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"Atlantis is an exhilarating listen, equally thanks to its fierce free jazz and brightly textural abstraction" Antonio Poscic, The WIRE, Feb 2020
Following closely on the heels of his ravishing solo album Tomorrow is Too Late, Stockholm-based synthesist and improviser John Chantler switches gears to unleash the stunning second album by his trio with saxophonist Seymour Wright and drummer Steve Noble, Atlantis. Chantler is well-known for his solo electronic work, which frequently explodes richly layered ambient soundscapes into visceral explosions and thrilling physicality, to say nothing of his imaginative experimentation with the organ, heard in radically transformed mode on the recent solo recording. But Chantler is equally invested in real-time improvisation and he’s developed a dazzling rapport and sound world with Wright and Noble, two of England’s most distinctive, active, and turbulent figures in spontaneous music over the last couple of decades. The pair has worked together in numerous contexts over the years, but it took Chantler to create an ongoing context for them, and since forming in 2017 the trio’s rigour and level of communication have steadily expanded.“My fantasy idea in the beginning when I wanted to do this trio was thinking about taking Derek Bailey’s role in the Topography of the Lungs trio,” he says, referring to the classic 1970 album with Evan Parker and Han Bennink. “That’s not what happened, but that was my way of imagining how I could make the synthesizer have the kind of range and ability to both comment on stuff and guide and push in certain ways, like Derek did in that group. That remains a kind of ambition even if aesthetically it doesn’t feel very close to that, but that’s how I first thought about what my role would be.” Indeed, Chantler serves as a pesky interrogator, his serrated tones and viscous globules cutting through the kinetic din dished out by Wright and Noble, and on the new album his integration is more fully realised to the point where it’s often impossible to decipher where the output of one musician ends—the sibilant bowed cymbals of Noble or the feedback-laced lines of Wright—and the pushback of another begins.The album was cut and mixed in a single day with in-house engineer Janne Hansson at Stockholm’s legendary Atlantis Studio, a facility made famous by the chart-topping albums recorded there by Abba in the 1970s, when the place was known as Metronome. Prior to entering the studio the trio spent an exhausting, all-in week rehearsing at the arts space Fylkingen—where they also played a show—in addition to playing a handful of gigs in Norway. Locked in, they discovered much different acoustic qualities at Atlantis from what they’d previously encountered. “There’s a very specific sound at the studio, and we’d been playing for a week together at Fylkingen, so we started to develop a thing that really works in that room, and then you move somewhere else, and the drums in particular sounded really different, and in some ways they had a bit more of a rock ‘n’ roll kind of feeling.” explains Chantler. Responding to that radically different, reverb-soaked ambience, he and Wright took advantage of a pair of matching Fender tube amps, charging their individual signals to match the booming, resonant sprawl of Noble’s pinpoint clatter.Compared to the group’s debut album Front and Above—a live recording of the trio’s very first performance at London’s Café Oto—which Chantler edited to emphasise the sparser expanses of the raucous, performance, the new album reveals a more open-ended spectrum, from delicate to crushing. Noble’s beautifully metallic rustling and throbbing snare bombs hang pregnantly in the air, and Chantler and Wright thicken the atmosphere with twinned abstractions, alternately ethereal and punishing. The transitions between calm and chaos are sometimes seamless, sometimes abrupt, but the full landscape transports the listener to another realm regardless of how ferocious or gentle the attack may be. As strong as the trio’s first album was, Atlantis marks a massive step forward. “The more you play together the more it starts to cohere into some kind of specific language,” says Chantler. “You start to understand the point of what a particular constellation might be.” With Atlantis there’s little doubt these three improvisers know exactly what the point of it all is, which thrillingly means that many new paths in the future have opened up.
