samedi 27 novembre 2010
mercredi 24 novembre 2010
Taylor Ho Bynum: cornet
Tomas Fujiwara: drums
The duet is an idea idiom: the scaffolding of improvisation laid bare, like wires gutted from a conduit. Here, musical dialogue becomes something about communicating, or miscommunicating, through paper cups. It's far less obvious that an improviser is making no sense, or has no sense, and/or no ideas, than when musicians are speaking ear to ear.
True Events hazards—if "hazard could describe music so careful—scrutiny, packed, coiled, and double-coiled with ideas. A less generous judgment might call this a "well-studied album, and it certainly does not shock of the new so much as it does the nu—or the "now, involved as much of it is with the historical reduction that seems to consume the jazz milieu these days. At the same time, Bynum and Fujiwara are so well- equipped a pair of intellects that merely hearing them communicate so directly is enough to ignore the fact that little, if anything, truly innovative has been said.
Perhaps a better appellation would be "scholarly —as in well-grounded. Bynum has a warm, malleable tone, a talent for coaxing out the personality of the cornet that few players of his generation seem to possess; it is colored in elements of
Bynum has an adroit, sensitive partner in Fujiwara—yet another tremendous drummer out of Boston—and the conversational, strongly melodic character of this combination sides recalls any number of definitive brass-percussion duets. What separates a session like this and, for example, Don Cherry and
In other words, it sometimes seems that Bynum and Fujiwara are taking it a little too easy on themselves—dancing on the line rather than breaking it, which they seem amply capable of—but one never feels a lack of intelligence or grace. Hearing Bynum and Fujiwara impose and superimpose rhythms on the time is great fun, and, especially in quieter spots, there's a potent lyricism, a subtle beauty that only the finest partners—I'm reminded of
Eric Cordier: hurdy-gurdy, electroni treatments
Pascal Battus: guitar
Eric Cordier et Jean-Luc Guionnet nous ont donné à entendre quelques unes des propositions expérimentales les plus intéressantes de ces dernières années, avec " Tore " paru sur Shambala et Synapses sur le label Selektion. Aujourd’hui Corpus Hermeticum sort le disque de PHEROMONE, trio avec Eric Cordier (vielle à roue et traitement électronique) et Jean-Luc Guionnet (citera, chiftelia, bois, métal et micros contact), auxquels s’est joint Pascal Battus (guitare environnée). Trio d’improvisation définitivement sorti de l’approche old school, sans pour autant sacrifier à la tendance minimaliste actuelle. Comme la plupart des disques parus sur Corpus H. celui-ci est traversé par l’énergie du rock. Pour PHEROMONE le petit Robert donne cette définition en biologie : sécrétion externe produite par un organisme, qui stimule une réponse physiologique ou comportementale chez un autre membre de la même espèce. L’ improvisation jouée comme réponse à une stimulation sonore de l’autre. Ce qui semble dire qu’il n’y a pas de réponses imaginaires mais seulement antérieures (de l’ordre du réflexe, codifiée). Ce qui pourrait être une remise en cause (ou tout au moins un doute émis à propos) du caractère déclaré libertaire de l’improvisation ou des musiques improvisées, une façon de dire qu’elles comportent un caractère idiomatique, un déterminisme culturel ? Mais il resterait du désir, du collectif, de la circulation, de l ’échange, de l’un à l’autre, l’improvisation comme érotique. Longue pièce enregistrée par Eric La Casa et Pierre-Henri Thiebaut Disparlure ", développe des paysages sonores bruissants, sons éclatés dans l’espace se répondant à la façon de ces phéromones, atteignant une apparente cacophonie de nuit d’été. Les textures sont denses et travaillées de torsions et de déchirures, de brûlures et d’implosions, la matière ne reste jamais inerte, le travail incessant. Disque de grincements, de matières ferrugineuses, lourdes, très denses. On y entend quelque chose de l’ordre de l’animalité, un peu à la façon d’une nourriture que se disputeraient des coléoptères voraces, déchiquetant, amputant, déchirant cette masse sonique. L’intérêt pour les sources sonores (de la guitare environnée ou de la vielle à roue) disparaît, semble secondaire, une belle confusion règne là, riche et non maigre, mais pourtant coupante, dangereuse. Les mains tremblent, cherchent, fouillent dans la matière à la recherche de ce son d’or qui fascine tant Charlemagne Palestine, mais ici comme pris dans le déchet, le rebus de la chose musicale. Quête alchimique de la merdre en or. Disparlure ", un bégaiement à la Christian Prigent, il y a de l’anamorphose dans la musique du trio, une torsion du musical dans le bruit monstrueux, comme une mise en vibration du réel. Prigent parlant de l’anamorphose en dit : " Son intérêt réside dans ce geste symptomatique, qui désavoue implicitement la réalité que serait censée figurer la représentation codée " . Est-ce de la musique (cette grande écriture codée des sons d’une société à un certain stade de son développement) ou plus simplement un moment de vie, du temps parlé ? Après le trio Noetinger / Marchetti / Werchowski, Bruce Russell continue d’ ouvrir son label aux expériences de l’improvisation de la vieille Europe, sortant la musique de l’impérialisme culturel anglo-saxon. Il y aurait un autre monde ?
MICHEL HENRITZI1998 DISPARLURE (Corpus Hermeticum) rapidshare/mediafire
mardi 23 novembre 2010
Kent Kessler: double bass
Paal Nilssen-Love: drums
The Portugese saxophonist Rodrigo Amado seems to replace Ken Vandermark in this trio with Kent Kessler on bass and Paal Nilssen-Love on drums. Vandermark played often enough with both of them in all possible line-ups and group configurations. Amado is also the sax-player in The Lisbon Improvisation Players, a Portuguese jazz band, with which Denis Gonzalez also made several performances. Amado is a different sax player than Vandermark, a little softer, more searching, more melodious, a little less energetic (but who isn't). The power of this band is that they create music, varying between hesitating and intense, calming each other, encouraging each other, propulsing each other to peaks, but without losing the focus, and with sufficient variation in the way they play their instruments to keep things fresh and exciting, even on the two longer pieces. The second of those, Pandora's Box, starts slow and searching, yet evolves into a rhythmic party full of intensity and musical joy, a piece in which both Kessler and Nilssen-Love get ample space for soloing. On the title song Kessler plays arco, Amado his baritone sax, and together they start the most abstract piece of the album, with the drums adding light touches and accents. This is no blowing fest, but very restrained, elegant and relatively accessible free jazz by three exceptional musicians. Highly recommended. (from FreeJazz)
2006 TEATRO (European Echoes) rapidshare/mediafire
Hamid Drake: drums, tablas, frame drum, voice
William Parker: bass, guimbre, talking drum, bowls, gongs
It's all there at the very beginning, thanks to Kidd Jordan, New Orleans' septuagenarian saxophonist, teacher, and leader; drummer Hamid Drake, who, despite leaving the Crescent City decades ago, still understands second-line rhythms; and William Parker, bassist extraordinaire, who plays a startling array of singing bowls, gongs, and even the talking drum on this session. In the 56 seconds that are "Peppermint Falls," the album's opener, all the elements are there, up front, and waiting to peel the layers off the onion of sound. Jordan swings in everything he does, whether it's the lonesome blues singing at the commencement of "Forever" or the startling intensity of "Unity Call." It's about song and sound, the notion of singing through the horn, expressing what the Indian, North African, and Congo shamans have been singing about for centuries. Certainly this is jazz; it lives in a post-Coltrane aesthetic -- the one of discovery, not imitation. The bowed bass beginnings of "Living Peace" suggest, from the relative calm and quiet of the first two tracks, that the edges will become a noticeable present tense in this music. But there are no edges, despite the moan-song of the horn, the bowing and the skeletal inverted notion of time that Drake stretches to its breaking point. What breaks are the defined notions of the pianoless jazz trio. This is a triangle where texture, balance, and color become the points at which sound itself can be expressed without distraction or notional individual identity struggles. This is music that just is, as jazz, as blues, as folk music. The culmination of the trio's art is in the album's final cut, "Last of the Chicken Wings." Never has out jazz sounded so recreational. The percussion work by both sidemen is stunning, carrying a series of Yoruba rhythmic inventions into the joy of the moment. When Jordan gets into his Ornette thang, playing the same catchy phrase over and over again as the percussion gets louder and more insistent, it's an expression of joy. And that's what Palm of Soul is, an expression of spirit joy, one that is rooted in the breakdown of time as a construct, and jazz as an independent form. In fact, if this trio proves anything on this date, it is that jazz is the music that carries within it -- or at least can and should -- all the musics of the world. Brilliant. (from AMG)
2006 PALM OF SOUL (AUM Fidelity) mediafire/rapidshare
many thanks to fusionero
dimanche 21 novembre 2010
Jean-Luc Guionnet: alto saxophone
Edward Perraud: drums, percussion
La rencontre du contrebassiste Eric Brochard, du batteur Edward Perraud et du saxophoniste – encore récemment entendu sur Propagations – Jean-Luc Guionnet, en deux actes : Lithe et Néolithe, qui se succèdent sur [on].
Là, aviser un paquet de gestes bruts, affirmant le parti pris d’une pratique radicale de l’improvisation : qui extirpe ses visions de l’instant à coups de notes qu’on arrache : grincements de contrebasse et plaintes longues d’alto, progressions incommodes de guitare et confections de drones inquiets bien qu’en voie de développement.
Et puis, Guionnet glisse et dérive, impose à son instrument un parcours circulaire ; Brochard répète une note, relent décidé de corde lâche ; Perraud tourmente ses cymbales déjà convulsives. Lithe et Néolithe, qui se succèdent sur [on], et qui l’imposent avec adresse. (from lesondugrisli)
Ceux pour qui « l’impro libre, c’est tout le temps la même chose » feraient bien d’écouter l’une après l’autre les deux plages : « Lithe » et « Néolithe ». Il faudra qu’ils trouvent autre chose à dire, ensuite. (from CitizenJazz)
Magnus Broo: trumpet
Mats Äleklint: trombone
Mattias Ståhl: vibraphone
Johan Berthling: double bass
Kjell Nordeson: drums
Magic from Sweden, published in Portugal. This Swedish band consists of Johan Berthling on double bass, Kjell Nordeson on drums, Magnus Broo on trumpet, Martin Kuchen on alto sax, Mats Aleklint on trombone and Mattias Stahl on vibraphone. The band brings a strong anti-war album here, and an ode to women in war-time, the "trees" that hold the families together. The music has this unbelievable combination of energy, melodic beauty and emotional sensitivity. Some of the tracks are wonderful, and possibly among the best I've heard this year. The opening track starts with arco bass, followed by dramatic and sad alto sax, with the vibes offering the right supportive touches, then the rhythm instruments move into a unison theme, opening the floor for the rest of the band to join in the sad melody. The bass also has a long intro for the second track, now on pizzi, for another wailing and tearful theme by the rest of the band. The title track is brilliant, with a strong and sweeping melody, very moving and heartfelt, offering lots of possibilities for expansion, and played in a wonderful African call-and-response mode, including percussive polyrhythmics and a staggering trumpet solo by Broo. And the next piece is great too, starting with a gut-wrenching sax solo by Küchen over a slow and bluesy rhythm, which offers the right background for the ensuing vibe and trombone solos. Those who know Küchen and Nordeson from their work with Exploding Customer will find similarities in the music, albeit less joyful here of course, and richer because of the additional instruments. The music is rhythmic, melodic, with a clear structural approach of theme, improvisations and back to theme, although a little more sophisticated than I describe it. But compositional power is one thing, the major achievement is in the performance itself, which is warm, sad and wonderful. A great album. (from FreeJazz)
2008 EVERY WOMAN IS A TREE (Clean Feed) rapidshare/mediafire
samedi 20 novembre 2010
Jean-Luc Guionnet: alto & soprano saxophones
François Fuchs: bass
Edward Perraud: percussion
Far from being a subversive play on words verging on paradox, Return of the New Thing is a reminder that tough, uncompromising music was not invented yesterday, but has a history spanning over 40 years.
One should appreciate the honesty and sense of humour shown by those behind the name - Fuchs, Guionnet, Perraud and (its author) Warburton - who, in this somewhat subversive manner, pay homage to tradition. On the other hand, there arise a number of doubts : can music burdened with so much tradition, as played by ROTNT, be fresh and honest ? Have the ideas of Ornette Coleman, Cecil Taylor, Albert Ayler and many others not become outdated or passé ? Does it make sense to refer to them ?
Upon listening to Crescendo these doubts are gradually dispelled. The quartet plays music that can still be appreciated. Music that can simultaneously irritate and fascinate, exhaust and thrill, amaze but also confuse ; music that affects both intellect and emotions. Particularly noteworthy is the freedom and precision - seemingly opposing qualities - with which the members of ROTNT develop their parts. One may feel surprise that free jazz (with which the term "new thing" was synonymous) can be so disciplined and exceptionally lucid, so precisely executed. Both as soloists and accompanists the musicians maintain an exceptionally tight grip on the clarity of their expression, and in the process of saturating it with detail they fully control the dynamics and timbre of their sound, whilst never forgetting the form and structure of the recording as a whole. The album contains only two fairly lengthy tracks, which can presumably be regarded a the product of so called "structured improvisation" - i.e. free expression based on certain elements agreed in advance. If I am mistaken in this - I am not familiar with the background of the recording - and the material is improvised in its entirety, the musicians deserve even greater praise.
In the quartet’s performance one can hear not only that its members are familiar with the history of jazz, but also that they are capable of transforming and personalising this history. It is presumably significant that Crescendo is jazz played by musicians who do not play jazz on a day-to-day basis (Jean-Louis Guionnet divides his time between electro-acoustic, improvised and organ music, François Fuchs customarily concerns himself with improvisation, while Dan Warburton and Edward Perraud possess a "serious" musical education and have quite thoroughly explored the world of non-conventional sounds, touching on rock, classical and various types of improvised music). Hence, their language becomes a product of the "free” idiom, traceable directly to the classics (e.g. Coleman, Shepp, Ayler and Mengelberg), as well as personal experiences connected with other areas of musical practice. Obviously, in line with its name, the music of ROTNT is dominated by the former, but tasty interjections lend it a certain amount of peculiar charm. (from DIAPAZON)
Tadeusz Kosiek (Translated by Rafał Eile)
jeudi 18 novembre 2010
Jean-Luc Guionnet: alto & soprano saxophones
François Fuchs: bass
Edward Perraud: percussion
This quartet mines some open spaces with commitment but the results aren't really all that involving. This is due in no small part to the fact that their focus seems to ebb and flow. This results in music that's at some moments diffuse, and at others full of the kind of all-out intensity that's mostly rhetoric and little substance.
The three track titles refer only to the duration of each piece in minutes and seconds. That nominal approach applies to the music itself. "29.09" has entered a passage of squall by the time the sixth minute is reached and the result sounds like four musicians in search of an idea. Drummer Edward Perraud injects some levity into proceedings when he's not approaching his drums as though they deserved assault and battery, but his band mates seem intent on whipping up some kind of ecstatic storm the like of which is hit and miss in terms of impact. By the time the eleventh minute has rolled around that mood has dissolved and it's in such quieter passages that the music comes to life. Jean-Luc Guionnet stutters into his alto sax and the group imperative is clearly something other than sound for its own sake.
More or less the same aesthetic apply to "24.41," the opening of which finds the group looking into subtle, shaded dynamics. The result is compelling music with the very lack of volume contributing considerably to that end. By the eleventh minute however whatever mood they've managed to established has been slowly usurped by the evidently collective desire to thrash, although Francois Fuchs's bass holds to a darker, less nihilistic dynamic in its midst. The music seems to be on the verge of implosion at this point and it's to the group's credit that they hold the thing together.
2008 ALCHEMY (Not Two Records)
Jean-Luc Guionnet: alto saxophone
François Fuchs: bass
Edward Perraud: drums
The "New Thing" refers, of course, to the avant-garde jazz scene of the early '60s, when free jazz was, in fact, a "new thing." The fact that at the end of the 20th century the style epitomized by the "New Thing" continues to flourish is a testimony to the rich and deep resources of the music and the individual musicians. The manifestation of the "New Thing" (or its "Return") found on this recording is produced entirely by a French-based quartet whose individual members, though clearly accomplished, are largely unknown in the world of new music (at least on this side of the Atlantic). No matter. What they have produced is a highly creative document of some very exciting, even thrilling, improvisations that combine sophisticated compositional skills with excellent free jazz that weaves in and out of rivers and hills. The conventional instrumentation of alto sax, piano, bass, and percussion is misleading, as the members of the quartet create a unique collective sound. While they are capable of energizing fury, they are also adept at producing challenging collages of soft sounds. (from AMG)
1999 RETURN OF THE NEW THING (LEO RECORDS)
mercredi 17 novembre 2010
Rob Mazurek: cornet
Jeff Parker: guitar
Chad Taylor: drums
Jason Ajemian: bass
Sure, these musicians did know each other, and they had played together, but not in this line-up, and not with this music. So they meet, they play for an hour, and the result is this incredible fourty-five minutes of freely improvised pieces of fantastic music.
The "Daydream Full Lifestyles" are Jason Ajemian on bass, Tony Malaby on tenor saxophone, Rob Mazurek on cornet, Jeff Parker on guitar, and Chad Taylor on drums. You can also consider it a somewhat altered version of the Chicago Underground Duo/Trio/Quartet, with Malaby on sax.
The music is lyrical, open-ended, unhurried and deeply sensitive. The instruments weave wonderfully floating textures of sound, with a strong inherent beauty.The big difference with the later incarnations of the Chicago Underground bands is the lack of electronic/electric experimentalism: the music here is entirely acoustic, and there are indeed moments that are pretty extreme, yet the totality of the sound is rather eclectic, integrating all that is great in the American jazz tradition: there is some blues, some bop, free jazz and more avant forms. This forms are mostly integrated into the totality of the concept, but to the band's credit, the different tracks also have a different feel and character, showing the various aspects of the same approach.
The only concept the band had was to respect each other's breathing pace : "Instead of music composed to a time signature or external clock, this is timed to each performer's internal clock. Everyone plays along to their own breath patterns. It's a chance operation. You compose music so it can fit into any overlapping of people’s breath patterns."
The result is a staggering performance by five stellar musicians. Free jazz at its best : expressive, innovative, joint creativity, instant composing, and first and foremost a great listening experience.
Don't miss it. (from FreeJazz)
2010 PROTEST HEAVEN (rapidshare/mediafire)
mardi 16 novembre 2010
Daniel Levin: cello
Satoshi Takeishi: percussion
Rob Brown is one of those New York sax players who have always been able to combine free jazz blowing fests with melody, rhythm and emotion, but on this album he seems to have reached a state of mental peace and relaxation that is absent on his other albums. He is accompanied by Daniel Levin on cello and Satoshi Takeishi on percussion. His other recent albums are also worth looking for (Radiant Pools and The Big Picture), as are his collaborations with William Parker and Matthew Shipp. Admittedly, his alto does still howl and screech and wail at times, but then above a rhythmic and harmonic basis, with more often than not a recognizable melodic structure. The choice of the cello is a good one, because the instrument can play a more prominent second voice than a bass ever could, both arco and pizzicato, and on top of that Takeishi is a percussionist who manages to give depth to the music by giving the right accents rather than feeling forced to give an explicit rhythmic foundation. The opening track, "Sounds, Part 1, Archeology" immediately offers the musical vision of this band : a subdued unisono melody on a slow tempo, as an introduction to a tearing and heart-rending solo by Brown, followed by some open and equally soft improvizing by the whole band, just to end in joined harmony. This music is characterized by spaciousness and openness. The second piece "Sounds, Part 2, Antics" offers a more abstract feel, with a Mysterioso-like tonal build-up. The third piece starts with a slow cello introduction and Brown's following long solo fits like magic on this. "Stutter Step" is more in the free-bop idiom that we know from his previous albums such as "The Big Picture". "Tibetan Folk Song" starts with a long cello-percussion intro, and Brown again brings a more than credible improvization on this traditional source material. The CD ends in peaceful beauty. Who could have expected that much internal peace and musical quietness from a player like Brown? But the approach appears to be the right one, offering a strong musical unity without loosing any of the free creativity. (from FreeJazz)
2007 SOUNDS (rapidshare/mediafire)
jeudi 4 novembre 2010
Kent Kessler: doublebass
Paal Nilssen-Love: drums
It is not entirely clear to me what the title of "The Abstract Truth" refers to: a philosophical discussion on the nature of our thinking and knowledge of reality or a reference to Oliver Nelson's classic "The Blues And The Abstract Truth", with an implicit message that there is no blues to be found here? Why leave the blues away otherwise?
To be frank, I wouldn't know. What I do know is that the music is good, and soulful, bluesy even. And it is dedicated to Italian painter Giorgio De Chirico, a surrealist who is known for his deep perspectives, the use of classical mythological iconography, and static cityscapes. But again, the link to the music itself is not always apparent.
The trio consists of Rodrigo Amado on tenor and baritone, Kent Kessler on bass, Paal Nilssen-Love on drums, and after "Teatro", it is the second album of the trio. All eight tracks are freely improvised pieces, yet with a focused logic of their own. Amado is a great saxophonist, not necessarily in the traditional technical sense, but certainly in the musical sense: he can make his instrument sing, speak, tell a story, full of passion and emotion, yet equally full of surprise. The music holds the middle between expansiveness and intimacy, a rare quality and one that is also to be found in Amado's photography : a nice sense of contrast, clarity in the execution, broad themes, yet looked at from a very finite and unique human perspective. And a warm human perspective. Kessler and Nilssen-Love are excellent partners for his music, as usual rich in ideas, and also sensitive in the playing, only listen to the first track "Intro/The Red Tower" : a little capsule of their musical universe, with the arco bass building the tension, abstract sax phrases arise, the drums subtly creating a thundering backdrop and the sax gently and warm-toned introducing the tempo, with the drums picking up the rhythm and the bass switching to a boppish vamp, then the tempo changes again, slowing down, becoming bluesy. A little less than five minutes, but quite wealthy. And well, so is the rest of the album. Very much in the same style as their first album, yet slightly better on this album. Because the pieces are more compact: intimate expansiveness, grand in its finite limitations, universal in its all-too human reality. The blues and the abstract truth, dig? (from Free Jazz)
2009 THE ABSTRACT TRUTH (rapidshare/mediafire)