Using mostly unprocessed electric guitars, the duo of Elliott Sharp and Scott Fields' latest release presents eight dueling guitar works using dynamic, angular tones and textures, from extremely aggressive work to clean avant-jazz with twisted technical intent.
A work that pays homage to chilly northwest winds, sparkling winter light, the February moon, and the tedium and the exasperation of March , all of which allow the emotional excitement of winter to show through.
On her first solo album, pianist Lisa Ullen plays 13 of her complex compositions, and, in addition to the keyboard, uses the inside piano and, on one track, her own upright bass, to illustrate her extended piano techniques.
A masterful fountain of melodic ideas, intriguing rhythms, and exceptional technical skill from the duo of Hamid Drake on drums and frame drum, and Sylvain Kassap on clarinets and chalumeau, recording live at the France Musique at Studio Theatre d’Alfortville and in the studio.
A live performance at Judson Church in Manhattan as part of the 20th Vision Festival from the NY/France free improvising trio of Joelle Leandre on double bass, Mat Maneri on viola, and Gerald Cleaver on drums and percussion, two tracks of steadily building, incredibly compatible dialog.
Live recordings at LOFT in Cologne, Germany from the trio of George Wissel on prepared saxophone, Achim Tang on doublebass, and Simon Camatta on drums & percussion, performing seven "Movements" that use prodigious technique with reserve and direction, revealing the structure of their work as the pieces build and recede in fascinating ways.
The free improvising trio of Makoto Sato on drums, Jean-Francois Pauvros on guitar and Jean-Marc Foussat on synthesizer & voice in a studio album of unique electro-acoustic dialog recorded in Paris in 2013.
A site-specific sound installation in the nave and choir of Minoritenkirche in Krems/Stein that engages with the architecture and sound of this church space from composer Michael Moser working with Berndt Thurner, Klaus Lang, Hannah Schwegler and Nik Hummer.
Having previously worked together with Joe McPhee and Kent Kessler, this album distills the Portuguese saxophonist Rodrigo Amado and NY drummer/percussionist Chris Corsano to a concentrated sax and drum duo of earnest and edgy playing, bending jazz, free and blues idioms to their will with magnificent technique and power, both clearly elated in their meeting.
Two basses and a lower-end saxophone from the trio of Damon Smith on double bass, Andrew Durham on electric bass, and Danny Kamins on baritone sax, Durham also adding effects and "Radio Manipulation" to their deep sound, Durham & Kamins the core of CARL with Damon Smith adding extra underpinnings to their slowly developing, sometimes pensive, sometimes cantankerous, profound improvisation.
Recorded live at Silence Sounds in Guelph Canada, the duo of Xavier Charles on clarinet and Eric Normand on electric bass & objects eschew idiom in favor of their unique natural language on their instruments, applying patient development of truly idiosyncratic and fascinating command through a single extended work punctuated in seven diverse passages.
From 2008-16 until drummer Frank Rosaly moved to Amsterdam, alto saxophonist Nick Mazzarella's Trio was an active part of Chicago's creative jazz scene; in early 2018 Rosaly returned for a visit and Mazzarella composed a suite of 6 new pieces to commemorate the trio's tenth anniversary, the exuberant result this excellent concert recorded at Co-Prosperity Sphere!
Exploring human relationships and self perception through the use of physical objects and their potential sounds, San Antonio drummer Claire Rousay, who has worked with Jacob Wick, Ken Vandermark, Brandon Lopez, &c. recorded these six solo drum performances in the studio, developing each in a way that shows her strong technical skills and narrative voice on the drums.
Portland Oregon composer and sound artist Jeff Lane, co-founder of the Chicago/Portland record label Never Anything, as his alter-ego Tereshkova in a large work of electronic composition, part concrete, part acousmatic, spanning two cassettes with four side-long pieces, each an extended journey in mood, motion, perplexing sources and embrace-ably interesting.
A beautiful solo set of 12 improvisations, Michael Attias performing on alto sax with his left hand and piano with his right, captured in the natural reverberation of La Maison en Bois in Abeville-La-Riviere, France; surprisingly his 1st solo album, developed over 12 years yet played in under an hour with no retakes, a wonderful nuanced reflection in tone, melody & color.
Recording in Toronto, the core trio of drummer Nick Fraser, saxophonist Tony Malaby and pianist Kris Davis are joined on four tracks by tenor saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock and trumpeter Lina Allemano, in an album of composed and collective improvisation, merging Toronto, NY and European influences in an accomplished album of diverse approaches and orchestrations.
The 5th release from the trio of multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Keiji Haino, guitarist Jim O'Rourke and Oren Ambarchi on wineglass and percussion is an introspective and beautifully developed set recorded live at their March 2013 concert at SuperDeluxe.
Recorded in the mid-90s, Livebatts! was a project of John White (Cornelius Cardew, Scratch Orchestra) developed to exploit "toy" keyboards of the 80s--cheap battery-driven instruments that hold tremendous potential for "serious" music-making--used here in a playful quartet with vocalist MJ Coldiron, Andrea Rocca (guitar & samples) and Nancy Ruffer (electrified flute).
An excellent first meeting of two guitarists recording on a February afternoon and released in the sequence recorded with no edits or changes, from Jim McAuley on guitar and Scot Ray on lap steel slide guitar with effects, an innately lyrical blending of styles masking the strong technical skills and long histories of these two superlative players.
Quietly lurking as it prepares to attack, this Kobra is the free improvising quaret of Aurora Nealand on accordion, alto saxophone, voice & objects, Steve Marquette on acoustic & electric guitars, Anton Hatwich on bass, and Paul Thibodeaux on drums, captured live at Chicago's Hungry Brain during the Instigation Festival for a mysterious 2-part "New Omens" and some "Telly Attire".