This Week’s Dynamic Discs Begin with This Mystic Music Treasure:
TISZIJI MUNOZ with JOHN MEDESKI / BILLY HART / DON PATE / JOHN LOCKWOOD / RA KALAM BOB MOSES - Heart Trance Revelation (Anami 43; USA) Featuring Tisziji Munoz on guitar & compositions, John Medeski on piano, Don Pate & John Lockwood on contrabasses and Billy Hart & Ra Kalam Bob Moses on drums. I got a call on New Years Day from my old friend, Tisziji Munoz, mostly to wish me well in the new year and our combined hope to find some way to help heal our currently troubled planet. You could say that our talk was synchronous since I had just heard a new disc from Munoz which had showed up in the mail earlier that week. I have played this disc, ‘Heart Trance Revelation’, practically every day ever since it arrived and I remain awed by its completely Cosmic Spiritual Jazz Energy! It turns out that this disc was actually recorded in January of 2012, but I didn’t hear about it until this promo from Ra Kalam came in the mail recently. Considering the Munoz’ music career started around 1970 when he was in Pharaoh Sanders band, he now has some 70 releases out on his own Anami Music label, each of which has something special to offer, especially if you love the Spiritual Jazz sound.
Although I have always dug what Munoz has released, this one sounds even more special, Cosmic Jazz at it most intense! The first piece, “Voice to Heart” is short and contains no guitar, just strange chanting voices and percussion, mostly gongs and cymbals. The vibe I feel is like floating in space with ghostly voices and spacious percussion surrounding us. The first song is called “The Joy of Practice” and it begins with John Medeski’s spinning, harp-like piano accompanied by a swirling cushion or acoustic basses and percussion moving in waves. Munoz starts his first ascent, slowly soloing on guitar, taking his time, tugging at those notes carefully, his unique somewhat metallic tone at the center of evolving storm. Munoz is basically plotting a course, riding the waves as they crash over and over. Aside from Munoz’ cosmic guitar, the other highlight here is pianist John Medeski, who sounds wonderful throughout, adding some superb, McCoy-like piano solos on several songs, as well as spinning a web between Munoz and the double rhythm team buzzing below. On “The Arrow Path”, the sextet ascends even higher, building in layers, Tisziji reaching into his bag of licks, the rest of the sextet all spinning, humming and simmering together, swirling like ghosts communing on that cosmic plain. The resulting music has a way of washing over us like warm waves of water, all of us floating together, higher and higher and…. The first jazz music that I listened to and took seriously (1972/1973) was jazz/rock, later known as fusion. This music along with the Canterbury Scene was my favorite music until 1975 when fusion turned sour, formulaic, commercial & predictable. Much of this music had become a spectator sport to show who could play faster and faster.
There was still strong fusion music later, but I/we had become more selective. Some of Munoz’ lines are fast and furious, yet he knows how to balance this just right, rarely using speed as a way to show off, more like those John Coltrane sheets of sound which seem to come from an entirely organic, spiritual area. Everyone in the sextet gets their chance to stretch our here so that we get a variety of highlights. I really dig the drums only tailspinning sound of “This Precious Lifetime”, the interplay between both drummers is spectacular yet still modest. Each of the nine pieces here is like a journey to the stars, the sextet (or subsets) always spinning a intricate tapestry together. As I watch the sun shine down through my kitchen window (1/13/21), I can feel that ray of warmth and light bearing down. Munoz’ guitar has a similar beacon going on here, beaming like rays from the center of the storm. One of the last things I discussed with Tisziji is the need for some healing music in these dark, troublesome times. We both agreed that we would work on a live show for later this year, some Cosmic Music to help us all heal. This coming May, will be the 30th anniversary of DMG, so we are working on a plan to celebrate this momentous occasion. Get ready! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MORE GREAT DISCS FROM THE FABULOUS FMR LABEL:
IN LAYERS with MARCELO DOS REIS / ONNO GOVAERT / LUIS VICENTE / KRISTJAN MARTINSSON - Pliable (FMR 591-1020; UK) Featuring Marcelo Dos Reis on electric guitar, Luis Vicente on trumpet, Kristjan Martinsson on piano and Onno Govaert on drums. This disc was recorded live in May of 2018 in a club called Salao Brazil in Coimbra, Portugal. This is a unique quartet of members from different backgrounds, Reis & Vicente (from Portugal), Govaert (Netherlands) and Martinsson (Scandinavia). I see that the two frontline members, Mr. Reis and Mr. Vicente, have worked together in several projects for the Clean Feed and FMR labels. Mr. Govaert is already on some dozen discs with Cactus Truck, Kaja Draksler and Bram Stadhouders, all Dutch-based musicians. This disc starts off very quietly with extremely minimal, careful playing. Slow, subtle and drifting, stretching out each note with a dream-like haze. Since there is no bass here, those drone-like sounds might be coming from working inside the piano and using some implement on the guitar. All four musicians here are gifted improvisers, hence there is quite a bit of exciting playing and exchanging of ideas. Although this music is free (sounding), there is a strong, organic, focused vibe going on here. When real improvised music works, it creates a spell of organic, democratic interaction which sounds like magic since the results of what we hear flow right in and touch us on a level which in inexplicable but still recognizable. This is the real article here. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
UDO SCHINDLER / JAAP BLONK Lakefront Discussions (FMR 592-0920, UK) Here’s a match made in…heaven? Hell? Purgatory? Can’t say for certain, but this one’s surely for the wide, the wider, and the widest ears—can’t recall a more brazenly confrontational piece of improvisational art in recent memory. Reeds player Schindler and vocal gymnast Blonk have extensive pedigrees, mostly on the avant side of things, though they’ve worked in a diverse number of contexts and situations. Herewith are evoked conceptualists populating the Fluxus movement plus member and norm-upsetter Joseph Beuys’s actionist forays, staunch free jazz from the extreme Brotzmann/Frank Lowe/ESP-Disk axis, and experimental throat agitators such as Phil Minton, Thomas Buckner, Ami Yoshida, and a small gaggle of others. It’s ‘basic’ but complex: Schindler emits all kinds of curt blasts, car honks, extended squeaks, foghorn arias, and gusty outbursts which jockey for position around Blonk’s innumerable tongue twisters, lip-smacked fluctuations, asyllabic word salads, muted shouts, shrieks, and mumbles, and just about any kind of possible sound that can be forced out from pursed lips and sickly larynxes. Blonk additionally decorates his limitless collection of utterances with all manners of computer-generated protuberances and synthetic glossolalia, many of whose burps and dribbles are virtually indistinguishable from his own physiological ‘acoustics’. Sometimes Blonk growls, protests, and rages against machines real and imaginary, which Schindler responds to in surprising, unexpected ways, though he’s surely just as capable of raising a ruckus when he wants to. Jarring, often scary, somewhat intimidating and in-your-face works that demand not only your attention but makes you question the very nature of what constitutes ‘music’. As for the lakefront alluded to in the title? Has to be the kind of place Jason Voorhees would hang at. Brrr. - Darren Bergstein
UDO SCHINDLER / OVE VOLQUARTZ - Tales About Exploding Trees and Other Absurdities (FMR 598-0920; UK) Featuring Udo Schindler on piccolo, bass & double bass clarinets and Ove Volquartz on bass and double bass clarinets. German multi-reeds player, Udo Schindler, most really like to record since he has some 40 releases staring in 2007. I’ve only come to know Mr. Schindler in the last few years since he records with Frank Gratkowski, Frank Paul Schubert and Marco Von Orelli, names I well recognize. Sometime last month (December of 2020), I got a box in the mail from Mr. Schindler with more than a dozen of his back catalogue. And now the FMR label has released five more newer titles, jeeez..! Most of Schindler’s releases are either solo, duos or trios. Mr. Schindler also switches between various reeds and brass for each release: soprano & tenor sax, various clarinets, cornet, euphonium and synth. Ove Volquartz is a German clarinetist who has worked with Gunter Hampel, Abbey Rader and Annexus Quam. Mr. Schindler and Mr. Volquartz have worked together a couple of times previously.
Bass clarinets are still relatively rare as lead instruments although that has changed over the past few years thanks to Jason Stein & others, but double or contrabass clarinets duos are still very rare. Word is that contrabass clarinets are difficult to play so that’s why so few solo on that instrument. Hearing two together is something especially rare. This disc was recorded live in October of 2018 at the Klang-Kunst Salon in Munich, Germany. The sound of those bass & contrabass clarinets is something else: deep, low-end, wooden clarinet tones in sympathetic layers. Both clarinetists are most expressive and work their way through a variety of different sounds on those low end clarinets. There is quite a bit more going on here than meets the eye or anyone’s expectation, hence whenever I give this disc a lesson, I hear more and more interesting interplay and sonic exploration going on. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
UDO SCHINDLER / DAMON SMITH / KARINA ERHARD - The MunichSoundStudies - Vol. 1 (FMR 593-0920; UK) Featuring Udo Schindler on clarinets & alto horn, Damon Smith on contrabass and Karina Erhard on C & alto flutes. Recorded live at Galerie at Toxin in December of 2019. Munich-based reeds player, Udo Schindler, has recorded some 40 discs since his first disc in 2007. Schindler is a marvelous, diverse multi-instrumentalist who switches between various reeds (clarinets & saxes) and brass (cornet & alto horn). Schindler has worked with more than a dozen players, each of whom plays different instruments, making each session something quite different. For this trio date, Schindler works with Boston-based bassist, Damon Smith, who keeps a high profile working many many greats: Joe McPhee, Peter Kowald, Henry Kaiser and many others. The third person here is a flutist named Karina Erhard, whose name is unrecognized be me.
UDO SCHINDLER / DAMON SMITH / JAAP BLONK The MunichSoundStudies Vol. 2 & 3 (FMR 594-0920, UK) Horn player Schindler, fast becoming one of FMR’s MVPs, works out vigorously once again with old foil Blonk and double bassist Smith on a clutch of duet/trio works that proudly test the limits of physical playing and audience endurance. This is not meant as a pejorative; there’s much in the way of piss and vinegar in these collections of performances and sounds, a remarkably consistent aesthetic whose astringency manages to deconstruct notions of both ‘jazz’ and ‘classical’ (even improv) simultaneously. But you need to (re)orient your ear before plunging headfirst into the flames. Active, concentrated listening is generally a key necessity to enabling full enjoyment of many an improv date, and this one’s no exception. However…all three participants here credit these works as compositions first and foremost, and whether or not they’ve chosen that word intentionally dovetails with the rough ’n’ tumble nature of the music, which unfolds in an acutely exploratory fashion and feels, most certainly, improvised. If this recording was actually composed beforehand, it speaks highly of the players’ innate abilities, expert execution of ideas, and genuine inspiration. Schindler’s stuttering bleats are often acrid and pithy, counterbalancing the parchment-dry bowing and broad strokes of bassist Smith, but the latter’s no slouch: he’s yin to Schindler’s yang, underscoring his partner’s sax, cornet, and clarinet acrobatics with a supple finesse one moment, wrapping serpentine lines of tensile strength around Schindler’s spunk the next. Blonk’s entrance on the Vol. 3 pieces throws everything into stark relief: his strangulated vocalese, nimble, humorous, and tactile, bring an element of unpredictability and danger to the sound stage, egging on his colleagues to whip their own instruments into submission. Bracing stuff all around, but then, most worthwhile art usually is. Keep your wits about you as the disc spins on, and your patience will be amply rewarded. - Darren Bergstein, DMG
JEREMY CARLSTEDT with BRIAN SETTLES / ANDERS NILSSON / DANTON BOLLER - Sound Escapes (Carlsteady 003; USA) Featuring Brian Settles on tenor sax, Anders Nilsson on guitar, Danton Boller on bass and Jeremy Carlstedt on drums. NYC has no shortage of great drummers and this has been the case for nearly a century. Jeremy Carlstedt, who studied and collaborated with Chico Hamilton for many years, is one of the Downtown Underground Greats. I’ve come to appreciate his playing and directing more over the past decade, considering a number of great sets he’s played at DMG throughout the years. Aside from his work with Steve Gauci, Martin Philadelphy and Tim Motzer, Mr. Carlstedt has an ongoing collaboration with DC saxist Brian Settles. Recently Carlstedt has been working with guitarist Anders Nilsson, another friend and fave of mine who rarely get the recognition he deserves. Although I didn’t recognize the name of the bassist here, Danton Boller, I found that he has worked with Seamus Blake, Tomas Fujiwara (also with Brian Settles) and Jeff Siegel.
“Blues for Arnie” (Lawrence?) opens and it is a stripped down, skeletal blues. It creates a solemn mood, quietly spooky and somewhat dirge-like. Both the tenor sax and guitar play eerie, reflective solos using few notes yet still the hypnotic simmer continues. “Duet” is a duet for tenor sax and drums and it is a superbly recorded, dreamy, both players warm, lush and sublime. Although I don’t think that Mr. Settles and Mr. Nilsson hadn’t played together before, they sound perfect together. Both play with the same mature, thoughtful restraint. Mr. Carlstedt plays a duet with his daughters’ amplified heartbeat which lovely, natural, organic sound. “The Preacher, The Teacher” is a fine duo for acoustic guitar with hands on drums, also stripped down yet evoking some smoky late-night blues. The quartet gets even more expansive on “Other Places”, which features a powerful, explosive guitar solo and an equally impressive drum solo in the second half. What I find most interesting is this: Anders Nilsson has often played more intense jazz/rock guitar with his own bands and with Fay Victor. Here, he lays back a bit, taking his time to more with less, fewer notes used more spaciously, making ever note, every nuance count. The use of suspense is carefully administered here. On the next to the last tune, “Starting from Today”, acoustic bassist Boller, takes a long, expressive story-like bass solo midway, his playing is the heart of this song. This is a consistently marvelous disc that shows the a more laid back yet evocative vibe which feels just right. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
THE WHY with ANDERS NILSSON / JEREMY CARLSTEDT - …this earth (Carlsteady 004; USA) Featuring Anders Nilsson on guitar and Jeremy Carlstedt on drums. Not sure when these two first got together (oh, in the store a few years back, just checked - ed) but it is certainly a great thing as the two new discs with them, a duo & a quartet, shows. Although Anders Nilsson is one of Downtown’s best guitarists, his profile remains occasionally under the radar of recognition. The Swedish born guitarist has been living in NY for a long time, leading a long list of different bands/projects and working with Fay Victor, Jason Hwang, Tomeka Reid and Ras Moshe. Each time Anders plays here at DMG it is with different collaborators and each set has been great. Drummer Jeremy Carlstedt is another Downtown great who studied with Chico Hamilton and has played a number of strong sets here with Martin Philadelphy, Tim Motzer and Tomaz Ulrich.
This disc consists of four long pieces, “Sunset”, “Clean”, “Rustling Trees” and “Dawn”.
It sounds like a suite, organic and flowing. Mr. Nilsson playing this hypnotic repeating riff with Carlstedt doing the groove underneath. Anders is also adding a series of bluesy slide guitar licks to the somber boogie. I have long been a fan of that great blues/rock/boogie groove, infectious and greasy. From Butterfield through Canned Heat and the Blues Project and even The Dead. Things get even heavier on “Clean” which might as well be called “Dirty” since Anders lays on the distortion thick and brooding. “Rustling Trees” has a Fall-like autumnal laid back vibe which feels so good, mellow yet quietly throbbing. “Dawn” is also laid back and a perfect closing theme, it has that one-man band-like sound, somewhat primitive yet directly to the heart. Yet another simmering, slow, bluesy groove which slowly builds up to a grand conclusion. I recently heard a CD by the Soledad Brothers which I found in the store (possibly from Eric Stern’s collection). I knew nothing about them but found the disc to be a real gem, just 2 guitars & drums and influenced by the Rolling Stones (1966-1972 era). This duo offering by The Why also has a great earthy, bluesy, somewhat rocking vibe that feels good to listen to and keep that inner groove going. Just under 29 minutes, the perfect length to play it over and over and over again. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
TED BROWN / BRAD LINDE / AARON QUINN / DAN PAPPALARDO / DERIC DICKENS - All About Lennie (Bleebop Records #914: USA) Tenor saxophonist Brad Linde is a leading artist personally nuancing the improvisational advancements of Lennie Tristano and peers inside the late 21st century. Recorded over two days in November of 2018, this recording celebrates the centennial of Mr.Tristano while simultaneously honoring one of his greatest living practitioners, tenor saxophonist and master improviser Ted Brown. Mr. Brown, 93, who studied with Mr. Tristano for seven years and created with Lee Konitz and Warne Marsh, is a revelation; his dry burnished tone is sweet yet tart. Throughout these performances, Mr. Brown and Mr. Linde compliment, counterpoint, and contrast their parallel saxophone voices wonderfully, offering startling musicality and intriguing dialogues. Mr. Brown crafts shorter phases rich in logical motivic development and playful rhythmic inflection, while Mr. Lande favors longer lines of a cerebral yet freewheeling harmonic nature. Beautifully recorded, highlights include wonderful interpretations of timeless Jazz repertoire, "Lover, Come Back To Me", a delightfully languid yet dramatic 'Yesterdays" and sparkling, creative readings of Mr. Brown originals "Feather Bed and Dig-It. Aaron Quinn (guitar), Dan Pappalardo (bass) and Deric Dickens (drums) offer magical support and thoughtful interplay, listening hard with the perfect amount of group sensitivity this music demands; young masters they are. For aficionados and or lovers of Mr. Lennie Tristano and his acolytes, these are pennies..from HEAVEN! Highly Recommended. - John J Mori - DMG.
DENNIS REA with GREG KELLEY / STUART DEMPSTER / DICK VALENTINE / GREG CAMPBELL / STEVE FISK / et al - Giant Steppes (MoonJune Records 109; USA) Featuring Dennis Rea on electric, resonator & Mellotron guitars, Dick Valentine on saxes, Greg Kelley on trumpet, Stuart Dempster on didgeridoo, Greg Campbell on el. French horn, Steve Fisk on keyboards and Don Berman & Brian Oppel on drums. Pacific northwest-based guitarist, Dennis Rea, has been through a long journey of exploration, drawing from rock, jazz, progressive and ethnic musics. Mr. Rea has worked in a variety of more progressive bands like Moraine, Iron Kim Style and Stackpole. Since the late eighties, Mr. Rea has been working with musicians from China, Taiwan and Tuva. For this fine disc Mr. Rea features four long songs, each based on songs from Tuva, Uyghur, Russia and Tibet. Each song is long, (8-17 minutes) and based on several traditional songs from the aforementioned cultures listed earlier. “Live at Gaochang” is based on a traditional Uyghur melody and it has a most, alluring, hypnotic sound, with an inspired solo from the sopranino sax and an undertow drone of the the didgeridoo and Greg Kelley’s sly, fractured trumpet. Eventually, Mr. Rea takes a long, proglike, sustained tone guitar solo which both floats and stings at times. Although the melody sounds ancient, the Frippish guiatr tone brings it more up to date. Rea plays the melodies here on resonator guitar which another name for a dobro, which is known more as a bluegrass instrument. In between the three melodies/songs of this piece, the didgeridoo and trumpet weaves their own drones together. “Altai By and By” is a traditional Russian melody which here is sung by Julian and Pava (Seattle-based folkloric group) on hurdy-gurdy. “Wind of the World’s Nest” is based on a traditional Tuvan (from Mongolia) melody. Tuvan (?) vocalist Albert Kuvezin’s deep voice (perfect for a dark metal band) sounds like it is come from another universe when it billows through the smoke. The final piece, “The Fellowship of Tsering” is based a song by Jampa Tsering, a beloved Tibetan singer/songwriter. This piece features the keyboards (organ) of Steve Fisk, a Washington-based engineer & producer, with whom I used to hear with his 80’s band, Pell Mell. This piece has a dark undertow and features a dungchen horn which sounds like a didgeridoo of sorts. I like that this disc seem to evoke a number of eerie moods and deals more with textures and the stretching out of sounds. That Tuvan vocalist also has a way of reaching into some dark, haunting spaces which are most effective. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
ORCHESTRA ENTROPY with MATT LONDON / GEORGIA COOKE / TOM WARD / SEB SILAS / SARAH GAIL BRAND / REBECCA RAIMONDI / BENEDICT TAYLOR / SETH BENNETT / MOSS FREED / MARK SANDERS - Rituals (FMR 85; UK) Featuring: Matt London, Georgia Cooke, Tom Ward & Seb Silas on reeds, Sarah Gail Brand on trombone, Rebecca Raimondi & Benedict Taylor on strings, Moss Freed on electric guitar, Seth Bennett on double bass and Mark Sanders on drums. An extended work composed & directed by Matt London for 10 improvisers inspired by two hand drawn panels. The only names I recognize here are: Gail Brand (who played at DMG once), Benedict Taylor (whose trio I once reviewed) and Mark Sanders (drum master for Evan Parker, Paul Dunmall & Jah Wobble). There are two sub-trios here (guitar/a.bass/drums & violin/viola/dbass) who are sub-directed as well. Recorded November 11, 2018 at Jerwood Hall, LSO in London. Although this music seems free at times, there is some direction going on. Seven of the nine pieces here each feature solos, a duo or trios, all of which are well-connected so that it sounds as if there are some tight or written or carefully crafted segments with intricate current-like movements. The two pieces which don't feature solos, duo or trios sound like Penderecki/Xenakis-like sonic fragments floating together. There are some extremely quiet sections which are also well-handled plus this disc is cleanly, warmly recorded. Although the personnel and instrumentation changes on each piece, this entire disc flows as though it is a suite, the overall vibe is continuous. When the full 10 piece unit enters on two pieces, things open up and get more expansive and intense. Considering that the title of this disc is ‘Rituals’, it brings to mind the way that creative music making and serious listening are ritualistic from the inside and outside view of things. Since the pandemic forces most folks inside 10 months ago (March or 2020), the ritual of going to live gigs has dried up and gone on line. So, we end up doing or creating our own rituals indoors, with fewer artists interacting live, it is a more private ritual/experience. I really do miss live gigs but inspired records like this sure do help as sonic medicine. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
SOUND AMERICAN - The Folk Issue - Number 25 (Sound American; USA) Co-edited by Nate Wooley, Anna Roberts-Gevalt & Sarah Hennies. The Folk Issue, our second issue of 2020, celebrates and explores the intersections of experimental and folk music. Guest edited by Sarah Hennies and Anna Roberts-Gevalt–two of America's most forward-looking practitioners in experimental and folk music, respectively–this issue takes on questions of musical community and what it means to work inside and outside of its traditions.
The issue features writing by Ana Alonso-Minutti on La Llorona, Drew Daniel on Throbbing Gristle, Henry Flynt on his own violin practice, Suzanne Kite in conversation with Scott Benisiinaabandan, John McCowen interviewing Sean Meehan, Kurt Newman and Martin Arnold, Ian Nagoski on bird call impresario Charles Kellogg, and Anna Roberts-Gevalt's moving COVID diary and conversation with Meredith Monk and Peggy Seeger. This issue’s Exquisite Corpse is by vocalist and composer Amirtha Kidambi.
Magazine / Book $16
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JON IRABAGON with MICK BARR / AVA MENDOZA / MIKE PRIDE // I DON’T HEAR NOTHING BUT THE BLUES - Volume 3: Anatomical Snuffbox (Irabbagast 017; USA) Featuring Jon Irabagon on tenor sax, Mick Barr & Ava Mendoza on guitars and Mike Pride on drums. This is an ongoing project that Jon Irabagon started in 2013 as a duo with the mighty Mike Pride on drums. Although the name of the duo was I Don’t Hear Nothing but the Blues, it sound more like an exercise for this tenor sax & drums duo to wail together in an ‘Interstellar Space’-like (John Coltrane & Rashied Ali LP) way. Two years later (2015), Irabagon added techno-metal guitar hero, Mick Barr, turning the duo into a trio which again soared into the freer terrain, with all the members pushing each other higher and higher til they reached boiling point. Fast forward to this week (2/27/20) and now I Don’t Hear Nothin’ But the Blues has become a quartet, adding yet another guitarist, the incredible Ava Mendoza. Formerly Bay Area-based, Ms. Mendoza, moved here a few years back. She has collaborated with many heavies like Fred Frith, Nels Cline, Sir Richard bishop, Stephen Gauci & Aaron Novik. Check out her brutal power trio Unnatural Ways and/or her new trio with Matt Nelson & Hamid Drake. Think about the four musicians here, each from very varied backgrounds: the techno-metal of Mick Barr (Krallice, etc.), avant & straighter jazz (from Irabagon & Mike Pride Qt), hardcore punk (MDC with Pride), noise, prog, etc. I caught this quartet two nights ago (2/25/20) at The Stone and when they began, it was an onslaught, brutal, relatively loud and intense, lasting for nearly 45 minutes. This disc was recorded live at Happy Lucky No. 1 in Brooklyn in April of 2019. In order to hear everyone here, we might split our attention since both guitars and sax are in constant motion, with furious layers of lines spiraling tightly around one another. Mr. Irabagon is at the center of the storm here, playing somewhat slower than the frantic guitars on either side. While Mr. Barr shreds those lightning fast licks, Ms. Mendoza creates another blur of activity which often matches mind-blowing sax blasting of Mr. Irabagon. Since Mike Pride has worked in all sorts of jazz and HC punk bands, he sounds like the perfect choice for this molten quartet. The energy here is over-the-top and reminds me of ‘Ascension’, the spirits & ghosts soaring together higher and higher. Although the vibe is mostly exhilarating, if you concentrate on any one instrument at at time, you start to hear the way each member stretches out as the play. The title of this disc: ‘Anatomical Snuffbox’ and cartoon cover of the four outlaw musicians on their horses marching past the Old Man’s Saloon seem most appropriate, blurring the lines between the serious and the humorous intentions. This music is not for the timid but those who can keep up with it. This is certainly the Brutal Truth of our everyday lives set aflame. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
TANGERINE DREAM - Sessions II (Invisible Hands 086; UK) "In their imperial years of the 1970s, Tangerine Dream's live concerts were an electronic exploration, improvised and different every night, with little or no relationship to their smash hit albums, which were similarly esoteric. As the 1980s dawned, their recorded work contained more recognizable themes and they scored some of the biggest films of the decade (Risky Business, Firestarter, Near Dark, Thief, Sorcerer). Now, they are returning in part to those pioneering days, and every show includes a section of improvisation, different every night. The best improvisations are being released as Sessions, and Invisible Hands Music is proud to release them out on deluxe double CD mastered at Abbey Road by Miles Showell. An important band at the peak of their powers and a treat for fans of electronic music."
2 CD Set $18
TANGERINE DREAM - Sessions III (Invisible Hands 087; UK) "In their imperial years of the 1970s, Tangerine Dream's live concerts were an electronic exploration, improvised and different every night, with little or no relationship to their smash hit albums, which were similarly esoteric. As the 1980s dawned, their recorded work contained more recognizable themes and they scored some of the biggest films of the decade (Risky Business, Firestarter, Near Dark, Thief, Sorcerer). Now, they are returning in part to those pioneering days, and every show includes a section of improvisation, different every night. The best improvisations are being released as Sessions, and Invisible Hands Music is proud to release them out on deluxe double CD mastered at Abbey Road by Miles Showell. An important band at the peak of their powers and a treat for fans of electronic music."
CONRAD SCHNITZLER - Paracon (The Paragon Session Outtakes 1978-1979)(Bureau B 355; Germany) "Conrad Schnitzler is incredible. I would dearly have loved to meet him, to have been present when he, Seidel and Baumann were working their magic at Paragon Studio. Fortuitously, Wolfgang Seidel, co-author of these pieces, has opened up his archive of recordings to the Bureau B label. He and Conrad Schnitzler spent many years together experimenting with sound, capturing the results on the two Consequenz albums, amongst others. I had the honor of meeting Wolfgang Seidel at the Golden Pudel Club during the 2018 Eruption Festival. Ken Montgomery, who worked with Schnitzler in New York towards the end of the 1980s, was also there. The concerts and performances were hauntingly powerful, infused with the spirit of Schnitzler's music and utopian vision. These entirely instrumental recordings were created in the late 1970s at Peter Baumann's Paragon Studio. In my opinion, this stellar period gave rise to the finest works: the Con (BB 350CD/LP), Consequenz (BB 121CD/LP), and Con 3 (BB 122CD/LP) albums, featuring such wonderful pieces as "Fata Morgana", "Coca", and "Auf dem schwarzen Kanal". These recently discovered pieces take the aforementioned albums a stage further. Sounds complement each other as they are reprised, whilst continuing to exist in their own cosmos. As you listen, you feel as if you have been transported back into the studio itself while the sessions are happening. One surprise follows another -- the third track sounds like clocks ringing at a pitch which only a bat could really hear. Numbers '5' and '6' are not so far removed from abstract techno tracks by Jeff Mills, albeit with rather more swing, floating in upper tone sequences reminiscent of the American composer Conlon Nancarrow. Nr. '8' is an absolute dream/wave piece, sounding like a relation of the (then) emerging Throbbing Gristle project. The tenth piece is my personal favorite, evoking a wave-romantic atmosphere which might lead you to believe that Conrad Schnitzler had been listening to The Cure. Schnitzler is electronica in its purest sense. He succeeds in rendering the unconscious audible. This goes far beyond 'music to listen to', it is music which works on different levels, music to move you." --Richard von der Schulenburg
ALINA KALANCEA - Impedance (Important 491; USA) “Alina Kalancea's Impedance is an entirely instrumental album spanning four sides, contains powerful rhythmic sequences, heart-beating frequencies and hypnotic loops that are paradoxically encapsulated in carefully crafted compositions which are full of secret passages and hidden doors. Kalancea's work creates ungraspable sonic experiences, which overtakes you, immersing its listeners in powerful and mind-altering soundscapes. There's no quick payoff on Impedance. This is the sound of new, patient electronic music, full of depth and substance. Alina Kalancea is a Romanian sound artist and composer based in Modena, Italy. She has studied sound design and synthesis with Enrico Cosimi and collaborated with producer Alex Gamez, and artists Julia Kent and Raven Bush. Highly recommended to fans of Eleh, Caterina Barbieri, Shasta Cults, Jessica Ekomane, Eliane Radigue, and Alessandro Cortini. Packaged in a deluxe, heavy duty tip-on gatefold sleeves printed by Stoughton; cut by Golden Mastering and pressed at RTI.”
ITADI - Itadi (Hot Casa 024; France) “Reduced price, last copies. Hot Casa presents a tremendous Afro-soul album recorded in Togo in 1977 by Itadi Bonney. This rare album was created by a four-piece band formed and led by Itadi. Recorded live in Ghana at the radio station and remixed in Togo, this album is a really stunning fusion of funky arrangements, jazz inspirations and typical Togolese rhythms, sung in English, Mina, and Akposo. The message was political, calling for African unity against dictatorship, which obliged Itadi to move to Washington DC during the '70s. Itadi Bonney, a native of Togo, West Africa, is an international musician who is a composer, arranger, vocalist, and guitarist. Itadi's music is a blend of Ghana's highlife and soul, creating a sparkling, undulating and eminently danceable wave of melodies and rhythms, punctuated by funky keys and layered with smooth vocals and harmonies. Itadi has toured France, Ghana, Benin, The Ivory Coast, Nigeria, and the U.S. Officially licensed and includes an interview with the artist.”
SETENTA - Latin Piece of Soul (Hot Casa 025; France) “Created in 2006, Setenta consists of seven musicians from Paris. Using their musical tastes and backgrounds, Setenta produce a unique mix of Latin, soul and boogaloo, with a touch of Caribbean influences. After a sparkling debut on the Latin scene with their first album Funky Tumbao (2010), they performed live for two years on an impressive and exhilarating world tour, and now Setenta is proud to present this hot album of Latin soul. Sung in Spanish, English and also in Creole and Yoruba, Setenta writes songs with lyrics about various universal themes, including "love, peace and unity." All 14 tracks on this new album were recorded at Mato studio in Paris, on analog equipment with rare vintage instruments. Influenced by Nuyorican maestros of the '70s, the band was also keen to create their own futuristic Latin-soul sound. The album also contains two covers that reflect the eclecticism of the band. First they decided to take on the hip-hop classic Busta Rhymes' "Woo Hah!! Got You All In Check "with a funky mambo version. Then Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" is revisited with a massive boogaloo touch, ready to hit radios and dancefloors all over the world. With this pulsating and rhythmic album, Setenta gives us a modern definition somewhere between salsa and funk -- a future Latin-soul masterpiece, already.”
PAT THOMAS & MATANA ROBERTS - The Truth (Otoroku 024; UK) “Pat Thomas is one of the most extraordinary pianists of our time. In a first-time duo with saxophonist Matana Roberts, the lyricism of his distinctly dexterous and curious approach to the piano paints pathways for Robert's poignantly vocal saxophone. Together the two speak; locked grooves and neat switchbacks on the keys form dialogue with long deliberate lines on the alto, punctuated by Roberts' ecstatic vocalizations. The trio of improvised pieces which make up the record's first side are rich phrases, pitched at each end of the piano and stretched and pulled by Pat. His simple, repetitive cycles yield space and color for Robert's song, then let sounds build to a flourish; an armed run on the keys and some wonderfully soft landings. The second side, a whole part in itself, goes deeper -- hammered armfuls of piano and torn top breath blasting from Roberts fall in a flutter of delicate keystrokes. Call and response halves collide in a wonderful thunder before finding the edge of another line to hang onto. There is a remarkable sense of purpose, precision and restraint at play, as well as a peaceful milieu, which no doubt stems from the two players' fierce individual intelligence, creativity and curiosity. Personnel: Pat Thomas - piano; Matana Roberts - alto saxophone. Housed in a screen printed kraftboard sleeve. Photographs by Dawid Laskowski and Fabio Luguro; Design and layout by Maja Larrson. Recorded by James Dunn live at Cafe OTO on December 8th, 2018. Mixed by James Dunn. Mastered by Giuessepe Ielesi. 180 gram vinyl.”
REINHOLD FRIEDL & ERYCK ABECASSIS - Animal Electrique (Editions Mego 274; Austria) “In retrospection, it seems significant that Reinhold Friedl and Eryck Abecassis met for the first time in Marseille, a brute and operatic melting pot of cultures and sounds and noises. They idea of a common project came up, but it took almost ten years to be realized. Finally, François Bonnet (GRM artistic director) supported enthusiastically the collaboration and invited the two composer-performer to the Akousma Festival 2019 at Radio France in Paris. Intense rehearsal periods in Vienna and at la muse en circuit in Paris defined the compositional directions: precise transitions between accurately defined musical states: the raw furious energy textures of "animal électrique 1" and "5", the contrasted calm with shaking fog horns "à la Lucier" of "animal électrique 3" and "6", noise and notes in the astonishing fusion of "animal électrique 2" (which could also be titled "Tsunami and minor thirds"), and finally the delicate non-tempered vocality of both piano and synthesizer in "animal électrique 4", a detuned operatic aria. Animal Électrique is a melting point of piano and synthesizer, both put into musical travesty: the piano becomes a sound and noise machine, with strong electronic influence; the analog synthesizer starts to sing and to hoot, producing raw and brutal instrument-like sounds, in line with brute electronic synthesis. This allows Eryck Abecassis and Reinhold Friedl to combine the exigence of composing with the instant pleasures of the game. Personnel: Reinhold Friedl - piano; Eryck Abecassis - analog synthesizer. Recorded by Grégory Joubert at Studio Luc Ferrari, La Muse en Circuit, CNCM, Paris, France, June 2019. Mixed by Eryck Abecassis. Mastered by Russell Haswell. Cut by Andreas Kauffelt at Schnitstelle, Berlin.”
THE LAST COPIES OF THOSE HORACE TAPSCOTT SOLO PIANO SESSIONS LP’S:
Horace Tapscott (1934 - 1999) was an amazing pianist, multi-band leader, strong collaborator, teacher and community leader from L.A. He worked many of the best Creative Musicians in L.A. and elsewhere: Arthur Blythe, John Carter, Andrew Cyrille, Roberto Miranda, Sonship, Reggie Workman, Sabir Mateen, Billy Hart, Jessie Sharps, Everett Brown and many others. Ever since hearing h’is quartet release, ‘The Dark Tree’ (Hat Hut/Art, now out-of-print) and hearing him live in NYC a couple of times, I remain a longtime fan-addict. Mr. Tapscott was prolific and lucky to find a producer/friend/supporter like Tom Albach, who ran the Nimbus West label, which put out mostly releases by several Tapscott bands and solo piano sessions. I have been friends with Mr. Albach for many years since we bonded as Old School record sellers, irascible and feisty in our long fight for recognition of Mr. Tapscott and his many collaborators. Mr. Tapscott did a series of solo piano session, actually 11 volumes. The first seven are/were LP only and Vols. 8 - 11, are CD only. All are essential for those who love great modern/jazz discs. Mr. Albach passed away a couple of months ago and I will indeed miss him. The Nimbus West label will continue and has a couple of new unreleased LP’s coming out in the next month or so. Look out for that new triple-LP only release from Tapscott’s Pan Afrikan People’ Arkestra! They should be here pretty soon. In the meantime, we just got in 10 copies each of the seven solo piano sessions LP’s. These are the very last copies that the label has so it will be your last opportunity to get these for a fair price. They are $25 each and if you take 4 or more, you can have them for $22 each. Don’t hesitate, please.
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 1: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 1581; USA) Solo piano recordings by Horace Tapscott: three originals by Tapscott (Jenny's Spirit's Waltz, Mother Ship, This Is For Benny); and Speedy Mike (A. Hines), Alone Together (Dietz-Schwartz) and Haunted (M. Swan)
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 2: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 1692; USA) solo recordings by Horace Tapscott: the 30-minute Struggle X: An Afro-American Dream by Tapscott; and Many Nights Ago (C. Crunk)
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 3: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 1703; USA) Five solo recordings of Horace Tapscott originals: The Tuus, Lately's Light-green Blues, Reflections Of Self, Lopkee's Blues, and After The Storm
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 4: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 1814; USA) Six solo recordings of Horace Tapscott originals: A Dress For Renee, The Hero's Last Dance, Shades Of Soweto, First Call Of The Hummingbird, Toward The Sunset, Forgiving; plus As Of Yet (Arthur Blythe), and Whit (L Spears)
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 5: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 1925; USA) Five solo recordings of Horace Tapscott originals: Stringeurisms, I'll Have One When It's Over, Blues In Pirouette, Perfumes In The Night, Hy-Pocket's Swan Song
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 6: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 2036; USA) Solo recordings by Horace Tapscott: three originals by Tapscott (Ancestral Echoes, Chartreuse Blues, The Golden Pearl); and Jessica (Roy Porter), Restless Nights (Reuben King), and New Horizon (Kaeff Ruzadun)
HORACE TAPSCOTT - Vol. 7: The Tapscott Sessions (Nimbus West 2147; USA) Five solo recordings of Horace Tapscott originals: Riding The San Andreas, Amanda's Tone Poem, Southwestern Avenue Shuffle, Yesterday's Dream, Sonnet Of Butterfly McQueen; plus 'Round Midnight (Thelonious Monk), and On The Nile (Charles Tolliver)
RELATIVE PITCH SALE - January of 2021:
The Amazing RELATIVE PITCH Records Label was started by Mike Panico and Kevin Reilly in 2011 and has released 110 releases in their first decade. RPR has been a longtime beacon for Creative Music at its most challenging. Everything they release is worthy of your attention, if you do care about Creative Music in its most extreme form. RPR has released discs from many Downtown and Elsewhere well-knowns and little-knowns, each release is treated with the respect it deserves. Sadly, co-founder, Mike Panico, passed away in 2018. Kevin Reilly has continued to release discs, each one a world of weird wonders. We have a number of overstocked items which are listed below. Each disc is $2 off of our regular price. This sale will the month of January of 2021 or until we run out of any of the below items. You must order 2 or more in order to get the discount. Most of these are still sealed & new, a couple of titles we had to bag ourselves. All are unplayed items.
CHRISTINE ABDELNOUR / CHRIS CORSANO - Quand Fond La Neige, Ou Va le Blanc? (Relative Pitch 1088; USA)
RP CD Sale $12
SUSAN ALCORN - Soledad: Improvisation And The Music Of Astor Piazzola (Relative Pitch 1032 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
TIM BERNE / NASHEET WAITS - The Coanda Effect (Relative Pitch 1103 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
MICHAEL BISIO & KIRK KNUFFKE - Row for William O. (Relative Pitch 1043 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
UDO SCHINDLER / JAAP BLONK - Hillside Talks (Relative Pitch 1089 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
JOHN BLUM / JACKSON KRALL - Duplexity (Relative Pitch 100 ,USA )
RP CD Sale $12
PETER BROTZMANN / FRED LONBERG-HOLM - Memories of a Tunicate (Relative Pitch 1104 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
MICHEL DONEDA - Everybody Loves Michel Doneda! : Solo Saxophone (Relative Pitch 1027 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
MICHEL DONEDA / LE QUAN NINH - Thirty Ways to Avoid Talking (Relative Pitch 1084 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
ESTAMOS TRIO [THOLLEM McDONAS/CARMINA ESCOBAR/MILO TAMEZ] - People's Historia (Relative Pitch 1013 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
RAMON LOPEZ / MARK FELDMAN - Trappist-1 (Relative Pitch 1093 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
PAUL FLAHERTY - Focused & Bewildered (Relative Pitch 1085 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
BEN HALL'S RACEHORSE NAMES With JOE MORRIS / JOHN DIERKER / et al - New Thing Called Breathing (Relative Pitch 1062 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
HOOK, LINE & SINKER With TRISTAN HONSINGER / AXEL DORNER / TOBIAS DELIUS / ANTONIO BORGHINI - Fishy Business (Relative Pitch 1090 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
JOOKLO TRIO with VIRGINIA GENTA / BRANDON LOPEZ / DAVID VANZAN - It is What It Is (Relative Pitch RPR 1119 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
INGRID LAUBROCK/TOM RAINEY - And Other Desert Towns (Relative Pitch 1018 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
INGRID LAUBROCK / TOM RAINEY - Buoyancy (Relative Pitch 1048 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
LEAP OF FAITH with PEK / GLYNIS LOMON - Principles of an Open Future (Relative Pitch 1112)
RP CD Sale $12
JAMES BRANDON LEWIS With JAIMIE BRANCH / ANTHONY PIROG / LUKE STEWART / WARREN TRAE CRUDUP III - An UnRuly Manifesto (Relative Pitch 1078 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
CHRISTIAN LILLINGER / TOBIAS DELIUS - Dicht (Relative Pitch 1057 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
BRANDON LOPEZ / MATT NELSON / ANDRIA NICODEMOU / GERALD CLEAVER - The Industry of Entropy (Relative Pitch 1063 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
SAMARA LUBELSKI - Partial Infinite Sequence (Relative Pitch RPR 1102 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
JOANNA MATTREY - Veiled (Relative Pitch 1095 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
MAGDA MAYAS / JIM DENLEY - Tempe Jetz (Relative Pitch 1061 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
CHRIS PITSIOKOS - Speak in Tongues and Hope for the Gift of Interpretation (Relative Pitch SS 004 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
PULVERIZE THE SOUND [PETER EVANS/TIM DAHL/MIKE PRIDE] - Pulverize The Sound (Relative Pitch 1039 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
METTE RASMUSSEN & CHRIS CORSANO - All The Ghosts At Once (Relative Pitch 1037 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
MATANA ROBERTS - Always (Relative Pitch 1036 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
ERIN ROGERS - Dawntreader (Relative Pitch 1097 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
FRANK PAUL SCHUBERT / ALEX VON SCHLIPPENBACH / MARTIN BLUME - Forge (Relative Pitch RPR 1117 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
TAMIO SHIRAISHI - Sora (Relative Pitch SS 003 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
TIPPLE With FRODE GJERSTAD / KEVIN NORTON / DAVID WATSON - Cartoon Heart (Relative Pitch 1091 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
BIRGIT ULHER / FRANZ HAUTZINGER - Kleine Trompetenmusik (Relative Pitch RPR 1107 ,USA)
RP CD Sale $12
ATTENTION ALL CREATIVE MUSICIANS OUT THERE, Around the world.
If you have a link, for some music that you are working on and want to share it with the folks who read the DMG Newsletter, please send the link to DMG at DMG@Downtownmusicgallery.com. Many of us are going stir crazy staying at home so if you want to inspire us and help us get through these difficult times, please show us what you got. I listed some these last week but have also a few more.
MORE THINGS TO DO WHILE YOU ARE WAITING AROUND FOR THE WORLD TO END OR GET BETTER: STILL STIR CRAZY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS!
THIS IS FROM MY GOOD FRIEND JESSICA HALLOCK,
This is from Jessica Hallock, please do check it out, there is so much to explore here and I know some of you are bored and need some inspiration/distraction:
Livestreams are obviously no replacement for live shows, but they're all the community we have right now––so experimental music calendar NYC-Noise.com now provides links to livestreams (with artist / curator donation info); a roundup of local musicians' releases; COVID-19-related resources, including links to grants, petitions, & a local venue donation list; & an Instagram account (@NYC_Noise) promoting artists and releases. Please let me know about your livestreams &/or new records at www.nyc-noise.com/submit.
This one comes from Saxist DAVID AARON of Flip City:
Touque "Soho Sessions"
(file under "R&B/jazz/soul")
This comes from CHRIS CUTLER (Henry Cow, Art Bears & REcommended Records)
Chris has a podcast called Probes and this is Episode #28.2
During the earlier part of the pandemic/lockdown when I started going back to work at DMG in June, I listened to all of the Probes podcast series and on the train coming and going to NYC. Each one is fascinating as Mr. Cutler Probes the many aspects Creative Music, unique instrumentation, the history of recordings and lots more. Please take some time and listen to these, they are most enlightening.
THIS ONE COMES from PAUL DUNMALL, British Saxophone Colossus!!!
I haven't done any gigs since March but I have a done a couple of recordings so if your interested there's a video of one below which goes on line 7.45pm November 26th it was organized by TDE promotions/Fizzle may you all stay well. - Paul
Here's the link: https://youtu.be/GjbY7tTeH7k
THIS COMES FROM JOURNALIST & AUTHOR OF THE ESP BOOK, JASON WEISS:
The French saxophonist Etienne Brunet (studied with Lacy a bit in the ‘70s, & in fact it’s thanks to him that Saravah put out Lacy’s Scratching the Seventies, which he edited; later played with various people like Jacques Oger, Jac Berrocal, Fred Van Hove). So, if maybe you’re inclined this time to list it in your newsletter, Etienne has just posted a duo set, “Wifi Long Distance Call” (39 min.), Etienne on bass clarinet, with percussionist Shyamal Maitra, mostly on tabla.
From INGRID LAUBROCK & TOM RAINEY:
Every Week for the entirety of this pandemic/lockdown INGRID LAUBROCK & TOM RAINEY have been posting a new duo offering. I have listened to every one of these as they were sent out and am much impressed by the way this duo continues to evolve and work their way through many ideas. You can check out each one here: