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Tin (Dominic Lash / Axel Dorner / Roger Turner): Uncanny Valley (Confront)

A new trio at the time, TIN is trumpeter Axel Dorner, bassist Dominic Lash, and drummer/percussionist Roger Turner, captured live in three locations during their 2015 UK tour, presenting masterful avant improvisations of sound-oriented work using an immense technical vocabulary to creative inventive and captivating dialog. ... Click to View


Jerman / Salis / Sanna: KIO GE (Confront)

A collaboration between American sound artist Jeph Jerman and Italian percussionists Paolo Sanna and Giacomo Salis, twelve intriguing short improvisations using extended techniques and lowercase approaches that include minimal textures, field recordings, abstract atmospheres and organic sounds. ... Click to View


Simon Fell H. : Le Bruit de la Musique (Confront)

The French Le Bruit de la Musique festival is run by Le Quan Ninh and Martine Altenburger, who invitedSimon H. Fell to perform a solo set on the doublebass, the result being this fantastic album that takes the largest of bass instruments through an astonishing array of approaches enhanced by the acoustics of the church of Toulx-Sainte-Croix. ... Click to View


Rachael Wadham / Philippe Lenglet / Bruno Duplant: everydayisagoodday (Confront)

Starting from John Cage's Zen quote--"Every day is a good day"--the trio of Rachael Wadham on piano, Philippe Lenglet on acoustic guitar and cithar (a type of harp), and contrabass, recorded these improvisations approaching their instruments not for melodies but as tools for experimentation, from which this trio finds a wealth of inventive sound. ... Click to View


Collusion Duo (Nick Smith / Mark Wastell): Refraction (Confront)

Violinist and percussionist Nick Smith, having access to St. Mary's Church at Great Baddow for music performance and rehearsals, made his first use of the space in 1996 in a duo with Mark Wastell on violincello, preparations and percussion, where they used the acoustics of the church to enhance their detailed and absorbing improvisations. ... Click to View


Nikos Veliotis / Mark Wastell: Live at All Angels (Confront)

Two cellists, Nikos Veliotis and Mark Wastell, employ a vast array of expansive techniques and approaches to an actively reductionist set of improvisations, using the natural reverb of All Angels church in Turnham Green, London as a third voice, as the duo listens attentively and advance their interchanges in intricate and riveting ways. ... Click to View


Chris Cundy: The Disruptive Forest (Confront)

A combination of cyclical themes, made-up folk dances, and invented improvisations from UK reedist Chris Cundy, performing on bass clarinet at the Cheltenham Synagogue for 10 compositions developed specifically for this Confront recording as playful compositions intended as popular music for solo bass clarinet. ... Click to View


Patrick Shiroishi : Ima (Confront)

US West Coast multi-instrumentalist Patrick Shiroishi performs an unorthodox set at 2575 Mission in Los Angeles, California, using alto saxophone, bells, electric toothbrush, ipod, pie tin, spoons, tape player, and voice to create a yearning work expressing the frustration of longing and estrangement. ... Click to View


Harry Miller: Different Times, Different Places Volume Two (Ogun)

Compiling un-released material from late British bassist Harry Miller's recordings from 1977, 78 & 82, in bands with drummer Louis Moholo, guitarist Bernie Holland, pianist Keith Tippett, saxophonists Trevor Watts & Alan Wakeman, trombonist Alan Tomlinson, and trumpeter Dave Holdsworth; effusive joyful lyrical jazz infused with African rhythms. ... Click to View


Trevor Watts / Stephen Grew Duo: All There Is (Discus)

A strong and enthralling set of dialogs captured live from the working duo of pianist Stephen Grew and saxophonist Trevor Watts on alto & soprano, intricate exchanges of great energy but also great compassion and introspection, a well-rounded set of adventurous exchanges that highlight the incredible skills of both players. ... Click to View


Jason Kahn: Monads [VINYL 2 LPs] (Editions)

Getting down the atomic, elementary nature of his work, electroacoustic explorer Jason Kahn dedicates each side of this double LP release to his interests in percussion, electronics, environmental recording and voice, constructing unique compositions that reveal the strong and recognizable methodology that drives him in his work. ... Click to View


Jason Kahn: Songline [VINYL 2 LPs] (Editions)

Swiss improviser Jason Kahn continues his forays into vocal experimentation with this solo album, recorded in the rooms of a former Swisscom telephone relay station in Zurich, recorded in a single take, pushing himself over the edge in these unique vocal compositions that are stark examples of his creative and confrontational skills. ... Click to View


Albert Ayler Quartet: Copenhagen Live 1964 (Hatology)

