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Super happy to have dug this out of the archives - the final night of the great French double bass player, improviser and composer, Joëlle Léandre's 2015 residency. Léandre was joined by Scottish improvising vocalist and dancer, Maggie Nicols, and drummer Roger Turner for both nights, and the second of the two saw sparks fly. Solo, Léandre is formidible - melodious, angry, rousing. Her voice breaks through the bass like McPhee's through a trumpet - there's joy, there's humour, and it's 100% intense. Léandre and Nicols have a long history together - 1982's Live at The Bastille with Lyndsey Cooper still stands strong - and their trio with Irène Schweizer as 'Les Diaboliques' is totally unique. Here, both performers are totally at home with with each other and with their sounds - there's depth, unpredictability, intensity and delirious humour. A treasure to share all five pieces, and we hope for another Léandre residency some day soon!  “A true, real artist. Stubborn. Visionary. Uncompromising. Intense. Tender and poetic at moments, raw and angry with the world at other times. She is unconcerned by style, and definitely stays far away from stylistic and formal mannerisms that are needed to placcate the reviewers and the hip audiences. She integrates music as music, and delivers it as music, using elements from tribal rituals over classical finesse to jazz expressionism and avant-garde search for new approaches, yet turning it all into something else, something more authentic, more innovative and - interestingly enough - also more universal.” – The Free Jazz Collective --- Joëlle Léandre / double bass, vocals  Maggie Nichols / vocals Roger Turner / percussion --- Recorded live at Cafe OTO on Wednesday 18th March, 2015 by Mark Jasper. Mixed and mastered by James Dunn. Photo by the wonderful Dawid Laskowski. 

Leandre / Nicols / Turner - 18.3.15

Slow, quiet and relaxed - Eva-Maria Houben’s first appearance at OTO touched all that heard it. Part of the Wandelweiser collective, Houben creates vast, incorporeal forms from almost nothing - music that lingers long after the last note has dissipated. Includes the premiere of Tiefe – Depth for Piano - a flawless study in decay and resonance. --- Eva-Maria Houben / piano --- Recorded live at Cafe OTO by Shaun Crook on Tuesday 30th August, 2016. Mixed by Abby Thomas. Mastered by James Dunn.  --- Transcipt from the evening:  “I’m very glad to be here. I had some very nice days here in London before this night, and I am very glad this night to be here. We spoke about the programme for this night and we decided upon 3 sections, and if you allow I would like to say some words. On the whole, I will play two first performances, and then I will play a few other pieces, and the first section will be a piece form 2014, Loosely Connected. It is not the first performance, it had already been performed in August in Germany, and it was a full experience for me. And then I will play the piece Depth - it’s short, and this will be the first performance. So, both pieces together will come I think, to twenty minutes. Two ten minute pieces. And then we have the first break, and you could take something, and then follows Sonata Number 10 that will have a duration of twenty four minutes, and then, at last, I will finish with Dandelion, a new piece, a first performance, and then The Hanging Garden or The Suspended Garden. Yes. And now, Loosely Connected and Depth. Thank you very much.” — "And now, the second set and it will be Sonata for Piano Number 10. This Sonata has a subtitle - it’s called in French, erm, Le Croche de Soils - Dreambirds. I have dreamt this piece and there were different sounds of birds from different countries and different towers and I listened before to a piece by Enescu, a Roman composer, and it was very impressive. And he imitated real birds by the piano, by sounds and keys which seemed to be wrong but they sounded like birds because there are birds which have disharmony partials - or harmonic partials but disharmonic partials too - and this was very fascinating for me and I tried to be on the traces of different composers. This sonata has 5 movements, and the first movement is dedicated to Mussorgsky, the second movement to Enescu, the third movement to Schumann, the fourth movement to Liszt, and the last and fifth movement to Olivier Messiaen. It is not their sounds but traces, smells, of those composers. Not more. You will listen to 5 movements and the whole sonata will have a duration of 24 up to 25 minutes. Then we will have the second break. Thank you." — "So or the last set we have at first, Dandelion. Dandelion could be a very long piece - it is a collection with many pieces of paper and every sheet is a world on its own, and I will play 3 pages, not more. But I could play many pages and could have played only Dandelion this evening, it’s a collection with many pages, but I play 3. It is a study on partials of the piano. And then follows Les Jardins Suspendus - The Hanging Gardens, yes, and this piece closes the night. And both pieces together I think will last I think 15 minutes. The first perhaps 8 minutes, and then 7 minutes." — "Thank you very much for your kind welcome. And I could play the famous Drei Choräles, they are very short. They have repetitions and I would think I will take about 4 or 5 minutes. Yes." —

Eva-Maria Houben - 30.8.16

Collection of live performances by free flux improv icons The People Band. Recorded at OTO between 2008 and 2014 and bookended with solos by the late Mel Davis, the clan create a hubbub of frenetic free jazz and chaotic, polyrhythmic thrusts.  The origins of the people band can be traced back to 1965 and the core members of the band had all arrived by 1969 / 70. Although all the musicians involved are playing within other genres - the love and power of this collective has inspired all to maintain and develop the work for over 50 years.  This album is dedicated to the memory of the founder member, pianist, teacher and continued inspiration - Mel Davis - who left us in 2013. Two solo tracks open and close this album by way of our deep respect.  --- Mel Davis / piano, thrumb piano, perc.  Terry Day / percussion, reed pipes etc.  Mike Figgis / pocket trumpet, guitar George Khan / saxes, flute Davey Payne / saxes Paul Jolly / saxes, bass clarinet Charlie Hart / bass, violin Tony Edwards / percussion Adam Hart / piano, trombone  and featuring: Tony Marsh  Maggie Nichols Ed Deane Terry Holman  Ben Higham Dave Chambers Brian Godding and with thanks to: Jim Dvorak Dave Fowler Oly Blanchflower --- Recorded by Arlen Figgis. Mastered by Nick Pugh at Session Corner. New artwork sourced from a Fabio Lugaro photograph. Previous artwork by Gina Southgate (original CD release). Produced by 33 Jazz / Paul Jolly. Thanks to Tim Powell and to the audiences that keep this remarkable band alive, and thanks to 33 Jazz who originally released the recordings as a CD. You can find the CD here.  

