domingo, abril 25, 2010

Porque me siento rara vol.21 - Emeralds


 They played their first show in June 2006, but Emeralds’ musical trajectory belies their relative nascence. Less than two years since their debut performance, the Cleveland noise trio find themselves sitting atop a discography over more than 20 releases, with over 70 shows under their collective belt. The coming months will find John Elliott, Steve Hauschildt and Mark McGuire crossing two more noteworthy thresholds: that of releasing their first CDs and vinyl after a bevy of cassettes and CD-R's, and an entry in the Ecstatic Peace! catalog, which means the potential for more widespread distribution and press.


miércoles, abril 21, 2010

Rectum - memory surface: 1979 (2010)

Noise / Loop / Abstract / Drone


lunes, abril 19, 2010

Esto lo estoy tocando mañana #7 - Machine Gun (1968)

Machine Gun was initially pressed in an edition of 300 for the saxophonist's tiny BRO imprint with a hand-silkscreened cover. It was reissued in 1972 on the fledgling FMP label, and re-pressed on vinyl several times before a recent FMP CD issue added alternate takes of two of the pieces. This latest Atavistic version combines all extant session material (resequenced as per the original LP) and a stunning live recording of the title piece, previously available on Fuck De Boere (Atavistic, 1968/2001) and originally the International Holy Hill Jazz Meeting 1968 (CB Records, 1968). This live take predates the studio versions by about two months, and adds tenor man Gerd Dudek to the front line for a nonet performance. Also added is a cover image taken from a 1967 collage by Brötzmann; titled Schiesscheibe, it adds to the reedman's legacy as a visual artist, something which is less acknowledged than it should be (he trained as a painter and was among the European abstract vanguard of the 1960s, following in the heels of Arte Povera and COBRA).

"Machine Gun —beginning with sharp staccato blasts from tenor saxophones, drum kits and percussively-slapped basses—is meant to be played loud. The character created by the dense assault of the piece's first few moments yields to a surprisingly supple improvisation from Parker, a tenor voice carrying on the Coltrane/Rollins school and very reminiscent of Archie Shepp. He dives and swoops in and out of the distant chords of van Hove and loose canvas of basses and percussion, occasional exhortations from the front line driving him to an ever more frantic execution.

Far from the "Gymnopedies" that are his usual persuasion, van Hove prods with broken fragments, Niebergall and Kowald sawing and pummeling their instruments in a gestural display. Breuker and Bennink get into a frantic, walloping bass clarinet and percussion duo, clearly encapsulating their New Acoustic Swing Duo performances from the time. The leader is the last to solo, pushing his tenor completely into the red as the full weight of the rhythm-quintet is behind his screams and brays.

Breuker seems to be the one who heralds the infamous R&B breakdown that appears three minutes before the piece's end, part marching-band troop rally and part homage to the bar-walking legacy of Adolphe Sax. It's always been kind of a shame that they didn't carry this humorous grit towards its conclusion, for the staccato "theme is what ends up closing the tune out. Still, as massive as this music is, there's another side to the proceedings—or perhaps a left cheek at least.

Van Hove's "Responsible starts the second side of the disc, a dedication to the late drummer Jan van der Ven, who worked in groups with the pianist and Dutch altoist Kris Wanders, whose substance abuse carried him to an early demise. Initially a taut and nasty free improvisation for piano strings, tabla, bass thwack and baritone skronk (as both drummers go at it, Bennink's yells capture the exuberance of the moment), it's the kwela theme at the tune's end that makes "Responsible interesting.

The additional take has the leader on tenor contributing truly wasted single-note honking, a lung-busting blast reverberating from the concrete walls of the Lila Eule. Visits by the expatriate South African band the Blue Notes and an influx of Surinamese musicians to the nearby Amsterdam scene probably combined to give the Belgian pianist's composition this African flair, but it's a shame the framework wasn't carried out to a fuller extent.



domingo, abril 04, 2010

Esto lo estoy tocando mañana #6 - The Sun Is Coming Up (1970)

5. THE RIC COLBECK QUARTET – The Sun Is Coming Up (Fontana 6383 001)
Issued in the UK only in 1970. Ric was an interesting white cat who came to the U.S. to blow some free emotion with NYC loft dwellers. He’s most well known for his amazing playing on the great Noah Howard’s first ESP-Disk release (ESP 1031). The whole 1000 series of ESP is critical & crucial to anybody wanting to explore this era of Free Jazz featuring recordings by Ayler, Ornette, Sonny Simmons, Sun Ra, Henry Grimes, Steve Lacy, Sunny Murray, Marzette Watts, Patty Waters, et al. I’m not including any of these in this list as they’re all available on CD now (from Forced Exposure, address above). The picture of Ric on the Noah Howard LP shows a man with race-car shades and a “cool” haircut playing his horn while a ciggie burns nonchalantly from his relaxed grip. A very hip dude. And very FREE. His only solo recording is this Fontana LP which he recorded while cruising through Europe. He connected with South African drummer Selwyn Lissack (whatever happened to…) and the UK’s famous avant-altoist Mike Osborne and bassist J.F. ‘Jenny’ Clark (student of 20th century compositionists Lucian Berio and Karlheinz Stockhausen) to create this exceptional and complex masterpiece.