In 1964 Albert Ayler's approach to free improvisation had found its voice, in a quartet supported by the now-legendary players Don Cherry on cornet, Gary Peacock on doublebass, and Sunny Murray on drums, heard live in a well-recorded concert at Club Montmarte, in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1964; ferocious and forward thinking, an astonishing concert! ... Click to View


Matthew Shipp: Invisible Touch At Taktlos Zurich (Hatology)

A fluid and freely improvised solo set from New York pianist Matthew Shipp performing live at the Taktlos Festival in Zurich, Switzerland, 2016, presenting profoundly virtuosic playing skills and remarkable instincts in a continuous 45 minute set that maintains interest and strong bearing as he takes his audience on a commanding and coherent journey. ... Click to View


Marco Von Orelli / Max E. Keller / Sheldon Suter: Blow, Strike & Touch (Hatology)

Swiss trumpeter Marco Von Orelli leads this trio with Max E. Keller on piano and Sheldon Suter on drums, heard live at JazzAmMittwoch, Theater an Gleis, in Winterthur, Switzerland in 2014 for a thoroughly modern jazz outing of creative and extended approaches to the trio's instruments and approach to free jazz. ... Click to View


Jean-Brice Godet Quartet (Godet / Attias / Niggenkemper / Costa): Mujo (Fou Records)

The debut album of French clarinetist Jean-Brice Godet, recording with a New York quartet of Michael Attias on alto sax, Pascal Niggenkemper on doublebass, and Carlo Costa on drums for seven tracks of adventerous original compositions, using weaving lines in melodic heads that propel his sidemen to lyrically rich solos and asides. ... Click to View


Sophie Agnel / Daunik Lazro: Marguerite D'Or Pale (Fou Records)

The duo of French pianist Sophie Agnel and sax player Daunik Lazro traces back to their work in the quartet Qwat Neum Sixx; here the two as a duo are caught live at the "DOM" Cultural Centre, in Moscow in 2016 for 6 improvisations, contemplative to explosive dialog, inspired by the Russian novel "The Master and Margarita" by Mikhail Bulgakov. ... Click to View


Isaiah Ceccarelli : Bow (Another Timbre)

Montreal-based Composer-percussionist Isaiah Ceccarelli, well known through his Ambiances Magnetiques releases, in 7 compositions, a mix of timbrally-based music in which he himself performs, and through-composed pieces that focus on harmonic progressions, performed as string duos, trios, and quartets. ... Click to View


Linda Smith Catlin : Drifter [2 CDs] (Another Timbre)

Ten pieces dating from 1995 to 2015 from Canadian composer Linda Catlin Smith, performed by Quatuor Bozzini and Apartment House, the first in Another Timbre's Canadian Composer series, a 2-CD release focusing on Smith's "equal and simultaneous drive toward abstraction and lyricism" in slowly developing, lush and sophisticated compositions. ... Click to View


Chiyoko Szlavnics : During a Lifetime (Another Timbre)

Three works from Canadian composer Chiyoko Szlavnics, two electroacoustic compositions incorporating sinewaves, one with a saxophone quartet and the other with two accordions, two flutes and two percussionists; and a string trio of long sustained tones and slow glissandi. ... Click to View


Martin Arnold : The Spit Veleta (Another Timbre)

Canadian composer Martin Arnold is based in Toronto, writing melodic works that contain a meandering, psychedelic quality, as heard in these three compositions performed by Philip Thomas on piano and Mira Benjamin on violin, the first two pieces solos from each respectively, and the last a duo with both musicians. ... Click to View


Mat Maneri / Evan Parker / Lucian Ban: Sounding Tears (Clean Feed)

Viola improviser and composer Mat Maneri leads this trio with British UK legend Evan Parker on soprano and tenor saxophone and Romanian ex-patriot and frequent collaborator Lucian Ban on piano, for ten compositions blending tradition, song, and improvisational tactics, recalling 20th century modern classical music in addition to jazz. ... Click to View


Rova / Bruckmann & Kaiser: Saxophone Special (Clean Feed)

The Californian saxophone quartet composed of Bruce Ackley, Steve Adams, Larry Ochs and Jon Raskin is extended with Henry Kaiser on guitar and Kyle Bruckmann on analog synth to perform the music of saxophone legend Steve Lacy in 7 compositions, putting an eclectic spin on the iconic composer and performer's music. ... Click to View


Mario Pavone (Pavone / Ballout / Malaby / Noriega / McEachern / Sarin): Vertical (Clean Feed)

Drawing from some of the finest players on the New York Downtown jazz scene, with Dave Ballou on trumpet, Tony Malaby and Oscar Noriega on reeds, Peter McEachern on trombone and Michael Sarin on drums, double bassist Mario Pavone presents a set of 11 new compositions of lyrical and sophisticated jazz anchored by the leader's powerful compositional structures. ... Click to View


Meridian Trio (Mazzarella / Ulery / Cunningham): Triangulum (Clean Feed)

A lyrical outing from the Chicago working trio of Nick Mazzarella on alto saxophone, Matt Ulery on doublebass, and Jeremy Cunningham on drums, performing live at the Whistler in Chicago, Illinois in 2016, recorded for this debut album of Mazzarella compositions, flexible pieces that balance jazz traditions with avant options for the players. ... Click to View


Chamber 4 (Vicente / Ceccaldi / Ceccaldi / dos Reis): City Of Light (Clean Feed)

A live concert at Les Soirees Tricot Festival in Paris, France in 2016, dedicated to the "City of Light", from the quartet of Luis Vicente on trumpet, Theo Ceccaldi on violin, Valentin Ceccaldi on cello and Marcelo dos Reis on acoustic guitar and prepared guitar, in music that, like the city, exhibits gorgeous simplicity through intricate sophistication. ... Click to View


Angles 9: Disappeared Behind the Sun [VINYL] (Clean Feed)

Saxophonist Martin Kuchen's amazing 9-piece Angles ensemble returns for an album titled for the grief of those who disappear due to war, crime and oppression, music that celebrates the tense balance in the challenge to confront and lead away from darkness and tyranny. ... Click to View


Honest John (Moe / Johannesen / Hoyer / Nylander / Holm): International Breakthrough (Clean Feed)

The Scandinavian quintet of Ole-Henrik Moe on violin, Kim Johannesen on guitar; Ola Hoyer on double bass; Erik Nylander on drums & drum machine; and Klaus Ellerhusen-Holm on alto saxophone and Bb on clarinet, in a daring album of mostly Ellerhusen-Holm compositions, arranged collectively into these creative and energetic gems. ... Click to View


The Selva (Jacinto / Almeida / Morao): The Selva (Clean Feed)

The Portuguese trio The Selva of Ricardo Jacinto (cello), Goncalo Almeida (double bass) and Nuno Morao (drums) in an album building on world and historic music forms focused through modern improviser's ears, creating a hybrid approach that slowly reveals its jazz roots in an unhurried but cultured take on new creative music. ... Click to View


Rune Your Day (Mathisen / Roligheten / Nergaard / Skalstad): Rune Your Day (Clean Feed)

Rather than ancient Germanic alphabet letters, "Rune" Your Day is named for Norwegian composer and band-leader, double bassist Rune Nergaard [Bushman's Revenge], and his quartet with Jorgen Mathisen on alto & soprano sax & clarinet, Andre Roligheten on tenor & baritone sax, and Axel Skalstad on drums, for an album of concentrated, creative jazz. ... Click to View


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  An Earful of Rainey  


By Steve Smith 2004-05-09

Fred Hersch The Fred Hersch Trio Plays... (Chesky, 1994) Given the longevity of pianist Fred Hersch's trio with Rainey and bassist Drew Gress, the band left few recordings to mark its live-wire chemistry. This one features the band setting its own stamp on familiar tunes by Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Ornette Coleman and others. The lyricism comes in broad strokes, but listen closely for the sense of play with which Rainey always animated this trio.

New and Used Consensus (Knitting Factory, 1995) Rainey actually enjoyed a rare composer credit on this all-star collective's earlier release, Souvenir (also on Knitting Factory). But the band's second and last album displays an increased assurance in both its compositions -- by Dave Douglas, Andy Laster, Mark Feldman and Kermit Driscoll -- and its interplay as a bona fide ensemble.

Tim Berne's Paraphrase Visitation Rites (Screwgun, 1998) One of the earliest documents of the long-form free fantasies spun by Berne, Rainey and bassist Drew Gress, Visitation Rites also remains among the most potent examples of this trio's empathic interplay. The disc's three long cuts capture perfectly the band's uniquely potent balance of improvisational sprawl and composerly gesture.

Tim Berne Science Friction (Screwgun, 2002) If Rainey has proven to be the perfect foil for the long arches of tension and release in Berne's free improvisations and long-form compositions, Science Friction - which teamed the two with guitarist Marc Ducret and keyboardist Craig Taborn - also proves that Rainey has become the most sympatico animator of Berne's dense, itchy funk compositions. Even in a tighter format, there's no reining in the drummer's imagination.

Mark Helias Verbs of Will (Radio Legs, 2002) Rainey has worked with bassman Mark Helias for years, driving both his more compositionally-oriented bands and his sprawling free-jazz trio Open Loose. The latest release by the latter demonstrates a greater concision of expression, like a gallon of black coffee distilled into a series of shots. Verbs of Will also demonstrates the potency of another burgeoning relationship: that of Rainey and rising young saxophonist Tony Malaby, who has used the drummer on three of his releases to date.



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