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See 2017 Top Sellers and Staff Lists

See 2016 Top Sellers and Staff Top Lists

Albert Ayler Trio
1964 Prophecy Revisted
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

With the essential sidemen to express his unique voice and approach to free jazz, saxophonist Albert Ayler, double bassist Gary Peacock, and drummer Sunny Murray, recorded these sessions in 1964 for the ESP label as "Prophecy", this excellent reissue & remaster also adding the live "Albert Smiles with Sunny" (inRespect) from the same concert; essential.


The Necks
Three
(Northern Spy)

Three extended improvisations from the three Australian improvisers Chris Abrahams (piano), Lloyd Swanton (bass), Tony Buck (drums/percussion) in their 21st album of mesmerizing music, from the dynamic opener "Bloom" to the introspective "Lovelock" dedicated to Damien Lovelock of The Celibate Rifles, ending in the lyrical and rich groove of "Further".


Dave Sewelson (w/ Steve Swell / William Parker / Marvin Bugalu Smith)
More Music for a Free World
(Mahakala Music)

Baritone saxophonist Dave Sewelson leads this collective quartet of New York associated players Steve Swell on trombone, William Parker on bass, abd Marvin Bugalu Smith on drums, a masterful example of modern creative jazz with a strongly lyrical attitude, through two extended improvisations and ending with a shorter "Reflections"; exemplary free jazz.


Polwechsel / Klaus Lang
Unseen
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The innovative acoustic free improvising ensemble Polwechsel, bridging contemporary music and free improvisation in ways that sound deceptively electroacoustic and comprised of Michael Moser on cello, Werner Dafeldecker on double bass, and Martin Brandlmayr & Burkhard Beins on cymbals & percussion, are joined by Klaus Lang performing on the church organ of St. Lambrecht's Abbey.


Paul Lytton / Nate Wooley
Known / Unknown
(Listen! Foundation (Fundacja Sluchaj!))

Recalling their brokenresearch LP from 2007, trumpeter Nate Wooley and drummer/percussionist Paul Lytton focus on unusual techniques and approaches to their instruments, using amplifiers and electronics to investigate new frontiers in interactive improvisation, each creating inexplicably interesting, masterfully interwoven sonic material.


Simon Nabatov Quintet (w/ Speed / Robertson / Hebert / Rainey)
Plain
(Clean Feed)

Russian-born Germany/NY-based pianist Simon Nabatov's Quintet with the new lineup of Chris Speed on tenor sax & clarinet, Herb Robertson on trumpet & cornet, John Hebert on double bass and Tom Rainey on drums, performing Nabatov's magnificently lyrical, sophisticated and often chamber-oriented compositions, an incredible achievement in writing and performance.


Oyvind Skarbo / Fredrik Ljungkvist / Kris Davis / Ole Morten Vagan
Inland Empire
(Clean Feed)

A transatlantic all-star quartet of modern improvisers influenced by contemporary compositional music and creative jazz, with pieces from all four players--Fredrik Ljungkvist on tenor sax & clarinet, Kris Davis on piano, Ole Morten Vagan on double bass, and Øyvind Skarbø on drums--creating superb modern, unforseeable, and joyful music.


Dijkstra / Bishop / Karayorgis / McBride / Gray
Cutout
(Driff Records)

The Boston-based quintet Cutout of Jorrit Dijkstra on saxophones, Jeb Bishop on trombone, Pandelis Karayorgis on piano, Nate McBride on bass, & Luther Gray on drums, in a set of free jazz pieces and virtual suites from original compositions and "instant-arranging" techniques from all band members, applying fresh ideas to superb playing with great camaraderie.


Dopolarians (William Parker / Kidd Jordan / Alvin Fielder / Chad Fowler / Christopher Parker / Kelley Hurt)
Garden Party
(Mahakala Music)

Legendary players, drummer Alvin Fielder, bassist William Parker, and saxophonist Kidd Jordan joined younger generation players pianist Christopher Parker, vocalist Kelley Hurt, and saxophonist Chad Fowler in New Orleans to record this exceptional album of modern jazz compositions primarily from Fowler, plus a collective improvisation and a narrative from Hurt.


Sun Ra Arkestra
Heliocentric Worlds 1 and 2
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The two volumes of "Heliocentric Worlds", recorded 7 months apart in 1965, represent perhaps one of greatest chapters in Sun Ra's legacy, bringing together his immense orchestration skills with future-leaning free jazz, allowing his players expanse inside disciplined compositions that reflect on both space and the then-new freedom explored by jazz soloists.


Decoy (Alexander Hawkins / John Edwards / Steve Noble) With Joe McPhee
AC/DC
(Otoroku)

The UK Decoy trio of John Edwards (bass), Steve Noble (drums) and Alexander Hawkins (keys) joins forces with pocket trumpet and saxophone player Joe McPhee during McPhee's residency at London's Cafe OTO, recording these two huge sets of brilliant free improv, Hawkins performing on organ adding a unique and soulful tone to a set that balances powerful energy with innate lyricism.


Joe Morris
Perpetual Frontier The Properties of Free Music [BOOK]
(Riti Publishing)

Joe Morris wrote this book to discuss aspects of free music, including responses to his questionnaire written by Joe McPhee, William Parker, Jamie Saft, Ken Vandermark, Marilyn Crispell, Nate Wooley, Jack Wright, Matthew Shipp, &c.


Albert Ayler Quartets
Spirits To Ghosts Revisited (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Three variations of quartet settings from iconoclastic free jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler, remastering and combining two Debut Records albums, "Spirits" from 1964 with Norman Howard (trumpet), Sunny Murray (drums), and alternating bass between Henry Grimes & Earle Henderson; and 1965's "Ghosts" on Debut Records with Don Cherry (trumpet), Gary Peacock (bass), and Sunny Murray.


Marion Brown
Capricorn Moon To Juba Lee (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Merging and remastering two essential albums from free jazz saxophonist Marion Brown: his 1966 ESP album "Marion Brown Quartet" with trumpeter Alan Shorter, bassist Reggie Johnson and percussionist Rahied Ali; and his 1967 Fontana album "Juba-Lee" in a septet with Reggie Johnson, drummer Beaver Harris, pianist Dave Burrell, trombonist Grachan Moncur III & saxophonist Bennie Maupin.


John Zorn (Medeski / Grohowski / Hollenberg)
Beyond Good And Evil - Simulacrum Live
(Tzadik)

Merging heavy melodic jazz with tinges of heavy metal, John Zorn's Simulacrum trio of John Medeski on organ, Kenny Grohowski on drums, and Matt Hollenberg on guitar perform nine of Zorn's intense compositions in a beautifully recorded concert at the Firehouse 12 studio, the band's consummate playing and passion bringing power to Zorn's darkly exciting music.


Berlin Art Quartet (Schubert / Bauer / Muller / Bruggemann)
Live At B-Flat
(Unisono Records)

Inspired by and using the same instrumentation as John Tchicai's seminal 60's free jazz band New York Art Quartet, since 2013 the Berlin Art Quartet of Matthias Schubert on saxophone, Matthias Bauer on bass, Matthias Muller on trombone, and Reinhard Bruggemann on drums, has carried on the spirit of NY Free Jazz, here in a live concert at B-Flat, in Berlin in 2019.


Kaja Draksler Octet
Out For Stars
(Clean Feed)

After setting music for the poetry of Pablo Neruda and Andriana Minou (Gledalec), Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler turns to the work of Robert Frost in a set of 7 sophisticated compositions, sung by Laura Polence & Bjork Nielsdottir in an improvising octet with reedists Ab Baars & Ada Rave, violinist George Dumitriu, bassist Lennart Heyndels and drummer Onno Govaert.


Patty Waters (w/ Greene / Pavone / Altschul)
An Evening In Houston
(Clean Feed)

The distinctively unique voice and unconventional stylings of Patty Waters bring a set of standards and folk songs to a live quartet session in Houston, Texas in 2018 with the stellar backup of Burton Greene on piano, Mario Pavone on bass, and Barry Altschul on drums, covering songs by Billy Holiday, Nat King Cole & Hank Williams along with a trio instrumental of Monk's "Off Minor".


Keune / Russell / Schneider / Lovens
Nothing Particularly Horrible (Live In Bochum '93)
(FMR)

Bringing together British and German free improvisers for this 1993 concert during the Ruhr Jazz Festival, the quartet of John Russell on guitar, Hans Schneider on bass, Paul Lovens on drums & percussion, and Stefan Keune on saxophones, find their convincing collective voice from previous pairings of the improvisers, including News from the Shed & Stefan Keune Trio.


Prevost / Solberg / Pettersen / Moore / Brice / Hardie-Bick
Plumes of Ash in Moonlight [2 CDs]
(Split Rock Records)

Bringing together two innovative improvising percussionists--Eddie Prevost of AMM fame, and Stale Liavik Solberg (VCDC, John Butcher)--for a studio album of wide-ranging and sometimes hair-raising electroacoustic improvisation, recorded live and unedited with Olie Brice on double bass, Tony Hardie-Bick on piano & tapes, Ed Pettersen on lap steel, and NO Moore on guitar.


Urs Leimgruber / Andreas Willers / Alvin Curran / Fabrizio Spera
Rome-ing
(Leo Records)

The long-running duo of saxophonist Urs Leimgruber and guitarist Andreas Willers are joined by percussionist Fabrizio Spera (Ossatura) and Alvin Curran (MEV) for a live performance at Casa del Jazz in Rome, merging avant jazz approaches with ea-improv through guitar effects and sampling, finding passion in explorative and unpredictable music of superb skill and intent.


Anahuac (Cogburn / Garcia / Schick)
Anahuac
(Astral Spirits)

Layered lowercase electroacoustic improv from the US / Mexico City / German trio of Chris Cogburn on percussion & electronics, Juan Garcia on double bass, and Ignaz Schick on turntables & electronics, eclectically informed by concrete sources and abstract electronics over Garcia's bass work and Cogburn's threshold-crossing acoustics & electronic percussion.


Bedrnhard Meyer / John Hollenbeck
Grids
(Shhpuma)

Bringing together NY drummer/percussionist John Hollenbeck, also on prepared piano, with Berlin bassist Bernhard Meyer for an album that blends textural rock, electronic and jazz approaches in 9 elusively calm yet structurally turbulent pieces, using complex systems of cross rhythms against atmospheric immersion, occasionally disruptive but generally eccentrically controlled and exploratory.


Noah Kaplan Quartet
Out Of The Hole
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

West Coast composer and saxophonist Noah Kaplan, associated with Anthony Coleman, David Tronzo, Peter Erskine, Rinde Eckert, Joe Morris, Mat Maneri, Joe Maneri, &c., here in his 3rd album with his Noah Kaplan Quartet, in a set of original compositions and one standard performed with Joe Morris (guitar), Giacomo Merega (electric bass) & Jason Nazary (drums, electronics).


Alex Ward
Frames
(Relative Pitch)

Originally a clarinetist, UK improviser Alex Ward began exploring the guitar in rock settings, first bringing the instrument to his improv work around the year 2000 with N.E.W. (w/ Steve Noble & John Edwards); this is his 1st solo guitar album, showing a wide range of styles that embrace improv, rock and compositional styles, a remarkable display of skill and creative drive.


Albert Ayler Trio
1964 Prophecy Revisted
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

With the essential sidemen to express his unique voice and approach to free jazz, saxophonist Albert Ayler, double bassist Gary Peacock, and drummer Sunny Murray, recorded these sessions in 1964 for the ESP label as "Prophecy", this excellent reissue & remaster also adding the live "Albert Smiles with Sunny" (inRespect) from the same concert; essential.


Dave Sewelson (w/ Steve Swell / William Parker / Marvin Bugalu Smith)
More Music for a Free World
(Mahakala Music)

Baritone saxophonist Dave Sewelson leads this collective quartet of New York associated players Steve Swell on trombone, William Parker on bass, abd Marvin Bugalu Smith on drums, a masterful example of modern creative jazz with a strongly lyrical attitude, through two extended improvisations and ending with a shorter "Reflections"; exemplary free jazz.


Polwechsel / Klaus Lang
Unseen
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The innovative acoustic free improvising ensemble Polwechsel, bridging contemporary music and free improvisation in ways that sound deceptively electroacoustic and comprised of Michael Moser on cello, Werner Dafeldecker on double bass, and Martin Brandlmayr & Burkhard Beins on cymbals & percussion, are joined by Klaus Lang performing on the church organ of St. Lambrecht's Abbey.


Paul Lytton / Nate Wooley
Known / Unknown
(Listen! Foundation (Fundacja Sluchaj!))

Recalling their brokenresearch LP from 2007, trumpeter Nate Wooley and drummer/percussionist Paul Lytton focus on unusual techniques and approaches to their instruments, using amplifiers and electronics to investigate new frontiers in interactive improvisation, each creating inexplicably interesting, masterfully interwoven sonic material.


Simon Nabatov Quintet (w/ Speed / Robertson / Hebert / Rainey)
Plain
(Clean Feed)

Russian-born Germany/NY-based pianist Simon Nabatov's Quintet with the new lineup of Chris Speed on tenor sax & clarinet, Herb Robertson on trumpet & cornet, John Hebert on double bass and Tom Rainey on drums, performing Nabatov's magnificently lyrical, sophisticated and often chamber-oriented compositions, an incredible achievement in writing and performance.


Oyvind Skarbo / Fredrik Ljungkvist / Kris Davis / Ole Morten Vagan
Inland Empire
(Clean Feed)

A transatlantic all-star quartet of modern improvisers influenced by contemporary compositional music and creative jazz, with pieces from all four players--Fredrik Ljungkvist on tenor sax & clarinet, Kris Davis on piano, Ole Morten Vagan on double bass, and Øyvind Skarbø on drums--creating superb modern, unforseeable, and joyful music.


Dijkstra / Bishop / Karayorgis / McBride / Gray
Cutout
(Driff Records)

The Boston-based quintet Cutout of Jorrit Dijkstra on saxophones, Jeb Bishop on trombone, Pandelis Karayorgis on piano, Nate McBride on bass, & Luther Gray on drums, in a set of free jazz pieces and virtual suites from original compositions and "instant-arranging" techniques from all band members, applying fresh ideas to superb playing with great camaraderie.


Dopolarians (William Parker / Kidd Jordan / Alvin Fielder / Chad Fowler / Christopher Parker / Kelley Hurt)
Garden Party
(Mahakala Music)

Legendary players, drummer Alvin Fielder, bassist William Parker, and saxophonist Kidd Jordan joined younger generation players pianist Christopher Parker, vocalist Kelley Hurt, and saxophonist Chad Fowler in New Orleans to record this exceptional album of modern jazz compositions primarily from Fowler, plus a collective improvisation and a narrative from Hurt.


Sun Ra Arkestra
Heliocentric Worlds 1 and 2
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The two volumes of "Heliocentric Worlds", recorded 7 months apart in 1965, represent perhaps one of greatest chapters in Sun Ra's legacy, bringing together his immense orchestration skills with future-leaning free jazz, allowing his players expanse inside disciplined compositions that reflect on both space and the then-new freedom explored by jazz soloists.


Decoy (Alexander Hawkins / John Edwards / Steve Noble) With Joe McPhee
AC/DC
(Otoroku)

The UK Decoy trio of John Edwards (bass), Steve Noble (drums) and Alexander Hawkins (keys) joins forces with pocket trumpet and saxophone player Joe McPhee during McPhee's residency at London's Cafe OTO, recording these two huge sets of brilliant free improv, Hawkins performing on organ adding a unique and soulful tone to a set that balances powerful energy with innate lyricism.


Albert Ayler Quartets
Spirits To Ghosts Revisited (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Three variations of quartet settings from iconoclastic free jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler, remastering and combining two Debut Records albums, "Spirits" from 1964 with Norman Howard (trumpet), Sunny Murray (drums), and alternating bass between Henry Grimes & Earle Henderson; and 1965's "Ghosts" on Debut Records with Don Cherry (trumpet), Gary Peacock (bass), and Sunny Murray.


Marion Brown
Capricorn Moon To Juba Lee (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Merging and remastering two essential albums from free jazz saxophonist Marion Brown: his 1966 ESP album "Marion Brown Quartet" with trumpeter Alan Shorter, bassist Reggie Johnson and percussionist Rahied Ali; and his 1967 Fontana album "Juba-Lee" in a septet with Reggie Johnson, drummer Beaver Harris, pianist Dave Burrell, trombonist Grachan Moncur III & saxophonist Bennie Maupin.


John Zorn (Medeski / Grohowski / Hollenberg)
Beyond Good And Evil - Simulacrum Live
(Tzadik)

Merging heavy melodic jazz with tinges of heavy metal, John Zorn's Simulacrum trio of John Medeski on organ, Kenny Grohowski on drums, and Matt Hollenberg on guitar perform nine of Zorn's intense compositions in a beautifully recorded concert at the Firehouse 12 studio, the band's consummate playing and passion bringing power to Zorn's darkly exciting music.


Berlin Art Quartet (Schubert / Bauer / Muller / Bruggemann)
Live At B-Flat
(Unisono Records)

Inspired by and using the same instrumentation as John Tchicai's seminal 60's free jazz band New York Art Quartet, since 2013 the Berlin Art Quartet of Matthias Schubert on saxophone, Matthias Bauer on bass, Matthias Muller on trombone, and Reinhard Bruggemann on drums, has carried on the spirit of NY Free Jazz, here in a live concert at B-Flat, in Berlin in 2019.


Kaja Draksler Octet
Out For Stars
(Clean Feed)

After setting music for the poetry of Pablo Neruda and Andriana Minou (Gledalec), Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler turns to the work of Robert Frost in a set of 7 sophisticated compositions, sung by Laura Polence & Bjork Nielsdottir in an improvising octet with reedists Ab Baars & Ada Rave, violinist George Dumitriu, bassist Lennart Heyndels and drummer Onno Govaert.


Patty Waters (w/ Greene / Pavone / Altschul)
An Evening In Houston
(Clean Feed)

The distinctively unique voice and unconventional stylings of Patty Waters bring a set of standards and folk songs to a live quartet session in Houston, Texas in 2018 with the stellar backup of Burton Greene on piano, Mario Pavone on bass, and Barry Altschul on drums, covering songs by Billy Holiday, Nat King Cole & Hank Williams along with a trio instrumental of Monk's "Off Minor".


Keune / Russell / Schneider / Lovens
Nothing Particularly Horrible (Live In Bochum '93)
(FMR)

Bringing together British and German free improvisers for this 1993 concert during the Ruhr Jazz Festival, the quartet of John Russell on guitar, Hans Schneider on bass, Paul Lovens on drums & percussion, and Stefan Keune on saxophones, find their convincing collective voice from previous pairings of the improvisers, including News from the Shed & Stefan Keune Trio.


Prevost / Solberg / Pettersen / Moore / Brice / Hardie-Bick
Plumes of Ash in Moonlight [2 CDs]
(Split Rock Records)

Bringing together two innovative improvising percussionists--Eddie Prevost of AMM fame, and Stale Liavik Solberg (VCDC, John Butcher)--for a studio album of wide-ranging and sometimes hair-raising electroacoustic improvisation, recorded live and unedited with Olie Brice on double bass, Tony Hardie-Bick on piano & tapes, Ed Pettersen on lap steel, and NO Moore on guitar.


Urs Leimgruber / Andreas Willers / Alvin Curran / Fabrizio Spera
Rome-ing
(Leo Records)

The long-running duo of saxophonist Urs Leimgruber and guitarist Andreas Willers are joined by percussionist Fabrizio Spera (Ossatura) and Alvin Curran (MEV) for a live performance at Casa del Jazz in Rome, merging avant jazz approaches with ea-improv through guitar effects and sampling, finding passion in explorative and unpredictable music of superb skill and intent.


Anahuac (Cogburn / Garcia / Schick)
Anahuac
(Astral Spirits)

Layered lowercase electroacoustic improv from the US / Mexico City / German trio of Chris Cogburn on percussion & electronics, Juan Garcia on double bass, and Ignaz Schick on turntables & electronics, eclectically informed by concrete sources and abstract electronics over Garcia's bass work and Cogburn's threshold-crossing acoustics & electronic percussion.


Bedrnhard Meyer / John Hollenbeck
Grids
(Shhpuma)

Bringing together NY drummer/percussionist John Hollenbeck, also on prepared piano, with Berlin bassist Bernhard Meyer for an album that blends textural rock, electronic and jazz approaches in 9 elusively calm yet structurally turbulent pieces, using complex systems of cross rhythms against atmospheric immersion, occasionally disruptive but generally eccentrically controlled and exploratory.


Noah Kaplan Quartet
Out Of The Hole
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

West Coast composer and saxophonist Noah Kaplan, associated with Anthony Coleman, David Tronzo, Peter Erskine, Rinde Eckert, Joe Morris, Mat Maneri, Joe Maneri, &c., here in his 3rd album with his Noah Kaplan Quartet, in a set of original compositions and one standard performed with Joe Morris (guitar), Giacomo Merega (electric bass) & Jason Nazary (drums, electronics).


Alex Ward
Frames
(Relative Pitch)

Originally a clarinetist, UK improviser Alex Ward began exploring the guitar in rock settings, first bringing the instrument to his improv work around the year 2000 with N.E.W. (w/ Steve Noble & John Edwards); this is his 1st solo guitar album, showing a wide range of styles that embrace improv, rock and compositional styles, a remarkable display of skill and creative drive.


James Tenney
Forms 1-4 - In Memoriam Edgar Varese, John Cage, Stefan Wolpe, Morton Feldman [2 CDs]
(Hat [now] ART)


Nate Wooley (Wooley / Sawyer / Halvorson / Alcorn)
Columbia Icefield
(Northern Spy)

With two guitarists--Mary Halvorson and Susan Alcorn on pedal steel--and Ryan Sawyer on drums, New York trumpeter explores the Rocky Mountains Columbia Icefield, the largest icefield in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, through sophisticated compositions and superbly illustrative sound, an exceptional album of improvisation and intention from four modern masters.


Howard Riley
10.11.12 [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Five original compositions and a great rendering of "Lush Life" from British pianist Howard Riley performing solo at the Jazz Jungtys Festival in Kaunas, 2012, brilliant and focused playing showing his masterful skills deeply steeped in tradition and freedom.


Bobby Bradford / Hafez Modirzadeh / Ken Filiano / Royal Hartigan
Live at the Magic Triangle [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

A live concert at Amherst, Massachusetts in 2016 as part of the Magical Triangle Jazz Series from the quartet of legendary cornetist Bobby Bradford, Turkish saxophonist Hafez Modirzadeh on tenor, in-demand New York bassist Ken Filiano, and percussionist/drummer Royal Hartigan, the band performing two Bradford compositions, with one each from Filiano, Modirzadeh and Hartigan.


Sunwatchers / Eugene Chadbourne
3 Characters [VINYL 2 LPs]
(Amish Records)

Eugene Chadbourne brings his guitars and voice to join the Sunwatchers band of Peter Kerlin, Jim McHugh, Jason Robira, and Jeff Tobias, as they perform the music of great American rock band Minutemen, with Minuteman Mike Watt joining on "spiel & labor leader", alongside original pieces by Sunwatchers, and experimental rock band Henry Flynt & The Insurrections.


Sven-Ake Johansson
Schlingerland / Dynamische Schwingungen [VINYL]
(Cien Fuegos)

Originally issued in 1972 on the FMP label, drummer Sven-Ake Johansson follows his instincts in polyrhythmic drum improvisation, demonstrating the prowess that makes him such a capable sideman of Peter Brotzmann, Alexander Von Schlippenbach, &c., through three direct and compelling statements of powerful rhythms that layer time signatures and tempos, dynamics and pulse.


Anthony Davis / Paul Plimley / Al Neil / John Kameel Farah
Past Piano Present | Live at Western Front 1985 - 2015 [VINYL LP with DOWNLOAD]
(Western Front New Music)

Four innovative and creative pianists performing solo at the Western Front between 1985 and 2015--Anthony Davis, Paul Plimley, Al Neil, John Kameel Farah--compiled on this extraordinary LP, the 2nd essential archive from one of Canada's most important performance spaces.


The Dogmatics
Chop Off The Tops [VINYL]
(Dogmatics)

The second album from the duo of pianist Chris Abrahams (The Necks) and clarinetist Kai Fagaschinski (The Magic I.D., Interational Nothing) has the duo decelerating for an intimate examination of tone and harmonics through perfectly placed notes and subtly extreme technique, creating sublime sonic environments that hover and dissolve; beautiful.


Myra Melford's Snowy Egret (w/ Miles / Ellman / Takeishi / Sorey)
The Other Side Of Air [VINYL 2 LPs + DOWNLOAD]
(Firehouse 12 Records)

Taking the reigns as composer, performer and bandleader, New York pianist Myra Melford's exceptional quintet Snowy Egret, with Ron Miles on cornet, Liberty Ellman on guitar, Stomu Takeishi on acoustic bass guitar, and Tyshawn Sorey on drums, present a brilliant album of creative jazz, with lyrical grooves and commanding soloing, a great and thoroughly modern album.


Benjamin Vergara / Fred Frith
Fanfarrisimo [VINYL]
(Tour de Bras)

Recording in Chile at the University Austral in 2018, trumpeter Benjamin Vergara and guitarist Fred Frith take us on two extended journeys through free electroacoustic improvisation, Frith's providing diverse and intense sonic environments over which Vergara's virtuosic and intuitive approach to the trumpet soars; impressive, creative, cathartic.


Evan Parker / Barry Guy / Paul Lytton
Live at Maya Recordings Festival [VINYL 2 LPs]
(NoBusiness)

Superb improvisation from three masters - Evan Parker on sax, Barry Guy on bass and Paul Lytton on drums - performing at the Maya Recordings Festival, September 23 - 25, 2011 at Theater am Gleis, Winterthur, Switzerland.


Rempis / Marhaug Duo
Naancore [VINYL]
(Aerophonic)

Chicago saxophonist Dave Rempis meets Oslo sound artist Lasse Marhaug for an improvised session yielding two intertwining tracks of extreme free playing pitting two like-minded collaborators in a noise scuffle of electronic storms and skronky sax runs.


ROIL (Chris Abrahams / Mike Majkowski / James Waples)
Raft Of The Meadows [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Free improvisation using the jazz idiom as a jumping off point from the trio of pianist Chris Abrahams (The Necks), bassist Mike Majkowski, and drummer James Waples, superb technical playing with a melodic intent and excellent pacing.


Jim Denley / Cor Fuhler
Truancy [VINYL]
(Splitrec)

Two extended and unusual improvisations between Australian saxophonist Jim Denley and Dutch pianist Cor Fuhler, developed over 7 weeks and recorded in the studio in 2013, using imaginative preparations and inventions to create fascinating new sounds and structures.


Fred Frith And Helen Mirra
Kwangsi - quail [VINYL]
(Shhpuma)

Helen Mirra uses the index of a W.G. Sebald's novel to create a mysterious, intriguing and fascinating audio world, performed by Mirra on printing press and acoustic guitar, and Fred Frith on rainsticks, mbira, charango, music box, voice, shoes and other objects.


Tatsuya Nakatani
Confirmation [VINYL]
(TAIGA)

The first vinyl solo album from one of the world's most active percussionists, Tatsuya Nakatani, recording live at Nakatani-kobo in Easton Pennsylvania in 2015, in an incredible display of unexpected sonic territory from drums, bows, bells, bowls and cymbals.


Marilyn Lerner / Ken Filiano / Lou Grassi
Live At Edgefest [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Live recordings from the 2013 Edgefest by the trio of Canadian pianist Marilyn Lerner, NY bassist Ken Filiano, and drummer Lou Grassi, a freely flowing session that combines profound technical skills with innate lyrical sensibility.


Fail Better! (Reis / Vicente / Guimaraes / Pereira / Filipe)
OWT [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Mesmerizing electric free improvisation from the Portugese quintet of Marcelo Dos Reis on guitar, Luis Vicente on trumpet, Joao Guimaraes on sax, Jose Miguel Pereira on double bass, and Joao Pais Filipe on drums, recording live at Salao Brazil in Coimbra, Portugal in 2014.


John Dikeman / Luis Vicente / Hugo Antunes / Gabriel Ferrandini
Salao Brasil [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Live recordings from Salao, Brazil in 2016 by the quartet of John Dikeman on tenor saxophone, Luis Vicente on trumpet, Hugo Antunes on double bass, and Gabriel Ferrandini on drums, for two sets of exploratory and often explosive free jazz.


Dave Burrell / Bob Stewart
The Crave Play the music of Jelly Roll Morton and Dave Burrell [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Frequent collaborators, pianist Dave Burrell and tuba player Bob Stewart take on the early jazz music of Jelly Roll Morton alongside original compositions from Burrell, performed live at the Kolner Stadtgarten in Cologne, Germany in 1994 for a joyful look forward and back.


Martin Kuchen / Mark Tokar / Arkadijus Gotesmanas
Live at Vilnius Jazz Festival [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

A live recording from the Vilnius Jazz and Music of Silent Film Festival in 2016, performing for an adaptation of the silent film "The Lost World" by Arturas Jevdokimovas, by the trio of Martin Kuchen on sax & flute, Mark Tokar on bass, and Arkadijus Goesmanas on drums.


MIR 8 (Andrea Belfi / Werner Dafeldecker / Hilary Jeffery / Tim Wright)
Perihelion [VINYL]
(Shhpuma)

Mir 8 brings electroacoustic artists Andrea Belfi (drums/percussion), Werner Dafeldecker (electroncis, bass), Hilary Jeffrey (trombone) and Tim Wright (computer & electronics) together for their debut album of four cinematic tracks following an abstract narrative through panoramic landscapes.


Alice Kemp
Fill My Body With Flowers And Rice [VINYL]
(Fragment Factory)

Sound composer and multi-disciplinary artist Alice Kemp's first full length vinyl album is a mysterious and beautifully paced release blending acoustic and electronic sources, field recordings, voice and inexplicable sound to create dream-like sonic environments, subtle and suggestive sound that contains clues of ritual, longing, and beauty.


Andrew Lamb / Warren Smith / Arkadijus Gotesmanas
The Sea of Modicum [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

Captured live at the 2016 Vilnius Jazz Festival, the free jazz trio of saxophonist Andrew Lamb and percussionists Warren Smith and Arkadijus Gotesmanas provide a unique orchestration, with the percussionists building rhythmic structures over which AACM alumni Lamb's powerful saxophone work emerges; a great album of solid exploratory free jazz.


Samuel Blaser / Gerry Hemingway
Oostum [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

A fantastic album of free improvisation between two creative and versatile players captured live at Kerkje van Oostum, Groningen, The Netherlands in 2015--percussionist Gerry Hemingway and trombonist Samuel Blaser--both using immense talent and unorthodox approaches to their instruments as they shift from unexpected atmospheres to lyrical richness.


Kaoru Abe / Sabu Toyozumi
Banka [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

NoBusiness continues their essential 70's reissue series of renowned Japanese free improvisers, here in an LP and extended CD edition of the live duo of percussionist Sabu Toyozumi and saxophonist Kaoru Abe on alto, soprano & sopranino saxophones, the LP presenting their 1978 concert at Gaja, Hatsudai in Tokyo, the CD extended with a live set at Minor, Kichijoji the same year.


Choi Bae Sun / Junji Hirose / Motoharu Yoshizawa / Kim Dae Hwan
Arirang Fantasy [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

A 1995 live concert at Romanisches Cafe in Tokyo from the South Korean and Japanese free improvising quartet of Choi Sun Bae on trumpet, Junji Hirose on tenor & soprano saxophones, Motoharu Yoshizawa on electric vertical five strings bass, and Kim Dae Hwan on percussion, in five collective improvisations including an homage to Charlie Parker.


Albert Ayler Trio
1964 Prophecy Revisted
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

With the essential sidemen to express his unique voice and approach to free jazz, saxophonist Albert Ayler, double bassist Gary Peacock, and drummer Sunny Murray, recorded these sessions in 1964 for the ESP label as "Prophecy", this excellent reissue & remaster also adding the live "Albert Smiles with Sunny" (inRespect) from the same concert; essential.


Dave Sewelson (w/ Steve Swell / William Parker / Marvin Bugalu Smith)
More Music for a Free World
(Mahakala Music)

Baritone saxophonist Dave Sewelson leads this collective quartet of New York associated players Steve Swell on trombone, William Parker on bass, abd Marvin Bugalu Smith on drums, a masterful example of modern creative jazz with a strongly lyrical attitude, through two extended improvisations and ending with a shorter "Reflections"; exemplary free jazz.


Polwechsel / Klaus Lang
Unseen
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The innovative acoustic free improvising ensemble Polwechsel, bridging contemporary music and free improvisation in ways that sound deceptively electroacoustic and comprised of Michael Moser on cello, Werner Dafeldecker on double bass, and Martin Brandlmayr & Burkhard Beins on cymbals & percussion, are joined by Klaus Lang performing on the church organ of St. Lambrecht's Abbey.


Paul Lytton / Nate Wooley
Known / Unknown
(Listen! Foundation (Fundacja Sluchaj!))

Recalling their brokenresearch LP from 2007, trumpeter Nate Wooley and drummer/percussionist Paul Lytton focus on unusual techniques and approaches to their instruments, using amplifiers and electronics to investigate new frontiers in interactive improvisation, each creating inexplicably interesting, masterfully interwoven sonic material.


Simon Nabatov Quintet (w/ Speed / Robertson / Hebert / Rainey)
Plain
(Clean Feed)

Russian-born Germany/NY-based pianist Simon Nabatov's Quintet with the new lineup of Chris Speed on tenor sax & clarinet, Herb Robertson on trumpet & cornet, John Hebert on double bass and Tom Rainey on drums, performing Nabatov's magnificently lyrical, sophisticated and often chamber-oriented compositions, an incredible achievement in writing and performance.


Oyvind Skarbo / Fredrik Ljungkvist / Kris Davis / Ole Morten Vagan
Inland Empire
(Clean Feed)

A transatlantic all-star quartet of modern improvisers influenced by contemporary compositional music and creative jazz, with pieces from all four players--Fredrik Ljungkvist on tenor sax & clarinet, Kris Davis on piano, Ole Morten Vagan on double bass, and Øyvind Skarbø on drums--creating superb modern, unforseeable, and joyful music.


Dijkstra / Bishop / Karayorgis / McBride / Gray
Cutout
(Driff Records)

The Boston-based quintet Cutout of Jorrit Dijkstra on saxophones, Jeb Bishop on trombone, Pandelis Karayorgis on piano, Nate McBride on bass, & Luther Gray on drums, in a set of free jazz pieces and virtual suites from original compositions and "instant-arranging" techniques from all band members, applying fresh ideas to superb playing with great camaraderie.


Dopolarians (William Parker / Kidd Jordan / Alvin Fielder / Chad Fowler / Christopher Parker / Kelley Hurt)
Garden Party
(Mahakala Music)

Legendary players, drummer Alvin Fielder, bassist William Parker, and saxophonist Kidd Jordan joined younger generation players pianist Christopher Parker, vocalist Kelley Hurt, and saxophonist Chad Fowler in New Orleans to record this exceptional album of modern jazz compositions primarily from Fowler, plus a collective improvisation and a narrative from Hurt.


Sun Ra Arkestra
Heliocentric Worlds 1 and 2
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The two volumes of "Heliocentric Worlds", recorded 7 months apart in 1965, represent perhaps one of greatest chapters in Sun Ra's legacy, bringing together his immense orchestration skills with future-leaning free jazz, allowing his players expanse inside disciplined compositions that reflect on both space and the then-new freedom explored by jazz soloists.


Decoy (Alexander Hawkins / John Edwards / Steve Noble) With Joe McPhee
AC/DC
(Otoroku)

The UK Decoy trio of John Edwards (bass), Steve Noble (drums) and Alexander Hawkins (keys) joins forces with pocket trumpet and saxophone player Joe McPhee during McPhee's residency at London's Cafe OTO, recording these two huge sets of brilliant free improv, Hawkins performing on organ adding a unique and soulful tone to a set that balances powerful energy with innate lyricism.


Albert Ayler Quartets
Spirits To Ghosts Revisited (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Three variations of quartet settings from iconoclastic free jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler, remastering and combining two Debut Records albums, "Spirits" from 1964 with Norman Howard (trumpet), Sunny Murray (drums), and alternating bass between Henry Grimes & Earle Henderson; and 1965's "Ghosts" on Debut Records with Don Cherry (trumpet), Gary Peacock (bass), and Sunny Murray.


Marion Brown
Capricorn Moon To Juba Lee (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Merging and remastering two essential albums from free jazz saxophonist Marion Brown: his 1966 ESP album "Marion Brown Quartet" with trumpeter Alan Shorter, bassist Reggie Johnson and percussionist Rahied Ali; and his 1967 Fontana album "Juba-Lee" in a septet with Reggie Johnson, drummer Beaver Harris, pianist Dave Burrell, trombonist Grachan Moncur III & saxophonist Bennie Maupin.


John Zorn (Medeski / Grohowski / Hollenberg)
Beyond Good And Evil - Simulacrum Live
(Tzadik)

Merging heavy melodic jazz with tinges of heavy metal, John Zorn's Simulacrum trio of John Medeski on organ, Kenny Grohowski on drums, and Matt Hollenberg on guitar perform nine of Zorn's intense compositions in a beautifully recorded concert at the Firehouse 12 studio, the band's consummate playing and passion bringing power to Zorn's darkly exciting music.


Berlin Art Quartet (Schubert / Bauer / Muller / Bruggemann)
Live At B-Flat
(Unisono Records)

Inspired by and using the same instrumentation as John Tchicai's seminal 60's free jazz band New York Art Quartet, since 2013 the Berlin Art Quartet of Matthias Schubert on saxophone, Matthias Bauer on bass, Matthias Muller on trombone, and Reinhard Bruggemann on drums, has carried on the spirit of NY Free Jazz, here in a live concert at B-Flat, in Berlin in 2019.


Kaja Draksler Octet
Out For Stars
(Clean Feed)

After setting music for the poetry of Pablo Neruda and Andriana Minou (Gledalec), Slovenian pianist Kaja Draksler turns to the work of Robert Frost in a set of 7 sophisticated compositions, sung by Laura Polence & Bjork Nielsdottir in an improvising octet with reedists Ab Baars & Ada Rave, violinist George Dumitriu, bassist Lennart Heyndels and drummer Onno Govaert.


Patty Waters (w/ Greene / Pavone / Altschul)
An Evening In Houston
(Clean Feed)

The distinctively unique voice and unconventional stylings of Patty Waters bring a set of standards and folk songs to a live quartet session in Houston, Texas in 2018 with the stellar backup of Burton Greene on piano, Mario Pavone on bass, and Barry Altschul on drums, covering songs by Billy Holiday, Nat King Cole & Hank Williams along with a trio instrumental of Monk's "Off Minor".


Keune / Russell / Schneider / Lovens
Nothing Particularly Horrible (Live In Bochum '93)
(FMR)

Bringing together British and German free improvisers for this 1993 concert during the Ruhr Jazz Festival, the quartet of John Russell on guitar, Hans Schneider on bass, Paul Lovens on drums & percussion, and Stefan Keune on saxophones, find their convincing collective voice from previous pairings of the improvisers, including News from the Shed & Stefan Keune Trio.


Prevost / Solberg / Pettersen / Moore / Brice / Hardie-Bick
Plumes of Ash in Moonlight [2 CDs]
(Split Rock Records)

Bringing together two innovative improvising percussionists--Eddie Prevost of AMM fame, and Stale Liavik Solberg (VCDC, John Butcher)--for a studio album of wide-ranging and sometimes hair-raising electroacoustic improvisation, recorded live and unedited with Olie Brice on double bass, Tony Hardie-Bick on piano & tapes, Ed Pettersen on lap steel, and NO Moore on guitar.


Urs Leimgruber / Andreas Willers / Alvin Curran / Fabrizio Spera
Rome-ing
(Leo Records)

The long-running duo of saxophonist Urs Leimgruber and guitarist Andreas Willers are joined by percussionist Fabrizio Spera (Ossatura) and Alvin Curran (MEV) for a live performance at Casa del Jazz in Rome, merging avant jazz approaches with ea-improv through guitar effects and sampling, finding passion in explorative and unpredictable music of superb skill and intent.


Anahuac (Cogburn / Garcia / Schick)
Anahuac
(Astral Spirits)

Layered lowercase electroacoustic improv from the US / Mexico City / German trio of Chris Cogburn on percussion & electronics, Juan Garcia on double bass, and Ignaz Schick on turntables & electronics, eclectically informed by concrete sources and abstract electronics over Garcia's bass work and Cogburn's threshold-crossing acoustics & electronic percussion.


Noah Kaplan Quartet
Out Of The Hole
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

West Coast composer and saxophonist Noah Kaplan, associated with Anthony Coleman, David Tronzo, Peter Erskine, Rinde Eckert, Joe Morris, Mat Maneri, Joe Maneri, &c., here in his 3rd album with his Noah Kaplan Quartet, in a set of original compositions and one standard performed with Joe Morris (guitar), Giacomo Merega (electric bass) & Jason Nazary (drums, electronics).


Alex Ward
Frames
(Relative Pitch)

Originally a clarinetist, UK improviser Alex Ward began exploring the guitar in rock settings, first bringing the instrument to his improv work around the year 2000 with N.E.W. (w/ Steve Noble & John Edwards); this is his 1st solo guitar album, showing a wide range of styles that embrace improv, rock and compositional styles, a remarkable display of skill and creative drive.


Nate Wooley (Wooley / Sawyer / Halvorson / Alcorn)
Columbia Icefield
(Northern Spy)

With two guitarists--Mary Halvorson and Susan Alcorn on pedal steel--and Ryan Sawyer on drums, New York trumpeter explores the Rocky Mountains Columbia Icefield, the largest icefield in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, through sophisticated compositions and superbly illustrative sound, an exceptional album of improvisation and intention from four modern masters.


Martin Archer
Anthropology Band [2 CDs]
(Discus)

Inspired by the music of 70's Miles Davis electric work, composer and saxophonist Martin Archer presents 15 compositions performed in two parallel sessions over two CDs, the first in a septet that includes Corey Mwamba, Pat Thomas and Dave Sturt, and the second an extended ensemble with brass and wind sections, each bringing distinctive life to these inspired compositions.


Kuzu (Rempis / Dorji / Damon)
Purple Dark Opal
(Aerophonic)

In 2018 on their 2nd tour, the Kuzu trio of Dave Rempis on alto, tenor & baritone saxophones, Tashi Dorji on guitar, and Tyler Damon on drums, captured this, their 15th concert in the tour, at The Sugar Maple, in Milwaukee, an extended improvisation that lives up to its title in dark ruminations that reveal beauty and rare color through powerful and passionate playing.


Hands To (Jeph Jerman)
Scrine
(Notice Recordings)

Sound explorer and composer Jeph Jerman created the 11 pieces on this release while living in the Knob Hill neighborhood of Colorado Springs, using unusual recording techniques he refers to as "guerrilla recordings" like tossing tape decks off buildings or putting them inside running clothes dryers, inching tape manually over the heads, exploiting creative field recordings, &c. &c.


Toned (Corder / Suarez / Weeks)
The Private Sector
(Shhpuma)

Schizophrenically skronky improv of ea-cutups and semi-maniacal segments that resolve to near-stillness from the West Coast TONED trio of Nathan Corder on electronics, Leo Suarez on drums, and Tom Weeks on sax, using a nonlinear and nonhierarchical organizational process and multiple layers of compositional feedback loops to create unpredictably bizarre and overtly fun music.


Jean D. L. (w/ Hermant / Ranaldo / Young)
Forays
(Shhpuma)

A set of beautiful electro-acoustic compositions, dream-like and rich in details using sources of acoustic instruments, field recordings, guitar, electronics and voice, organized into hazy and beautiful reflections, with contributions from Margaret Hermant on xylophone & violin, Jeremy Young on electroncis, and Lee Ranaldo providing field recordings and voice.


Machinefabriek
Sahara Mixtape [CASSETTE+DOWNLOAD]
(Machinefabriek)

Rutger Zuydervelt, aka Machinefabriek, presents 33 pieces made for the score of the VPRO-produced documentary series Sahara, in which Bram Vermeulen explores political turmoil, social issues and cultural heritage in the Sahara region, here in a beautifully heterogenous album presenting upbeat rhythmic, melodic, and lyrical music balanced by moody dark sonic environments.


Amirtha Kidambi / Lea Bertucci
Phase Eclipse [CASSETTE + DOWNLOAD]
(Astral Spirits)

A wonderfully unique and idiosyncratic album of voice and electronics from the duo of Amirtha Kidambi and Lea Bertucci, in active and surprising pieces using word-less vocal expresion and abstract utterance, altered live by electronics as the two interact in complement and confluence; the final piece was captured live at NYC's The Kitchen.


Bruno Duplant / Pierre Gerard
Soleil Clandestin
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Five "Soleil Clandestin" soundscapes using abstract voice, guitar, electronics, field recordings & percussion from sound artists Bruno Duplant and Pierre Gerard, on the surface peaceful, minimal and using space and silence, but buried inside are disquieting additions through vocal abstractions placed in unusual position to the sound; curious and captivating.


Gen Montgomery Ken
Endogeny [CASSETTE]
(Tribe Tapes)

Sound and visual artist Gen Ken Montgomery released this album on cassette on the Directions Music label in 1990, here reissued in 2020; the two side-long pieces were performed live and then remixed, creating a fascinating and elaborate tapestry of tapes, concrete and mechanical sounds alongside instrumentation of percussion, violin, voice, &c.


Rutger Zuydervelt
Porcelain (soundtrack for the film by Jenneke Boeijink)
(Machinefabriek)

The soundtrack for Dutch/Belgium/Italian co-production "Porselein" (Porcelain), a psychological drama by Jenneke Boeijink, recorded with cellist Francesco Guerri and using a motif from Henry Purcell's "The Fairy Queen", the album release including 12 additional tracks; powerful, emotional and passionate music of great tension and brilliant performances from Guerri.


Polwechsel
Polwechsel
(Hat [now] ART)


Jocelyn Robert
Pandore
(Ambiances Magnetiques)

Jocelyn Robert's first release on Ambiances Magnetiques in a four-disc set that shows off his solo work and highlights the contributions from other artists who have worked with him through the years.


Elio Martusciello
To Extend the Visibility [PAL DVD]
(Recommended Records)

Beautifully packaged PAL DVD of 6 films by Elio Martusciello (Taxonomy) including two original texts by Tim Hodgkinson & Sebastiano Giacobello & visual works by Ester Curcio & Ale Sordi.


Eugene Chadbourne
The Secret of the Cooler / The Bird Cage
(Chadula)

Double CD reissue of 2 of Doc Chad's 80s cassettes, combining two extended compositions utilizing home overdubbing and homemade instruments, released in their entirety.


Bill Gould / Jared Blum
The Talking Book
(Koolarrow Records)

Gigante Sounds's Jared Blum and Faith No More bassist Bill Gould collaborate on this album of dark drones and grainy guitar, a tense and eerie album of dark beauty.


Carl Kruger
Loveday [3'' CDr]
(Bicephalic)

Abstract sound design from 910 Noise collective artist Carl Kruger, 5 tracks on a lovely 3" CD created through the processing of acoustic sound and electronics, a dynamic set of excellent compositions.


Illusion Of Safety
Children Of The Fear Of Truth [CASSETTE]
(Banned Production)

Los Angeles experimental sound artists Illusion of Safety (Daniel Burke-guitar, modular, samples; Mitch Enderle-dirty bass spring; Mark Klein-guitar; Mark Sorensen) in a 5 track cassette of ominous industrial sound, bridging free-form work with rhythmic passages.


Rydberg (Werner Dafeldecker / Nicolas Bussmann)
Rydberg
(Monotype)

Rydberg was a Swedish physicist with a moon crater named after him, here celebrated by the the duo of Nicholas Bussmann (sampler, electronics) and Werner Dafeldecker (function generator, electronics) in an album blending ambient electronics and muted, guiding rhythms.


Ryu Hankil / Noid / Matija Schellander and others
Foreign Correspondents [2 CDs]
(Mikroton Recordings)

In 2013 Noid and Matija Schellander travelled from Vienna to Asia to meet with an amazing set of sound artists, bringing compositions and recording new works that were assembled into these immersive compositions, presented in the chronological order they were created or recorded.


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 performances in real time, creating an exceptional and engrossing work.


Odd Person / Miguel A. Garcia
NOOSPHERTILIZER V [CASSETTE + ART BOOKLET]
(Aubjects)

A split cassette and art booklet from US sound artists August Traeger performing as Odd Person, and Spanish sound artist Miguel A. Garcia, presenting works of experimental electronic sound, both diverse and extensive journeys through unusual sonic worlds.


Klaxon Gueule
Ceci n'est pas [3 CDs]
(Sono Sordo)

Translating to "this is not", the experimental Montreal trio of Michel F. Cote, Alexandre St-Onge and Bernard Falaise have for 20 years experimented in sound, bridging rock, experimental and improvised forms, here in a 3-CD retrospective of studio works from the last 16 years with collaborators Jean Derome, Ellwood Epps, Sam Shalabi, Philippe Lauzier, and Christof Migone.


MIR 8 (Andrea Belfi / Werner Dafeldecker / Hilary Jeffery / Tim Wright)
Perihelion [VINYL]
(Shhpuma)

Mir 8 brings electroacoustic artists Andrea Belfi (drums/percussion), Werner Dafeldecker (electroncis, bass), Hilary Jeffrey (trombone) and Tim Wright (computer & electronics) together for their debut album of four cinematic tracks following an abstract narrative through panoramic landscapes.


HMS (Joe Houpert / Nathan McLaughlin / Erich Steiger)
Tetrad [CASSETTE + DOWNLOAD]
(Astral Spirits)

Blurring the lines between experimental music, improv, and composition, the trio of Joe Houpert, Nathan McLaughlin, and Erich Steiger use the studio to rework their improvisations, accenting aspects of the acoustic and electronic elements and morphing them in unexpected ways; "think Henry Flynt meets Cluster meets Revolutionary Ensemble".


David Myers Lee
Superpositions [CASSETTE with Download Code]
(Cronica)

David Lee Myers, AKA Arcane Device, explores feedback in its most beautiful forms, over decades developing systems to capture the microscopic edges of errant signals and convert them into lovely long tones, using a series of matrix mixers to manipulate them in real time, creating works of fragile charm, impressive interstices of rhythm, and gorgeous melodic nodes.


Alice Kemp
Fill My Body With Flowers And Rice [VINYL]
(Fragment Factory)

Sound composer and multi-disciplinary artist Alice Kemp's first full length vinyl album is a mysterious and beautifully paced release blending acoustic and electronic sources, field recordings, voice and inexplicable sound to create dream-like sonic environments, subtle and suggestive sound that contains clues of ritual, longing, and beauty.


Jason Zeh
A Series Of Objects [CASSETTE]
(Banned Production)

American sound artist Jason Zeh recorded these two extended works of drone and slowly evolving interpositions on the ruins of the Great Black Swamp in 2011 & 2012, each side a single work that initiates a rich sonic platform that ultimately shifts sinuously as new sounds dovetail each other, lulling the listener hypnotically, then furtively altering the environment.


Jurg Frey
Fields, Traces, Clouds
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Three compositions from clarinetist and Wandelweiser peer Jurg Frey, performed by Luke Martin on electric guitar, Laura Cetilia on cello, J.P.A. Falzone on piano, vibraphone, Morgan Evans on Weiler on violin, Jurg Frey on clarinet, composer; beautifully reflective music indicating Frey's working method and his relationship with wide, quiet sound spaces.


Eva-Maria Houben
Ensemble Works [2 CDS]
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Three detailed and fragile compositions from German minimalist composer Eva-Maria Houben reveal themselves over two CDs, performed by the Boston-based experimental music ensemble, Ensemble Ordinary Affects, with Houben herself on organ recording at Memorial Chapel, in Wesleyan University, CT: three movements from "echo fantasy"; "gesang XI"; and "unter anderen".


Catherine Lamb
Point/Wave
(Another Timbre)

The first piece composer Catherine Lamb has written specifically for acoustic guitar was commissioned by Chilean guitarist Christian Alvear, extending concepts from an installation piece titled "Secondary Rainbow" with Bryan Eubanks, Lamb employs electronics over an infinite cycle of four "environmental chords" which overlap and resonate with one another.


Morton Feldman (Philip Thomas)
Piano [5 CD BOX SET]
(Another Timbre)

Containing the majority of minimalist composer Morton Feldman's compositions for solo piano, 3 CDs of short works and 2 for the magnificent "For Bunita Marcus" and "Triadic Memories", performed by one of the foremost interpreters of Feldman's work, Philip Thomas, and presented in a sturdy 5-CD box set with a 52 page booklet of notes from the performer and artwork.


Tim Hodgkinson
Under The Void
(Recommended Records)

Three dynamic works for contemporary classical composition from Henry Cow founder Tim Hodgkinson, composed and assembled using a variety of techniques including live performance, in ensembles that include Hyperion Ensemble, Chris Cutler on percussion, Angharad Davies on violin, Mark Sanders on percussion and Yoni Silver on bass clarinet; extraordinary!


Kory Reeder
Love Songs / Duets
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)


Rishin Singh
Out From The Blinding White
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)


Andre Moller O. / Christoph Nicolaus / Rasha Ragab
Music For Stone Harps [2CDs]
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Christoph Nicolaus began working with the stone harp around 2007, a block of granite with a slanted top that is deeply notched to create fins that resemble a loaf of bread, played by "bowing" the sides with wet hands causing each to vibrate in unique and beautiful tones; this album collects 13 compositions & improvisations performed between 2008 and 2018, in rich and uniquely evocative sound.


Sivan Silver-Swartz
Untitled 6
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)


Urs Schneider Peter
Klavierwerke 1971 - 2015 [2 CDs]
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Four compositions for solo piano from Swiss composer Urs Peter Schneider, founder of Ensemble Neue Horizonte Bern, with four accompanying prose pieces with text in German from Schneider himself, Martin Luther, and Ita Wegman; unusual words to accompany Schneider's minimalist works of clear progressions, thoughtful direction and interesting concepts.


John Zorn (Lage / Frisell / Riley)
Virtue
(Tzadik)

Following up "Nove Cantici Per Francesco D'Assisi" with the three acoustic guitars of Bill Frisell, Gyan Riley and Julian Lage, "Virtue" is inspired by Julian of Norwich, one of the founders of Christian mysticism, portrayed through twelve succinct Zorn compositions of beautifully lyrical contrapuntal interplay and transcendental reflection.


Horatiu Radulescu
20 Jahre Inventionen
(Edition Rz)

Horatiu Radulescu's String Quartet No 4, opus 33 (1976-87) performed by the Arditti String Quartett at IRCAM/Centre Pompidou Paris in 1996.


James Tenney / Matthias Kaul
The Solo Works For Percussion
(Hat [now] ART)

Five works from composer James Tenney for solo percussion, performed by Matthias Kaul, plus one work for tape and percussion and one work for percussion and tape-delay-system with Rudiger Orth ("Deus Ex Machina").


Matthias Kaul
Solo Percussion
(Hat [now] ART)

Matthias Kaul performing percussion works recorded on using cymbalon, hurdy-gurdy, bicycle, telephone, voice, &c., with Stefan Romeyan providing and reciting his poetry on "Roma".


Tomasz Sikorski / Julius Eastman
Unchained
(Bolt)

Tomasz Sikorski (1939-1988) was a minimalist composer and pianist based in Warsaw; "Unchained" presents four works performed by pianists Emilia Sitarz, Bartek Wasik, Joanna Duda, and Mischa Kozlowski.


Tom Johnson
Counting Keys
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

John McAlpine performs composer Tom Johnson's beautiful piano cycle "Counting Keys", using mathematical progressions to create the structure of its 5 movements; plus 8 parts from his "Organ and Silence for Piano"; and two other compositions using mathematical processes.


Jurg Frey
String Quartet No. 3 / Unhorbare Zeit
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

Two works from composer Frey performed by Montreal's string ensemble Quatuor Bozzini: "String Quartet No. 3", a minimal work of colors, sensations, shadows, durations; and "Unhorbare Zeit" exploring durations without sound, or empty volumes, to achieve lucidity and transparency.


Dante Boon / Jurg Frey
clarinet (and piano)
(Another Timbre)

Three beautifully delicate works for Jurg Frey's clarinet, composed by the Amsterdam-based Wandelweiser composer/pianist Dante Boon, who has collaborated with Frey for several years and who accompanies Jurg on two of the pieces.


P.O.P. [Psychology Of Perception]
Ikebana
(FMR)

Fascinating sound and drone music from this interesting German ensemble led by Reinhold Friedl, "ikebana" takes its name from the tradition of Japanese flower arranging which dates back to the 7th century, with 8 tracks named as such: Shoka, Rikka, Nigeria and Morimono.


Christoph Schiller / Morgan Evans-Weiler
Spinet & Violin
(Another Timbre)

An extended improvisation between spinet player Christoph Schiller and Boston-based composer/violinist Morgan Evans-Weiler, recorded in Schiller's workshop in Basel during Evans-Weiler's tour of Europe, a slowly moving exploration of pitch, timbre and texture executed with intensive concentration and utterly impressive control.


Eva Houben Maria
Organ Sonatinas And Drones [2 CDs]
(Edition Wandelweiser Records)

American organist and composer Carson Cooman performs three sontatinas, each in three movements, and the 2014 work "drones", by German contemporary composer Eva Maria Houben, a member of the Wandelweiser group, all slowly evolving works of tone and subtle harmonics.


Chris Strickland
Excruciating... [CASSETTE]
(Notice Recordings)

Montreal composer Chris Strickland used strategies of "deliberate uncertainty" to direct these 3 pieces of minimized technique, narrative, and emotion, performed by Montreal musicians Guido del Fabbro on violin and Solomiya Moroz on flute, with field recordings creating a hazy ambiance over the slowly evolving works.


Raphael Roginski (feat. Olga Myslowska / Sebstian Witkowski)
plays Henry Purcell
(Bolt)

Polish guitarist Raphael Roginski presents works from baroque English composer Henry Purcell (1659-1695), considered one of the greatest English composers, performed on solo guitar and with accompaniment by Sebastian Witkowski on synth and Olga Myslowska on voice, a beautiful and languorous album that pays homage to the profound lasting qualities of Purcell's music.


Clara de Asis
Do Nothing
(Another Timbre)

Spanish composer and guitarist based in France, Clara de Asis performs her own work "Do Nothing" in 6 sections, an electroacoustic, minimal studio composition for guitar and percussion, in 3 movements using space between distinct sound events to let each take its own life, offset by 3 movements of rotating or ringing percussive sound and punctuation.


Jurg Frey / Magnus Granberg
Early to Late
(Another Timbre)

New ensemble pieces by Jurg Frey and Magnus Granberg played by Ensemble Grizzana, commissioned by Another Timbre with the request that both start from the same two fragments of early music, one by Johannes Ockeghem, the other by William Byrd, each composer producing fascinatingly different pieces that both contain echoes of the source material.


Eugene Chadbourne Contemporary Rock Band
Eugene's Treat Area
(Chadula)

Eugene Chadbourne's Contemporary Rock Band is a trio with bassist Jair-Rohm Parker Wells of Machine Gun fame, electronic harmonica master Steven De Bruyn of El Fish and The Rhythm Junks, and Doc Chad himself on electric & acoustic guitars, banjo and voice, in a well-recorded studio album of covers that range from rock, pop, psych, experimental, blues, and a unique cover of "Monk's Dream".


Das Rad (Archer / Robinson / Dinsdale)
Das Rad
(Discus)

Influenced by progressive rock, kosmiche, and fusion forms, the UK trio Das Rad of Nick Robinson on guitars & electronics, Martin Archer on sax, reeds, winds, keys and electronics, Steve Dinsdale on drums and percussion, and Julie Archer on voice, bringing 70s sounds to modern sensibilities and superb creative playing, a great achievement.


Eugene Chadbourne Contemporary Rock Band
Sounds Of The Now Generation
(Chadula)

Doc Chad took his Contemporary Rock Band, here as a quintet with Schroeder on drums, Fisten Titus Waldenfels on fiddle, Jan Fitsen on bass, and Marcello Del Bosco on drums, on a tour of Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Slovenia, Bulgaria, here presenting the best of the tour with recordings of Pink Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, plus a solo piece recorded on a vintage acoustic guitar.


Eugene Chadbourne
Country All The Way
(Chadula)

A mix of songs and instrumentals, with 11 country classic covers, recorded in the studio and on tour from 2017-2018 in Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Slovenia, and Bulgaria, and the UK including one track from Cafe Oto, in the company of Titus Waldenfels (guitar), Thilo Kuhn (keys), Schroeder (drums), Gary Cherwonka (pedal steel) and Steven De Bruyn (harmonica).


ZNR
The ZNRarchive Box [4 CDs]
(Recommended Records)

ZNR, the French trio of Hector Zazou, Joseph Racaille, and Patrick Portella, in a deluxe box set combining both of the official ZNR releases, "Barricades III" and "Traite de Mechanique Populaire" along with 2 CDs of additional released and unreleased material and a book of memories, histories, reflections, photographs, documents, interviews and other memorabilia.


Art Bears
Winter Songs
(Recommended Records)


Faust
BBC Sessions +
(Recommended Records)


Henry Cow
Vol. 9: Late
(Recommended Records)

Part of the Henry Cow boxset, now available for individual purchase, compiled from live recordings, radio transcription, or early recordings, remastered and presented to give a complete look at the history of Henry Cow.


Mako Sica / Hamid Drake
Ronda [CASSETTE + DOWNLOAD]
(Astral Spirits)

The long-running Chicago free-rock trio Mako Sica currently comprised of Przemyslaw Drazek (trumpet & guitar), Brent Fuscaldo (guitar) and Chaetan Newell (drums & piano) are joined by free improvising legend Hamid Drake on drum kit, tablas and frame drum for a beautiful and rich album of genre merging, spiritually warm, primarily instrumental music, inclusive and persuasive.


East of the Valley Blues (Kevin & Patrick Cahill)
Ressemblera [CASSETTE + DOWNLOAD]
(Astral Spirits)

Twin brothers Kevin and Patrick Cahill, AKA East of the Valley Blues, are a Toronto-based guitar duo who have released a series of albums blending country, folk and world approaches with a Fahey-esque overtone, here in an extended work of interactive playing that has a nearly telepathic feel in the give and take these two brothers bring to their instruments.


Eugene Chadbourne w/ Son of Shockabilly
Unreal Band
(Chadula)

Recorded the year before the first Shockabilly record in 1983, this live album with Eugene Chadbourne on electric guitar and vocals, plus Shockabilly-to-be and percussionist David Licht, and Tom Shepard taking Kramer's place on bass, as the trio take on country music, Hendrix, Beatles, Yardbirds, bring out The Rake, and otherwise twist up a set of great songs.


Geoff Leigh / Makoto Kawabata / Aogu Tanimoto
Live At Delsol Cafe
(Acid Mothers Temple)

Acid Mothers Temple guitarist Kawabata Makoto meets Henry Cow wind player, percussionist and sound artist Geoff Leigh, with Aogu Tanimoto on violin & synth, as they are captured live at Delsol Cafe, in Yahata, Japan, performing a spiritually psychedelic five-part improvisation merging acoustic and electronic instruments in unorthodox and fascinating ways.


Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Hallelujah Mystic Garden Part Two [VINYL][BLACK VERSION]
(Important Records)

The 2019 lineup of Japan's psychedelic rock band unleashes the 2nd part of their "Hallelujah Mystic Garden", revisiting the classic "Pink Lady Lemonade" in a disco-esque version that generates a universal groove of guitar riffs and synth swoops; side two adds a groove-heavy new work of kosmiche electronics, Makoto soloing, and hallucinatory vocals.


Elephant9
Psychedelic Backfire I
(Rune Grammofon)

The first of two "Psychedelic Backfire" concerts at Oslo's Kampen Bistro, taken from a 4 night residency by the Norwegian Elephant 9 rock trio of drummer Torstein Lofthus, bassist Nikolai Haengsle, and keyboardist Stale Storlokken, expanding on tracks from their excellent studio catalog in strongly lyrical and technically superb instrumental and improvised rock forms.


Elephant9 w/ Reine Fiske
Psychedelic Backfire II
(Rune Grammofon)

The second of two "Psychedelic Backfire"s, The Norwegian Elephant 9 improvising rock trio of drummer Torstein Lofthus, bassist Nikolai Haengsle, and keyboardist Stale Storlokken are joined by Dungen guitarist Reine Fiske for an exciting live concert at Kampen Bistro, in Oslo in 2019, the interaction of Fiske and Storlokken a fine example that prog rock is still a vital form.


Surplus 1980
Pigeon Obstacle Course
(Dephine Knormal Musik)

Created out of Sleepytime Gorilla Museum and drummer/percussionist Moe Staiano's Mute Socialite, this 7-piece improvising rock band turns rock on it's side in mostly instrumental, energetically complex and twisted rock pieces with acerbic social narrative, the band employing three drummers, bass & two guitars, piano and trumpet from Darren Johnston.


Henry Cow
The Henry Cow Box Redux: The Complete Henry Cow [17 CDs, 1 DVD, 250pg Book]
(Recommended Records)

The ultimate Henry Cow collection bringing together all of the 40th anniversary releases of this influential and innovative band, with all the remastered studio CDs, live CDs, Bonus CD, DVDs and booklets from each prior box, plus an additional 60 page booklet of band commentaries, pictures and other documents prepared specifically for this release, all in a sturdy & handsome box.


Krokofant w/ Stale Storlokken / Ingebrigt Haker Flaten
Q
(Rune Grammofon)

Bassist Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten (The Thing) and Stale Storlokken (Elephant9, Supersilent, Terje Rypdal) join the Nordic Krokofant trio of Axel Skalstad on drums, vibraphone, Tom Hasslan on guitar, and Jorgen Mathisen on saxophone for the band's 3rd album, performing the 4-part work "Q", an intense and sophisticated album of complex and passionate instrumental rock.


Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Minstrel In The Galaxy [VINYL + DOWNLOAD]
(RIOT SEASON)

First-ever vinyl release of this 2004 album, with a then-new quartet lineup of the band including the core trio of Makoto Kawabata (Guitar), Atsushi Tsuyama (monster bass), Hiroshi Higashi (guitar and effects), replacing Cotton Casino with drummer Hajime Koie from the band Mainliner, AMT creating an evolving psychedelic journey of touchstones & prog force.


Joe Morris
Perpetual Frontier The Properties of Free Music [BOOK]
(Riti Publishing)

Joe Morris wrote this book to discuss aspects of free music, including responses to his questionnaire written by Joe McPhee, William Parker, Jamie Saft, Ken Vandermark, Marilyn Crispell, Nate Wooley, Jack Wright, Matthew Shipp, &c.


Derek Bailey / Han Bennink / Evan Parker
Topographie Parisienne [4 CDs]
(Fou Records)

Recorded in 1981 by audio engineer and label owner Jean-Marc Foussat, the trio of guitarist Derek Bailey, saxophonist Evan Parker, and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Han Bennink are heard in an amazing evening of performance at 28 rue Dunois, in Paris, France, in duo and trio configurations, exploring material similar to Parker's "Topography of the Lungs"; essential.


Jimmy Giuffre 3 (w / Bley / Swallow)
Graz Live 1961
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

After introducing his new trio with pianist Paul Bley and double bassist Steve Swallow in two 1961 albums on Verve, clarinetist Jimmy Giuffre embarked on a tour of Europe, this recently discovered, well-recorded concert in Graf, Austria the perfect example of his unique concepts yielding intensely focused, harmonically challenging, rhythmically abstract, and exquisite chamber jazz.


Marion Brown
Capricorn Moon To Juba Lee (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Merging and remastering two essential albums from free jazz saxophonist Marion Brown: his 1966 ESP album "Marion Brown Quartet" with trumpeter Alan Shorter, bassist Reggie Johnson and percussionist Rahied Ali; and his 1967 Fontana album "Juba-Lee" in a septet with Reggie Johnson, drummer Beaver Harris, pianist Dave Burrell, trombonist Grachan Moncur III & saxophonist Bennie Maupin.


Albert Ayler Quartets
Spirits To Ghosts Revisited (remastered)
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Three variations of quartet settings from iconoclastic free jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler, remastering and combining two Debut Records albums, "Spirits" from 1964 with Norman Howard (trumpet), Sunny Murray (drums), and alternating bass between Henry Grimes & Earle Henderson; and 1965's "Ghosts" on Debut Records with Don Cherry (trumpet), Gary Peacock (bass), and Sunny Murray.


John Coltrane Quartet
Impressions Graz 1962
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Taking his quartet on a European tour in the fall of 1962, Coltrane's band with McCoy Tyner on piano, Jimmy Garrison on double bass, and Elvin Jones on drums performed in Graz, Austria at Stefaniensaal, the concert beautifully recorded by ORF Steiermark and here released as the first of two volumes, showing both Coltrane's lyrical origins and expanding free inclinations.


Morton Feldman (Philip Thomas)
Piano [5 CD BOX SET]
(Another Timbre)

Containing the majority of minimalist composer Morton Feldman's compositions for solo piano, 3 CDs of short works and 2 for the magnificent "For Bunita Marcus" and "Triadic Memories", performed by one of the foremost interpreters of Feldman's work, Philip Thomas, and presented in a sturdy 5-CD box set with a 52 page booklet of notes from the performer and artwork.


Albert Ayler Trio
1964 Prophecy Revisted
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

With the essential sidemen to express his unique voice and approach to free jazz, saxophonist Albert Ayler, double bassist Gary Peacock, and drummer Sunny Murray, recorded these sessions in 1964 for the ESP label as "Prophecy", this excellent reissue & remaster also adding the live "Albert Smiles with Sunny" (inRespect) from the same concert; essential.


Franz Koglmann Septet (w / Clark / Arcari / D'Agaro / Turkovic / Pasztor / Herbert)
Fruits Of Solitude
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

With a superb septet of improvisers also versed in contemporary music, trumpeter Franz Koglmann presents sophisticated compositions that interject the concept of "solitude" in the three-part title track, alongside Koglmann compositions and Jimmy Giuffre's "Finger Snapper", using striking orchestration of trumpet, sax, clarinet, bassoon, oboe, french horn, cello and double bass.


Tyshawn Sorey
Pillars [3 CDs]
(Firehouse 12 Records)

Drummer/percussionist, trombonist, pianist and importantly here, composer, Tyshawn Sorey in an amazing and ambitious work "Pillars", assembling an ensemble of virtuosic NY performers (Joe Morris, Todd Neufeld, Ben Gerstein, Stephen Hayes, Zach Rowden, Carl Test, Mark Helias) as he references Tibetan rituals, Stockhausen, and Anthony Braxton, and much more.


Marc Copland / Drew Gress / Joey Baron
And I Love Her
(Illusions/Mirage)

Brought together originally as the rhythm section for John Abercrombie, the trio of pianist Marc Copland, bassist Drew Gress and drummer Joey Baron have continued on as a performing trio, heard here in NYC for a lyrical set of standards, popular tunes, and originals including pieces by Coltrane, Hancock, Lennon-McCartney, Cole Porter, and John Abercrombie.


Sam Rivers / Cecil McBee / Norman Connors
Emanation (Sam Rivers archive sessions. Vol.1)
(NoBusiness)

The NoBusiness label initiates its Sam Rivers Archive Series with this CD of River's Loft-era trio. the leader on tenor & soprano saxophones, flute & Piano, Cecil McBee on bass and Norman Connors on drums, for two sets at a Jazz Workshop residency in Boston in the summer of 1971, a superb concert showing inspired group interaction and River's intense focus.


Sam Rivers / Joe Daley / Dave Holland / Barry Altschul / Charlie Persip
Zenith
(NoBusiness)

2nd in a projected 8-volume series of reed & wind player Sam Rivers archival recordings produced Ed Hazell and NoBusiness; "Zenith" is a masterful 1977 recording at Jazztage Berliner with Sam Rivers on sax, flute & piano, Joe Daley on tuba & euphonium, Dave Holland on bass &, cello, and Barry Altschul & Charlie Persip on drums, in an extended, diverse and exceptional set.


Angles 9
Beyond Us
(Clean Feed)

Now a distinct edition of saxophonist Martin Kuchen's concept, the Angles 9 ensemble is captured live at the Zomer Jazz Fiets Tour in The Netherlands in 2018, performing Kuchen's embraceable and lyrical compositions, allowing his masterful band--including Magnus Broo, Johan Berthling, Mattias Stahl, &c.--great opportunities for collective playing and profound soloing.


Taylor Bynum Ho 9-tette
The Ambiguity Manifesto
(Firehouse 12 Records)

Grown from a sextet to this 9-tette, cornetist/composer Taylor Ho Bynum's ensemble brings together some of the finest improvisers from the Boston and New York scenes for compositions that merge orchestration and allow flexibility in interpretation, as heard in these 7 lyrical pieces, the last 3 turning the first 3 on their heads in reworked, expanded versions.


Evan Parker / Kinetics (Anderskove / Melbye / Vestergaard)
Chiasm
(Clean Feed)

Performing live at The Vortex in London and live at the DKDM studio in Copenhagen, legendary UK saxophonist Evan Parker joins Swedish pianist Jacob Anderskov's trio Kinetics with Adam Pultz Melbye on bass and Anders Vestergaard on drums, recording these four masterful improvisations of full-force momentum, concentration, exploration and exultation.


Sun Ra Arkestra
Heliocentric Worlds 1 and 2
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The two volumes of "Heliocentric Worlds", recorded 7 months apart in 1965, represent perhaps one of greatest chapters in Sun Ra's legacy, bringing together his immense orchestration skills with future-leaning free jazz, allowing his players expanse inside disciplined compositions that reflect on both space and the then-new freedom explored by jazz soloists.


Mario Pavone Dialect Trio
Philosophy
(Clean Feed)

Three in-demand New York improvisers--Mario Pavone on double bass, Matt Mitchell on piano, and Tyshawn Sorey on drums-- recording in the studio in one of the premiere spaces in the Metropolitan area, Firehouse 12, resulting in this profoundly authoritatve piano trio album, with five Pavone original compositions, two from Annette Peacock, and one collective improv.


Matthew Shipp
Invisible Light, Live Sao Paulo
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Captured live at the 2016 Jazz at the Factory Festival in Sao Paulo, this addition to New York pianist Matthew Shipp's catalog finds the masterful player presenting his own compositions like "Symbol Systems", "Gamma Ray" or "Invisible" light alongside unique takes on "Angel Eyes", "On Green Dolphin Street", "Yesterdays" and "Summertime".


Mark Dresser Seven (Nicole Mitchell / Ehlrlich / GoGwilt / Dessen / White / Black / McLagan)
Ain't Nothing But A Cyber Coup & You
(Clean Feed)

The 2nd album for East/West Coast double bassist and composer Mark Dresser's Seven band, in a diverse set of lyrically intricate Dresser compositions using unusual and compelling rhythmic structures, with Nicole Mitchell on flute, Marty Ehrlich on clarinets & sax, Keir GoGwilt on violin, Michael Dessen on trombone, Joshua White on piano, and Jim Black on drums.


From Wolves To Whales (Rempis / Wooley / Niggenkemper / Corsano)
Strandwal [2 CDs]
(Aerophonic)

The 2nd release from the quartet of cutting edge improvisers--Nate Wooley on trumpet, Dave Rempis on saxophone, Pascal Niggenkemper on bass, and Chris Corsano on drums--presents a complete concert during their Fall 2017 European tour, performing in the city of Haarlem near Amsterdam in a wide-ranging concert of incredible technique and intrepid playing.


Brotzmann / Schlippenbach / Bennink
Fifty Years After... Live at the Lila Eule 2018
(Trost Records)

50 years after saxophonist Peter Brotzmann's Octet recorded the legendary "Machine Gun" album, the trio of Berlin pianist, composer Alexander von Schlippenbach and Dutch percussionist Han Bennink commemorated the album at Lila Eule in Bremen, the concert heard here so successful that the trio decided to release the album and continue on as a working trio.


Anthony Braxton (w/ Nels Cline, Greg Saunier, Taylor Ho Bynum)
Quartet (New Haven) 2014 [4 CDs]
(Firehouse 12 Records)

A 4-CD box set documenting the meeting of a quartet featuring saxophonist, composer and conceptualist Anthony Braxton alongside improvising guitarist and Wilco star Nels Cline, drummer and Deerhoof founder Greg Saunier, and trumpeter Taylor Ho Bynum, each CD an hour-long, wide-ranging set leaving behind genre imitations as they perform Braxton's colorful graphic score.


Kimmig-Studer-Zimmerlin and George Lewis
S/T
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

The innovative string trio of Daniel Studer on double bass, Harald Kimmig on violin, and Alfred Zimmerlin on cello, develop focused environments of timbre, texture, dynamic and space, seemingly abstract yet incredibly concentrative and virtuosic interaction, here joined by Chicago trombonist and electronics artist George Lewis adding a 4th profound layer to their incredible conversation.


Joe McPhee / Lol Coxhill / Chris Corsano / Evan Parker
Tree Dancing
(Otoroku)

A 2010 recording at London's Cafe Oto by the London / New York quartet of Lol Coxhill on soprano saxophone, Evan Parker on saxophones, Joe McPhee on saxophones, and Chris Corsano on drums & percussion, with McPhee introducing the set and starting with a tribute to Ornette Coleman, as the four perform seven intense "dances" as duos, trios and full quartet.


Nate Wooley
Battle Pieces 4
(Relative Pitch)

"Battle Pieces" uses trumpeter Nate Wooley's "social music" system, where each piece is constructed for a soloist who improvises with no score while the remaining player choose at will from over 75 compositions over which the soloist must find their path; here at Roulette in NYC with Nate Wooley, Sylvie Courvoisier, Ingrid Laubrock, & Matt Moran.


Paul Dunmall Sun Ship Quartet (Skidmore / Kjaer / Solberg / Wastell)
John Coltrane 50Th Memorial Concert At Cafe Oto [2 CDs]
(Confront)

A stellar line-up commemorateing the 50th anniversary of John Coltrane's passing, showcasing Paul Dunmall's blistering Coltrane-influenced quartet together with special guest, lifelong Coltrane devotee saxophonist Alan Skidmore, and also marking the premiere performance of the newly formed international trio of Julie Kjaer (DK), Mark Wastell (GB) and Stale Liavik Solberg (NOR).


Baczkowski / Lopez / Corsano
Old Smoke
(Relative Pitch)

This smoking album of free jazz leads the New York trio of Steve Baczkowski on saxophone, Brandon Lopez on bass, and Chris Corsano on drums to fiery playing as they burn up the stage at Hallwall, in Buffalo, New York in 2018, over seven concise collective conversations expressing both passion, restraint, and profoundly masterful skill.


ICP Tentet
Tetterettet
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

10 years after drummer Han Bennink, pianist Misha Mengelberg, and saxophonist Willem Breuker formed the ICP co-op, Bennink & Mengelberg formed this 10-piece "Tetterettet", an all-star international group including Peter Brotzmann, Tristan Honsinger, John Tchicai, this their first incredible and far-ranging album, remastered and available on CD for the first time.


Satoko Fujii / Ramon Lopez
Confluence
(Libra)

Having played in trio settings before, pianist Satoko Fujii and Spanish drummer Ramon Lopez seized the opportunity to record as a duo in the studio in NY, bringing just two Fujii compositions to guide them, they began freely improvising, creating this stunning album of elegant interaction, peaceful yet detailed, intuitively beautiful and sophisticated music.


Charles Gayle / John Edwards / Mark Sanders
Seasons Changing [2 CDs]
(Otoroku)

Recorded at Cafe Oto in London in 2017, legendary NY free jazz saxophonist Charles Gayle is joined by masterful free improvisers John Edwards on double bass and Mark Sanders for two live sets, released here in a limited 2-CD album, presenting the fire and range of all three players, from full-on aggressive and confrontational playing to deeply introspective.


Tomeka Reid / Kyoko Kitamura / Tyler Ho Bynum / Joe Morris
Geometry Of Distance
(Relative Pitch)

Following their debut album, "Geometry of Caves", the quartet of improvising musicians Joe Morris (guitar), Tomeka Reid (cello), Taylor Ho Bynum (cornet) and Kyoko Kitamura (voice) return for this album of passionate free improvisation, here even more attuned as a group as they employ their collective language using unusual technique and incredible expertise; spectacular!


Satoko Fujii / Orchestra New York
Entity
(Libra)

Satoko Fujii leads her 13-piece big band through 5 thrilling and insightful compositions with a who's-who of NY improvisation: Nels Cline (guitar), Ches Smith (drums), Joe Fiedler & Curt Hasselbring (drums), Oscar Noriega, Ellery Eskelin, Briggan Krauss, Andy Laster & Tony Malaby (sax), Herb Robertson, Natsuki Tamura & Dave Ballou (trumpet) & bassist Stomu Takeishi; wow!


Rob Mazurek
Desert Encrypts Vol. 1
(Astral Spirits)

The third volume in trumpeter Rob Mazurek's Marfa Trilogy, inspired by the desert surroundings of Marfa, TX where Mazurek held his first Desert Encrypts Festival, this album captured live with the superb quartet of Kris Davis on piano, Chad Taylor on drums, and Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten on bass, for 6 passionate and compelling works of modern jazz.


Joe Morris
Instantiation: Paradoxical
(Glacial Erratic)

One part of New York improvising guitarist and composer Joe Morris' "Instantiation" project, where each part is uniquely composed with specific notated and operational components making each impossible to perform the same way twice, here in a studio recording with clarinetist Dan O'Brien, bassist Brad Barrett, and violinist Elinor Speirs.


Kuzu (Rempis / Dorji / Damon)
Purple Dark Opal
(Aerophonic)

In 2018 on their 2nd tour, the Kuzu trio of Dave Rempis on alto, tenor & baritone saxophones, Tashi Dorji on guitar, and Tyler Damon on drums, captured this, their 15th concert in the tour, at The Sugar Maple, in Milwaukee, an extended improvisation that lives up to its title in dark ruminations that reveal beauty and rare color through powerful and passionate playing.


Tomeka Reid / Filippo Monaco
The Mouser
(Relative Pitch)

Tomeka Reid is a Chicago based cellist, composer and free improviser, versed in classical and jazz contexts, here in a duo with Italian drummer Filippo Monaco recording in his studio in Milano, a lively conversation of extended acoustic improvisation using diverse techniques and approaches with an arsenal of percussive instruments; impressive and engaging.


Susan Alcorn / Joe McPhee / Ken Vandermark
Invitation To A Dream
(Astral Spirits)

An excellent album of informed free improvisation in the debut of this masterful trio of legendary musicians spread across the US--Joe McPhee on soprano sax & pocket trumpet [NY], Ken Vandermark on tenor sax & clarinet [Chicago], and Susan Alcorn on pedal steel guitar [Texas], a profound album from assertive to introspective playing in seven captivating collective improvisations.


Eve Risser
Apres Un Reve
(Clean Feed)

A remarkably varied and unique approach to prepared piano that French pianist Eve Risser refers to as "piano droit", heard in her performance at FGO Barbara, in Paris on an upright piano, chosen for its specific mechanical qualities that allow Risser to generate a surprising amount of rhythmic variety, as she performs a single work mixing composed and improvised elements.


Agusti Fernandez Trio (w. William Parker / Susie Ibarra)
One Night At The Joan Miro Foundation
(Listen! Foundation (Fundacja Sluchaj!))

A formidable meeting of three powerhouses of modern creative improvisation of diverse backgrounds -- Filipina-American drummer/percussionist Susie Ibarra, legendary New York bassist William Parker, and Spanish pianist Agusti Fernandez, in a spirited, masterful and stunning live performance at the Joan Miro Foundation in Barcelona recorded in 1998.


Richard Pinhas / Tatsuya Yoshida
Ascension
(Magaibutsu Limited)

The collaboration between Magaibutsu label leader, Yoshida Tatsuya (Ruins, Korekyojinn, Koenji, The World Heritage, &c) on drums, keyboards & voice, and Heldon mastermind Richard Pinhas on guitar & effects, continues with this CD of live material from their 2014 Japanese tour, extending the 2015 "Live in Japan" album, including the 8-part "Ascension".


Marco von Orelli / Tommy Meier / Luca Sisera / Sheldon Suter
Lotus Crash
(ezz-thetics by Hat Hut Records Ltd)

Trumpeter Marco von Orelli's piano-less quartet with Tommy Meier on tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, Luca Sisera on double bass, and Sheldon Suter on drums is caught live at Theater am Gleis, in Winterthur, Switzerland in 2018, and at Boudoir au Revoir, the same year, performing von Orelli's compellingly clever compositions, plus one each from Adam lane and Tommy Meier.


NYUK (Nasuno / Yoshida / Uchihashi / Nasuki)
NYUK
(Magaibutsu)

An extension of the Korekyojinn band of Nasuno Mitsuru, Yoshida Tatsuya, and Kido Natsuki, by adding guitarist Uchihashi Kazuhisa (Altered States, Ground Zero, Innocent Records), for eight intense improvisations recorded at Shinjuku Pit Inn, Tokyo in 2013, a startling album of jaw-dropping polyrhythmic, avant rock interaction and intention; spectacular.


Toh-Kichi (Satoko Fujii / Tatsuya Yoshida)
Baikamo
(Libra)

The duo of Japanese improvisers, pianist Satoko Fujii and drummer Tatsuya Yoshida, continue their collaborations which includes many albums with the Satoko Fujii Quartet, their duo "Erans" record on Tzadik, and the original "Toh-Kichi" album on Victo, here in a new studio album of intricate, energetic and ebullient improvised dialogs, named for the aquatic flower "Baikamo".


Mary Halvorson
Code Girl [2 CDs]
(Firehouse 12 Records)

Always open to new approaches, NY guitarist Mary Halvorson takes her trio with drummer Tomas Fujiwara and bassist Michael Formanek, adds trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire and, in a twist of the thumbscrew, vocalist Amirtha Kidambi, for a mix of song and instrumental pieces that balance jazz and rock sensibilities with lyricism, intricate lines, and creative spirit.


James Lewis Brandon (Lewis / Branch / Stewart / Pirog / Crudup III)
An Unruly Manifesto
(Relative Pitch)

New York tenor saxophonist James Brandon Lewis leads a quintet with Jaimie Branch on trumpet, Luke Stewart on bass, Anthony Pirog on guitar, and Warren Trae Crudup III on drums, in a free jazz album dedicated to Charlie Haden & Ornette Coleman and Surrealism, modern creative music with one foot planted in the 70s and one in the 2010s.


Julius Eastman / Apartment House
Femenine
(Another Timbre)

A live recording of Julius Eastman's 1974 work "Femenine" performed by Apartment House led by cellist Anton Lukoszevieze, with Simon Limbrick on vibraphone, Kerry Yong on piano, Mark Knoop on keyboard, Mira Benjamin on violin, and Gavin Morrison and Emma Williams on flute, an ecstatic and intricate work using a repeating figure contrasted with both asynchronous and complementing backgrounds.


The Fictive Five (Ochs / Wooley / Filiano / Niggenkemper / Eisenstadt)
Anything Is Possible
(Clean Feed)

A tour-de-force of modern creative jazz from the quintet of Larry Ochs on tenor & sopranino saxophones, Nate Wooley on trumpet, Ken Filiano on bass & effects, Pascal Niggenkemper on bass & effects, and Harris Eisenstadt on drums, the familiar history of the musicians and the staggering skill of each bearing out the album's title, in 2 collective and 3 Ochs compositions.


Tiger Trio (Leandre / Melford / Mitchel)
Map of Liberation
(RogueArt)

Born from the duo of Chicago flutist Nicole Mitchell and French bassist Joelle Leandre ("Sisters Where") and brought together by Myra Melford, this is the 2nd album from their Tiger Trio formation, joining profound skill, unusual creative intent, ferociously authoritative conversation, shrewd wit, and an innate sense of balance to 11 succinct collective improvisations.


Evan Parker / Barry Guy / Paul Lytton
Concert In Vilnius
(NoBusiness)

Three British free jazz giants, having worked in a number of configurations and as a trio over many decades, are caught live in the Russian Drama Theater during the 2017 Vilnius Jazz Festival--Evan Parker on soprano & tenor saxophones, Barry Guy on bass, and Paul Lytton on drums, for four improvisations of nuance and surprise, incredible mastery, and profound conversation.