John Chantler / synthesiser
Steve Noble / drums
Seymour Wright / alto saxophone
RECORDED AND MIXED AT ATLANTIS GRAMMOFON AB, STOCKHOLM 24 JANUARY 2018ENGINEER: JANNE HANSSONMASTERING: STEPHAN MATHIEUPAINTINGS: LESTER WRIGHT
RECORDING SESSION MADE POSSIBLE WITH SUPPORT FROM THE AUSTRALIA COUNCIL FOR THE ARTS
John Chantler / Steve Noble / Seymour Wright – ATLANTIS
Recorded live by Takeo Suetomi at Café Amores, Hofu, April 29, 1996.The CD version includes a bonus track (“Two Chaps 1“).
New, unsealed, includes Obi
Evan Parker & Motoharu Yoshizawa – Two Chaps
Remastered CD edition of Une éclipse totale de soleil, Ghédalia Tazartès' third LP, originally released in 1984. Far away from contemporary music intellectualisms and the works of synthetic noise purists, this album features a new form of musical expression and is certainly one of the most original and creative records of the '80s. The value of this work was at the time underestimated and only a few people had a chance to listen to this beautiful music. The record utilizes collage, Tazartès' unique vocals, trance-ethno backing splices, droning organ, and childish naiveté, in a spirit all its own. Originally conceived in two parts, Une éclipse totale de soleil is here supplemented with a 25-minute piece titled "Il regalo della befana" or "Une éclipse totale de soleil (Part III)," composed expressly for the original 1996 release of this CD edition. The original two parts are constructed from sung passages of Middle Eastern musics, drum machine noises, distorted signals, and the voices of small children. The newer third part takes some of the same sorts of cues but is more in keeping with turntablism or sampling culture, dipping into recordings recycled from pop culture. Tazartès' music compiles fragments from a wide variety of sources in a stunning, idiomatic fashion, still undiminished by the passage of time.
Vocals, Music, Recording, Mixing: Ghédalia TazartèsVoices: Alain Rigout, Bruna Filippi, Daniel Kenisberg, Rafaël Glucksmann, Yumi Nara
Released by: Alga Marghen
Ghedalia Tazartes – Une eclipse totale de soleil
2002 release. Alga Marghen proudly presents the first record ever produced by Ben Patterson: "This is not only my first CD, but also the first recordings of these works available to the general public." Starting as a virtuoso double-bass performer of classical music, Ben Patterson was one of the very first founders of the Fluxus Group in Wiesban. This digipak CD will introduce you to some American neo-avant garde music classics, a crossover between John Cage's exploding influences and the experimental art atmosphere of the early 1960s in Europe. The compact disc program includes two essential 1961 documents: "Duo for Voice and a String Instrument" and "Variations for Double-Bass," both recorded in concert at the Galerie Parnass in 1962; this event has special historic significance in that it included the first public presentation by George Maciunas of his Fluxus manifesto and plans for the Wiesbaden Fluxus Festival.
"Duo" was Patterson's most ambitious and lost attempt to combine graphic notation and chance operations for the realization of a performance score, while "Variations" represents the moment when, unexpectedly, out of some unknown place, something new entered the process -- humor! The other three tracks were recorded in Milano especially for this release; a collaboration with Philip Corner, Walter Marchetti, Davide Mosconi, and a few more friends. These newly-recorded pieces include "A Simple Opera" (1995), a repetitive homage to Emmett Williams on his 70th birthday; "Paper Piece" (1960), the work that cut the umbilical cord to all of the author's previous classical and contemporary musical training and experience, and "Pond" (1961), a piece that reminds of Richard Maxfield's electronic music with voice collage.
The edition includes a fold-out 16-page insert with original scores and photos.
Released by Alga Marghen
Ben Patterson – Early Works
2001 release. The compact disc by Anton Bruhin issued by Alga Marghen is titled r o t o m o t o r and covers two different areas of the artist's research. The first one is represented by a group of works including the short and mysterious environmental recording "ORAX" as well as "Lange Tone," "VERSUCHPILZ 6," and "Paul Is 35," three excerpts from the epic "MC-10 zyklus" created between 1976 and 1977, recording various layers of sound sources on two cassette recorders with loudspeakers. T
he complete zyklus consists of 12 different episodes (each one 10 minutes long) which investigate the multi-layer ping-pong recording technique; the spatial illusion of the monoaural replay which moves away from the listener's ears into the depth of space. Far away sounds coming from a cosmic dimension or from an abyssal space, moving fore and back. The loss of sound quality considered as stoned space improvement. The title-track is a 28 minute-long reading of one of Bruhin's major works. Rotomotor is a poetic Idiotikon of the Swiss-German dialect where, instead of the straight alphabetical order, the words are organized according to the similarities of their letters (each word differs from the previous one by just one letter). For this reading, a delay is repeated in the signal after 0.6 seconds and each word is superimposed into the echo of the preceding one. On one hand this echo generates the rhythm of the performance, on the other it supports the acoustic metamorphosis of the words.
Again, a very simple concept perfectly accomplished. What results from the whole program is maybe difficult to describe, and maybe more easily perceivable in a state of alternate consciousness. But surely, it is a quite unique sense of acoustic approach; so no surprise to see him mentioned in the mythical Nurse With Wound reference list.
Anton Bruhin – Rotomotor
This recording gathers all of the music from the final night of Otomo and Sachiko's first residency in 2009 which saw the pair joined by the long running trio of Evan Parker, John Edwards and Tony Marsh and special guest John Butcher. Butcher played duos with both Otomo and Sachiko and joined the quintet for a rousing sextet: stunning twin saxophone interplay, the unparalleled open-ness of the Marsh/Edwards rhythm pairing, Sachiko's deft high frequency interventions and Otomo's guitar at the centre - moving between abrasive textural invention and suggestive single note runs of ever-shifting melody.
"As for indicating a place in the curiously sculpted bridges between improvised music and sound art, well, the simple singularity of these daring and committed performances should bear out their significance." Clifford Allen, Tiny Mix Tapes
"This Quintet/Sextet album is recorded beautifully and it needed to be to capture all the nuance involved ... These are musicians at the top of their craft." Free Jazz Blog
"...fresh and inspired. The recording stands as a finely-honed classic of classically approached free improvisation: the players dance and flow smoothly and effortlessly with and around the sounds of their partners." - Henry Kuntz
Point of Departure Review
Otomo Yoshihide / Sachiko M / Evan Parker / Tony Marsh / John Edwards / John Butcher – Quintet / Sextet / Duos
For the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the legendary Machine Gun recordings at the Lila Eule in Bremen, Peter Brötzmann put together a trio with the Berlin pianist, composer Alexander von Schlippenbach and the percussionist Han Bennink, who already sat on the drums 50 years ago. They were so pleased with the music that they decided to release it and continue to play gigs as the trio. Machine Gun was originally recorded in May 1968 by an octet consisting of influential musicians of new jazz and improvised music. The LP was repressed on Cien Fuegos in 2018 (CF 020LP).
Peter Brötzmann / tenor saxophone, b-flat clarinet, tarogato
Alexander von Schlippenbach / piano
Han Bennink / drums
BROTZMANN / SCHLIPPENBACH / BENNINK – Fifty Years After... Live at the Lila Eule 2018
VINYL IS DELAYED TIL NOVEMBER. CDS READY TO SHIP.
In the late 1960s, the American trumpet player and free jazz pioneer Don Cherry (1936–1995) and the Swedish visual artist and designer Moki Cherry (1943–2009) began a collaboration that imagined an alternative space for creative music, most succinctly expressed in Moki’s aphorism “the stage is home and home is a stage.” By 1972, they had given name to a concept that united Don’s music, Moki’s art, and their family life in rural Tagårp, Sweden into one holistic entity: Organic Music Theatre. Captured here is the historic first Organic Music Theatre performance from the 1972 Festival de jazz de Chateauvallon in the South of France, mastered from tapes recorded during its original live broadcast on public TV. A life-affirming, multicultural patchwork of borrowed tunes suffused with the hallowed aura of Don’s extensive global travels, the performance documents the moment he publicly jettisoned his identity as a jazz musician, and represents the start of his communal “mystical” period, later crystallized in recordings such as Organic Music Society, Relativity Suite, Brown Rice, and the soundtrack for Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain.
The musicians in Don Cherry’s New Researches, hailing from Brazil, Sweden, France, and the US, converged on Chateauvallon from all over Europe. The five-person band—Don and Moki Cherry, Christer Bothén, Gérard “Doudou” Gouirand, and Naná Vasconcelos— performed in an outdoor amphitheater and were joined onstage by a dozen adults and children, including Swedish friends who tagged along for the trip and Det Lilla Circus (The Little Circus), a Danish puppet troupe based in Christiania, Copenhagen. The platform was lined with Moki’s carpets and her handmade, brightly colored tapestries, depicting Indian scales and bearing the words Organic Music Theatre, dressed the stage. As the musicians played, members of Det Lilla, led by Annie Hedvard, danced, sang, and mounted an improvised puppet show on poles high up in the air.
The music in the Chateauvallon concert aspired to a universal language that would bring people together through song. In a fairly unprecedented move, Don abandoned his signature pocket trumpet for the piano and harmonium, thereby liberating his voice as an instrument for shamanic guidance. The show opens with him beckoning the audience to clap their hands and sing the Indian theta “Dha Dhin Na, Dha Tin Na,” and the set cycles through uplifting and sacred tunes of Malian, South African, Brazilian, and Native American provenance—including pieces that would later appear on Don’s albums Organic Music Society and Home Boy (Sister Out)—all punctuated by outbursts of possessed glossolalia from the puppeteers. “Relativity Suite, Part 1” notably spotlights Bothén on donso ngoni, a Malian hunter’s guitar, prior to Vasconcelos taking an extended solo on berimbau. A vortex of wah-like microtonal rattling, Vasconcelos’s masterful demonstration of this single-stringed Brazilian instrument is a harbinger of his work to come as a member, with Don, of the acclaimed group Codona. The sounds of children playing on the ensemble’s achingly tender rendition of Jim Pepper’s oft-covered beacon of spiritual optimism, “Witchi Tai To,” lends the proceedings an especially intimate, domestic glow. Given the context of the star-studded international jazz festival, the concert’s laid back, communal vibe feels like an attempt by the Cherrys to show Don’s jazz audience that he was moving on. At the same time, however, Don was extending a warmhearted invitation for them to come along for the ride.
With liner notes by Magnus Nygren.
Blank Forms, 2021
Don Cherry – Organic Music Theatre - Festival de jazz de Chateauvallon 1972
DO ANIMALS SPEAK TO EACH OTHER? WHAT DO THEIR SONGS MEAN? WILL WE EVER BE ABLE TO UNDERSTAND THEM AND TALK BACK?
Ever since the accidental discovery of whale song in 1967, the idea of complex animal sentience has been gaining strength within the scientific community. A growing number of researchers and academics are exploring the idea that animals enjoy music on a similar level to human beings.
Animal Music is the first anthology to present an overview of the current state of this vital debate. Its authors have spoken to the leading scientists, researchers and musicians in the field to uncover hidden meanings and new perspectives. They visit the world’s largest library of animal sounds, hack into the mysterious sonic world of shrimps, travel back in time to the point where animal and human songs diverged, and decode the latest neuroscientific findings about animal music and communication.
The book includes exclusive interviews with Chris Watson, Jana Winderen, Yannick Dauby, Slavek Kwi and Geoff Sample as well as features on Bernie Krause, David Rothenberg and Olivier Messiaen and many more.
Tobias Fischer & Lara Cory – Animal Music: Sound and Song in the Natural World (book/CD)
Comes in Blu-ray sized Gatefold Digipack with 16-page booklet featuring liner notes by Anthony Braxton and score excerpts.
Early in his career, Anthony Braxton established a foundational taxonomy of musical concepts and gestural categories for improvisers and performers to use in the interpretation of his music - what Braxton calls Language Music. You can hear his first rigorous exploration of many of these on his celebrated 1969 record For Alto. There are only twelve basic varieties to his Language Music: long sound, accented long sound, trills, staccato formings, intervallic formings, and so on. An association with a particular variety of one of the Language Musics is a defining aspect of any of his individual works.Braxton has also developed a series of compositional modalities: different ways of imagining and structuring how a musician, or musicians, may participate in a given piece. Since 1995, he has been primarily concerned with his Holistic Modeling Musics. Each is associated with one of the Language Musics: Ghost Trance Music (long sound), Falling River Music (accented long sounds), Diamond Curtain Wall Music (trills or ornamentation), Echo Echo Mirror House Music (multiphonics), and Pine Top Aerial Music (short attacks).Firehouse 12 Records is pleased to release the latest iteration of Braxton's musical system, called ZIM Music, which is derived from language number 11: gradient logics. Gradient logics pertain to aspects of music that continually change, faster and faster, slower and slower, brighter and brighter, darker and darker. 12 Comp (ZIM) 2017 documents 12 performances over the course of two years, showcasing the development of ZIM music as the compositions and ensemble adapted to new musical situations.The very first ZIM Music composition was in fact presented to the quartet with Nels Cline, Greg Saunier, and Taylor Ho Bynum documented on Quartet (New Haven) 2014. During that session it was used only sparingly, and later became the first of four ZIM compositions (398 - 401) to be recorded during a residency at the University of Alabama in the summer of 2015.While the first four ZIM compositions were short, linear, single-lined and mostly graphic, Composition No. 402 was scored for a quintet of reeds, brass, tuba, and two harps. Combining traditionally notated sections with sections of individual and tutti graphic notation, Composition No. 402 was premiered in Poland in November 2015, and appears on this Blu-ray as the opening track, recorded live at Wake Forest University in March 2017. At the Big Ears Festival in 2016, Braxton debuted Composition Nos. 403 & 404 which are primarily non-linear graphic compositions.After the Wake Forest performance of Composition No. 402, the recordings in this set move through Composition Nos. 408 through 420. Recorded in a variety of contexts, these compositions maintain the gradient logics of dynamic and timbre change, but infuse gradients into the notated material itself. He dubs this computer-aided notation "extraction notation": the musicians are given technically impossible music and are expected to "extract" a performance from the notation as part of their improvisational process. This resulting transformation, from notated to performed is in itself a gradient process.The stellar core ensemble of Taylor Ho Bynum, Dan Peck, Jacquline Kerrod, and Shelley Burgon is augmented and altered with roster of star emerging musicians, including Tomeka Reid, Adam Matlock, Jean Cook, Stephanie Richards, Ingrid Laubrock, Brandee Younger, and Miriam Overlach.12 COMP (ZIM) 2017 is available as a single disc Blu-ray, as well as high-resolution digital files through Firehouse 12 Records' Bandcamp page and the usual streaming and download outlets. "For a project of this scope, more than 11 hours or music, Blu-ray was the obvious release format for us. To make each performance available in the native high-sample rate and also to issue immersive surround mixes of the incredible soundscapes generated by this ensemble, there was really no other option" says Firehouse 12 Records co-founder and chief engineer Nick Lloyd. "We were lucky to be able not only to record a number of the pieces on this release at Firehouse 12, but also to make location recordings in North Carolina and Montreal of ZIM in its natural habitat - in front of a live audience!!"
Anthony Braxton – 12 Comp (ZIM) 2017
Takumi Akaishi’s music is like a delicate shadow box garden, a miniature sonic world unto itself. Following the release of his debut LP Music for Hurdy Gurdy (2012) and first cassette tape Naked Tape and Others (2013), Akaishi garnered critical acclaim for his fidelity to the hurdy gurdy mantle, filtered through a uniquely gentle, almost hazy touch. His tracks are interjected with ambient noise culled from the quotidian cityscape, complementing the characteristic “flatness” underpinning his oeuvre. Memoria represents the culmination of six years in incubation, the distillation of experience relived in the form of beautifully distorted memory.
Takumi Akaishi / hurdy gurdy, tube amp, tapes
Composed and performed by Takumi Akaishi. Memoria was recorded between 2006 and 2007, 2014, 2017 in Tokyo, Osaka, Yokohama, Hakodate, Lisbon.
Takumi Akaishi – Memoria
Closing out a trilogy of releases initially readied by the Harriman, NY powerhouse Spectrum (following the Jack Tamul & William Hoskins titles) is this fantastic set of noisy synthesizer adagios, composed in the late 70s by William Strickland on Moog Modular, Organ, and Four-Channel Tape. Offering a pair of conceptual, side-length suites, a series of exceedingly lo-fi miniatures meets us on the A-Side; "An Electronic Visit to the Zoo" seems to almost ignore its own premise - despite the red-herring titles; "Apes", "Lions", "Elephants", etc. - offering a fairly rough & hissy take of over-gained & time-domain blurred synthesizer gristle, all but buried in grime & extremely distant voltage-haze - about as far away from an "Animals Christmas" / "Le Zoo Electronique" type exploito-Library affair as is possible. On the flip, the "Sound Hypnosis" pieces work a mix of weird, processed drum machine & extremely resonant-filter strategies not all that far removed from the later Nicholas "Nik Pascal" Raicevic Narco sides; it's about as "Hypnotic" as it gets without resorting to cod-New-Age cloud-float. "Repetitions with Distortions", indeed. Of the three Spectrum's we've had the pleasure of reinvestigating, this is by far the most elusive, confusing, & singular; very glad to have this C.P. reproduction in the fray.
Creel Pone, 2007
William Strickland – An Electronic Visit To The Zoo, Sound Hypnosis
Since his 2006 debut under the L'Ocelle Mare moniker, Bonvalet has gradually moved away from traditional notions of composition and diverted his attention purely to the textural and timbral quality of sound. His tenure playing guitar in various bands - notably Cheval De Frise and Powerdove - provides the experience needed to isolate his instruments, zeroing-in on the gestures of performance - plucks, strums, vibrations - using them to assemble component parts that are essentially free by design.
Flute, piano, strings and various percussive instruments collide with all manner of effects and assorted sound objects like a telephone, metronome - even masking tape, each recorded and assembled through a no-method process that rejects traditional notions of composition. But while the assembly is for all intents and purposes dispassionate - just take a look at the track names - the resulting recordings are a marvel, gradually building into individual mood pieces that betray a buried instinct for harmony.
Take 'Guitare Classique, Métronome, Tambourins…’ as an example - Spanish guitar, pitch bent, a frenzied metronome, an arpeggio, something rattles - a non-linear, complex rendition, a miracle of sound that lands like the most inspirational film music you’ll have heard in years. Or on 'Piano, Banjo, Orgue, Métronome' - a more angular, interesting take on the sort of thing Alva Noto and Ryuichi Sakamoto have tried over a number of collaborative albums - a 3 minute recital punctuated by increasingly agitated piano notes, all moving key changes and brittle strings.
Through its curious construction, 'Sans Chemin’ (literally, ‘without path’) feels to highlight the way our instinctive interaction with harmony, beauty, and dissonance can quickly ignite or extinguish heightened feelings without easy explanation. Perhaps all the pieces here were really made without direction - an aimless meander through sound - or maybe there’s something significantly more intricate and complicated at play. Either way, the result is the same; a richly textured and evocative, often startling transition from chaos and into the sublime, mirroring our own complex existential topographies.
CREDITS Music : Thomas Bonvalet Recording : Manuel Duval and Pierre-Henri Thiébaut* Mastering : Manuel Duval Photography : Thomas Bonvalet Design : Bartolomé Sanson
--- Shelter Press, Murailles Music, 2021
l'ocelle mare – Sans Chemin
Recording of the stunning first set performed by the trio of Peter Brötzmann, Steve Noble and John Edwards at Cafe OTO in January 2010 during Brotzmann's first residency at the venue. This was also the first time the trio had played together.
Recorded at Cafe OTO by Shane Browne, mixed by John Edwards and Mastered by Andres [LUPO] Lupich at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin.
"On an east London side street, Café Oto hosts a programme of international experimental sounds to shame subsidised arts temples, drawing demographic-defying crowds of all ages through its doors. The first release on Oto's own label, available as an authentic vinyl slab or a slippery download, is a 40-minute splurge of sax, drums and bass skronk, live at the venue in 2010, from the German free-jazz giant Brötzmann and two stars of the London improv scene. Unrepeatable moments of collective inspiration and sudden sunlit shafts of modal near melody punctuate the continuing energy blur. Business as usual down Dalston Junction." Stewart Lee, The Sunday Times "Since it opened in Dalston in April 2008, Café OTO has become London's new music venue of choice for the likes of the Sun Ra Arkestra, Joe McPhee, Mats Gustafsson – and Peter Brötzmann, whose first residency at the club in January 2010 yielded this inaugural release on OtoRoku, Café OTO’s new in-house label. The night in question was the first time Brötzmann had played with bassist John Edwards and drummer Steve Noble, and the decision to team them up was inspired. With Alan Wilkinson, or in Decoy with Alex Hawkins and NEW with Alex Ward, Edwards and Noble have a deserved reputation as a thrilling high-energy rhythm section. And as Brötzmann is no slouch when it comes to high-energy playing, the combination is explosive. Right from the start of the set – the first that evening – it's obvious why this was selected to christen the label. All three players jump straight into top gear, with Brötzmann setting a cracking pace, his torrent of sound characterised by that hard-edged tone which makes him such compelling listening. ...the worse the better sets a high standard for subsequent releases to match. But, as every night at Café OTO is recorded and there's a wealth of fine music waiting in the wings, including quality recordings from Otomo Yoshihide and Wadada Leo Smith, OtoRoku looks like a label to watch." John Eyles, Paris Transatlantic
"These two extended improvisations, recorded in January 2010 during Brötzmann’s first residency at OTO, finds the group attaining near-telepathic modes of interconnectedness, despite this being the trio’s first outing together. From the off, Brötzmann’s gills are gurning, throwing up torrents of molten roar, while Noble’s mule-kicking at the traps reels out ride hits like a baby sporting a bonnet of bees." - Spencer Grady, BBC Music
"Does the world need another Brötzmann album? Probably not, but as the inaugural release on Cafe OTO's in-house high quality vinyl-only label, this one is cause for celebration. Recorded there - superbly well, too - during Brötzmann's residency in January 2012, this is no frills straight-up free jazz, solos and all, pitting the Firebreather of Wuppertal against the might local rhythm team (yes, they can and do swing hard) of John Edwards and Steve Noble. All three are on outstanding form, from the opening yelp - when it comes to Big Bang beginning, nobody does it better than Brötzmann - to Edwards's snarling drone 38 minutes later. Shame engineer Shane Browne slammed thos faders down so brutally: for once, you feel like joining in with the whoops and hollers of the punters." - Dan Warburton, The WIRE
BROETZMANN / EDWARDS / NOBLE – THE WORSE THE BETTER
Our tenth OTOROKU release sees a return to the group that kick-started the label - the veteran German reedsman and free jazz pioneer Peter Broetzmann with the long-running London bass/drums partnership of John Edwards and Steve Noble. After the release of '…The Worse The Better' that group went on to play a series of devastating shows in Europe and to emerge as one of Broetzmann's finest working groups. Over the same period Peter was developing a deep rapport with Jason Adasiewicz, the upstart vibraphone player from Chicago. What seems on paper like an awkward pairing reveals itself on stage and on record as a symbiotic revelation. Adasiewicz's physical attack matching Broetzmann for impact whilst the extended sustain of the vibes opens up an eerie space for some of Broetzmann's most fertile lyricism.
The recording is from the last set of a two-day residency at Cafe OTO that brought these two groups together for an astonishing quartet. Adasiewicz and Noble struck up an immense partnership in rhythm. Edwards wrestled with a broken house bass and failing amplifier and still managed new levels of invention - stoking the others onwards. Broetzmann was clearly energised - I swear I saw him dancing at the side of the stage whilst exchanging a shattered reed. And for all the usual rhetoric of Free Jazz bluster and machismo, this is a meeting characterised by the joy of communal creation that makes you want to dance - even if only in your head.
Broetzmann / Adasiewicz / Edwards / Noble – MENTAL SHAKE
Saltern presents Al Di Là, the first full-length collection of recordings by renowned dancer/choreographer, artist, and writer Simone Forti.
Forti (born 1935, Florence, Italy) has influenced generations of artists through her innovative approaches to dance and movement. Forti is noted for her extensive work with musicians, including Charlemagne Palestine, La Monte Young, Jon Gibson, Peter Van Riper, and Z'EV, among others. With Al Di Là, we hear Forti musically in her own right through a diverse collection of never-before-released pieces, ranging from the early '60s to mid-80s, that highlight Forti's use of her voice, folk songs, handmade instruments, and physical space. The album, compiled by Forti with the assistance of Tashi Wada, includes a rare guest appearance by La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela and features a 28-page color booklet of writings, drawings, and photos by Forti. Al Di Là is a uniquely personal and intimate portrait of one of the truly visionary artists of our time. Edition of 550. Printed at Stoughton Printing Company. Mastered by Stephan Mathieu.
Produced by Simone Forti and Tashi Wada Mastered by Stephan Mathieu Cover image by Simone Forti
Simone Forti – Al Di La
"A long desire of extraordinaire saxophone player Peter Brötzmann was a studio recording of some of his favorite jazz tunes and his own music -- a grand bridge over the music important for his life and his musical career in the past and present. Trost invited him to Martin Siewert's studio in Vienna to do so in summer 2018. The result is intense, beautiful and touching. Features compositions by Harry Barris/Gordon Clifford, Sigmund Romberg/Oscar Hammerstein II, Herbie Nichols, Dizzy Gillespie, George Gershwin/Ira Gershwin, and Sonny Rollins. Personnel: Peter Brötzmann - tenor saxophone. Recorded, mixed, and mastered by Martin Siewert. Liner notes and artwork by Peter Brötzmann."
Peter Brötzmann – I Surrender Dear
It's easy to be cynical these days, maybe difficult to imagine that music can change the world, but not for Joe McPhee and Hamid Drake. With Keep Going, they will make the planet a better place for humanity, a place to be humane, to preserve humankind. At 78-years-old, Poughkeepsie multi-instrumentalist McPhee is a national treasure, and he's making more music than ever before, pushing himself to tour incessantly, issuing astonishing new records at a fierce rate.
But this release, with legendary Chicago percussionist Drake, is something extremely special in the midst of many special records. The duo first recorded together in 1999, having only played together a limited number of times; the resulting music was issued as Emancipation Proclamation on the Okka Disk label. When the opportunity arose to hit the studio for a second time, McPhee and Drake had two more decades of extensive work together under their belts, as members of the Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet and in many other contexts. But the session somehow consolidated their shared energy in an unexpected way – the drummer's incredible warmth and sense of buoyancy, the saxophonist and trumpeter's preternatural musicality and quest for social justice. The recording started with McPhee reciting words by Harriett Tubman, resulting in the title track; Drake's support was an achingly slow Max Roach-like beat. From this inspired, inspiring starting point, the twosome frolicked through a rich program, McPhee donning tenor and alto saxes, and pocket trumpet, Drake turning momentarily to the frame drum. Each musician contributes an introspective solo track. McPhee at one point plays trumpet into an open gong, which gives him otherworldly overtones, a sort of acoustic version of electric Miles. Drake makes too few records, so anything of his is mandatory; McPhee's been on a roll lately, releasing lots of music, but Keep Going is one not to be missed.
Corbett vs Dempsey, 2021
Joe McPhee & Hamid Drake – Keep Going