The Squid's Ear
Recently @ Squidco:

Brotzmann Peter / Fred Hopkins / Rashied Ali: Songlines [VINYL 2 LPs] (Trost Records)

Emphasizing the lyrical aspects of free jazz, the superb trio of Peter Brotzmann on alto & tenor sax and taragato, Fred Hopkins on bass, and Rashied Ali on drums, recorded this album in 1991, now remastered to bring this exceptional music back to the foreground. ... Click to View


LOK 03+1 (Schlippenbach / Takase / DJ Illvibe / Lovens): Signals [VINYL] (Trost Records)

Percussionist Paul Lovens joins the Lok 03 trio of Alexander von Schlippenbach (piano), Aki Takase (piano), and DJ Illvibe (turntables) for the follow-up to their 2005 debut, here in an extended album of playfully unexpected improv from four masterful players. ... Click to View


St. Francis Duo (Stephen O'Malley / Steve Noble): Peacemaker Assembly [VINYL] (Trost Records)

Guitarist Stephen O'Malley meets UK free improvising drummer Steve Noble in Philadelphia PA to record this mammoth duo of sound and drone guitar with active, deep drumming, for a mesmerizing album of intense sound and rhythm. ... Click to View


Nacka Forum (Kajfes / Kullhammar / Berthling / Osgood): We Are The World (Moserobie Music)

Nacka Forum, the Scandinavian quartet of Jonas Kullhammar on sax and other winds, Goran Kajfes on trumpet & cornet, Johan Berthling on double bass and Kresten Osgood on drums, in their 5th studio album of lyrical free jazz of massive technical and creative skill. ... Click to View


Nacka Forum (Kajfes / Kullhammar / Berthling / Osgood): We Are The World [VINYL] (Moserobie Music)

Nacka Forum, the Scandinavian quartet of Jonas Kullhammar on sax and other winds, Goran Kajfes on trumpet & cornet, Johan Berthling on double bass and Kresten Osgood on drums, in their 5th studio album of lyrical free jazz of massive technical and creative skill. ... Click to View


Martin Kuchen & Landaeus Trio: The Pity Of It All [VINYL] (Moserobie Music)

Pianist Mathias Landaeus's trio with Johnny Aman on bass and Chris Montgomery on drums are joined by saxophonist Martin Kuchen (Angles, &c) for a limited edition LP of superb jazz merging free and lyrical elements for a tremendous modern jazz album. ... Click to View


Jonas Kullhammar & The New Kids On The Rock: [VINYL] (Moserobie Music)

A demo album so good it had to be released: saxophonist Jonas Kullhamar (here on the Braithophone) leads a quartet with exceptional young Swedish jazz musicians Johan Graden (piano), Vilhelm Bromander (bass), and Konrad Agnas (drums); irresistible grooves with a great vibe! ... Click to View


Oren Ambarchi / Stefano Pilia / Massimo Pupillo: Aithein [VINYL] (KARLRECORDS)

Oren Ambarchi (guitar/drums), Stefano Pilia (guitar), and Massimo Pupill (bass) team up for an instrumental trip bridging post-rock, drone, and improvisation, a dark journey that draws the listener into increasingly muscular playing as the ferocity of the music builds. ... Click to View


GGRIL (Grand Groupe Regional d'Improvisation Liberee): Geste (Tour de Bras)

Eric Normand's Quebec based 12-piece GGRIL (Grand Groupe Regional d'Improvisation) in an album of 5 improvisations and a piece by percussionist Danielle P. Roger; creative, wonderfully creative music with eclectic instrumentation that's simultaneously challenging and fun. ... Click to View


Nigero: Lunras Negras [CASSETTE] (Small Scale Music)

Vocalist and guitarist Geraldine Celerier Eguiluz leads this Montreal string ensemble with voice and percussion through free improvisation that integrates musicians, language, friends, and accomplices in creating unique and explorative song environments. ... Click to View


The Wire: #387 May 2016 [MAGAZINE + CD] (The Wire)

"Matt Krefting meets US folk maven Marissa Nadler... Daniel Spicer travels deep into Manchester's improv underground... Maverick Icelandic super conductor Ilan Volkov takes the Invisible Jukebox test... and more. Plus The Wire Tapper 40! The next volume in our series of underground music anthologies will be attached to the cover of every copy of the May issue - 20 new tracks from DJ Stingray, Susanna, Supersilent, The Library Of Babel and more." ... Click to View


Henry Threadgill Ensemble Double Up: Old Locks and Irregular Verbs (Pi Recordings)

