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DMG Newsletter for May 3rd, 2024:, 2024

Now they've all moved away said the voice of a stranger
To a beautiful home by a bright crystal sea
And some day I'll meet them all up in Heaven
Where no one will be a rank stranger to me.

Everybody I met seemed to be a rank stranger
No mother or dad not a friend could I see
They knew not my name and I knew not their faces
I found they were all rank strangers to me.

I first heard the above song on a Bob Dylan album called ‘Down in the Groove’, which was released in 1988. The album is only about 1/2 great and includes a few clinkers. This song was made popular by the Stanley Brothers, a great bluegrass act and it was recorded in the late fifties. Dylan’s version is superb, haunting, timeless and it makes me want to weep every time I hear it. Dylan’s version is stripped down to just his voice, guitar and righteous support from Larry Klein’s fretless bass. Mr. Klein is a master el. bassist, obviously Jaco-like in tone and was once married to Joni Mitchell. I didn’t hear the original version until many years later, but even the original tugs deeply at the heart. I remember singing this song to myself on the way to and from the Victo Fest in Quebec in October of 1989. I was feeling the deep emotions of loss and felt like a stranger when I was in Canada by myself that year and it helped me rise above what I was feeling in my heart and my soul. I just listened to the original version last night and sang it to myself before I dozed off. There is one other song on that Dylan record which I really love. It is called “Sylvio” and the lyrics were written by Robert Hunter, the Dead’s main lyricist. Give it a listen. Another gem from the treasure chest of gifts/songs/jewels by the songwriter/poet/scribe/Pulitzer prize winner - Bob Dylan. - BLG at DMG



Yesterday, May 1st 2024, was the 33rd anniversary of our store, Downtown Music Gallery. When we opened in May of 1991 at 211 East 5th St in the East Village, I would never have thought that we would still be around more than 30 years later. It has been a long strange trip with successes and lots of detours. We still sell many of the same formats: LP’s, CD’s, singles, cassettes, DVD’s, books and t-shirts, but as some formats go up in popularity (vinyl) others are slowly selling much less (CD’s), we have to balance what we have with what sells. I worked for Manny Maris’ store Lunch For Yor Ears in 1988 & 1989 before it went under. Lunch started a tradition of weekly free in-store concerts which we also did at DMG although they weren’t steady until I became the owner around 1997. Our weekly concerts were once on Fridays and then on Sundays and now take place every Tuesday at 6:30. We switched to outdoor shows during the summer of the pandemic which seemed to be a good thing for our listeners and us. The indoor sets remain a highlight of my week since something transcendent or just inspiring happens every week. Check out our 1 minutes slivers on InstaGram which are posted almost every day.

We also started the DMG newsletter in the late 1990’s which evolved from a printed one page to an email newsletter of several pages which is now transmitted to 7,000 subscribers every week, year round. We moved to the Bowery from 2003 through 2009, around the corner from Tower & Other Music and this was our best, most successful location. Our mail-order increased quite a bit plus we had alot of walk-in traffic. We usually have DMG anniversary concerts every May and I am working on one now for early July with Tisziji Munoz, Bob Ra Kalam Moses, Don Pate and friends. Stay tuned. My business partner Manny Lunch retired several years ago and we’ve had around 33 employees over the long haul, each one of them has been integral to our ongoing goal of promoting Creative Music to Serious Listeners worldwide.

Over the past few years, CD sales, which were our bread & butter, have plunged while LP sales have increased somewhat. Hence, we are struggling to survive. We need to acquire a substantial LP collection in order to stay above water. There have been a number of CD collection donations over the past year which we do appreciate. I am trying to figure out a way that we can continue for a few more years since this is the job that I love to do. Almost every day at the store, someone comes to find some music that they can’t find anywhere else. I love the challenge of finding that music and giving credit where it is due. Thanks to all of you for your longtime support. You know who continues to Love you all, that’s me - MC BruceLee Gallanter, DMG



Tuesday, May 7th:
6:30: PATRICK BRENNAN / PAUL AUSTERLITZ - Contrabass Clarinet / CLAIRE de BRUNNER - Bassoon / NICK GIANNI- Bass Flute / THOMAS HEBERER - Trumpet / DAFNA NAPHTALI - Electronics / SAM NEWSOME - Soprano Sax!

Saturday, May 11th: DMG and GauciMusic Co-Hosts this evening with:
6pm: LISA MEZZACAPPA - Contrabass / CHRIS WELCOME - Guitar / MIKE PRIDE - Drums
7pm: STEPHEN GAUCI - Reeds / KEVIN SHEA - Drums!
8pm: JOHN DIKEMAN - Tenor Sax / BRANDON LOPEZ - ContraBass

Tuesday, May 14th: BLG up at Victo Fest; JP Nadien Hosts:
6:30: TOM WEEKS - Solo Alto Saxophone
7:30: GIAN PEREZ / BRANDON LOPEZ / ELIZA SALEM - Guitar / Bass / Drums

DMG stands for Downtown Music Gallery and we are located at 13 Monroe St, between Catherine & Market Sts. You can take the F train to East Broadway or the M15 bus to Madison & Catherine Sts. We are in a basement space below an art gallery & beauty salon. We are on the east side of Chinatown, not far from East Broadway & the end of the Bowery. Admission for all concerts is free and donations are always welcome. We have concerts here every Tuesday starting at 6:30 plus Steve Gauci curates his own series here on the 2nd or 1st Saturday of each month. You can check out the weekly schedule here: I post 1 minute segments from these sets almost every day on our InstaGram feed (if you don’t do InstaGram, you can still view these 1 minute clips on the DMG homepage, (a recently added feature), so please check them out and come down to visit when you can. - BLG/DMG



