968. "I was overwhelmed with the percussive rhythms, beautiful deep vocals and combined energy," Caldato Jr. explains. "It felt like the most authentic Brazilian roots music I had ever heard. It was raw and dynamic, a pure organic sound and energy." Alongside arranger Caio Cezar, Carlos assembled his Orquestra to record five tracks at Berna Ceppas' Estudio Maravilha 8 studio in Rio De Janeiro. With percussion, horns and vocals cut in single takes over three days, the session captured the intuitive, pure and natural spirit of the group in full flow. Following the success of the initial session, five additional tracks were recorded at the iconic Estudio CIA dos Tecnicos in Copacabana to complete the album. 80 Anos is a contemporary incarnation of Abigail Moura's vision, bristling with the flair of the original recordings. "This is an important continuation of the Orquestra Afro Brasileira sound and movement that is still strong and relevant today," Caldato Jr. says. 180 gram vinyl.”
STRAIN CRACK & BREAK - Music From The Nurse With Wound List Volume Two (Finders Keepers 109LP; Germany) “With his ongoing commitment to like-minded archivist label Finders Keepers Records, industrial music pioneer Steven Stapleton further entrusts the label to lift the veil and expose "the right tracks" from his uber-legendary and oft misinterpreted psych/prog/punk peculiarity shopping list known as The Nurse With Wound List. Following the critically lauded first instalment and it's exclusively French tracklisting both parties now combine their vinyl-vulturous penchants to bring you the next Strain Crack & Break edition which consists of twelve lesser-known German records that played a hugely important part in the initial foundations of the list which began to unfold when Stapleton was just thirteen-years-old. From the perspective of a schoolboy Amon Düül (ONE) victim, at the start of a journey that commenced before phrases like kosmische and the xeno-ignant krautrock tag had become mag hack currency, this compendium is devoid of the tropes that united what many would accurately argue to be the greatest progressive pop bands in Europe (namely CAN, Neu! and Kraftwerk) and rather shatters the ingredients across a ground zero landscape. This record includes the music that skulked behind krautrock and perhaps refused to polish its backhanded name belt. Including lesser-known artists like the late Wolfgang Dauner whose career proceeded and outlived the kosmische movement while consistently informing and outsmarting 'em whenever they got stuck in their metronomic ruts, or Fritz Müller, the man who was to Kraftwerk what Stuart Sutcliffe was to The Beatles but had more in common with Yoko and quite rightly couldn't give a shit about the Fab Four's Hamburg roots. Elsewhere there's a plethora of German bands made for German audiences as they try and shed second hand flower power Americanisms and feel the benefits of much harder drugs and the realizations of difficult second album budgets. Bonzo Cockettes show off their Big Muffs and drummers ask for extra mics while Conny Plank goes for parliamentary office and gives babies good firm handshakes for the camera. Tracks by Mr. and Mrs. Fuchs (aka Anima-Sound) who played their instruments completely naked throughout their anti-career alongside previously unpressed tracks by the scene's leading Detroit-born African American drummer Fred Braceful (Exmagma). Finders Keepers and Nurse With Wound continue to sing from the same hymnal with this ongoing collaborative attempt to officially, authentically and legally compile the best tracks from Steve's list, where many overzealous nerds have faltered (or simply, got the wrong end of the stick). Volume Two focuses exclusively on individual tracks of German origin -- the country whose music forged the prototype of the NWW inventory in the form of his secondary school vinyl want-list in the early 1970s. Features Wolfgang Dauner, My Solid Ground, Association PC, Fritz Müller, Exmagma, Anima-Sound, Tomorrow's Gift, Out Of Focus, Brainstorm, Thirsty Moon, Gomorrha, and Brainticket.”
2 LP Set $30
Here are some of the above listed Ogun & Cadillac Titles with reviews/blurbs included:
BLUE NOTES with CHRIS McGREGOR / DUDU PUKWANA / JOHNNY DYANI / LOUIS MOHOLO - Before the Wind Changes, Live in Waregem 1979 (Ogun 037; UK) Ogun kicks off its 2012 release schedule with the second recording from the Blue Notes' 1979 tour of Belgium and Holland, taken from tour organiser Rob Sotemann's tape archive. Whereas the critically acclaimed first volume from this archive, Spiritual Knowledge And Grace (OGCD 035), featured an impromptu collaboration between Blue Notes members Louis Moholo-Moholo, Dudu Pukwana & Johnny Dyani and American tenor sax powerhouse Frank Wright, Before The Wind Changes focuses on the established quartet line-up with Chris McGregor at the piano and features an incendiary performance from Waregem.
EDQ with ELTON DEAN With KEITH TIPPETT / LOUIS MOHOLO / CHRIS LAURENCE - They All Be On This Road Bonus Tracks (Ogun 048; UK) Dean (alto sax, saxello), Keith Tippett (piano), Chris Laurence (bass), Louis Moholo (drums). Why is Paul Morley my favourite music writer? Might have something to do with the second review that he did for the NME, which was of the Elton Dean Quartet live at Manchester's Band On The Wall, back in early 1977. In his review he enthusiastically argued that the likes of Dean, Tippett, Trevor Watts, Derek Bailey, etc. were as punk as the punks, if not more so, in their quiet radicalism. As an extremely impressionable 13-year-old reader, I reckoned that if Morley could be so right about improv, then he must be equally right about the subject of his first review for NME - the Buzzcocks. Thus are new doors opened. This particular album was recorded at the Seven Dials pub in Covent Garden and might be subtitled The Popular Elton Dean. Side one is given over to a 20-minute take on Coltrane's then untouchable "Naima," with which the quartet manage to do remarkable things. But the wild card here is Chris Laurence, depping for Harry Miller, as he brings something of a new perspective to the group's music. Laurence really plays on career-peak form here, forever seeking out unexpected harmonies and accents, and the other three musicians are noticeably affected by his imagination. Side two sees the quartet tackling some standards, including "Easy Living" and "Nancy With The Laughing Face," but the highlight is a storming version of Dean's own "Dede-Bup-Bup" where Tippett plays with such intensity in his solo that it's a surprise that he didn't demolish the piano. Amazing stuff! - Marcello Carlin
JOHNNY DYANI OKAY TEMIZ / MONGEZI FEZA WITCHDOCTOR'S SON With DUDU PUKWANA et al - Rejoice Together (Cadillac 12/13; UK) “Johnny Mbizo Dyani was a South African bassist and composer who came to London as an apartheid exile with his compatriots in the racially-mixed Blue Notes group in 1964, and played a key role in the creative impact they made on British jazz in that era, before his death in 1986. This double album, also celebrating the 40th birthday of London jazz label Cadillac, catches the nimble and dramatic Dyani in a scorching free-jazz trio with the likewise shortlived trumpeter Mongezi Feza and classically trained Turkish drummer Okay Temiz, and a hollering, joyous, township-grooves septet including the great Blue Notes saxophonist Dudu Pukwana. Feza, a fizzing blend of Miles Davis and Don Cherry, leads the trio set with his fast, impulsive, fearlessly haphazard attack, while Dyani fuses implacable walks, richly sombre chordwork and audacious free-jazz countermelody. But the septet tracks are this collection's most openly attractive features – featuring Dyani on electric keys and vocals, the robustly sublime Pukwana on alto sax and whistles, and a powerful electric lineup. It's mostly about catchy Dyani songs and a party vibe, but there's enough of the inimitable Pukwana's talkative, cajoling, and sometimes romantically smoky horn to keep the jazzers smiling.” - The Guardian, UK
2 CD Set $20
CHRIS McGREGOR'S BROTHERHOOD OF BREATH With DUDU PUKWANA/EVAN PARKER/MIKE OSBORNE/HARRY BECKETT/BRUCE GRANT/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS/RADU MALFATTI/HARRY MILLER/JOHNNY DYANI/LOUIS MOHOLO - Procession - Live in Toulouse - Expanded Edition (Ogun 040; UK) McGregor (piano), Harry Beckett, Marc Charig (trumpets), Radu Malfatti (trombone), Mike Osborne, Dudu Pukwana (alto saxes), Evan Parker (tenor sax), Bruce Grant (baritone sax, flute), Johnny Dyani, Harry Miller (basses), Louis Moholo (drums). CD features three BONUS TRACKS [23 minutes] not on the original album: "TBS", "Andromeda", and "You Ain't Gonna Know Me Cos You Think You Know Me". Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath may have had fairly conventional instrumentation for a small big band (four saxophonists, two trumpets, one trombone, two bassists, drums and the leader on piano) but the music was anything but safe and predictable. McGregor and three of his fellow Blue Notes (altoist Dudu Pukwana, bassist Johnny Dyani and drummer Louis Moholo) join some of England's more advanced players, including altoist Mike Osborne, Evan Parker on tenor, and trumpeter Harry Beckett, for three originals, including two which are quite lengthy. Although the themes are strong, the emphasis is on improvising, particularly by the full group together, and there are plenty of intense sections on this colorful LP. Recommended to open-eared listeners, this is one of the Brotherhood of Breath's best recordings. "Recorded live in Toulouse in May 1977, the absence of Feza from the line-up was palpably evident - though check the band's glorious freewheeling take on Feza's "Sonia," which you would like to go on forever - but, perhaps because of this, the band concentrate ferociously on the music at hand and deliver a blistering performance (Dyani finally agreed to play with the Brotherhood on this particular tour, and Miller kept his place in the band to provide a two-bass hit). Parker again provides some of the highlights - his passionate tenor outburst on "Sunrise On The Sun" (as Osborne's alto comments in tandem) and his sudden explosion in the midst of the systematically repeating motifs of "Kwhalo." Malfatti also performs his most passionate solo on record, multiphonics and all, on "Sunrise," while the 18 minutes of Pukwana's "Kwhalo" - a tune also known, and recorded, as "Diamond Express" - might be the band's finest moment on record. Is it pop? Is it minimalism? Is it kwela? It's all those things and far, far more. On his sleevenote Keith Beal observes how, by the track's end, every instrument in the band is a drum - it's astonishing, fiercely danceable and the finest of testaments to this greatest of all bands." - Marcello Carlin
CHRIS McGREGOR'S BROTHERHOOD OF BREATH With DUDU PUKWANA/MONGEZI FEZA/EVAN PARKER/GARY WINDO/HARRY BECKETT/MARC CHARIG/NICK EVANS/RADU MALFATTI/HARRY MILLER/LOUIS MOHOLO - Live at Willisau (Ogun 001; UK) McGregor (piano); Harry Beckett, Marc Charig, Mongezi Feza (trumpets); Nick Evans, Radu Malfatti (trombones); Dudu Pukwana (alto sax); Evan Parker, Gary Windo (tenor saxes); Harry Miller (bass); Louis Moholo (drums). The original derivation of the term "kwela" for the form of South African township music previously known as "penny whistle music" comes from the exclamations of the policemen who would periodically come to arrest, take away, beat up and/or kill various township residents who had the temerity to be black. As they were being rounded up and cattle-prodded into the police vans they would exclaim "Kwela! Kwela!" meaning "Get up! Move it!" Thus a symbol of oppression was turned into a symbol of defiant celebration - the words "Get up! Move it!" now meaning "let's dance." With the Brotherhood of Breath, Chris McGregor was able to marry his love of kwela music, the Protestant hymns with which he had grown up as a child and post-Ornette all-comers free jazz in a large, sprawling band with a South African core and involving, at various times, virtually everyone of consequence on the British modern jazz and improv scene. They were capable of producing the most atonal and demonic of improvisations, yet the imperturbable rhythm section of Louis Moholo and Harry Miller anchored their explorations at all times, such that you were dancing as you flew into post-Sun Ra outer space. Frequently, in concert the "traffic jam" syndrome would make itself apparent, with all of the dozen or so horn players queuing up to solo, or just storming in anyway; often musicians would wander around the stage at their own free will, or jam the bells of their horns into microphones to produce overtones. Somehow it all held together and gave us the most glorious group of musicians of any genre ever to exist, a band who seemed to provide everything I wanted in music, post-Ellington in make-up and yet also strangely proto-punk in attitude. Their two studio albums for RCA were generally well-behaved affairs, even if the second was somewhat looser than their Joe Boyd-produced debut. But their three live albums from the '70s - and there's another double CD package due shortly from Cuneiform Records, comprising more newly-found tapes of gigs from 1971 and 1975 - present a far more raucous and anarchic assemblage. Live In Willisau was recorded in Switzerland in January 1973 on the same tour which also produced the Radio Bremen broadcasts reissued in 2001 as Travelling Somewhere, and both should be heard in tandem if possible. The Radio Bremen gig has a slightly different line-up - Mike Osborne, who was too ill to perform at the Willisau gig, appears on second alto, and Malcolm Griffiths deps for Malfatti on second trombone - but both sets of music are equally wild. Live At Willisau, even with CD remastering, still sounds as though it were recorded at the back of a bus queue, and while this necessarily means that some of the finer details of the improvised ensembles are lost - the trumpets and saxes seem a distant blur, while the two trombonists are in your face - the rawness of the music seems to be a good match for the basic sonics. Those still trying to figure out what Evan Parker was doing in that duo with Paul Lytton would do well to listen to his contributions here - his tenor feature on "Do It" is, however abstract it becomes, still fundamentally relevant to the rhythmic and melodic momentum of the piece. The breakneck pace of the Brotherhood compels Parker towards emotional directness, and his retention of the latter while still utilising his jaw-dropping technique is brilliantly achieved. Malfatti provides a suitably droll commentary on the mock march of "Kongi's Theme" while Evans blows suitably mournfully on "Ismite Is Might." Hovering above all of this, however, is the ghost of Mongezi Feza, a musician who would have been a core regular on Ogun albums had he lived; as it turned out, this is the only Ogun album on which he appeared in his lifetime, and his main feature on "Tungi's Song" is perhaps the best solo he ever recorded, full of casually astonishing technical brilliance and a goodly portion of sheer cheek and deep emotion. Happily this album is one of the few which have been reissued on CD, in this case with over half an hour of extra material from the gig. Interestingly the performance of the ballad "Davashe's Dream" is more restrained than the explosive take recorded for the band's debut, while the version of "Andromeda" gets a little too messy (you can hear an audibly vexed McGregor trying to cue the horns back in halfway through), but nonetheless this is an absolutely vital record. - Marcello Carlin
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO UNIT with ALEXANDER HAWKINS / JASON YARDE / HENRY LOWTHER / ALAN TOMLINSON / JOHN EDWARDS / et al - For The Blue Notes (Ogun 042; UK) Louis Moholo-Moholo-drums; Jason Yarde & Ntshuks Bonga-saxophones; Henry Lowther-trumpet; Alan Tomlinson-trombone; Francine Luce-voice; John Edwards-bass; Alexander Hawkins-piano "2014 marks Ogun's 40th year as an uncompromising independent label specializing in cutting edge jazz and improvised music, much of it rooted in the musics of South Africa. For the first of our Anniversary releases, we are proud to present this electrifying performance by the Louis Moholo-Moholo Unit, recorded two years ago as part of the 'Aperitivo in concerto' series of concerts at the Theatre Manzoni in Milan, Italy."
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO / CANTO GENERAL with PINO MINAFRA / ROBERTO OTTAVIANO / ROBERTO BELLATALLA - Rebel Flames (Ogun 044; UK) "Wonderfully soulful work from drummer Louis Moholo Moholo - heard here in the company of Canto General - an Italian group, but one whose music is awash in South American inspiration! Reedman Roberto Ottaviano is in the quintet - and he sounds better here than we've heard him in years - blowing with this rich tone alongside trumpeter Pino Minafra, in a musical partnership that almost takes us back to the spirit of Gato Barbieri's Latin America projects of the early 70s! Pianist Livio Minafra brings a real sense of majesty to the music, too - almost a Cuban balance of lyricism and rhythm, which makes for a perfect fit with Moholo's drums and the bass of Roberto Bellatalla. The group perform tunes by some of Moholo's older contemporaries - Harry Miller, Keith Tippett, Dudu Pukwana, and Mongezi Feza - and titles include "Orange Grove", "Thoughts To Geoff", "Dedicated To Mingus", "Angel Normali", and "You Ain't Gonna Know Me Cos You Think You Know Me". -Dusty Groove
LOUIS MOHOLO-MOHOLO UNIT with JASON YARDE / ORPHY ROBINSON / JOHN EDWARDS / et al - An Open Letter to My Wife Mpumi (Ogun 031; UK) Featuring Jason Yarde & Ntshuks Bonga on saxes, Pule Pheto on piano, Orphy Robinson on vibes, John Edwards on bass, Francine Luce on vocals and Louis Moholo-Moholo on drums & co-production. When the legendary South African jazz band, the Blue Notes, left their homeland in 1963 for France, there was no turning back since apartheid was threatening the daily lives of the bandmembers. The Blue Notes moved to England in the mid-sixties, befriended, collaborated and influenced a generation of British musicians. The Blue Notes evolved into the Brotherhood of Breath (BoB) around 1970, their legacy continues as unreleased recordings and reissues appear. From December 1975 (when Mongezi Feza passed) until the mid-eighties, all of the original members of the Blue Notes (including their second bassist Harry Miller) passed away except for their mighty drummer Louis Moholo. Interest in the Blue Notes & Brotherhood has increased greatly over the past decade. Those of us who religiously attend the Vision Fest had the good fortune to hear Mr. Moholo play twice in NY and each set was special, his playing is astonishing and still unique. The Ogun label was started by the late Harry Miller and is still run by his wife Hazel Miller. Ogun continues to explore the Blue Notes and BoB legacy by reissuing out-of-print Ogun discs as well as unreleased sessions and new recordings by Mr. Moholo and his current collaborators. Some 45 years later, Mr. Moholo-Moholo finally moved back to South Africa where he still lives when not traveling. 'An Open Letter to My Wife Mpumi' was recorded in November of 2008 at a solar-powered studio in London. For this session Louis put together an amazing septet of strong musicians that he has been gathering for past decade or so. Right from the gitgo, we know we are in store for something special. "Mark of Respect" begins our journey with Louis' intense free spinning drums while the saxes play that memorable South African melody. The rhythm team of vibes, piano, bass and drums swirls around one another in a magnificent joyous communion of the spirits. Pianist Pule Pheto's "Dikeledi Tsa Phelo" is a haunting ballad with Ms. Luce's exquisite voice chanting the melancholy melody while the band weaves poignant waves around her. "The Tag" features some strong bari sax from Jason Yarde who is also the composer. The main theme repeats throughout the piece while Francine's voice, both saxes, the vibes and piano wail frenetic lines together. Even pieces like "Thank U 4 2 Day" that start off calmly soon sail out into outer space with a Sun Ra dreamlike melody sung sweetly by Ms. Luce. Both Francine and Louis sing and laugh together on "Sonke" another catchy yet free theme that has a most joyous vibe at center. Although Ms. Luce's voice is found on most of the songs here, her voice is used as more of instrument and is no louder than any other instrument. She is still an integral part of the tight tapestry that is woven on each piece. One of the things that makes this disc distinctive is the way it is often free, spirited and inter-connected simultaneously. There is also a most uplifting vibe that runs throughout this entire hour-long disc that can't be denied. "Fine Line" is an inspired duo for vibes and drums that is most magical in the way Louis and Orphy play as one solid force. Jason Yarde's boppish "Two Alto Hit" is a perfect to bring things to a great close with bebop meets free in an explosive f(l)ight to the finish. Another gem from the fine folks at Ogun for those who still collect audio treasures. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery
MIKE OSBORNE: TRIO & QUINTET With HARRY MILLER/LOUIS MOHOLO/MARC CHARIG/JEFF GREEN/PETER NYKYRUJ - Border Crossing / Marcel (Ogun 015; UK) Possibly THE most awaited classic '70s Brit-Jazz reissue in years! Two of Brit alto monster Mike Osborne's super-rare Ogun LPs unabridged on 1 CD! 'Border Crossing', with his main - and legendary - rhythm section of the early '70s, bassist Harry Miller and drummer Louis Moholo, is a powerhouse spectacle. Recorded live at the Peanuts Club 9/28/74 'Marcel's Muse', a quintet recording from 5/31/77, is another tour-de-force and features Harry Miller, guitarist Jeff Green, trumpeteer Marc Charig, and the late Peter Nykyruj on drums [to which this CD edition is dedicated] The digital remastering for CD was done by Martin Davidson, founder of the Emanem label.
MIKE OSBORNE TRIO With HARRY MILLER / LOUIS MOHOLO - All Night Long (Ogun 029; UK) The monumental All Night Long, recorded the same year as the SOS album but altogether a different type of trio. Here Osborne teams up with bassist Harry Miller and powerhouse drummer Louis Moholo, his regular trio. The results feature some of the most integrated and inspired small group interactions I've ever heard and at the time I was also listening to Ornette's trio with Izenson and Moffett. Osborne immediately asserts himself with the blistering riff from the title track, Miller answers with attacking bass and soon there is a three way juggernaut of fiery improvisation. You can feel the fire and collective spirit generated by these players who know each other and can respond in a split second to any change in direction. The two sides add up to about 40 minutes and are only part of one set they played. According to Keith Beal's sleeve notes "The trio played three sets equally exciting that night". Each time I listen to it I am in awe at the intensity of their playing. The levels of energy are astounding as they power forward seamlessly taking in Monk's Round Midnight, Osborne's tunes, like Scotch Pearl and Country Bounce and collective pieces. Even in more ruminative moments there is a sizzling tension created by Moholo behind Osborne's compact lyricism. Recorded at Willisau, like the first Brotherhood Of Breath release for Ogun, it is a gig I would have donated vital organs to witness. - Paul Donnelly, Stride magazine "Recorded live in Willisau and therefore considerably lower-fi than Border Crossing, this album isn't quite as intense as its predecessor - few albums are - but still worthwhile to hear what Ossie does with the venerable "Round Midnight" without ever suggesting Dolphy." - Marcello Carlin
MIKE OSBORNE TRIO - The Birmingham Jazz Concert, November 7 1976 [2 CD set] (Cadillac 10/11; UK) NEVER PREVIOUSLY RELEASED! Osborne's is the great 'what-might-have-been' story of the UK scene - a brilliant and tempestuous player who blazed through the 60s and 70s in the Westbrook band, in Brotherhood of Breath, in S.O.S. with Alan Skidmore and John Surman, in Kenny Wheeler's Big Band and in multiple other line-ups; as well as on a small number of his own recordings. Yet his voice was silenced by illness in 1982 and he was never able to perform again until his death in 2007. So any new material is welcomed with open arms by the ever-growing audience for what is now rightfully acknowledged as a particularly fecund time and place for jazz. This 2CD live set is eagerly and gratefully received. From the sleeve notes - Founder George West reminisces thus: I founded Birmingham Jazz in 1976 with the help of six other enthusiasts; we each put L25 on my dining room table and said we would promote some concerts for as long as the money held out. Birmingham Jazz has promoted live jazz ever since - a remarkable achievement. Our first concert was with Barbara Thompson's Paraphernalia; I'm not sure who were our second but Mike Osborne's trio with Harry Miller and Tony Levin was the third, on 7 November 1976. These concerts took place in the Warwick Suite of the Grand Hotel, Colmore Row, Birmingham that was our home base for the first five years. The musicians gave me permission to record the concert as a souvenir on my Maxwell C180 tape and Yamaha recorder, and it subsequently remained unplayed in my files until unearthed in 2009; amazingly the tape had not deteriorated in any way and gives a very high quality documentation of an outstanding evening's music making. As there had been no announcements of tune titles, several have proved slightly controversial despite being auditioned by a number of musicians who had known and played with Mike over the years he was active. But what is unquestioned is the creative quality of the Trio's performance.
2 CD Set $20
EVAN PARKER QUARTET with ALEXANDER HAWKINS / JOHN EDWARDS / PAUL LYTTON - All Knavery & Collusion (Cadillac 018; UK) For many years Evan Parker, one of the greatest post-Coltrane saxophonists, has played a monthly gig at the London club The Vortex. These gigs in part illustrate Evan’s close ties with the fragile ecosystem of clubs that support the jazz world; the small venues that allow an intimate and powerful connection between the artist and audience that is at the heart of jazz creativity. Evan called these events his ‘jazz’ gigs, the knowing hyphenation an indication of the problematic use of the J word, an acceptance of the Vortex as a ‘jazz’ club, and a nod to his origins in jazz history. I took a friend there one time and it seemed to me that the trio’s performance (Evan, John Edwards and the great and sadly departed Tony Marsh) came close to seeing Coltrane or Ayler playing at the 5 Spot or one of the other legendary New York venues. When we asked Evan if he would record an album for Cadillac, it was this aspect of his multifaceted talents that we had in mind. The quartet you hear on this album (with Paul Lytton, John Edwards and Alexander Hawkins) came together for a gig at the Vortex in Evan’s regular slot on June 20th 2019, and what a fine gig it was! Then the next day we relocated to the beautiful barn-like studio of Rimshot, deep in the Kent countryside to record the album. The location, close to Evan’s home, had other resonances which Chris Searle has described in his sleeve notes. The subsequent (and over long) process of mastering and producing the album coincided with the first Covid lockdown and the coincidence of Evan and I both reading Defoe’s “Journal of the Plague Year”, which provided context and some track titles. This put me in mind of Stephen Fowler’s brilliant rubber stamp artwork, and he has created a visual representation that expresses many of the themes of the album.” - Cadillac Records
STAN TRACY & MIKE OSBORNE - Alone & Together - Wigmore Hall 1974 (Cadillac 014/015; UK) aluable enough in itself, but added golddust comes in the shape of the additional material – the previously unreleased second half of the evening – a duo recording with alto saxist Mike Osborne. Two of the greats of the English jazz scene – in fact two of the finest jazz improvisers of theirs or any time. This is not only highly charged, beautiful music performed by musicians at the top of their game, it’s a fascinating and irreplaceable historical snapshot of the jazz scene of the time. ‘There can’t have been too many duos in the history of jazz that have ever achieved such a rare understanding as Osborne and Tracey achieve here. And one that’s all the more gratifying in the light of the knowledge that the alto player was the man responsible for bringing newer forms of jazz to Stan’s ears, and dissuading the older musician from jacking it in altogether.’ - Steve Lake, 1974
2 CD Set $20
STAN TRACEY With ANDREW CLEYNDERT / CLARK TRACEY - Solo: Trio (Cadillac 06; UK) “It would make an absorbing blindfold test to present a panel of interested listeners with a track from this disc and one from the same pianist’s Little Klunk trio session for Decca, 40 years ago, and invite them to decide which one’s played by the 71 year-old. Not that the early record didn’t sound as fresh, witty and jostling with clamorous harmonies and sidelong melody as Tracey has done for most of his life, but that the later one is, miraculously, fresher still. If there’s an obvious difference it’s that Tracey, striking out for an identity in the crowded piano-jazz world of the late 1950s, performed originals on Little Klunk and delivers moving tributes to absent heroes and personal guiding spirits like Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk here. But, as always, Stan Tracey is a restlessly exuberant embodiment of the axiom that his role as a jazz artist is to make a song sound, not like itself, but like himself. There’s enough evidence of that here to make confirmed Tracey fans stand up and cheer, and unconfirmed ones give the response some serious attention. His work has rarely sounded more positive, expansive, varied and open. ‘I could appreciate what was involved in all the rest of bebop piano playing’ Tracey said to this writer way back in 1973. ‘But it seemed so limited – once you’d got to the way of doing it, you knew what was coming. There was very little opportunity to bring into use the things that the piano can do better than anything else.’ If Stan Tracey has devoted his life to a single project in jazz, it’s the art of playing total piano – giving all the instrument’s inner voicings, percussive effects, orchestra-like shouts, quick horn-like runs and reverberant silences humming with overtones, an equal place in the rich tapestry of his music.” - Cadillac Records
THE STONE IS NOW OPEN AGAIN, Here is the schedule:
THE STONE RESIDENCIES - CREATIVE MUSIC STUDIO - MAR 9–12
8:30 pm - TRIO - Angelica Sanchez (piano) Brandon Lopez (bass) Tom Rainey (drums)
8:30 pm - Luminous Ragas of India
Steve Gorn (flutes) Mir Naqibul Islam (tabla)
8:30 pm - Sana Nagano Trio - Sana Nagano (violin) Patricia Brennan (vibes) Wendy Eisenberg (voice, guitar)
8:30 pm - Kalia Vandever Trio - Savannah Harris (drums) Hannah Marks (bass) Kalia Vandever (trombone)
The Stone is now located at in
The New School - Glass Box Theatre
55 west 13th street - near 6th ave
music at 8:30pm
$20 per set
unless otherwise noted / cash only payment
reservations are available on
The New School website
all admissions are at the door
prior to each performance
This one is from CHRIS CUTLER, original member of Henry Cow, Art Bears, News from Babel, respected author and founder of Recommended Records. This is Chris’ wonderful podcast and I urge you all to give it a listen…
Guitarist and DMG-pal HENRY KAISER has a monthly Video Solo Series on Cuneiform’s Youtube page:
1990 video from WETLANDS in here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wfs5OuBfNxs
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 & improvisations on each episode. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/gary.lucas.5836/
This clip just arrived in my email from British Sax Colossus PAUL DUNMALL:
Live at Scholes Street Studio
Saturday March 19th, 8pm & 9:15pm sets
Live recording/Live audience!
Noa Fort - vocals
Sam Newsome - soprano saxophone
Sean Conly - bass
$15 at the door, cash/venmo
@Scholes Street Studio - 718-964-8763
375 Lorimer St, Brooklyn, NY (near Lorimer J/M, Montrose L)
This comes from Flute & Reeds Virtuoso BOB DOWNES: