Live recording of the debut London performance for the duo of Limpe Fuchs and Evan Parker - two giants of avant garde music. Having met at Fort Process Festival in 2016 and seen each other perform solo in a tiny underground bunker, the two then paired up for a couple of duo concerts - one at OTO, and one in Brighton for the Alternative Jazz Festival. Fuchs brings her unique menagerie of sounds to the space - variable wood and stone blocks (marble and serpentinite sourced from Sondrio in Upper Italy), ringing bronze pendulum strings and a variety of skin and bronze drums sound out alongside her own voice and a two toned harmonic violin. Fuch's huge set up, spread out across the stage area and unique to each performance, means the music to develops through movement - as each instrument is played, another is left in silence. Their duo evolves in phases, navigated by Fuch's movement around the room, and Parker's intuitive finding of endings, of pauses and of ways to engage with Fuch's personal rhythms is perfect. Surely the beginning of a regular duo? We hope so.
Limpe Fuchs / percussion, vocals, violin
Evan Parker / saxophone
1. Set 1 - 28:58
2. Set 2 - 20:13
3. Set 3 - 16:02
Recorded liveat Cafe OTO by James Dunn on Monday 28th May 2017. Mixed and mastered by James Dunn. Artwork by Oli Barrett - original photograph by Edith Stocker.
Available as 24bit FLAC or 320kbp MP3
"If you've ever been tempted by free improvisation, Parker is your gateway drug." - Stewart Lee
Evan Parker has been a consistently innovative presence in British free music since the 1960s. Parker played with John Stevens in the Spontaneous Music Ensemble, experimenting with new kinds of group improvisation and held a long-standing partnership with guitarist Derek Bailey. The two formed the Music Improvisation Company and later Incus Records. He also has tight associations with European free improvisations - playing on Peter Brötzmann's legendary 'Machine Gun' session (1968), with Alexander Von Schlippenbach and Paul Lovens (A trio that continues to this day), Globe Unity Orchestra, Chris McGregor's Brotherhood of Breath, and Barry Guy's London Jazz Composers Orchestra (LJCO).
Though he has worked extensively in both large and small ensembles, Parker is perhaps best known for his solo soprano saxophone music, a singular body of work that in recent years has centred around his continuing exploration of techniques such as circular breathing, split tonguing, overblowing, multiphonics and cross-pattern fingering. These are technical devices, yet Parker's use of them is, he says, less analytical than intuitive; he has likened performing his solo work to entering a kind of trance-state. The resulting music is certainly hypnotic, an uninterrupted flow of snaky, densely-textured sound that Parker has described as "the illusion of polyphony". Many listeners have indeed found it hard to credit that one man can create such intricate, complex music in real time.
Limpe Fuchs studied classical piano and violin in Munich and percussion with Hans Holzl, citing avant-garde composers such as Murray Schaefer and John Cage as her early musical influences. She prefers to call herself a percussionist in the tradition of sound-scape artists yet it is also clear that the visual aspect of her work has always been given the same attention as the acoustic. Over her forty-year career she has continued experimenting with “no formalism” improvisational sound and visual performance using handmade instruments and sound sculptures. Her engaging performances are meant to be carefully listened to, requiring attention from the audience as she moves freely in space evoking her natural sound-scapes while playing her viola woodhorn, pendulumstring, a four-meter- steel constructed lithophone, sheet metal, pieces of wood and singing in her unique ephemeral bird-like style.
Limpe Fuchs has been accredited as a seminal influence on the “Krautrock” scene of the late ‘60s and ‘70s and later became an inspiration for the experimental psychedelic underground of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s (HNAS, Nurse with Wound, etc.) and for generations after. Limpe started her career in the late sixties with Anima Musica along with her then partner, the sculptor Paul Fuchs, and in 1971 they recorded their first album called Stuermischer Himmel. The next release was an unofficial release of the three-day Ossiach Festival recorded live including performances by Weather Report and Tangerine Dream among others. It was here that they met with the organizer, the famed pianist Friedrich Gulda, who soon joined Limpe and Paul to create Anima. Subsequently the albums entitled Anima and Musik Fur Alle were both released in 1972. From 1969 till 1989 the duo continued performing, recording, touring (most notoriously on a tractor travelling at 30km/h which pulled the stage) often adding new members including their son, Zoro. She then started on her solo career and continues to perform live, also collaborating with many musicians and she has even ventured into theater performance. Most recent collaborators include flamingo Creatures, the organ player Matthias Ank, Christoph Reiserer, Julia Scholzel, Christoph Heemann, Timo van Luijk.