JON IRABAGON TRIO plus ONE with MARK HELIAS / BARRY ALTSCHUL / URI CAINE - Dinner and Dancing (Irabbagast Records 026; USA) Featuring Jon Irabagon on alto clarinet, tenor & sopranino saxes, Mark Helias on contrabass, mixing & mastering and Barry Altschul on drums plus Uri Caine on piano. Multi-sax wonder, Jon Irabagon, played at The Stone last week (4/17-20/24) with four different groups and word is that all four groups were great and completely different personnel and sound wise. I caught one with vibist Patricia Brennan which was fabulous. Award winning saxist, Mr. Irabagon split from his original quartet (MOPDTK) and moved from NYC during the pandemic. He has continued to keep quite busy leading several of his own bands as well as collaborating with Chris Speed, Dave Douglas & Gordon Grdina. This the Jon Irabagon Trio has a previous disc from 2014 on the JazzWerkStatt label plus guest pianist Uri Caine worked with Dave Douglas around the same time that Irabagon did. The music here was recorded at The Stone in March of 2023 and is mainly spontaneously composed. There are two long unnamed pieces here. All of the collaborators here are older than Mr. Irabagon and bring a lifetime of improvisatory experience to the proceedings. The first piece starts off with Irabagon on alto clarinet, the rest of the quartet slowly entering as the energy level builds. Over the past decade, Mr. Helias has been taking on other responsibilities in the studio (or live) by editing, mixing and mastering. Hence the sound and balance here is superb. Uri Caine is a perfect addition to this trio since he is such a fine, creative, inventive and often exuberant pianist. Mr. Irabagon played several different reeds (soprillo, sopranino, alto & tenor saxes) and has mastered each of them. His playing here on alto clarinet (not the most popular of clarinets) is especially engaging. It also sounds as if Irabagon has mastered playing two or three sounds at once on his clarinet, adding some high end multiphonic squeaks and drones to his animated bird-like & other bent-note sounds. There is a section midway through the first piece where the quartet starts to levitate, rising higher before calming down again with a fine, laid back solo by Mr. Altschul and an extraordinary piano solo by Mr. Caine. Mr. Irabagon switches to tenor sax and has a robust, Trane-like tone, choosing each note carefully, adding some soulful notes and adding  some shrewd interaction with the piano-led rhythm team. The second piece begins with another fine drum solo. Mr. Altschul has been a master improviser for over 60 years (starting out with Paul Bley) and we can hear this in his playing throughout this disc. Irabagon has obviously studied his jazz/sax history and takes a tantalizing, soul-infested tenor solo here with Mr. Caine adds some great sixties soul/jazz chords. The quartet slowly wind down and become more spacious with Irabagon on sopranino (not shrill!) and Caine adding those warm, funky chords. Overall, this is an extraordinary effort, an example of free improv at its best from a master quartet. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG     
CD $14

BRIAN MARSELLA / JON IRABAGON - Blue Hour (Irrabagast Records 026; Red Palace Records 005; USA) Featuring Brian Marsella on piano, Yamaha CS-60, Korg BX-3 & Ritm-2 and Jon Irabagon on mezzo soprano, tenor & sopranino saxes. The first two tracks were recorded at The Stone in October of 2022 while the last three pieces were recorded at Eastside Sound (studio) in January of 2022. Over the past few years keyboard wiz, Brian Marsella, has kept very busy in a variety of different projects: John Zorn (in the Chaos Magick quartet, 6 CD’s), Cyro Baptista, Zion80 and lots more. Even after moving out of NYC during the pandemic, award-winning multi-saxist, Jon Irabagon, also keeps quite busy: playing the music of John Zorn in a quartet with Chris Speed, working with Dave Douglas, Gordon Grdina and many others. One of the things that I like most about Brian Marsella is that he plays numerous keyboards (organ, piano & various synths) and seems to be influenced by a wide variety of genres and styles. The last time I caught him at The Stone for a residency earlier this year (2023), he kept switching a half dozen keyboards to great effect.
   All the music seemed to have been completely improvised. “A Day That Will Live in Infamy” is first and begins with quiet, spacious, mystical synth sounds and somber soprano sax. While Marsella plays some spooky, atmospheric synth(s), Irabagon carefully bends and twists each note carefully, the duo creating a soundtrack for an old film noir flick. The sax, synth and then piano start to erupt intensely after a while. Another thing which stands out here is that both of these musicians draw from a number of melodic sounds and themes. Marsella will create a quick bassline with one hand while he plays waves of notes on the piano with the other hand while Irabagon plays a series of lines on his tenor, some inside, some outside but always in response to whatever lines that Marsella is playing at the time. The constant interaction is often astonishing and unpredictable. Both of these players are daredevil improvisers who keep pushing each other higher and into more turbulent sections. I’ve caught Mr. Marsella play the music of John Zorn both in the solo and in the trio setting and I know he is a most impressive, expressive pianist. His acoustic piano playing here is extraordinary, majestic and in a class of its own. Both of these players can match each other's exploration no matter where they go. The studio pieces are better balanced hence the interplay can be heard even more. This entire disc is nearly 77 minutes in length and it had me at the edge of my seat for the entire long ride. Just incredible! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG  
CD $14

