The Heat is Rising and the Summer is Here
Simmering and Sizzling and Sweating, Oh Dear!
Can’t Wait to Jump in a Lake or the Ocean and Cool Down Once More
So Let’s Rejoice to the Spirit of Life and Let the Music Flow into Our Pore(s)
But It Doesn’t Really Matter When I Listen to the Muse
Forget All of the Bullsh*t and Turn off the Fake News
My Birthday’s is Coming and I’m Getting Older Every Day
But I am Still Having Fun, No Matter What They Say!
This Week’s Menu of Sonic Delights Includes the Sounds of:
The William Parker Quartets: Rob Brown / Cooper-Moore / Hamid Drake / Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson! The David S. Ware Trio in 2010: William Parker & Warren Smith! Matthew Shipp Solo! Amir ElSaffar Rivers of Sound Orchestra! Aruán Ortiz Solo! Louis Sclavis Quintet!
Silke Eberhard Trio! Uri Caine & The Lutoslawski String Quartet! Ugly Beauties: Marilyn Lerner / Matt Brubeck / Nick Fraser! Arve Henriksen! Lea Bertucci & Leila Bordreuil! Patrick Higgins’ Bachanalia! Kelly Moran’s Piano Preparations! Two from Max Nagl!
Plus Archival Discs from Albert Mangelsdorff: Don Cherry, Lee Konitz, Karl Berger, Wolfgang Dauner & Elvin Jones! Frank Zappa Palladium 1981! TackHead! Robert Ashley! Dieter Moebius! Haino Keiji LP Rarity! The New York Contemporary Five: John Tchicai & Archie Shepp and Cream!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRUCIE BUBBIE!
This Monday, June 19th, I will turn 63 years young or old, depending on how I feel each day. I decided to have a special celebration to share my good fortunes so I organized a very special night at The Stone! Since this summer is 50th anniversary of the passing of John Coltrane, I felt it would be a good idea to try and evoke the spiritual side of Mr. Coltrane’s music. I chose two bands who will do their best evoke those spirits. “Music is the Healing Force of the Universe” so says an album title by Albert Ayler. On this night we will be dealing with those Healing Forces so please come down and share in those spirits.
Here is the line-up and I am very proud to present these musicians:
7:00: UNBROKEN: LOUIE BELOGENIS - Tenor & Soprano Sax / SHANIR BLUMENKRANZ - Contrabass / KENNY WOLLESON - Drums!
8:30pm: FRANKLIN KIERMYER QUARTET Featuring: JOVAN ALEXANDRE - Tenor Sax /
DAVIS WHITFIELD - Piano / OTTO GARDNER - Bass / FRANKLIN KIERMYER - Drums!
Admission is $25 for both sets and all the money goes to the musicians.
Special Thanks to my Main Man, John Zorn, for letting us do this at his historic place!
Next March of 2018, The Stone Performance series will move to a new location at The New School (55 W. 13th St. near 6th Ave). It will be the end of one era and the beginning of a new one. Please come down to attend some performances at The Old Stone before it moves. It is a very special place where we go to rejuvenate our spirits on a weekly basis.
I just finished my Victo 2017 / FIMAV 33 review which I will edit tonight and send out tomorrow. Sorry for the delay. Be on the lookout. - BLG
THE DMG 26TH ANNIVERSARY SERIES OF SONIC CELEBRATIONS Continue with:
Sunday, June 18th at DMG - FREE admission!
6pm: KYLE MOTL & TREVOR DUNN - ContraBass Duo!
7pm: PAUL GIALLORENZO / JAIMIE BRANCH / ANTON HATWICH - Synth / Trumpet / Double Bass!
Monday, June 19th at THE STONE (NW corner of Ave C & 2nd St)
Bruce Lee Gallanter’s Big Birthday Celebration & Concert of Spiritual Jazz!
7:00: UNBROKEN: LOUIE BELOGENIS - Tenor & Soprano Sax / SHANIR BLUMENKRANZ - Contrabass / KENNY WOLLESON - Drums!
8:30pm: FRANKLIN KIERMYER QUARTET Featuring: JOVAN ALEXANDRE - Tenor Sax /
DAVIS WHITFIELD - Piano / OTTO GARDNER - Bass / FRANKLIN KIERMYER - Drums!
July, 2017 is the 50th Anniversary of the Passing of John Coltrane - We Embrace his Spirit /Music on This Night! Admission: $25 for both sets!
Sunday, June 25th:
6pm: THOMAS HEBERER / FRANK KARTOVSKY - European Trumpet and Sax Duo
7pm: JOHN McCOWEN - Solo B-flat and ContraBass Clarinet
Sunday July 2nd:
6pm: VORKTIP TRIO: NICOLAS LETMAN-BURTINOVIC / ELIJAH SHIFFER /
BRITT CIAMPA - Acoustic Bass / Sax / Drums!
Saturday, July 15th at DMG: Super Rare Solo Performance by:
6pm: HENRY KAISER - Solo Electric Guitar!
DMG is located at 13 Monroe St. (between Catherine & Market Sts) in a basement below a small gallery. Take the F train to East Broadway or the 6 train to Canal or the B or D to Grand, or the M-15 bus to Madison & Catherine. Come on Down, the Sunday Music Series is Always Free & the Vibes are Always Cosy
WILLIAM PARKER QUARTETS With ROB BROWN / HAMID DRAKE / COOPER-MOORE or JALALU-KALVERT NELSON - Meditation / Resurrection (Aum Fidelity 104/105; USA) The 22nd Annual Vision Festival took place las week (May 28th-June 3rd, 2017) and provided a much needed sense of community from the musicians, artists, dancers, writers and audience members who were in attendance. Although the sound in there main room of Judson Hall was problematic at times, the spirit of the music/event was a joy to behold. One of the main musicians and bandleaders at the center is William Parker, bassist, composer and visionary. Several of the bands that Mr. Parker plays with ere in attendance: In Order to Survive, Farmers by Nature and a large ensemble (\Songs for a Free World’) and each set was something special.
The first of this ambitious two disc set features the recording debut of a new quartet: Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson on trumpet, Rob Brown on alto sax, William Parker on acoustic bass & compositions and Hamid Drake on drums. The personnel here consists of three of the four members of Mr. Parker’s longtime quartet: In Order to Survive: Rob Brown, Hamid Drake and Mr. Parker plus an amazing trumpeter, Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson, who I hadn’t heard of before now. The addition of Mr. Nelson to Parker’s longtime is a wonderful thing, since the passing of Roy Campbell a few years back, had left a hole in some of Parker’s strong ongoing ensembles, so difficult to fill. The first disc is titled ‘Meditation’, which seems appropriate, since it is something we all need to do, when our the stress of life starts to get to us. Commencing with, “Criminals in the White House” (actually written when George Bush, Jr. was in the White House), the quartet has that infectious, elastic, swinging groove, that is often at the center of every unit in which Parker and Hamid Drake play together. The first solo is from Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson, and it is a true gem, the joy of life at the center. Mr. Parker calls “Leaves/Rain”, a stutter time waltz and that is just what it is, gleeful and most uplifting. Horace Silver Part 2” has Mr. Parker playing a tarogato (eastern European oversized clarinet, with Nelson on kalimba and Mr. Drake on gongs. The vibe is a nice blend of mid-eastern, Afircan and American jazz streams, a tasty blend that feels just right. Mr. Parker loves to write these songs which evoke old school and new school sounds, Ornette-like in the way they embrace an inner groove and freedom at the same time. There is way too much great music on this disc to comment on here but I will say this: trumpeter Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson is in fine form throughout and takes a handful of outstanding solos throughout. A great match for Nelson and longtime soloist for many of Mr. Parker’s ongoing projects is Rob Brown. Mr. Brown is incredible time and again, making very solo some special.
In Order to Survive is another of Parker’s longtime bands, the personnel remains: Cooper-Moore on piano, Rob Brown on alto sax, William Parker on bass and Hamid Drake on drums. I have heard this quartet live on many occasions and they never cease to amaze me. Denis Charles and Susie Ibarra have both been in the drum chair, but the irrepressible Hamid Drake reigns nowadays, so we know this is indeed an amazing all-star quartet. “Sunrise in East Harlem” kicks this disc off with a lush, laid-back, sunsetting like groove. Rob Brown plays with a tart, Dolphy-esque tone, Cooper-Moore’s piano at his most exquisite and William Parker’s bowed bass utterly sublime. “Some Lake Oliver” is dedicated to the great saxist Oliver Lake, who co-led & conducted a large ensemble with William Parker at the finale of the Vision Fest this year (2017). This piece shifts back and forth effortlessly between a free and slow-swinging groove that is a joy to behold. Rob Brown’s poignant, bittersweet tone rides on top and is joyous. There is some slow-burning beauty going on here, a quiet storm righteous and true. You can tell that this quartet has been around for a long while since they play son well together as one outstanding dynamic force! It is mid-June of 2017 and we have a contender for CD of the year, hearye, hearye! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
2 CD Set $18
DAVID S. WARE TRIO With WILLIAM PARKER / WARREN SMITH - Live in New York, 2010 (Aum Fidelity 102/103; USA) This double disc set consists of the David. S. Ware Trio, live from the Blue Note in NYC on October 4th of 2010. For this special set, Mr. Ware plays stritch (a Buescher straight alto sax) & tenor sax, William Parker on contrabass and Warren Smith on drums. When the amazing saxist & bandleader, David S. Ware, passed from this world in 2013, we all lost a gentle giant who was an inspiration to many of us avant-jazz fanatics. Thanks to the great Aum Fidelity label, unreleased gems from the David S. Ware treasure chest have continued to inspire us once again. What makes this release special is a couple of factors: Mr. Ware very rarely played in clubs in NYC, except for the Knitting Factory and never at the Village Vanguard, where Mr. Ware used to frequent when he was growing up. The other special thing is that Mr. Ware is playing with a trio, after many years of leading his own great quartet and rather than playing tenor sax only (like he did in that quartet), Ware decided to reach into his past and play a stritch, which is a rare straight alto sax, an instrument that Rahsaan Roland Kirk once played and made more visible. The first set opens with a long and winding unaccompanied stretch solo, Mr. Ware spinning out lines like a serpent spewing fire, slowly at first and then shooting sparks as the his solo evolves and ascends. Eventually the great William Parker/Warren Smith rhythm rhythm team join in as the eruption soars higher and higher. Both William Parker and Warren Smith are masters of freedom and get to stretch out at length, providing a web of support and a number of inspired solos. The is a powerful, intense, free-flowing, connected and truly spirited trio! This music is superbly recorded, the balance is just right and the inner fire is being flamed and growing higher and higher each time I listen. This is the music of healing, a force to be reckoned with now and forever more. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery
2 CD Set Set $18
WILLIAM PARKER / DAVID BUDBILL - What I Saw This Morning (Self-produced; USA) William Parker has dedicated the release of Medition/Resurrection to the wonderful poet/playwright/author David Budbill, who passed on September 25, 2016 – a few weeks before the recording of the album. He and William had a very close creative relationship and friendship. They worked together on the CDs Zen Mountains Zen Streets & Songs for a Suffering World, and the DVD On Being Native, among many other live performances.
This CD, What I Saw This Morning presents their final work (on record) together, and presents 31 of David's poems as spoken word accompanied by William on bass, kemele ngoni, hochiku, shakuhachi, duduk; as well as an Interview between the two in four parts. It is a moving testament to life, passage through and the synergy of these two artist citizens from very different backgrounds.
CD $10 (Limited Edition)
MATTHEW SHIPP - Invisible Touch. At Taktlos Zürich (Hatology 743; Switzerland) “Pianist Matthew Shipp is prolific. Under his own name and in collaboration with with numerous other free-thinking jazzers—saxophonist Ivo Perlman in the forefront of these—CD releases seem to pour out of him. His best under his own name comes in the trio/duo/solo format. Piano Sutras (Thirsty Ear, 2013); The Conduct Of Jazz (Thirsty Ear, 2013); Piano Song (Thirsty Ear, 2017); and a duo set with drummer Bobby Kapp, Cactus, (Northern Spy Records, 2016) attest to his artistic focus and excellence.
Cruise the internet for profiles of and interviews with Shipp and he comes off as a prickly personality, a man assured of his own talents and unsympathetic to pigeon-holers, pretentious critics and label prospectors mining for a bunch of words aimed at pinning down his music. His music just is. So here comes a bunch of words concerning Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zurich, a solo piano outing by Shipp.
Shipp approaches the piano with a pugilistic mindset. Think of a boxer, throwing hard flurries at the speed bag, then shuffling over to deliver a series of thunderous body shots into the gut of the heavy bag. It's a sound full of vehemence that rises at times to a fury. It's an approach he continues with on Invisible Touch At Taktlos. The set is a continuous, forty-five plus minutes without a pause, until the applause at the end of tune number 11, "It," that leads into a four minute encore. This stream of consciousness style suits Shipp, as it did Cecil Taylor on Olim (Soul Note, 1987). But Shipp is more visceral than Taylor, with more of a feel for interludes of crisp lyricism. His sound is denser.
Elaborate, even serpentine phrasings abound, punctuated by muscular chords and endlessly creative—even beautiful—tangents. "Monk's Nightmare" is a thunderstorm. "Instinctive Touch" wanders frenetically, spewing notes in rapid fire fashion. "Blue In Orion" injects a feeling of solemnity into the proceedings; "Gamma Ray" pulses, pretty and powerful. And in the middle of it all the standard "Tenderly" rises, sounding not all that tender, but rather ominous.
Matthew Shipp seems like a guy—musically a personally—who walks through the world with a chip on his shoulder. On Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zurich the chip is still there, but it sounds as if he sat down at the piano one night with that big, flat, flagstone shard balanced perfectly, and all things—life and art—were well with his world. The result is one of Matthew Shipp's finest and most riveting recordings.” - Dan McClenghan, AAJ
* AMIR ELSAFFAR RIVERS OF SOUND With CRAIG TABORN / MILES OKAZAKI / JASON ADASIEWICZ / CARLO DEROSA / NASHEET WAITS / et al - Not Two (New Amsterdam 088; USA) “Iraqi-American trumpeter, santur player, vocalist, and composer Amir ElSaffar has mastered disparate musical styles and created a singular approach to combining aspects of Middle Eastern music with American jazz, extending the boundaries of each tradition. ElSaffar’s Rivers of Sound ensemble presents 17 musicians from a broad spectrum of traditions; together, the group creates an entirely new musical language that transcends established notions of style and convention. In performing Not Two, a composition by ElSaffar, each musician in the Rivers of Sound ensemble interacts with the group to create a new approach to transcultural music through the combination of improvisation and composition, the merging of musical languages, maqam and polyphony, and the novelty of the sound. Using resonance as its governing principle, Not Two incorporates elements of maqam modal music of the Middle East with jazz and other contemporary musical practices to create a unique microtonal musical environment that moves beyond the notions of style and tradition into a realm of uninhibited musical communication.”
* AMIR ELSAFFAR RIVERS OF SOUND 17-PIECE ENSEMBLE will play at the River to River Festival (28 Liberty Plaza) at 6pm this Friday, June 16th. - FREE admission!
ARUÁN ORTIZ - Cubanism Piano Solo (Intakt 290; Switzerland) The acclaimed Cuban pianist and composer Aruán Ortiz, considered "an avatar of creative and progressive improvisation" (Ted Panken, Jazztimes Magazine) and a "first-rate" pianist (Nate Chinen, WBGO Jazz Radio), releases his solo piano album titled „Cub(an)ism“. This album was recorded by the engineer Martin Pearson in December 2016 at the Swiss National Radio in Zürich and produced by Intakt Records.
"Cub(an)ism is the result of an in-depth conversation with a range of musical idioms and styles, and various experiences from the phases of Ortiz’ life, in Cuba, Spain, France and the USA, which have formed his eclectic concept of music.
On this album, Ortiz’ pieces arise from specific ideas and moods, developed imperceptibly along systematic constructions spiked with the unexpected. Despite a certain adherence to system, the music on Cub(an)ism remains sensual at all times. Using clear but flexible systems, the music lives from structure and surprise. Crystalline structures are abruptly dissolved, clear forms blurred like a reflection in stormy water, before resurfacing. Ortiz’ music breathes this magic, the allure of dancing structures". - Florian Keller from the liner notes
LOUIS SCLAVIS QUARTET - Live at the Theatre Gutersloh (Intuition 71323) “We must not complain, we must fight”, is motto Louis Sclavis repeats almost like a mantra. The 64 year-old from Lyon likes the process this triggers. The son of a photographer, whose own photographs have been shown in exhibitions and adorn the covers of is newer studio albums, began playing the clarinet at ten. His inspiration back then was the music of Sidney Bechet, France's biggest Jazz star at the time. From there he went on to the conservatory, where at sixteen he saw a concert by the Workshop d'Lyon and immediately began playing their sophisticated style of Free Jazz. “You could say that I experienced a very fast transition from new Orleans Jazz and the music of Duke Ellington, which I also liked back then and still like a lot, to Free Jazz”, he laughingly admits. “I only found out later what happened in Jazz musically in-between.” True to his fighting spirit, Sclavis soon engaged himself in the French and European - Jazz scene with a vigor to match his extraordinary talent, winning the Prix Django Reinhardt in 1988 already and recording many ground breaking albums, such as 'Carnet des Routes', inspired by a tour of Western and central Africa with Henri Texier and Aldo Romano. The concert documented on this album opened the WDR 3 Jazzfest at the Theater Gutersloh on February 2, 2017, which also happened to be Louis Sclavis' 64th birthday. As a present to himself and to his audience, he presented a new quartet that evening, with Sylvain Riffet, who more than stepped up to the plate as the second reed-voice on saxophone, the excellent Christophe Lavergne on drums and Sarah Murcia on bass. Sclavis adores this eclectic group and explains that especially Sarah Murica, best known in France for accompanying chansonnier George Moustaki or writing the score to a successful movie about Serge Gainsbourg, brings a different flair and freshness to the music. “I like drummers and bass players, but they just did not appear on any of my last albums”, he says. “So I was very happy to be playing with a real 'Jazz rhythm section' again in Gutersloh.”
SILKE EBERHARD TRIO With JAN RODER AND KAY LÜBKE - The Being Inn (Intakt 280; Switzerland) “It’s no secret that reedist Silke Eberhard is a keen student of jazz history, a player whose inspiration routinely gets recharged by immersing herself in the music of her early heroes. For her that means more than listening to old records by the likes of Eric Dolphy, Charles Mingus, and Ornette Coleman (the subject of Eberhard’s 2007 Intakt debut, a duo album with pianist Aki Takase titled Ornette Coleman Anthology) – but diving into that repertoire and reshaping it with novel instrumentation.
But Eberhard makes it clear that the trio featured on The Being Inn is the context for which she always imagines her own material. “I feel a lot of freedom with this group,” she says of working with bassist Jan Roder and drummer Kay Lübke. Although this particular group coalesced in 2006, her history with each player stretches back to the mid-90s and there’s no missing the rapport they’ve all developed together.
Eberhard and company make a conceptual leap on the album, with many of the pieces tied to the titular concept – an imaginary inn the saxophonist pictured as she composed numerous tunes. She jokes that the spry opening track, “Ding Dong,” is the kind of number she likes to open one of the trio’s sets with – “a door bell,” she calls it, although the first sounds we actually here are her footsteps leading toward a door that soon opens, inviting the listener in.” - Peter Margasak, from the liner notes)
* URI CAINE / THE LUTOSLAWSKI QUARTET - Space Kiss (816 Music 1603/NFM 32; USA) Featuring Uri Caine on piano & compositions with the Lutoslawski String Quartet, recorded at National Forum of Music in Wroclaw, Poland. Since the prestigious Winter & Winter label has slowed so much, pianist & composer Uri Caine has kept busy composing and playing in New York, as well as in in Europe: Italy, the Netherlands and Poland. Over the past couple of years, Mr Cine has released two discs on his own 816 Music label: a great duo with Han Bennink and a trio with Mark Helias and Clarence Penn. Mr. Caine, who recorded some two dozen discs for Winter & Winter, many of which were rearranged versions of older classical composers like Mahler, Beethoven and Bach, composed his own music for the great Lutoslawski String Quartet with Mr. Caine himself as the soloist. This disc was recorded at a specially designed performance space in Wroclaw, Poland and the sound is especially superb.
The first piece is called “Knucklehead”, a term I often use, when folks do silly things worth commenting on. Mr. Caine’s piano takes off with quick cascading lines, the string quartet matching him as the piece evolves. The piece is often calm and quiet at the beginning but soon starts to soar, the interplay between piano and strings becomes more complex as it goes. Mr. Caine draws from a wide variety of styles or genres, from ragtime or blues to more modern flourishes, the flow is well-connected yet surprising in its twists and turns. There is often a playful, positive vibe going on here, which feels just right during these times of worrisome news. Mr. Caine’s writing for the string quartet sounds inspired, going back and forth between salty and peppered expositions, churning at times, dancing, leaping and then sailing back down to a more reflective mood. What I also like about this disc is that the music is never too gnarly or difficult to enjoy yet still erupts at times to more intense sections, with various lines criss-crossing tightly. I find the best way to listen to this music is to have no distractions from all social media BS. Turn it off, shut it down. The music itself is a strong elixir, often more serious and thoughtful than the Comedy of Errors that surrounds us. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
* Uri Caine & The Lutoslawski String Quartet will perform music from their new CD next Wednesday, June 21st at 8:30 in the Glass Box Space in Arnold Hall, 55 West 13th St., NY, NY
MARILYN LERNER / MATT BRUBECK / NICK FRASER / UGLY BEAUTIES - Strange Attractors (Self-produced; Canada) Featuring Marilyn Lerner on piano, Matt Brubeck on cello and Nick Fraser on drums. This is the second disc from this Toronto-based trio. I’ve reckoned with pianist Marilyn Lerner through several appearance at the Victo and Guelph Jazz Festivals, as well on discs with Lori Freedman, Ig Henneman and a great trio with Ken Filiano & Lou Grassi. Drummer Nick Fraser has played here at DMG a couple of times and has worked with Tony Malaby, Kris Davis and Quinsin Nachoff. Matt Brubeck is the younger son of jazz legend Dave Brubeck and has worked with Tom Waits, Oranj Symphonette and the Club Foot Orchestra.
Instead of all improvised date, all three members of this trio contributed songs. The opening track is also the title piece and it is something else. “Strange Attractors” has an odd, sort of middle-eastern groove with the piano and drums doubling their almost reckless sounding rhythm line. Very odd, yet strangely enchanting. One of the things I like most about this is the way certain songs seem to move through charted sections yet somehow weave their way through freer detours. On “What Now”, there is a charming melodic fragment played by the piano which keeps shifting as the drumming becomes more slippery. A few of the songs here have a quaint quality thematically, dreamy in part with haunting cello weaving into the mix. I love the way the trio strips things down to their bare essentials on “Poupee Mecanique”, which starts out with a jewelry box melody and later erupts with an intense cello solo, then winding down once again. At times, this reminds me of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra but stripped down to just a trio. Perhaps a bit more haunting or quietly disorienting at times, yet consistently mesmerizing in its own way. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, BMG
CHAYA CZERNOWIN - Wintersongs (Kairos 15008; EEC) No other work marks the changes and developments of Czernowin's work as ‘Wintersongs’. The first “Wintersong” was written in 2002 and the last was written in 2014, right after ''Hidden'', which marks the outward cusp of the change in Czernowin's work. While the existential and elemental quality of the music are intensely present as before, the engagement with the slower but entangled temporal perception reveals an immersive quality. The music becomes an experience where rapture and continuity are shaping the sound as if it was a living matter, while creating opening and closing spaces inside the structure.
ARVE HENRIKSEN - Towards Language (Rune Grammofon 2192; Norway) With Towards Language, trumpeter Arve Henriksen is back with his trusted long-time musical partners Jan Bang and Erik Honoré. Also, an important part of the line-up is Eivind Aarset, the ECM associated guitarist extraordinaire. Towards Language is Arve's ninth album (eight on Rune Grammofon and one on ECM) under his own name. Asked to comment on his new album, and its title, here's what he has to say: "To express something on your own can be quite challenging at times. I have, for years, been in creative collaborations with musicians and producers that have encouraged and inspired me. Music that has a connection to 'Places of Worship', but this time recorded 'live' in the studio in a chamber music like approach inspired by contemporary elements from composers like Toru Takemitsu and Manuel de Falla, to traditional organ music, and at the end of the album bringing in a traditional 'kven' (ancient Nordic song tradition) theme from the roots of my family from the North of Norway, sung by Anna Maria Friman of Trio Mediaeval."
Three from the Robbie Lee’s Amazing Telegraph Harp Label:
LEA BERTUCCI LEILA BORDREUIL - L-Onde Souterraine (Telegraph Harp 010; USA) Featuring Lea Bertucci on bass clarinet and Leile Bordreuil on cello. Since the turn of the millennia, there have been a number of great improvising cellists emerging from the Downtown Scene: after Hank Roberts & Erik Friedlander, we now have Okkyung Lee, Daniel Levin, Chris Hoffman and Tomeka Reid. More recently cellist Leila Bordreuil has been performing around town. Ms. Bordreuil has played here at DMG a couple of times, once in a duo with Chris Pitsiokos, plus she has a strong duo effort with Michael Foster on the Relative Pitch label. I don’t know much about Lea Bertucci although she can be found on a duo CD with someone named Ed Bear on the Chicago-based Peira label. Both instruments here are amplified at times, but no effects pedals were used, no overdubs were done. This duo was recorded by Patrick Higgins at his studio in Hudson, NY and word is that Mr. Higgins is an incredible and in-demand engineer.
Everything about this disc is high quality, from the lovely, gold (writing) & black textured cover art, taken from a Himalayan Archive to the way this music is captured. The way these instruments are recorded so that we here every nuance, soft, shifting drones of feedback, like wow! Is that feedback or a bass clarinet or a cello causing those drones?!? I turned off the fan so the music could breathe free of any distraction. The only other sound I hear is a dog barking in the distance. Hard to believe that there is just a cello and bass clarinet involved here. Both create a variety of intricate, diverse sounds, with more textural things going on that one might imagine. Both of these instruments have a similar timbral range so it is hard to tell them part at times. Some of these sounds are on the sub-atomic level so you have to listen very closely at times to ear all that is going on. The squeaks and creeks and hums are often magnified and carefully recorded. This is not really lower case improv yet it is still just as detailed and serious. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
PATRICK HIGGINS - Bachanalia - NYC-MMXV (Telegraph Harp 009; USA) “A description of this record in Twitter-like brevity: "Sandy Bull meets Michael Hedges in a church." Of course that short-changes everyone involved, especially the only living artist among the three: guitarist Patrick Higgins. Mr. Higgins' Bach is crisply and often muscularly rendered, technically dazzling and exquisitely and ingeniously recorded.
According to the artist: "The record was very carefully recorded in three different environments: two different rooms at St Cecilia's Church in Brooklyn and the main hall at Future-Past Studios in Hudson NY. Each of these three spaces has quite a distinct frequency response and reverberation time, so I was particularly interested in capturing what was unique in each room from both a performance and an audio standpoint. Deep room mics were placed carefully in particular depths in each room, and in most cases only one or two close mics were used. The room or "depth" mics were used to create the ambient bed that was then re-processed, stretched, distorted, delayed, sampled, and so on.
I especially like Higgins' turn of the phrase "beautifully lathed"! As best as I can tell, Higgins sticks to Bach's musical script in his transcriptions for guitar. The innovations are in how he's chosen to record and process the performances. The varied results are mesmerizing and sonically spectacular. While some of the tracks are bathed in heavy reverb and/or "electronica", the cleanliness of the attack is at all times fully expressed, which is necessary to sustain the rhythmic strength and musical flow.
The result is a solo guitar recording augmented with an involving and grand environmental complexity. While the concept was not "the absolute sound" simplicity of a guitarist performing in a defined acoustical space, the production does produce a unique spatial context for each piece of music (most of which will be familiar to even non-classical music listeners), some grand and enormous, some more intimate, but all produced and mixed with obvious great care to produce the desired, sometimes hallucinogenic result.
The recording produces enormous acoustics spaces of great height, width and especially depth. So to get back to the beginning: if you like Sandy Bull's revolutionary ‘Inventions’ (Vanguard Stereolab VSD 79191) or Michael Hedges ‘Aerial Boundaries’ (Windham Hill/Audio Fidelity AFZLP 208) this is a must have. Otherwise it's just a "should have". You'll sit transfixed until the sides end, aided by an outstanding dead quiet QRP pressing. Includes a download card good for either an MP3 or FLAC file version. You can read more about this record and hear a sample Telegraph Harp Records website. This is in every way, a high quality, meticulously played and produced production well-worthy of your attention and support.” - Steve Guttenberg, AnalogPlanet
KELLY MORAN - Bloodroot - Compositions for Prepared Piano & Electronics (Telegraph Harp 011; USA) “It seems that pianist Kelly Moran's approach to crafting her artistry requires a trip to Home Depot, for the purchase of a variety of screws and bolts. An observer of this purchase might assume an imminent assembly of a back yard patio set, but in reality, these items—among other things—are destined for insertion inside Moran's piano, between the piano strings, creating alterations to the vibrations, resulting in sounds you may never have heard before. It's called "prepared piano," a page from the playbook of avant classical composer John Cage's late-1940s works, Sonata's And Interludes. But Moran—who studied under Kei Akagi an University of Irvine—takes the Cage idea a step further, with the use of e-bows and electronics on her ambitious Bloodroot.
The alteration of the piano's sound, via inserted objects, abetted by the electronic aspects of samples and ebows, unleashes a world of sonic possibilities. Moran harnesses these possibilities to create a sound at once simple and complex, modern and antiquarian, eerie and beautiful and, oddly, suffused with a sort of alien sacredness, like a soundtrack to an extraterrestrial (Frank Herbert's Dune world, perhaps) civilization.
The initial impression that comes to mind with Bloodroot, from the opening track, "Celandine," is of a harpsichord. Certain preparations flatten the piano's resonance to create this impression. Then there are gong-like notes, ringing with rich overtones. Moving on to the third composition, "Freesia," a sampled e-bow lays out an electro-drone beneath singing piano notes. "Hyancinth" features strummed and plucked piano strings, and with the title tune Moran employs a "live e-bow on the piano strings" combined with prepared piano that results in a subtle orchestral atmosphere.
There is also, with the entirety of Bloodroot, the impression of the experience of micro-tones, of hearing notes between the notes, unique new sounds—an important part of the beguiling component of the music.
The door is wide open for Moran and her style of music making. She steps boldly through that door on Bloodroot. The future possibilities are limitless.” - Dan McClenaghan, AllAboutJazz
MAX NAGL - Exit in Fahrtrichtung (Rude Noises 025; Austria) This is solo effort for Max Nagl and he plays: soprano, alto, tenor & bari saxes, sampler, guitars, dulcimer, harmonium, recorder and a number of other odd instruments. Every year, Austrian saxist Max Nagl sends us one or two new discs of assorted collaborations with mostly other Austrian musicians. On rare occasion, Mr. Nagl will send us a solo effort like this one which does include Anne Harvey-Nagi on violin on a couple of tracks. I generally like everything that Mr. Nagl sends us, especially his quartet, the Big Four (with Steve Bernstein & Noel Akchote). What keeps us guessing is what Mr. Nagl will do next since every disc is vastly different. In the title, “fahrtrichtung” refers to the direction of traffic or travel. The disc begins with soft, calm solo sax which is soon joined by eerie layers of keyboards, other saxes and minimal percussion. The music sounds like it was taken from a suspense filled film noir soundtrack. Nagl like to use those cheesy yet charming rhythm lines from a cheap keyboard. What makes this special is the way Nagl written some swell charts for three or foes saxes, creating sumptuous harmonies for his quaint melodies. On a song called, “Lower”, Nagl surrounds his lonely, lovely bari sax with selective guitar fragments as subtle sonic seasoning. Mr. Nagl does a fine job of adding odd things like car horns or silly samples to give his music a most enchanting old world grace. There are a few songs that sounds rather familiar like their melodies were lifted from an ancient Duke Ellington song or something from the same time period. I played this disc while I was cooking dinner last night and its somber mood felt just right. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MANHATTAN LOVE SUICIDE [MAX NAGL / JONNY GRIEBLER / WILLI FREIGNER] - 1991 (Rude Noises 023; Austria) Manhattan Love Suicide features Max Nagl on alto & bari saxes, violin, guitar, organ & drums; Jonny Griebler on guitar and Willi Freigner on drums. Manhattan Love Suicide appears to an older project that Austrian saxist Max Nagl was involved with way back when. This disc was actually recorded between 1989 & 1991, the first half is the trio recorded partially live at B.A.C.H. in Vienna and the second half is a solo project by Mr. Nagl recorded around the same time. From the picture on the back cover, the trio look like a post-punk or weird new wave band. Their music seems to be coming from a similar area: echoplexed squealing sax, jittery guitar, throbbing drums and occasional venomous shouted vocals. At one point, the band stops and Nagl cuts loose with one of those scary, bent-note Zorn-like sax solos. When the guitar re-enters, he matches the sax’s intensity with tight, frenzied response. What this reminds me of is New York NO Wave from a decade earlier and perhaps my pals Dissipated Face, another crazy punk/jazz trio who knew no boundaries between genres. Although this music does sound somewhat dated (it is more than 25 years old), there is something fresh or unhinged that I dig. The solo effort in the second half shows that Mr. Nagl has always been a crafty musician with lots of weird ideas to try out by experimenting with different instruments. Nagl creates his warped songs by throwing difference into the blender: guitars, violins, voices, saxes, cheap keyboards and percussion. Each piece evokes a different vibe or scene. Although there are no solos, verses or choruses, Nagl finds a way of creating different environments which are often soundtrack-like, perhaps for strange cartoons. The recent solo effort that I reviewed yesterday (‘Exit in Fahrtrichtung’), show that Max Nagl has come a long way with his solo efforts adding thoughtful arrangements & jazz licks to his expanding arsenal of ideas. Impressive, nonetheless. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
Historic, Archival & Reissued Recordings:
ALBERT MANGELSDORFF With DON CHERRY / KARL BERGER / LEE KONITZ / ATILLA ZOLLER/ WOLFGANG DAUNER / ELVIN JONES - And His Friends (MPS-Jazz 211961; EEC) Historic reissue of this classic 1969 album, featuring duets between Mangelsdorff (trombone) and the following musicians: Don Cherry (trumpet), Elvin Jones (drums), Karl Berger (vibraphone), Attila Zoller (guitar), Lee Konitz (alto sax) and Wolfgang Dauner (piano). The genius of German trombone player Albert Mangelsdorff can't be experienced better than with these improvised duets, recorded with some of his best musical friends. Swinging, innovative, freewheeling and poignant. This disc indeed captures all shades of Mangelsdorff's music: fun and humor in the duet with Don Cherry; light, gently flowing swing, the sureness and consciousness of 'time' in the set with Elvin Jones; melodic sensibility in Zoller's 'Outox'; the ties with the 'tradition' of cool jazz in the dialogue with Lee Konitz; and the fascination by the avant-garde, the continuous further development as in the Berger intermezzo. In spite of all this diversity it may strike the one or the other attentive listener that there are certain motifs, ideas, phrases cropping up again and again in the various selections in a multitude of variations and modifications, as if being continuously developed further, thus creating the impression that the six duets contained in the grooves of this album are not merely six different selections but the somehow connected movements of one complete, cohesive suite. The six musicians playing these duets are representative for many others. Time and again, Albert is particularly brilliant in playing duets and dialogues. Mangelsdorff recently turned 75, had a festival in his honor and is still going strong!
FRANK ZAPPA - Nasty Rats Live... Live At The Palladium New York 1981 (Keyhole 9083; UK) Frank Zappa performing Nasty Rats, live at the Palladium, New York on October 31st, 1981. 1981 was a typically busy year for Frank Zappa, with the establishment of his UMRK studio, as well as the release of Tinsel Town Rebellion, You Are What You Is, and three Shut Up 'n Play Yer Guitar albums. In September, he embarked on a US tour, adding Steve Vai to his tight new band. On Halloween night, they performed at the Palladium in New York, the show being simulcast on WNEW-FM radio and MTV. Featuring several songs he rarely played in concert, it's a must for all serious fans. The entire WNEW-FM broadcast is presented here with background notes and images.
2 CD Set $24
TACKHEAD - The Lost Tapes Vol. One & Remixes (Echo Beach 121; Germany) TackHead have performed hits for millions of music fans. The list of their clients is long, in fact it couldn't be any longer, and it includes some of the most illustrious names around: The Rolling Stones, Seal, Annie Lennox, Madonna, Mick Jagger, Nine Inch Nails, Lauryn Hill, Mos Def, REM, Charlie Watts, Tina Turner, Miles Davis, Peter Gabriel, James Brown, Depeche Mode, Malcolm McLaren, George Clinton, Herbie Hancock, Duran Duran, BB King, The Cure, Donna Summer, Billy Idol, African Bambaata, Tommy Boy Label, Sugarhill Gang Records, and many more. They are more than just highly talented individual artists -- they are absolute luminaries in their field. The New York Times once called them "one of today's most extraordinary rhythm sections." They aren't just musicians, but also producers, remixers, and friends and supporters of fellow musicians. In 2014, they released their last new studio album For The Love Of Money (DR 109B-CD/109LP), an outrageous concept project featuring cover versions of artists who inspired Tack>>Head, take, for example, the reggae covers they picked: "War", "Exodus", and "Black Cinderella" pay tribute to two reggae giants -- Bob Marley and Errol Dunkley -- by getting them "into TackHead shape". Tack>>Head have always been famous for being acerbic commentators of the prevailing political and social conditions, and "War" and "Exodus" are the perfect soundtrack for this mission. Several remixers felt inspired by the original vive and set out to immortalize it, delivering their remix skills to create spiritual interpretations. In fact, some remixes sound better than the original... The top spot of the double CD release is CD one. Tack>>Head opened their treasure vaults and released a bunch of previously unreleased tracks from their creative path between 1985 and 1995. These tracks provide a brilliant overview of their history and creative potential. Tack>>Head's astonishing texture of tone and rhythm attracted a circle of musicians who were the cream of the music business at that time. Raw, unique, fresh, awesome - a celebration of the bands in an accomplished blend of funk, body-rock, reggae, and dub. Limited to 777 paginated copies.
2 CD Set $17
ROBERT ASHLEY - Automatic Writing (Lovely Music 1002; USA) 1996 release. 2017 repress. ‘Automatic Writing’ compiles three early Robert Ashley works from 1967-79 - some of his most experimental works. Composed in recorded form over a period of five years, "Automatic Writing", originally issued on Lovely Music in 1979, is the result of Robert Ashley's fascination with involuntary speech. He recorded and analyzed the repeated lines of his own mantra and extracted four musical characters. The result is a quiet, early form of ambient music. The piece rather famously formed the basis for Nurse With Wound's A Missing Sense (1997). Steven Stapleton's commentary on the recording: "A Missing Sense was originally conceived as a private tape to accompany my taking of LSD. When in that particular state, Robert Ashley's 'Automatic Writing' was the only music I could actually experience without feeling claustrophobic and paranoid. We played it endlessly; it seemed to become part of the room, perfectly blending with the late night city ambiance and the 'breathing' of the building." The piece features the voices of Ashley and Mimi Johnson, with electronics and Polymoog backing, with a switching circuit designed and built by Paul DeMarinis. "Purposeful Lady Slow Afternoon" and "She Was A Visitor" are excerpts from an opera entitled "That Morning Thing", composed in 1966-67 as a result of Ashley's impulse to express something about the suicides of three friends. "Purposeful Lady Slow Afternoon", originally issued in 1968, is a woman's description of a sexual experience. Ashley attempts "to demonstrate the dichotomy between the rational-whatever can be explained in words-and its opposite-which is not irrational or a-rational, but which cannot be explained in words." The lead voice performed by Cynthia Liddell, the processed back-up chorus, the recurring bell tone, and the pervading tape hiss, create an unsettling mood. "She Was a Visitor" was originally issued on the electronic compilation Extended Voices in 1967. It is another form of description, intended to be understood as a form of rumor. The chorus is divided into groups, each headed by a leader. A lone speaker repeats the title sentence throughout. The separate phonemes of this sentence are picked up freely by the group leaders and are relayed to the group members, who sustain them softly and for the duration of one natural breath. The time lag produces a staggered, chant-like effect, with the sounds moving outward from the nearest performer to the farthest. Booklet notes by Robert Ashley.
DIETER MOEBIUS - Kram (Bureau B 258; Germany) Dieter Moebius - one half of the legendary duo Cluster and the godfather of electronic krautrock - passed away in the summer of 2015. Bureau B are reissuing his final four solo albums. Following on from Blotch (BB 209CD/LP) and Nurton (BB 210CD/LP), reissued in 2016, Kram and Ding (BB 259CD/LP) now complete the quartet. Liner notes were penned by Moebius's friend, the U.S. composer, producer, and musician Tim Story. Kram was originally released in 2009.
Tim Story on Kram: "Recorded in 2008, Kram's playfully disjointed rhythms and shiny plastic surfaces give us just a glimpse perhaps of Moebi's own state of mind -- content, at ease, and happy to be working on music. With small mobile recording setups in Berlin and Majorca where he and Irene split their time, he recorded when the muse struck (although he would hate the word 'muse'). In English, 'kram' means 'stuff' and the title is fitting. Synthetic, toy-like sounds skitter across the soundstage, colliding with those unlikely rhythms, and modulating in real time with Moebi's unmistakable hand on the controls. Funny, warped, joyfully cluttered, Kram unapologetically embraces its disposable sounds and sly humor. Imbued throughout with his singular conception of music and sound, it's arguably Moebius' most cheerful and mischievous album, and it's all the richer for it. Moebi was a champion of the everyday -- self-effacing in both his life and his music. In Kram, he elevates the commonplace, then promptly subverts the touchstones which make it familiar. The lack of overt 'emotionality' in his work sometimes obscures the humanity and depth that's always there, lurking behind the fabricated surfaces. Kram is a perfect example. Though he would be quick to dismiss it, the warmth of Moebi's personality drifts indelibly through it."
DIETER MOEBIUS - Ding (Bureau B 259; Germany) Tim Story on Ding: "If Dieter Moebius' previous album Kram was an irreverent mélange of bright synthetic textures, 2011's Ding might be considered Moebi's industrial album. There is a cyclical, mechanical feel to many of the pieces here -- but this is light industry, not heavy machinery. Small, discrete contraptions churn out curious objects as the listener strolls the factory floor, the combinations evolving as perspectives shift with each step taken. Moebi made extensive use of a relatively portable sample recorder/looper during the creation of Ding, and the freedom to capture random bits of sound in the natural (or unnatural) world must have been inspiring. These organic ambiences might have evoked a terrain that feels familiar, except of course that this is a Moebius album. Angular rhythms, disembodied voices, repeated loops of audio debris all combine to forge a facsimile of reality that is wonderfully peculiar. The earthy environments of Ding give it a remarkable depth of field, and Moebi masterfully allows a great deal of transparency in the mixes. The smallest of musical cues -- the alternating, faraway chords which float through 'Bone,' for example -- are sufficient to tie the seemingly disparate elements together into a satisfying, truly musical experience. The strands of natural, mechanical, and electronic sounds are so deftly juxtaposed that music never quite overwhelms noise, and the clamor is never allowed to stifle Ding's strange poetry. Altogether, Ding feels like something of a small revelation -- there's liberation in Moebi's willful escape from a sound palette confined solely to his synthesizers. If the notion of manipulated, overlapping field recordings sounds dry and abstract, Ding is anything but. In places, the loping, syncopated pulses suggest the polyrhythms of African music, even funk -- but it's a state which never quite materializes because the rhythm loops are almost always trimmed slightly too long or too short, deliberately interrupting the 'groove' that otherwise could have taken hold. So it's music you might conceivably dance to, if your legs aren't quite the same length. Mentally, it's much easier to dance with Ding. Shot through with Moebi's humor and extraordinary imagination, its provocative choreography of music and noise remains one of his most seductive."
OSIRIS - Osiris (Prog Temple 8073; UK) Prog Temple present a reissue of Osiris's self-titled album, originally released in 1982. The tiny Arab island of Bahrain was no hotbed of rock music in the 1970s - but that's where this superb band hailed from. Equally influenced by top UK progressive bands (Camel, Yes, Jethro Tull) and their own musical heritage, they played a deft and melodic brand of keyboard-heavy prog that could easily have found success in the West. Their debut album was originally issued in a tiny pressing in their homeland in 1983 and makes a welcome return to CD here, together with background notes.
THOMAS KONER & JANA WINDEREN - Cloitre (Touch 051; UK) Issued on compact disc for the first time. Originally released digitally in 2014. Thomas Köner and Jana Winderen, recorded live from the cloisters at Evreux Cathedral, Normandy, France by Franck Dubois on June 14th, 2014, as part of L'Ateliers. With thanks to Denis Boyer. Limited edition CD in card sleeve; Remastered by Thomas Köner; Photography by Jon Wozencroft.
KEIJI HAINO - Watashi Dake? (Black Editions 001; USA) Black Editions present the first vinyl reissue of Keiji Haino's stunning debut album Watashi Dake?, originally released in 1981. This first ever edition released outside of Japan features the artist's originally intended metallic gold and silver jacket artwork. Over the last fifty years few musicians or performers have created as monumental and uncompromising a body of work as that of Keiji Haino. Through a vast number of recordings and performances, Haino has staked out a ground all his own, creating a language of unparalleled intensity that defies any simple classification. For all this, his 1981 debut album Watashi Dake? has remained enigmatic. Originally released in a small edition by the legendary Pinakotheca label, the album was heard by only a select few in Japan and far fewer overseas. Original vinyl copies became impossibly rare and highly sought after the world over. Watashi Dake? presents a haunting vision -- stark vocals, whispered and screamed, punctuate dark silences. Intricate and sharp guitar figures interweave, repeat, and stretch, trance-like, emerging from dark recesses. Written and composed on the spot -- Haino's vision is one of deep spiritual depths that distantly evokes 1920s blues and medieval music -- yet is unlike anything ever committed to record before or since. Produced in close cooperation with Keiji Haino and legendary photographer Gin Satoh. Coupled with starkly minimal packaging, featuring the now iconic cover photographs by Gin Satoh, the album is a startling and fully realized artistic statement. Housed in custom printed deluxe Stoughton tip-on jackets, including black on black inserts, extras, and hand-colored finishes; Remastered by Elysian Masters and cut by Bernie Grundman Mastering; Pressed to high quality vinyl at RTI; Includes download code.
THE NEW YORK CONTEMPORARY FIVE With DON CHERRY / ARCHIE SHEPP / JOHN TCHICAI / DON MOORE / J.C. MOSES - Consequences (Modern Silence 025; Malta) Modern Silence present a reissue of The New York Contemporary Five's Consequences, originally released in 1966. The New York Contemporary Five barely lasted a year, all told, but they recorded five albums that shaped the jazz to come. They were a super-group after the fact -- the stellar frontline of Don Cherry, Archie Shepp, and John Tchicai all being relative newcomers at the time. Cherry had recently left Ornette Coleman and was only starting to stretch into world music. Shepp was fresh off a stint with Cecil Taylor and had just found his voice as a composer and performer. And Tchicai was virtually unknown. Their scorching music -- aided by the supple and hard-hitting rhythm section of Don Moore and J. C. Moses -- is a thrilling mix of adventurous soloing and post-bop structures, memorable heads and go-for-broke improv. Shepp and Tchicai offered two different ways forward for sax players: Shepp privileged texture, density, and fragmentation -- a pointillist take on Ben Webster or Coleman Hawkins, perhaps. Tchicai was a master of melodic invention, teasing out hard and bright phrases that seem unpredictably off-kilter. What's still remarkable about these tunes is their sense of internal tension. They're wound tighter than a magnet coil, without sacrificing any spontaneity. There's little that's strictly free about this jazz, but it's full of reckless and unexpected drama all the same. "Consequences" is the record's barnburner, built on fiery performances and climaxing with a Don Cherry solo that sounds like the aural equivalent of a fifty foot skid mark. Their version of Bill Dixon's "Trio" is contemplative by comparison, offering a loping groove, overlapping textures, and a series of wonderfully sustained solos that show off the stylistic strengths of each player.
CREAM [ERIC CLAPTON / JACK BRUCE / GINGER BAKER] - Wheels Of Fire (Vinyl Lovers 900198; Italy) Vinyl Lovers present a reissue of Cream's Wheels Of Fire, originally released in 1968. Like the band's previous two releases, 1966's Fresh Cream (VL 900167LP) and 1967's Disraeli Gears (LR 140LP), Cream's third album also topped the charts. Although it was criticized at the time for being a somewhat disjointed album, divided into one LP of new studio material and one LP of live material, it redeemed itself because "White Room" has gone down in the annals history as one of the great moments in rock n' roll. Features four bonus tracks including the super rare "Desert Ride".
2 LP Set $30
STEVE BACZKOWSKI / CHRIS CORSANO / PAUL FLAHERTY - The Dull Blade (Feeding Tube Records 307; USA) "More than a decade since their first (and last) trio album, Dim Bulb (2005), 'Buffalo Steve,' Chris Corsano and Paul Flaherty are back on the attack. The three recorded as part of a larger ensemble on the Open Mouth LP, Wrong Number (2014), but they have a certain way of creating focused trio dynamics that makes babies talk in tongues and old men drool. The line-up is a bit unorthodox -- two saxes (one a goddamn baritone) and drums. You might almost be tempted to call the format European. But it'd be a canard to try and place this album in the Euro free music tradition. I mean, yeah, there is some massive outsider brawling here. Buckets of wind and clumps of tubs 'all double twisted up,' as Fred Blassie used to say. But the fire never refrains from flaming as jazz-qua-jazz, which places it a lot more squarely in the American tradition than actual squares would have you believe. These three are clearly savages, which is a far cry from people impersonating savages, if you catch my drift. Beyond that, there is an ineffably jazzoid heft to the music here. Both Steve and Paul are playing in a distinctly post-Ayler jetstream. The freedom of their runs maintains that strangely (perhaps even imaginary or projective) American connection to bar-walking R&B maniacs -- something that seems to lie at the bottom of our country's hornic subconscious. Which is not to say individual moments on this record couldn't have come from the FMP catalog, but there's a red hot holism here that will brand most asses with the stars & stripes. The Dull Blade has a strange undercurrent of swing here as well. Largely provided by Mr. Corsano's driving full kit approach, the most outward-moving passages (often those involving the inner and outer freak registers of the horns) get corralled back into more clearly terrestrial and genuinely moving. It's a great goddamn record. Once again these guys manage to defy odds and expectations, creating music that is as fully-charged and beautiful as it is warped." - Byron Coley, 2017 Edition of 400.
POP MAKOSSA - The Invasive Dance Beat of Cameroon 1976-1984 (Analog Africa 083; Germany) Double LP version. Gatefold sleeve with 20-page booklet; 140 gram vinyl. The Pop Makossa adventure started in 2009, when Analog Africa founder Samy Ben Redjeb first travelled to Cameroon to make an initial assessment of the country's musical situation. He returned with enough tracks for an explosive compilation highlighting the period when funk and disco sounds began to infiltrate the makossa style popular throughout Cameroon. From the very beginning, there were several mysteries hanging over Pop Makossa. It was not until DJ and music producer Déni Shain was dispatched to Cameroon to finalize the project, license the songs, scan photographs, and interview the artists that some of the biggest question marks began to disappear. His journey from the port city of Douala to the capital of Yaoundé brought him in contact with the lives and stories of many of the musicians who had shaped the sound of Cameroon's dance music in its most fertile decade. The beat that holds everything together has its origins in the rhythms of the Sawa people: ambassey, bolobo, assiko and essewé, a traditional funeral dance. But it wasn't until these rhythms arrived in the cities of Cameroon and collided with merengue, high-life, Congolese rumba, and, later, funk and disco, that modern makossa was born. Makossa managed to unify the whole of Cameroon, and it was successful in part because it was so adaptable. Some of the greatest makossa hits incorporated the electrifying guitars and tight grooves of funk, while others were laced with cosmic flourishes made possible by the advent of the synthesizer. However much came down to the bass; and from the rubbery hustle underpinning Mystic Djim's "Yaoundé Girls" to the luminous liquid disco lines which propel Pasteur Lappé's "Sekele Movement", Pop Makossa demonstrates why Cameroonian bass players are some of the most revered in the world. "Pop Makossa Invasion", an obscure tune recorded for Radio Buea makes its debut here and joins the pantheon of extraordinary songs that plugged Cameroon's makossa style into the modern world. Also features: Dream Stars, Mystic Djim & The Spirits, Bill Loko, Eko, Olinga Gaston, Emmanuel Kahe et Jeanette Kemogne, Nkodo Si-Tony, Bernard Ntone, Pat' Ndoye, and Clément Djimogne.
2 LP Set $28
Bruce Lee Gallanter’s Recommended Gig List for June of 2017
THE STONE RESIDENCIES - MICHAEL COLTUN - JUNE 13-18
THE STONE AT THE NEW SCHOOL—55 WEST 13TH STREET
BRANDON ROSS - FRIDAY AND SATURDAY NIGHTS JUNE 16-17 AT 830
JUNE 16—Brandon Ross & Blazing Beauty: Brandon Ross (electric guitar, banjo) Charlie Burnham (violin) Stomu Takeishi (acoustic bass guitar) JT Lewis
JUNE 17—Phantom Station: Brandon Ross (electric guitar, banjo) Sadiq Bey (voice, electronics) Hardedge (soundesign) JT Lewis (drums)
8:30pm: - Michael Coltun/Brian Chase DUO
Michael Coltun (bass, electronics) Brian Chase (drums)
8:30pm: Cheick Hamala Diabaté & Mankan - Cheick Hamala Diabaté (n ' goni, vocals) Rob Coltun (guitar) Michael Coltun (bass, tapes, electronics) Cem Misirlioglu (drums, samples, prophet analog synth) plus special guests
Blending traditional Malian songs, whose origins can be traced to the 13th century, with modern sonic textures and soundscapes. Featuring griot, “king of the n’goni”, Cheick Hamala Diabaté.
8:30pm: KOLTUN - Michael Coltun (bass, electronics) Cem Misirlioglu (percussion, samples) Jad Atoui (modular synths) Jacob Bergson (prophet synth, modular synths); KOLTUN is a new project led by Michael Coltun. The group synthesizes Jewish and Middle Eastern rhythms and melodies with noise washes and sonic textures. Based in New York, members of KOLTUN come from Turkey, Lebanon, and the U.S.
Bruce Lee Gallanter’s Birthday Celebration and Concert of Spiritual Jazz! 7pm: Unbroken: Louie Belogenis (alto sax) Shanir Blumenkranz (bass) Kenny Wollesen (drums) and 8:30: The Franklin Kiermyer Quartet: Jovan Alexandre (tenor sax) Davis Whitfield (piano) Otto Gardner (bass) Franklin Kiermyer (drums)
Next month, July 2017 is the 50th Anniversary of the Passing of John Coltrane. Tonight we Embrace his Spirit by Playing Music Inspired by the Great John Coltrane Quartet. - $25 for both sets!
THE STONE RESIDENCIES
CHRIS BROWN—Six Nights of Microtonal Electroacoustic Music
8:30 pm - First Light - Kyle Bruckmann (oboe, electronics) Theresa Wong (cello) Chris Brown (keyboard, computer); NYC premieres of: First Light (2016), setting of poems by Jackson MacLow in Harry Partch's 43-tone tuning / Obelisk (2014), in 7-limit just intonation, with interactive electronics / Snakecharmer (1987), newly restored version, for Kyle Bruckmann, oboe
830 pm - Structures from Six Primes - Zeena Parkins (harp) Nate Wooley (trumpet) Chris Brown (piano); Improvisations within selected 13-limit harmony-rhythm proportions from Six Primes (2014)
830 pm - Transit - John Bischoff (live electronics) Tim Perkis (live electronics) Chris Brown (live electronics); Bandmates in The Hub perform aerial free improvisations… without any net!
THE STONE AT THE NEW SCHOOL—55 WEST 13TH STREET
WADADA LEO SMITH - FRIDAY AND SATURDAY NIGHTS JUNE 23-24 AT 830PM
Wadada Leo Smith (trumpet)
830 pm - Six Primes (2014)(NYC premiere) - Chris Brown (piano) - Six Primes is a suite of six pieces that use the six prime numbers 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, and 13 to govern both the tuning and rhythmic structure of the music, including the harmony and rhythmic subdivisions. The piano is retuned in a just intonation in which the notes are tuned to one ratio with the highest prime factor of 2, three ratios with highest prime of 3, and two ratios each with highest primes of 5, 7, 11 and 13. It rigorously explores the 75 intervals thus created in rhythmic structures that mirror in time the proportions given by the notes employed.
830 pm - The Thorn (2017) Miguel Frasconi (glass objects, analog electronics) Chris Brown (piano, computer) John McCowen (contrabass clarinet)
The trio improvises within pulsing harmonic and rhythmic sequences generated in real-time by SuperCollider computer code
830 pm - John Zorn, William Winant, Chris Brown Trio; John Zorn (sax) William Winant (percussion) Chris Brown (piano, computer processing); Three old friends—all virtuosos—come together for a fabulous concert of improvisation!
All Sets start at 8:30pm Tickets: $20
There are no refreshments or merchandise at The Stone.
Only music. All ages are welcome.
Cash Only at the door. There is no phone.
There is no food or beverage served or allowed
just a serious listening environment.
The Stone is booked purely on a curatorial basis
The CORNELIA STREET CAFE - 212-989-9319
29 Cornelia St in the heart of the West Greenwich Village, NYC
Friday Jun 16
9:00PM & 10:30PM YOTAM SILBERSTEIN & LA FAMILIA - Yotam Silberstein, guitar, comp.; Glenn Zaleski, piano; Rick Rosato, bass; Daniel Dor , drums
Saturday Jun 17
9:00PM & 10:30PM MATT PAVOLKA BAND - Ben Monder, guitar; Pete Rende, piano; Matt Pavolka, bass; Nate Wood, drums
Sunday Jun 18
8:30PM NEW BRAZILIAN PERSPECTIVES: EDUARDO BELO GROUP - Eduardo Belo, bass; Alejandro Avilés, alto sax, flute; Lívio Almeida, tenor sax, flute; Ari Hoenig, drums
10:00PM NEW BRAZILIAN PERSPECTIVES: RICHARD MILLER TRIO - Richard Miller, guitar; Itaiguara Brandao, bass; Sergio Krakowski, pandiero
Tues, June 8:01PM ALEX GOODMAN QUINTET - Alex Goodman, guitar; Matt Marantz, sax, Eden Ladin, piano; Rick Rosato, bass; Jimmy Macbride, drums
Wednesday Jun 21
8:01PM ADAM KOLKER, CD RELEASE: BECKON - Adam Kolker , woodwinds; Steve Cardenas, guitar; Billy Mintz, drums; Lawrence Feldman, flutes; Jeff Nichols, clarinets; Jackie Henderson, bassoon Adam Kolker,
Thursday Jun 22
8:00PM KYLE NASSER QUINTET - Kyle Nasser, tenor, soprano sax; Jeff Miles, guitar; Zach Lapidus, piano; Martin Nevin, bass; Allan Mednard, drums
Friday Jun 23
9:00PM & 10:30PM GILAD HEKSELMAN ZUPEROCTAVE - Gilad Hekselman, guitar; Aaron Parks, keyboards; Kush Abaday, drums
Saturday Jun 24
9:00PM & 10:30PM GILAD HEKSELMAN ZUPEROCTAVE - Gilad Hekselman, guitar; Aaron Parks, keyboards; Kush Abaday, drums
Sunday Jun 25
Jen Lap & Jimmy Schatz, hosts
Justin Herman; Jesse Roth; Alex Papiccio; Jon Fisch
8:30PM ISRAELI JAZZ SPOTLIGHT: ROTEM SIVAN TRIO
10:00PM ISRAELI JAZZ SPOTLIGHT: TAL RONEN DUO
Shapeshifter June, 2017:
Jun 16 -
7p - Rich Bomzer Projects
Evan Sundquist- keys
TJ Adorno- Guitar
Alex Aitken- drums
Colin Dooman- bass
Annie McLean- vocals
Alex Slomka - bone
Jesse Klirsfield- trumpet
8:15p - Stephan Haluska - Harpist (processed harp and electronics)
7pm: Nani - Special guests: Michael Winograd (Clarinet) & Dan Nadel (Guitar)
8:15p CD Release Party! Ben Sher Tempestade
Ben Sher New Organ Trio with Sylvia Cuenca and Gary Fisher
9:30pm: Jun 20 Dongfeng Liu Quintet
John Benitez: Bass / Francis Benitez: Drums
Feifei Yang:Erhu / Lin Ma : Pipa / Dongfeng Liu: Piano
8:15p - Clay Giberson - Pastures project
Clay Giberson - keyboards
Drew Gress - bass
Matt Wilson - drums
David Binney - saxophone
9:30p - Avi Granite's Verse
Ralph Alessi - trumpet
Avi Granite - guitar/composition
Aidan O'Donnell - bass
Owen Howard - drums
7PM - Jonathan Saraga Sextet
8:15PM - Danny Rivera Big Band
7p - Joseph Branciforte & Theo Bleckmann
Joseph Branciforte (fender rhodes, electronics, tape loops, & objects)
Theo Bleckmann (voice electronics)
8:15p - IKONOSTASIS - Ikonen/Moses/Mathisen (FIN/USA/NOR)
Kari Ikonen - piano and Moog synthesizer
Ra-Kalam Bob Moses - drums
Ole Mathisen - saxophones
Shapeshifter is located at
18 Whitwell Place in Brooklyn, NY
R train to Union stop
Friday, June 16th 8:00 PM
Ken Filiano ReUnion
8pm: Ken Filiano – bass (solo)
9pm: - ReUnion
Michiru Inoue – Butoh dance
KenYa Kawaguchi – shakuhachi
Andrea Wolper – voice
Carol Liebowitz – piano
Saturday, June 17th 8:30 PM
Gregorio/Giallorenzo Duo & Jaimie Branch Trio
Guillermo Gregorio – clarinet
Paul Giallorenzo – piano
Jaimie Branch Trio
Jaimie Branch – trumpet
Brandon Lopez – bass
Mike Pride – drums
Friday, June 23rd 8:30 PM
Satoko Fujii KAZE
Kappa Maki – trumpet
Christian Bezos - trumpet
Satoko Fujii – piano
Peter Ménard – drums
Thursday, June 29th 8:30 PM
Aaron Irwin Trio / New Nemesis Trio
Aaron Irwin Trio
Aaron Irwin – Saxophone
Mike Baggetta – guitar
Jeff Hirshfield – drums
New Nemesis Trio
Brian Drye – trombone
Justin Carroll – piano/synths
Jeff Davis – drums
I-Beam is located at 168 7th Street in Brooklyn, NY 11215 - Directions: SUBWAY: Take the F or R trains to 4th Ave & 9th Street. Walk down 4th ave to 7th street. Make a left on 7th and walk past 3rd ave. We are located on the ground floor, the grey doors to the right of the stairs of #168.