The People Band - Live at Cafe OTO

A delight to release the live set from experimental songwriters, Still House Plants. Obscured melodies and minimal song structures are suffused with light, off-kilter rhythms and chords, lolloping cymbals and lilting vocals. The trio are so relaxed with each other you might be drinking tinnies with them in their front room. Romantic without tripping into mushy. God bless Glasgow, thank you GLARC and please come back again soon. --- Finlay Clark / guitar David Kennedy / drums Jessica Hickie-Kallenbach / vocals --- Recorded on Monday 7th November by Shaun Crook. Mixed & mastered by James Dunn.  ─────────────────────────▄▀▄ ─────────────────────────█─█ ─────────────────────────█─█ ─────────────────────────█─█ ─────────────────────────█─█ ─────────────────────────█─█ ─────────────────────────█─▀█▀█▄ ─────────────────────────█──█──█ ─────────────────────────█▄▄█──▀█ ────────────────────────▄█──▄█▄─▀█ ────────────────────────█─▄█─█─█─█ ────────────────────────█──█─█─█─█ ────────────────────────█──█─█─█─█ ────▄█▄──▄█▄────────────█──▀▀█─█─█ ──▄█████████────────────▀█───█─█▄▀ ─▄███████████────────────██──▀▀─█ ▄█████████████────────────█─────█ ██████████───▀▀█▄─────────▀█────█ ████████───▀▀▀──█──────────█────█ ██████───────██─▀█─────────█────█ ████──▄──────────▀█────────█────█ ███──█──────▀▀█───▀█───────█────█ ███─▀─██──────█────▀█──────█────█ ███─────────────────▀█─────█────█ ███──────────────────█─────█────█ ███─────────────▄▀───█─────█────█ ████─────────▄▄██────█▄────█────█ ████────────██████────█────█────█ █████────█──███████▀──█───▄█▄▄▄▄█ ██▀▀██────▀─██▄──▄█───█───█─────█ ██▄──────────██████───█───█─────█ ─██▄────────────▄▄────█───█─────█ ─███████─────────────▄█───█─────█ ──██████─────────────█───█▀─────█ ──▄███████▄─────────▄█──█▀──────█ ─▄█─────▄▀▀▀█───────█───█───────█ ▄█────────█──█────▄███▀▀▀▀──────█ █──▄▀▀────────█──▄▀──█──────────█ █────█─────────█─────█──────────█ █────────▀█────█─────█─────────██ █───────────────█──▄█▀─────────█ █──────────██───█▀▀▀───────────█ █───────────────█──────────────█ █▄─────────────██──────────────█ ─█▄────────────█───────────────█ ──██▄────────▄███▀▀▀▀▀▄────────█ ─█▀─▀█▄────────▀█──────▀▄──────█ ─█────▀▀▀▀▄─────█────────▀─────█ ─█─────────▀▄──▀───────────────

Still House Plants 19.7.16

Verbatum notes for the concert as written by John Tilbury: John Tilbury - solo piano. ( Pavana. The Earle of Salisbury - William Byrde (1543-1623) . Fantazia of foure parts - Orlando Gibbons (1583-1625) followed by Coptic play-along Improvisation based on/accompanied by Morton Feldman's Coptic Light (1985) A Wordless Encounter  "Last Friday my wife and I were on our way home by train from a wedding in Norwich. It was around 8pm. I had left my seat and had made my way to the exit doors. A young man was standing by the door. He must have been in his thirties. He was shortish, bulky, with a shaven head, and was wearing shorts and flip-flops. He was of fair complexion. My wife remarked later that he looked foreign, Nordic. He might have been a Baltic weight-lifter. I was facing the doors, he was standing between the two sets of doors. All of a sudden, I felt a presence at my right shoulder. It was a head whose teeth were biting through my suit and tee-shirt. I could feel the teeth though my assailant had not managed to penetrate the bare skin. Within around, I suppose, ten seconds I was able to shake him off. We stood facing each other; he bared his teeth, rather like an animal. I raised my hands in a calming movement and mouthed the words: it's ok, calm down, or words to that effect. At that moment a few people, including my wife, had left their seats, preparing to alight. I do not know if they had witnessed any part of what happened. My wife, seeing my arms raised in apology, thought I may have stumbled against him. The biter then bared his teeth to her and she, thinking he was smiling at her, smiled back. He repeated this. Then, facing the door opposite the exit doors he began to gyrate, or dance. My wife urged me to 'go through' and we moved purposefully, though unhurriedly, into the next carriage. We alighted at Folkestone West station and made our way briskly down into the subway and up to the exit leading to the bus replacement service. The biter had disappeared. On the bus I reflected on my response to the 'attack'. Bizarrely, although I had 'acted' to free myself from his teeth, there was no 'response' to the the 'attack', except a feeling of sheer disbelief. As if what happened must have been a 'fiction'. Would there be a 'reaction'? A nightmare? No. Nothing. I have recounted the incident to a few friends. My wife suggested I should describe what happened in writing. N.B This incident is entirely unconnected with this evening's concert." --- Recorded live at Cafe OTO by Shaun Crook on 31st August, 2016. Mixed and mastered by James Dunn. Photo by Dawid Laskowski. With thanks to Seymour Wright. 

John Tilbury - 31.8.16