ANTHONY BRAXTON - 10 Comp (Lorraine) 2022 (New Braxton House 911; USA) The challenge of a boxed set like this one is blocking off a few chunks of time to not only listen, but engage with and participate in the music. Doing so is especially important for the works of Anthony Braxton – an iconoclastic composer / performer who eschews any dichotomy between improvisation and composition, and has developed his own musical vocabulary of trans-notational sounds that can be communicated graphically or between musicians via gesture.
Put another way (and this is based on my admittedly limited understanding of his theories), Braxton does not compose or improvise per se. Instead, he develops musical systems in which composition and improvisation coexist. These systems can be thought of as somewhat programmatic extensions of that of Terry Riley’s In C. A given system might be reduced to practice by a different number of musicians, playing different instruments, and interpreting the score differently. This means that each performance is a unique experience and different from all others.
Often, Braxton times these performed works to be between 40 and 60 minutes in length. In cases where there are a large number of musicians involved (e.g., 7-14 or so), his systems allow them to be divided into subgroups that are playing semi-independently. And yet the combination of their sounds still somehow works together.
Indeed, this characteristic of Braxton’s approach is apparent at a smaller scale in 10 Comp (Lorraine) 2022. At first blush, the music is chaotic and appears freely improvised with each musician seemingly playing without regard for the others. The beauty of his systems, however, is that this is intentional. Braxton creates structured frameworks in which repetition and patterns are too abstract to easily pick up on or do not exist at all. But each contributor’s efforts mysteriously (and mathematically) fit in with the rest.
With this in mind, absorbing the eight hours of music of this set can be intimidating. There is little in the way of melody, harmony, or rhythm to latch on to. The notes seem arbitrary and yet strangely methodical. If listened to in passing, each track can appear similar to the others – even randomly generated. But that is not the case. Slowly, incrementally, familiar shapes and colors emerge.
10 Comp (Lorraine) 2022 consists of 10 long pieces. The first 6 are live performances by the trio of Braxton (sax, electronics), Adam Matlock (accordion, voice), and Susana Santos Silva (trumpet) from Fall 2021. The following 4 are studio quartet recordings by Braxton (sax, electronics), James Fei (sax), Zach Rowden (string bass), and Carl Testa (string bass) from Spring 2022. A deeper listen to each of these groups reveals the complex beauty of Braxton’s systems, or rather the musicians’ expressions thereof.
The trio pieces are lively with aggressive runs, especially from Braxton and Silva. Matlock effectively plays two instruments simultaneously, accordion and wordless bursts of voice. The latter, however, appears sporadically. Certain sequences of notes, a spikiness, a warped droning, an extended technique, or a twisted chord progression reach the foreground from time to time and then are echoed later in the same piece or on subsequent pieces.
But these echoes are distant and attenuated. Every minute is different and fresh. This constant novelty is what makes the music difficult for our pattern-matching brains to absorb. Or, it seems as if Braxton, Matlock, and Silva are simultaneously playing lead throughout each album-length track. There is a lot going on.
The quartet pieces follow much of the same approach but are more subdued and drone-oriented. This is likely due to the pair of double basses setting up a slow-moving foundational framework in the low registers. Braxton and Fei provide abstract warbling and distorted passages, which then evolve to become drones while Rowden and Testa turn to plucking. The extended techniques are more prevalent, as this foursome continuously creates and tears apart the fabric of their soundscape.
In short, the listener can approach 10 Comp (Lorraine) 2022 in various ways. To ultimately appreciate the music (and Braxton’s artistry), one needs to be an active party to the experience. Like a difficult essay or book, you may have to wrestle with the subject matter for a while to move from initial confusion to a clearer understanding of the work. - by Mike at
10 CD Box Set $130

THE MESSTHETICS and JAMES BRANDON LEWIS with ANTHONY PIROG / JOE LALLY / BRENDAN CANTY - Self-Titled (Impulse! 602458 945911; USA) Featuring James Brandon Lewis on tenor sax, Anthony Pirog on electric guitar, Joe Lally on bass guitar and Brendan Canty on drums. Ever since checking out saxist James Brandon Lewis when he moved to town a decade ago, I knew there was something special about his playing. Starting in 2014, Mr. Lewis has eight releases, each one different personnel, sound and concept-wise and each one a gem of avant-jazz at its best. I can tell that Lewis works hard on each release, each one showing off another side to his ever-evolving palette. Oddly enough, Mr. Lewis started off his recording career with two discs on the Okeh label, an offshoot of Columbia Records and a rare situation to say the least. Since then Lewis has put out records on the Relative Pitch, Intakt and Tao Forms labels, aside from a few rarities on smaller labels like Off and RR Gems. The Impulse started in the early 1960 and it was the home bass for John Coltrane from 1961 until his passing in 1967 and many posthumous releases. Aside from many reissues and Trane rarities, Impulse! wound down to few releases over the past decade. Hence, times are changing again and Impulse! has been releasing more avant or spiritual jazz over the past few years. Check out more recent records by Shabaka Hutchings or Brandee Younger for a taste of the future of jazz.
The Messthetics hail from Washington, DC and consists of Anthony Pirog on guitar (prog/jazz/rock titan), Joe Lally on el. bass and Brendan Canty on drums. Mr. Lally and Mr. Canty were once for the great hardcore punk band Fugazi, founded by Ian MacKaye formerly of Minor Threat, one of the most popular and influential of all hardcore bands. Guitarist Anthony Pirog also hails from Wash, DC and is a great guitarist who has worked with Henry Kaiser, the Spellcasters & his duo with his partner Janel. Check out any of Pirog’s 10 records as a leader as each one is worth hearing. What’s interesting is this: the last time I heard something fresh which had a combination of hardcore punk and avant- jazz was when Naked City emerged (between 1987 to 1993), thirty years ago. “L’Orso’ stars with a medium tempo riff and sax & guitar playing the slightly funky lines together. Although the riffs played by the Messthetics are rock sorta riffs, Mr. Lewis adds his own feisty lines linked to the churning riffs. “That Thang” has another tight, sly, riff at the center with the guitar and sax united as one force. Pirog takes an especially strong, spirited guitar solo as does Lewis on his tenor. My favorite piece here is called “Three Sisters” and it is a laid back, simmering groove song with a most infectious riff, smokey tenor which is well matched by Pirog’s sustained psych guitar tone. Both Lewis and Pirog solo together and reach for the stars with their passion filled playing. “Boatly” is a lovely sorta ballad with a most haunting melody and some exquisite guitar and a sublime sax solo from Lewis. “The Time is the Place” has another killer slightly funky bass riff with heavy guitar chords and Lewis’ roaring sax riding on top. Pirog takes an auspicious punk rock guitar solo which is short and just the right length. Instead of playing more freely and screaming, JB Lewis often plays more melodically which is perfect for the charming melodies that the band plays on many of these songs. What I find most interesting about this disc is this: instead of playing mainly avant/jazz/punk, the quartet spent time creating some haunting melodies which are often warm and enticing. They do get out at times but only in short spurts. This is an unexpected gem from an unpredictable planet. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CD $16

ANDY MILNE and UNISON with JOHN HEBERT / CLARENCE PENN plus INGRID LAUBROCK / YOKO REIKANO KIMURA - Time Will Tell (Sunnyside SSC 1714; USA) Featuring Andy Milne on piano & compositions, John Hebert on contrabass, Clarence Penn on drums plus Ingrid Laubrock on tenor sax and Yoko Reikano Kimura on koto. After recording a dozen discs with M-Base founder, Steve Coleman, Canadian keyboardist, Andy Milne, worked with Ralph Alessi and recorded around ten discs a leader, first with the band Dapp Theory and with his trio Unison. This is his second disc with Unison and it includes guest appearances from Ingrid Laubrock on tenor sax and Yoko Reikano Kimura on koto. Mr. Milne has a recent duo effort with Ms. Laubrock on the Intakt label (from 2022). Mr. Milne mentions in the liner notes that he was adopted as child and he finally met his birth mother. This disc explores the mixed emotions he went through when he finally met her. Milne wrote most of the music on this disc except for one song by each of his rhythm team members.
“Purity of Heart” has a majestic sound and features the fine playing of Ms. Laubrock on tenor. The music is closer to chamber jazz and it is warm and inviting. Mr. Milne’s piano solo is sweeping and dreamy, a perfect to open this disc. “Lost and Found” is stripped down and elegant with a sublime koto added, something we rarely hear on a jazz release. Clarence Penn composed “Papounet” (French for pap or daddy) and while the bass holds down the groove/bottom, the piano & drums speed up and slow down together exchanging tight lines. Every note in “Solotude” is slow, haunting and lovely and reverberates quietly. “Kumoi Joshi” features both the tenor sax and koto, the somber vibe is calm yet mysterious. Milne plays layers of exquisite waves on “No Matter What”, another rather majestic piece, with an austere, heartwarming melody that lingers long after the song ends. What I find interesting about this disc is how subdued it is, often solemn yet still charming in its own way. I see listening to this music late at night, but candlelight with some mellow wine or tasty tea to calm down our nerves. This is a treat after several avant jazz or improv discs in a row to review. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CD $14

KIRSTEN CAREY / AARON EDGCOMB - Mature Defense Mechanism (Relative Pitch Records RPR 1181; USA) Featuring Kirsten Carey on guitar (recorded in Detroit) and Aaron Edgcomb on drums (recorded in New York). Ever since listening to the Mothers of Invention’s debut album, ‘Freak-Out!’ in the summer of 1967 several times over a short period, I realized that great albums, great music takes time to fully absorb. More than a half century later, I am convinced that I or we still need time to fully understand and appreciate Creative or challenging music. Relative Pitch just sent us 9 new discs, all of which will be released this month, May of 2024. As someone who has long enjoyed a variety of Creative Music, I find this to be a good thing. I am always up for a challenge and with RP, challenges abound.
   Although I didn’t recognize the name of guitarist Kirsten Carey, it turns out that Mr./Ms. Carey had a disc out called ‘The Ulysses Project’ from a decade ago (2013). Drummer Aaron Egdcomb played here at DMG around 2 years ago in a trio with David Leon plus he is a member of Trigger, a fine power trio who have a disc on John Zorn’s ‘Bagatelles’ Box One. Both musicians recorded their parts separately in different locations in New York and in Detroit. Starting with “Taste of Foreboding” (aptly titled), there is a sense of restless exploration going on here. Carey has an odd, somewhat shrill, bent-note sound on guitar with a liberal, distinctive use of distortion/effects while Edgcomb has that UK improv (Steve Noble-like) organic, swirling, quietly intense percussion eruption. At times it is the percussion that seems to lead, yet the balance slowly shifts throughout. I find this music to be often exciting, focused, tight-knit and shrewd. Carey seems to be drawing from a reservoir of twisted melodies, focusing on a series of fractured strumming. This music doesn’t sound completely free as the duo seem to be tapping into several connected streams or themes. At times Carey adds different amounts of distortion to his playing which changes the vibe to a more unsettling state. I also like that there are quieter, less brittle sections here which keep the balance of things easier to enjoy at length. Although both musicians recorded their parts separately, it is impossible to tell this by listening. A solid duo effort on all sides. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG 
CD $13

YEDO GIBSON - Conic Tube (Relative Pitch RPRSS 025; USA) Featuring Yedo Gibson on soprano, alto and tenor saxes, recorded in a studio in Lisbon in February of 2023. I’ve known about Brazilian saxist Yedo Gibson from his collaborations with Vasco Trilla, Veryan Weston, Luis Vicente and Susana Santos Silva. Although Mr. Gibson has fecorded in a number of duos, trios and quartets, this seems to be his first solo sax recording. Mr. Gibson switches between three saxes for each of his 8 solo pieces. Starting out on soprano, Gibson plays those soft, odd, microtonal sounds that many of the lower case musicians have been playing over the past decade with certain sounds similar to what John Zorn did in his early days with just mouthpieces and bird calls (late 70’s/early 80’s). On the second piece, Gibson switches to alto sax and launches into some burning Trane-like fire-breathing lines. On the third piece, Gibson switches to tenor and pushes things even further out. Gibson concentrates on these high-end multiphonics, bending his notes carefully yet intensely, hitting some of those high-end squeaks that often make dogs bark or more normal listeners cringe. Gibson plays his soprano on the 5th piece in quick spiralling lines, his sound in between Lol Coxhill (humor) and Roscoe Mitchell (seriousness). Mr. Gibson does a good job of playing a couple of different lines at the same time and altering his approach, taking off the mouthpiece and playing directly into the sax and adding a few vocal sounds as well. On track 6, Gibson takes the riff from the bebop song, “Billie’s Bounce” and chops up the riff, spinning out furious lines similar to the way Bird used to astonish his fans with his own daredevil high speed excursions. Gibson reaches deeper into his tenor tribulations on track 7, pushing his tone wider and his note-bending to the extreme and eventually calming down for a section before reaching higher and higher. Yedo Gibson ends up on his soprano for the last piece, varying his lines from those extreme high end squeaks to more restrained sections of muted oddities and even some flatulent sounds. What I like most about this is that Gibson varies his approach on each piece showing that he has spent times dealing with the different nuances of playing solo sax(es) in his own unique way. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG  
CD $13

IAN CARR [NUCLEUS] with ALAN HOLDSWORTH / BRIAN SMITH / DAVE MacRAE / GORDON BECK / ROY BABBINGTON / CLIVE THACKER / TREVOR TOMKINS - Belladonna (Mr Bongo MRBCD 229; UK) Featuring Ian Carr on trumpet & flugelhorn, Brian Smith on tenor & soprano saxes, alto & bamboo flutes, Alan Holdsworth on electric guitar, Dave MacRae on Fender Rhodes & acoustic piano, Gordon Beck on Hohner electric piano, Roy Babbington on bass guitar and Clive Thacker & Trevor Tomkins on drums & percussion. Word is that ‘Belladonna’ was supposed to be the fourth album by Ian Carr’s Nucleus & released in 1972, but their manager at the time had their name tied up in a contract so that the album was released under Ian Carr’s name. Strange story?!? I guess. Along with Soft Machine (the 1970-1974 period) and If (1969-1975), Nucleus were the quintessential British jazz/rock/fusion band during the UK electric jazz/rock golden era of 1970-1975. There are around 11 Nucleus studio albums between 1970 & 1980 but a handful of live recordings. There is a box set called ‘Torrid Zone: The Vertigo Recordings 1970-1975’, a 6 CD set released in 2019 which does include nine of their studio records, including ‘Belladonna’, but it is currently out-of-print. What’s interesting about Nucleus is that several members left the band to join Soft Machine afterwards: Karl Jenkins, John Marshall, Roy Babbington & Alan Holdsworth. So although Nucleus and Soft Machine evolved in different ways, they were parallel brethren of UK Jazz/Rock at its best.
‘Belladonna’ was produced by Jon Hiseman, the amazing British jazz/rock drummer who was a founding member of Colosseum I & II, Tempest and the United Jazz Rock Ensemble. Hiseman is also a great engineer and producer, hence the sound of this album is superb. There is a mysterious quality that runs throughout this album that I find most enchanting. The electric pianos, percussion and horns are recorded with a seductive amount of reverb which was popular during this period and well-utilized here. After a mystical, haunting intro bassist Roy Babbington breaks into this killer riff/groove. The guitar, trumpet and sax state the repeating theme with some funky 70’s sounding electric piano(s). Monster jazz/rock guitar god, Alan Holdsworth, rarely solos here, for a change, but does slip in some sly, greasy guitar riffs, something he rarely did anywhere else. Ian Carr’s trumpet and Brian Smith’s soprano sax sound like two snakes interweaving their solos together with guitar and electric pianos also woven just right. Ian Carr’s “Summer Rain” is a slow, moody, laid back groove with some especially groovy, distorted electric piano (shades of Jan Hammer in Mahavishnu Orch) and Holdsworth slipping in some greasy licks underneath. On Brian Smith’ “Remadione”, the electric pianos and el guitars all solo together, bending and twisting their notes inside out tightly together. Carr’s “Mayday” opens up side two of the original album and has another funky, “Shaft”-like killer guitar riff with an inspired tenor solo from Brian Smith. Ace drummer, Trevor Tomkins, adds some righteous congas to this piece. “Suspension” begins with an eerie electric piano and bamboo flute before it gets into another hypnotic riff. The last piece is “Hector’s House” by Brian Smith and it is funkiest and a highlight with another killer groove and great playing with all members of the band, especially Brian Smith’s burning soprano sax and an incredible Holdsworth high flying, high speed guitar solo! Brilliant and not too long! Some jazz purists/snobs used to say “Fusion Died”. Between 1970 & 1975, there were dozens of extraordinary jazz/rock epics and this one in near the top of the heap! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
CD $16

HAINO KEIJI / JOZEF DUMOULIN / TEUN VERBRUGGEN - The Miracles Of Only One Thing (Sub Rosa SR 429CD; Belgium) Featuring Keiji Haino on guitar, vocals, flute, gongs; Jozef Dumoulin - Fender Rhodes and Teun Verbruggen - drums, electronics. Japanese legend, Keiji Haino, meets two of Belgium's most active and valued musicians, keyboardist Jozef Dumoulin (Lilly Joel) and drummer Teun Verbruggen (Othin Spake). The Miracles Of Only One Thing is a deep and intense testimony of this meeting. Keiji Haino, without any doubt one of the most important musicians from the Japanese underground scene, is at his best, Teun Verbruggen and Jozef Dumoulin did a three-week tour in Japan in September of 2015, playing concerts as a duet, but also solo and with local musicians. One of those musicians was hero Keiji Haino, whose work has spanned rock, free improvisation, noise, percussion, psychedelic music, minimalism and drones. Besides his legendary bands Fushitsusha and Lost Aaraaff, he has worked with artists and bands like Boris, The Melvins, Jim O'Rourke, Oren Ambarchi, Peter Brötzmann and Steve Noble. As for Dumoulin and Verbruggen, they are both known for their always refreshing and groundbreaking work that breaks the barriers between free improvisation, electro, jazz and more. Jozef Dumoulin is part of the duo Lilly Joel appearing recently on Sub Rosa with What Lies in the Sea (SR 416CD, 2015). Belgian drummer Teun Verbruggen was a member of Flat Earth Society & The Bureau of Atomic Tourism and has worked with Nate Wooley, Phil Minton, Trevor Dunn & Audrey Chen. The three teamed up for a studio recording and a recorded live-show. Out of all the material, they distilled an album that reflects both the excitement of the new bond as well as the deep and vast sonic landscapes that their joined forces laid bare.
CD $17 [last copies]

CONRAD SCHNITZLER - Slow Motion (Bureau B 452CD; Germany) The 1960s weren't just about The Beatles, the Rolling Stones and hippies; they also ushered in new forms of art: happenings, Fluxus, Neo-Dada, video art, to name just a few. As borders blurred, pop influenced art and art influenced pop. Many protagonists of the time chose to ignore borders altogether. This chaotic, euphoric atmosphere of extreme innovation lasted well into the 1970s and continues to resonate today. All manner of trailblazers shaped the soundscape of the era. Conrad Schnitzler (born 1937) and Karl Horst Hödicke (born 1938) -- longstanding members of the official artistic canon - were multifunctional artists who painted, performed, sculptured, made films and music. They were always to be found on the edge of the "permissible" and invariably went beyond "modern" perceptions of art. Schnitzler, Hödicke and many of their contemporaries arrived at a completely new definition of the avant-garde. The circumstances of Schnitzler and Hödicke's first meeting are unknown, but it should come as no surprise that it was Schnitzler who composed the soundtrack for Hödicke's film entitled Slow Motion in 1976. The two artists were cut from the same cloth, routinely crossing any boundaries they happened to encounter. Schnitzler wrote music for each of the film's 14 sequences, linking them together in a logical progression of minimalist imagery. Each piece of music quite brilliantly accentuated the preceding one. Schnitzler's musical sensibility was wholly compatible with Hödicke's approach to film. Not that Schnitzler was ever a film composer. Slow Motion worked because Schnitzler and Hödicke were on the same wavelength, daring to experiment with sound and vision in such a way that auditory and visual components were interdependent. Nevertheless, it still makes sense to release the soundtrack without the images. Schnitzler undoubtedly responded to the pictures as he composed, but his customarily uncompromising style is very much in evidence: rhythmically structured electronic cascades, intermittent impulse chains and manual improvisations alternate with planar clouds of sound. Analogue sequencers and an analogue rhythm machine played a crucial role. The tracks on Slow Motion vary in length and mood, but the listener never has to leave Schnitzler's sonic universe, even without the pictures for which the music was composed. Slow Motion is an important document in Schnitzler's oeuvre, seamlessly taking its place alongside his many other releases, whilst also highlighting his constructive input as an equal partner in an experimental film production.
CD $18 / LP $30

DUB SYNDICATE - Mellow & Colly (Expanded Edition)(Echo Beach EB 201CD; Germany) The one and only Dub Syndicate album mixed by Overton "Scientist" Brown comes as an official reissue as expanded limited collector's edition! Originally released as catalogue number Lion & Roots 001 in 1998 on Style Scott's own label, here's the expanded and remastered collector's limited edition. The longplayer Mellow & Colly is timeless for real and should not be missed in any Dub Syndicate collection or serious reggae selection. It is also the crucial half of Style Scott's two-album Scientist Vs. Sherwood Soundclash project that started his Lion & Roots label in 1998. The other half entitled Fear Of A Green Planet (EB 200CD) was already reissued late 2023 on Echo Beach. Featuring the original eight tracks and expanded with another five tracks taken from the completely unreleased Jamaican session demo tapes -- three of those lately overdubbed by Jesse King from Canada, better known as Dubmatix! Also featuring U Brown, Junior Reid, Big Youth, Ranking Joe, and Ansel Cridland.
CD $17

CONSUMER ELECTRONICS - Surge (Dirter Promotions 170CD; UK) Consumer Electronics return with Surge, a brand-new album containing seven tracks and with a run-time of 42 minutes. The duo of Philip Best and album producer Russell Haswell deliver a hallucinatory vision of the world -- as it appears in 2024 e.g. Noticeably noisier and more aggressive than previous releases, CE dive even further into the chaos of sonic manipulation and mind-bending frequencies. Best's lyrics are among his most demented yet, written in the shadow of intimate distress, global conflict, and resigned disintegration. For his part, Haswell conjures crunching landscapes of sound and fiery rhythmic propulsions. The pair use state of the art technology allied with cracked and fractured primitive electronics. Exquisitely crafted to give the listener a disquieting look into the abyss. Featuring a guest appearance by long time cohort Gary Mundy of RAMLEH, this should be considered the definitive CE album. Full color artwork by Philip Best. Packaged in heavy board mini gatefold sleeve, with inner and insert.
CD $16

MYRIAM GENDRON - Mayday (Feeding Tube Records FTR 766CD / FTR 766LP; USA) Mayday is the third LP by Montreal-based artist, Myriam Gendron. It follows her earlier, critically acclaimed albums, Not So Deep As A Well (2014) and Ma Délire: Songs Of Love, Lost & Found (2021). Myriam began exploring the complex folk traditions of Quebec (and beyond), with Ma délire, which combines traditional and original songs with arrangements that make space for avant-garde musical interludes by such folks as guitarist Bill Nace (Body/Head) and renowned jazz percussionist Chris Corsano. Mayday presents an even more syncretic fusion of the elements Myriam uses to create her sound. Most of the songs are original, sung in both English and French, and they blend traditional and avant elements with abandon. She is often accompanied on this album by the guitarist Marisa Anderson and drummer Jim White (Dirty Three, Xylouris White), whose work provides a quietly aggressive sort of free-rock base. Additional players include Montreal bassist Cédric Dind-Lovie, Bill Nace and saxophonist Zoh Amba. Mayday is a thoroughly thrilling effort that manages to create new vistas of sound while maintaining a feel that is both intimate and familiar. The music here certainly possesses a richly serious tone, but Myriam Gendron (like Leonard Cohen) is able to infuse her darkness with a subtle, powerful light that reminds listeners that even the most pitch-black night is but a transitional state. Beautiful work. Recorded at home and at Hotel2Tango with Howard Bilerman and Shea Brossard. Mastered by Harris Newman.
CD $15 / LP $25

GORDAN - Gordan (Glitterbeat 155CD; Germany) This self-titled second album from Gordan, the acclaimed transnational (Serbia/Germany/Austria) experimental trio, fuses traditional Balkan vocalizations with feedback, electronic sound generators, pulsing bass and hypnotic drumming. Gordan mirrors the mysticism of legends and stories from the Balkan region, creating a music that stretches between expressiveness and abstraction; tradition and the avant-garde. The visceral vocals of Svetlana Spajic (Marina Abramovic, Lenhart Tapes, Antony and the Johnsons) are both rooted and deeply interpretive. In turn, drummer Andi Stecher (STECHER, Billy Bultheel, Orchestre Les Mangelepa), and Guido Möbius on bass and electronics, employ sonic strategies that steer the songs in inspired and unpredictable directions. Gordan makes music that lies between expressiveness and abstraction. Their pieces are not limited by rigid formal structures. Instead, they are open processes that create a loss of sense of time. Reduced arrangements and expressive vocals combine to form a powerful musical whole. This band creates something new from minimalism, intensity and the rich singing tradition of the Balkans. When Down in the Meadow, the first album by Gordan was released by Morphine Records in October 2021, it was celebrated by critics and audiences alike. Now the trio presents its second, even more radical record. Drummer Andi Stecher forgoes any ornamentation and at the same time plays varied and concentrated. Confident and with outstanding technique, he is the engine of the band's sound. His stylistic flexibility demonstrates a profound knowledge of global music history. Guido Möbius plays bass guitar and various electronic sound generators. He also provokes feedback using a guitar amplifier, microphone and effects. These sometimes spherical, sometimes very concrete sounds interact with Svetlana Spajic's voice. Vocals and feedback circle each other in fleeting, ever-changing harmony.
CD $17

PETER KERNEL with KEVIN SHEA / JULIAN SARTORIUS / et al - Drum To Death (On the Camper Records OR 040CD; Switzerland) Drum To Death is a collection of 11 experiments by Peter Kernel and their favorite drummers. Throughout 2020 to 2023, Peter Kernel invited eleven of their most esteemed drummers to send them rhythms with which they composed these eleven tracks. Each song was written and dedicated to the inherent drummer as an ode of appreciation to the beat creator. These eleven songs come together as a unique collection of an odd collaboration based on appreciation for different styles and people, a microworld made of different feelings, patterns, colors, intentions and attitudes. The album features collaborations with Bernard Trontin (The Young Gods), Cosmic Neman (Zombie Zombie), Beatrice Graf, Domi Chansorn, Ema Matis, Tam Bor, Hugo Panzer, Julian Sartorius, Kevin Shea (Storm & Stress, Lydia Lunch), Simon Berz, and Simone Aubert (Hyperculte, Massicot).
CD $18

OUM - Dakchi: Live In Marrakech (Ternaire TER 002DD; France) In 2024, the singer and songwriter Oum celebrates her fifteen-year career with a live album recorded in Marrakech, which plunges back into the magic of her three flagship records, here revisited in a different light. This seventh album, named Dakchi, which means "those things," is the opportunity for this daring off-roader to allow herself a suspended moment for a temporary assessment, a return to her roots. Dakchi is the first best-of live album, in which Oum brings together around ten titles from her repertoire woven throughout three albums with identities as singular as they are filled with a common sap: "Soul of Morocco" (2013), "Zarabi" (2015), and "Daba" (2019). It is the expression of typically Moroccan hybridizations -- African, Berber and Andalusian -- which irrigate the crossbreeding of Oum. It is also joyful and natural fireworks display of polyrhythms which galvanize her music the Marrakech signature, playful, sunny, festive. Oum slips three unpublished pieces, including the sublime Arabic cover of the legendary bolero "Lagrimas Negras," "Toda la Gente," an introduction to "Mansit," signed by Cuban musician Damian Nueva, or the delicate "Intidhar," composed by Yacir Rami.
CD $19

JIM WHITE AND MARISA ANDERSON - Swallowtail (Thrill Jockey 605CD / 605LP; USA) "The collaboration between renowned drummer Jim White and acclaimed guitarist Marisa Anderson is a natural union of two of the most intuitive players and listeners working in music. Jim White is known for his groundbreaking trio, Dirty Three, as well as duo Xylouris White. His list of collaborations is vast and include artists such as Nick Cave, Bill Callahan, Cat Power, Marnie Stern, and Warren Ellis. Jim just released his debut solo album, All Hits: Memories. Marisa Anderson, known primarily for her solo work, in demand collaborator who has worked with Tashi Dorji, Sharon Van Etten, Yasmine Williams, and Michael Hurley. She has released records with William Tyler and Tara Jane O'Neal. White and Anderson are each highly sought after collaborators in no small part because of their mastery, versatility and highly expressive playing. Their sophomore album, Swallowtail, finds the duo completely attuned to each other, fluidly moving as wind and water. They avoid preconceived movements, instead focusing on their musical conversation. As Anderson puts it: 'The ideas aren't the music, they are the pathway into the musical possibilities.' Their skillful interplay creates an effervescence throughout the album. The ebb and flow to the duo's motions bring a sense of serenity and ease to spontaneous transitions, each swell and retraction sounding as free as it does inevitable. White and Anderson's preternatural alchemy as a duo allows each fleeting gesture to feel featherlight and stirring while maintaining an inquisitive spirit. Their music is an enchanting and illuminating."
CD $16 / LP $26



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



5/1 Wednesday
8:30 pm - Collaborative duos - Ricardo Gallo (piano, moog) Jessica Pavone (viola)

5/2 Thursday
8:30 pm - J. Pavone Trio - Ben Copperhead (banjo, guitar) Jessica Pavone (compositions, viola) Sara Schoenbeck (bassoon)

5/3 Friday
8:30 pm - Trio Improvisations - Matt Nelson (saxophones) Jessica Pavone (viola) Ches Smith (drums)

5/4 Saturday
8:30 pm - Strings - Aimée Niemann (violin) Jessica Pavone (viola) Abby Swidler (violin, viola)


5/8 Wednesday
Uri Gurvich (alto sax) Uri Caine (piano) Peter Slavov (bass) Rodolfo Zuniga (drums)

5/9 Thursday
8:30 pm - E-FOLK - Uri Gurvich (alto sax, ewi) Elias Meister (guitar) Leo Genovese (keys) Panagiotis Andreou (electric bass) Ronen Itzik (drums)

5/10 Friday
8:30 pm - NUBIA featuring the Bergamot String Quartet - Uri Gurvich (alto sax) Ledah Finck (violin) Sarah Thomas (violin) Amy Tan (viola) Irène Han (cello) Leo Genovese (piano) Peter Slavov (bass) Ronen Itzik (drums)

5/11 Saturday
8:30 pm - SAXOPHONICS - Uri Gurvich (alto sax) Dan Blake (tenor and soprano saxes) Kenneth Jimenez (bass) Vinnie Sperrazza (drums)

THE STONE is located in
The New School at the Glass Box Theatre
55 West 13th Street - near 6th ave

wed-sat - music at 8:30pm

ADMISSION - $20 per set
unless otherwise noted
cash only payment


Uptown Out (An Indoor Flea Market)
A new improvised music series featuring:
Matt Lambiase (trumpet)
Mary Cherney (flute)
Stephanie Griffin (viola)
Claire de Brunner (bassoon)
Will Glass (drums)

Thursday,  May 9, 7pm
Recirculation, a project of Word Up
876 Riverside Dr at 160th St.
NY NY 10032
$5 suggested donation





Then you should check out the writing & interviewing by Rick Rees, who has a mailing list/website dedicated to Giorgio Gomelsky. Every month, Mr. Rees (who call himself a non-writer, no so says I), sends out an interview with different musicians that Mr. Gomelsky was involved with throughout his long music career. This month’s installment featuring a long interview with Chris Cutler and Maggie Thomas, who did album cover artwork for Virgin Records. The interview with Chris Cutler is long, fascinating and exhausting! Being a Henry Cow, Soft Machine & other Canterbury bands/musicians fanatic myself, I learned quite from these interviews! You can subscribe here:



Formerly of HENRY COW, THE ART BEARS, NEWS FOR BABEL & RECOMMENDED RECORDS (ReR) has been creating an ongoing series of podcasts called the Probes series. I am often fascinated at listening to each of these as Mr. Cutler does an incredible job of showing a deep history of Creative Music in the 20th century & beyond. I usually listen to these on the train to NYC that I take to get to work each day. The most recent Probes (#36) was released a few weeks ago, here is the links: