The Chicago quartet of Joshua Abrams (double bass), David Boykin (tenor saxophone), Jason Adasiewicz (vibraphone), and Frank Rosaly (drums) performing an excellent set of modern jazz influenced by dream states.
A travelogue from the saxophone trio of Pete Whyman, Frank Van Der Kooij and Chris Caldwell, documenting their tour through Beijing to Pyongyang in North Korea through field recordings and musical sketches.
Trombonist Jeff Albert's Instigation Quartet, comprised of saxophonist Kidd Jordan, double bassist Joshua Abrams, and drummer Hamid Drake, play a superb studio session, starting and ending with two works by Fred Anderson.
A live show from Montreal's Casa Del Popolo in 2012 from the amazing transnational free jazz trio of saxophonist Dave Rempis, cellist/guitarist/electronic artist Fred Lonberg-Holm, and drummer/percussionist Paal Nilssen-Love.
Trombonist Samuel Blaser and his quartet of Marc Ducret (guitar), Banz Oester (double bass), and Gerald Cleaver (drums) perform his 4-part suite live with an ebb-and-flow tempo and intricate dynamics that are reflective of the sea.
Canadian alto saxophonist Francois Carrier's 3rd FMR release, with long-time companion Michel Lambert (drums) plus flautist Neil Metcalfe, guitarist Daniel Thompson and bassist Guilaume Viltard, recording in the beautiful acoustics of St leonards Church, London.
A quartet session of composition and improvisation headed by drummer Nick Fraser with Tony Malaby (sax), Andrew Downing (cello) and Rob Clutton (bass), exploring the essence of freedom and abstraction in contemporary jazz.
A remarkable solo guitar CD from Bill Frisell, filled with complex harmonies, bizarre voicings, rich orchestral sonorities, intense screams, delicate phrasing, wild noises and an incredible simultaneity.
Mick Sexton curates the first compilation of late pianist/keyboard player Pete Jacobsen, with sidemen including Mick Sexton, Tony Marsh, Don Weller, Jimmy Roche, Bobby Wellins, Rob King, Chris Boscoe, &c.
The New York trio of trumpeter Kirk Knuffke, bassist Max Johnson and Ziv Ravitz recording mostly original compositions in the studio, modern improvisation blending melodic and free improvisation in excellent ways.
The 2nd Intakt release for the trio of Oliver Lake (sax), Christian Weber (bass) and Dieter Ulrich (drums) performing live at the Zurich JazzFestival Unerhort 2011 with guest trombone player Nils Wogram.
Kook is the duo of Norweigan guitarists Stian Larsen and Erik Ahlsen creating a series of improvised soundscapes using their guitars and live electronics; absorbing music of unusual tone, texture, and direction.
The last recording of the trio of saxophonist and flutist Paul Dunmall, guitarist Phill Gibbs, and the late drummer Tony Marsh, a fitting tribute to the great drummer's long association with Dunmall and Gibbs.
The complete set from the live performance of Neil Metcalfe (flute), Guillaume Viltard (double bass) and Daniel Thompson (guitars), performing in the extraordinary space of St Leopards Shoreditch Church in Hackney, London.
Spring 2013 issue with 9 track CD. On the cover and featured: Akio Suzuki; Featured: Nicolas Bernier and Martin Messier; Featured: Edrem Helvacioglu; Profile on The Ratchet Orchestra. Plus reviews, events, words, &c.
Assembling 13 tracks from obscure compilations released from 2011-2012 by the various monikers of 910 Noise artist August (September) Traeger, a wide-ranging and captivating set of approaches to sound & noise work.
Al-Khwarizmi was a Muslim mathematician and astronomer, his memory interpreted in a series of variations by Pat Thomas playing inside and outside of the piano, an impressive display of 21st century keyboard technique and conceptual playing.
Three young virtuoso violinists perform two new major works by John Zorn - "Passagen" and "Ceremonial Magic" (reworked from his Rimbaud release) and a set of 12 miniatures for two violins, "Apophthegms".
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.
Frequent Squidco in-store performer Electric Bird Noise returns defying expectation with an album of new wave dance & 1970s synth experiments, taking influence from bands like New Order, The Cure, Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, & Gary Numan
Brotzmann's own BRO label releases this performance at Chicago's Hideout of the duo of Peter Brotzmann on alto and tenor sax, b-flat clarinet and tarogato, and vibraophonist Jason Adasiewicz from their 2012 US tour for three stunning tracks of free improvisation.
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.
Roman philosopher Titus Lucretius Carus named "Clinamen" the unpredictable (in time and space) swerve of atoms falling in the void, which aptly describes the unexpected directions taken in subtle free improvisation from this French trio, led by bassist Louis-Michel Marion, with Jacques Di Donato on clarinet, and Philippe Berger on viola.
A collection of 11 great songs by NY avant-garde jazz pianist Matthew Shipp, chosen from 10 different albums recorded between 2000 and 2012, outstanding tracks culled from more than a decade of innovative work.
A sophisticated modern jazz album from alto saxophonist Gavie Templeton, music based on his grandfather's experience as an Air Corps navigator in WWII, performed in a quartet with pianist Gary Fukushima, bassist Darek Oles, and drummer Joe Labarbera.
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.
A beautifully hypnotic album of saxophone, accompanied by Pan-Ney, Shruti Box and Organ, recorded in overdubs by composer/wind player Werner Durand in this 2nd chapter of his trilogy focused on the Pan-Ney, a self-built instrument for repetitive foundations, as Durand draws on elements of nature, mythology, dance, religion, literature and folklore.
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.
'Spilla' means 'to play' in the language of Neapolitan musicians, and playing here are NY guitarist and composer Elliott Sharp and Italian guitarist Sergio Sorrentino, presenting world premier recordings of 4 works recorded live in Vercelli, Italy: two improvisations and two graphic scores performed on electric guitar with incredible technique and passion.