Henry Threadgill's tribute to friend, composer-conductor Lawrence D. Butch Morris, in a detailed 4-part work with an excellent set of improvisers: Henry Threadgill, Jose Davila, Jason Moran, Christopher Hoffman, David Virelles, Roman Filiu, Curtis Macdonald, and Craig Weinrib. ... Click to View


Derek Bailey / John Tilbury: Playing with a Dead Person [VINYL] (Bolt)

Despite their desire to record together, UK improvisers, guitarist Derek Bailey and pianist John Tilbury, never quite worked it out; so Tilbury instead took these solo Bailey recordings into the studio and improvised to them, making Bailey the dead leader of their duo. ... Click to View


Illtet (Ladd / Parker / Sorey ): Gain [VINYL WITH DOWNLOAD] (RogueArt)

Crossing NY and Chicago artists, the quartet of Mike Ladd on vocals & synth, Jeff Parker on electric guitar, Tyshawn Sorey on drums, trombone & electric piano, and HPRIZM/High Priest on synth create thought-provoking spoken environments of intense improv. ... Click to View


Astral Colonels (Anthony Pateras / Valerio Tricoli): Good Times in the End Times (Immediata)

Anthony Pateras & Valerio Tricoli worked 7 years transforming pianos, organs, harpsichords, tape machines and synthesizers into an expansive sonic otherworld that celebrates the "End of Times" in three parts; a meticulous and fascinating work. ... Click to View


Extended Pianos (Fox / Griswold / Pateras): Switch On A Dime (Immediata)

Extended Pianos employ stochastic improvisations, live analogue processing, feedback experiments, atmospheric tape composition, and ultra-physical episodic structures to manipulate prepared piano performance in real time, creating an exceptional and engrossing work. ... Click to View


Licht-Akiyama Trios: Tomorrow Outside Tomorrow (Editions Mego)

Alan Licht on guitar and electronics and Tetuzi Akiyama on guitar explored the lines that divide improvisation, composition, folk, blues, and experimental music in this Tokyo recording from 2014, two large works, the title track featuring Rob Mazurek on cornet. ... Click to View


The Ex: The Ex at The Bimhuis (1991-2015) [2 CDs] (Ex Records)

A double CD with booklet, posters and articles, compiling almost 25 years of live performances from the improvising and intelligent Netherlands rock band The Ex, 12 concerts with guests including Ab Baars, John Butcher, Wolter Wierbos, Han Bennink, Getatchew Mekuria, &c. ... Click to View


eRikm: Doubse Hysterie (Monotype)

A 6 part work based on immersive listening with a smartphone featuring a GPS and audio headphones made during a train trip across the Arc Jurassien, developed into 6 rich and detailed compositions, performed with violinist Julia Eckhardt and cellist Silvia Platzer. ... Click to View


Kevin Drumm : The Back Room [VINYL] (Monotype)

Kevin Drumm released this originally on a CDR in 2012 to be sold on tour, now released properly on vinly LP, 5 tracks of intensive sound, glitch and feedback from one of the modern masters of noise. ... Click to View


Leif Elggren: Das Baank [VINYL] (Fragment Factory)

A solo album from veteran Swedish artist Leif Elggren, a sound and symbolic record as a powerful statement on the limits of social and political absurdity and corruption in our present time, and commenting on repression, violence, fear and power. ... Click to View


John Zorn: The Painted Bird (Tzadik)

Crossing heavy improv with jazz, classical, world music and more, Zorn's latest compositions are handled by the ensemble of John Medeski (organ), Ches Smith (congas, Voudun drums), Kenny Wollesen (vibes), Kenny Grohowski (drums), and Matt Hollenberg (guitar). ... Click to View


Cyro Baptista: Bluefly (Tzadik)

A pop-infused psychedelic trip featuring Cyro with a huge lineup of superb musicians, lyrical improvisation with latin and world influences, with Baptista taking vocals over his eclectic and melodically embraceable music; a beautiful album to return to frequently. ... Click to View


Dave Douglas High Risk: Dark Territory [VINYL] - Record Store Day Release (Greenleaf Music)

A collection of new music from the creative electronic-inspired ensemble High Risk headed by NY trumpeter Dave Douglas, exploring the intersection of creative improvisation and modern electronic music production in lyrical and unexpected ways. ... Click to View


Nate Wooley / Ken Vandermark: All Directions Home (Audiographic Records / Pleasure of the Text Records)

Live recordings from Milwaukee's Sugar Maple in 2015 of the dynamic and amazing duo of NY trumpeter Nate Wooley and Chicago saxophonist Ken Vandermark, a tour-de-force of technical and melodic playing showcasing both players and their nearly telepathic high-speed improv exchange. ... Click to View


Ken Vandermark / Paal Nilssen-Love: The Lions Have Eaten One of the Guards (Audiographic Records)

The continuing adventures of European drummer Paal Nilssen-Love and Chicago reedist Ken Vandermark, this album was recorded live in Antwerp Belgium in 2013, showing the powerful technical skills of both players and their euphorically great approach to free improv. ... Click to View


Ben Goldberg / John Schott / Trevor Dunn: Almost Never (Nuscope)

Clarinetist Ben Goldberg leads a trio with electric guitarist John Schott and Mr. Bungle bassist Trevor Dunn for a lyrical and beautifully reserved album of improvisation that uses a subtly spacious approach to creating environments for informed interchange. ... Click to View


John Cage: Empty Words (Edition Wandelweiser Records)

John Cage's "Empty Words" (1974) is drawn from the Journals of Henry David Thoreau, written in four parts: Part I omits sentences, Part II omits phrases, and Part III omits words. Part IV, which omits syllables, leaves us nothing but a virtual lullaby of letters and sounds. ... Click to View


Antoine Beuger : Two . Too (For Erwin-Josef Speckmann) (Edition Wandelweiser Records )

Jurg Frey on clarinet and Irene Kurka on soprano vocals perform Wandelweiser composer Antoine Beuger's extended composition "Two"; then the duo of Rhodri Davies on harp and Ko Ishikawa on sho are layered on the first recording, creating a refreshingly new take on the piece. ... Click to View


Olive / Owen (Tim Olive / Ben Owen): 63-66 (845 Audio)

Recording in Brooklyn in 2014, this collaboration between Olive and Ben Owen presents four tracks of electronic improvisation using shortwave radio, oscillators, paper, contact microphones and magnetic pickups, creating a mysterious and well-paced album of sound experimentation. ... Click to View


Email:



The Squid's Ear
Squidco Sales

Heard In

Reviews of artist releases:
cd's, books, magazines, &c.


  Steve Dollar 
  Jazz Guide to New York City  
  (The Little Bookroom) 

   review by Kurt Gottschalk
  2004-04-27
Steve Dollar: Jazz Guide to New York City (The Little Bookroom)

Steve Dollar is asking for it. Compiling a Let's Go-style compendium of places to hear live jazz in New York City is the kind of task which will leave you as dogged by people combing for mistakes and omissions as it will thankful tourists looking to find what lies beyond The Blue Note and The Village Vanguard. Surely as soon as you've written one thing down, something else will have changed, a downtown gallery will suddenly crop up with an interesting series of programs or some old reliable will give in to the pressure of catering to beer-swigging rockers.

Fact is, however, Dollar has done an admirable job in mapping the city, and the omissions are more than outweighed by his thorough reporting and easy prose. The little black book rounds up nearly 100 Manhattan venues and tracks down a handful in Brooklyn and Queens as well. No doubt he missed something in the Bronx and Staten Island - if only the occasional perfomance at The Bronx Museum of the Arts or the Snug Harbor Cultural Center - but for tourists trekking the usual routes or newbies interested in more context than Time Out has to offer, it's an excellent resource.

Dollar approached the project as more than a reference book. His writing is natural and entertaining, and he peppers the listings with bits of New York jazz lore. He provides a peek into where bassists go for strings, relates the story of Sonny Rollins on the Williamsburg Bridge and waxes briefly about subway musicians. He also gives some undeserved praise to the sound system at Iridium, strangely claims that "you won't find a more enjoyable place to see - and hear - live music" than Joe's Pub, and corrects the German grammar for the Neues Kabarett concert series at the Brecht Forum. (I was a cofounder of that series, but no hard feelings.) He dishes some attitude ("Intrusive waitrons, ill-mannered diners smacking and slurping, the piercing jangle of cutlery - everything exists to distract you from the performers, who might as well return to their long-forsaken Holiday Inn gig," he writes, without pointing fingers, of the ever-present dinner club), but what Dollar achieved is no small feat; he went to dozens of dark rooms with a saxophonist on one side and a bar on the other and found what made each distinct. It's a valuable little handbook, even though it will be out of date before Cab Calloway's 100th birthday.





Comments and Feedback:



The Squid's Ear presents
reviews about releases
sold at Squidco.com
written by
independent writers.

Squidco



The Squid's Ear is the companion magazine to the online music shop Squidco !


  Copyright © 2014 Squidco. All rights reserved. Trademarks. (1999)