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© 2002-2018, Squidco LLC
  Top Lists by Customer Orders
See 2017 Top Sellers and Staff Lists

See 2016 Top Sellers and Staff Top Lists

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.


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.


Boneshaker (Williams / Nilssen-Love / Kessler)
Fake Music
(Soul What Records)

Masterful, fervent free jazz from trans-Atlantic trio of Mars Williams on saxophones, Kent Kessler on bass, and Paal Nilssen-Love on drums, captured live at Elastic Arts, in Chicago in 2017 for three impressive collective improvisations of intense energy, articulate and extended expression, and ecstatic improvisation in an exceptional and cohesive concert.


Luis Vicente / Vasco Trilla
A Brighter Side Of Darkness
(Clean Feed)

Starting from silence, the improvisations on this collective and fully spontaneous album from trumpeter Luis Vicente and percussionist Vasco Trilla never reaches cathartic crescendo, but as only skilled innovators such as they can do, they captivate the listener in other-worldly environments of advanced technique and profound intention; engrossing and ineffable.


The Selva (Jacinto / Almeida / Morao)
Canicula Rosa
(Clean Feed)

The 2nd album from the Portuguese trio of cellist Ricardo Jacinto, double bassist Goncalo Almeida, and drummer Nuno Morao, blending free jazz and freely improvised music using effect pedals and electronic devices to expand their collective improvisations, textured playing influenced by folk melodies and an experimental post-rock bent; mesmerizing and passionate.


Nicola Hein L.
The Oxymothastic Objectar
(Shhpuma)

Using an electric guitar, preparations, and objects as a tool of reflection, Nicola L. Hein presents an album of philosophical bent, about the question of skepticism in music, or a skeptical form of improvisation, through tumultuous playing of impressive technique caught live at Spectrum in NYC, as each track title presents observations or questions that Hein seeks to resolve.


Mike Gennaro / Alex Ward
Running for Trains
(Confront)

Three separate live recordings from Hamburg, Gottingen and Berlin, Germany from the duo of Canadian drummer Mike Gennaro and UK clarinettist & electric guitarist Alex Ward, during their 5-stop November 2017 tour crossing Germany by train, selecting six of Gennaro's well captured recordings from their most interesting, exciting or innovative improvisations; exceptional!


Devin Gray / Ellery Eskelin / Michael Formanaek / Dave Ballou
Dirigo Rataplan II
(Rataplan Records)

Brooklyn drummer Devin Gray leads 3 musicians with Baltimore ties--Ellery Eskelin (sax), Dave Ballou (trumpet) and Michael Formanek (bass)--the rhythm team of this chord-less quartet providing the perfect platform for the diverse song structures in Gray's compositions, through tight melodic interaction or unrestricted excursions for the horn section; superb modern jazz.


John Cage Meets Sun Ra
John Cage Meets Sun Ra - The Complete Film [7" + DVD]
(Modern Harmonic)


Spring Roll (Helary / Mayot / Rayon / Lemetre / Davis)
Episodes
(Clean Feed)

Picking up from flutist Sylvaine Helary's 2015 Ayler release "Spring Roll/Printemps", this evolved album of chamber jazz performed with Hugues Mayot on saxophone & clarinet, Antonin Rayon on piano & Moog, Sylvain Lemetre on vibes & percussions, and Kris Davis on piano, presents sophisticated compositions from Helary, Davis, Rayon Dan Blake, and Matt Mitchell.


Arild Andersen / Clive Bell / Mark Wastell
Tales Of Hackney
(Confront)

World instrumentation of shakuhachi, thai flute, shinobue, thai mouth organ, and shruti box blends with western orchestration of double bass, percussion and electronics as Clive Bell, Arild Andersen, and Mark Wastell come together in the studio after their well-received concert at Cafe Oto in London to develop these beautifully lyrical improvisations.


Matthew Shipp Trio / Nicole Mitchell
All Things Are
(RogueArt)

Chicago and New York come together in Brooklyn to record this excellent encounter between pianist Matthew Shipp and flutist Nicole Mitchell, with Michael Bisio on bass and Newman Taylor Baker on drums, bridging exciting free playing with strong lyrical elements, balancing kinetically exuberant interaction with introspective and dark moments; inspired and masterful.


Stephan Crump / Ingrid Laubrock / Cory Smythe
Channels
(Intakt)

The NY trio of Stephan Crump on acoustic bass, Ingrid Laubrock on tenor & soprano saxophones, and Cory Smythe on piano follow-up to their "Planktonic Finales" album with this live album recorded at the Unerhort!-Festival in Zurich in 2017, in a lyrically free album of solid compositional structures that result in warmly creative and singular jazz.


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.


Satoko Fujii
Stone
(Libra)

A stunning solo album working inside and outside of the piano and coaxing electronic response from the strings from pianist Satoko Fujii, caputered at Samurai Hotel in NY in September of 2018, and in the studio in Brooklyn three months later, during her prolific 60th "kanreki" birthday year, here in 15 dynamic and far-ranging improvisations revealing her depth and creative powers.


Guillotine (Lopes / Ceccaldi / Wildhagen)
Guillotine
(Clean Feed)

Recalling the French Revolution, Portuguese guitarist Luis Lopes joins forces with French cellist Valentin Ceccaldi and Norwegian drummer Andreas Wildhagen as they slice through complex electric improvisation in a triptych for Marie Antoinette, ending in a Robespierre-like reign of terror "Orgasmic Dance"; muscular, convoluted, unsettling and exultant.


Carlos Bica / Daniel Erdmann / Dj Illvibe
I Am The Escaped One
(Clean Feed)

Portugese double bassist Carlos Bica joins forces with German saxophonist Daniel Erdmann and turntablist DJ Illvibe, the son of pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach, for a unique album of improvisation blending experimental and jazz approaches with substantive layers of genre-blending from Illvibe's record arsenal, all handled with accessible control and lyrical sophistication.


Matthias Spillmann Trio (Spillmann / Lang / Baumgartner)
Live At The Bird's Eye Jazz Club
(Clean Feed)

Matthias' Spillmann's Trio with the leader on trumpet and flugelhorn, Swiss drummer Mortiz Baumgartner and Danish Bassist Andreas Lang are caught live at Bird's Eye Jazz Club, in Basel Switzerland in 2017 for a lyrical and informed album of hard bop, seminal free jazz and jazz standards, including pieces by Ornette Coleman, Billy Strayhorn, Joe Lavano, and William C. Handy.


Satoko Fujii ma-do
Heat Wave
(Libra)

Satako Fujii's 2008 release introducing her then new ma-do quartet of Satoko Fujii on piano, Natsuki Tamura on trumpet, Akira Horikoshi on drums, and late bassist Norikatsu Koreyasu, the band name signifying "window" and "the silence between notes", in an album of superb, lively, eclectic and absolutely exciting improvisation from 9 original Fujii compositions.


Anthony Braxton / Quartet
(Santa Cruz) 1993 1st Set [REPRESS]
(Hatology)

Reissuing and remastering saxophonist Anthony Braxton's stellar release documenting his 1993 live performance with Marilyn Crispell on piano, Mark Dresser on bass, and Gerry Hemingway on percussion & marimba, demanding collective improvisation from masterful players.


In the Sea (Tristan Honsinger / Nicolas Caloia / Joshua Zubot)
Forks and Spoons
(Creative Sources)

With two magnificent albums and more than 100 concert performances, the masterful dialog from this working string trio of Canadian, European and American players--Tristan Honsinger on cello and voice; Joshua Zubot, on violin; Nicolas Caloia on double bass--is evident in their thrilling exchanges and dynamic approaches to both rapid and reflective improvisation.


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.


Daniel Carter / Watson Jennison / William Parker / Federico Ughi
Live! Volume 1: Erie [VINYL]
(577)

Working together in tours and recording since 2005, the NY trio of multi-reedist and wind player Daniel Carter, bassis William Parker and drummer/percussionist Federico Ughi are joined by saxophonist Watson Jennison also on flute, recorder and keyboards for this enlightened album of modern and transcendent jazz in a limited, remastered LP edition with bonus material.


Anthony Braxton
GTM (Syntax) 2017 [12 CD BOX SET]
(New Braxton House/Firehouse 12 Records)

LAST COPIES! A 12-hour collection over 12 CDs of composer Anthony Braxton's Ghost Trance Music (GTM), a compositional system he developed with his superlative Tri-Centric Vocal Ensemble, GTM allowing the ensemble to generate a performance in real time in a mix of sung, spoken, and non-verbal utterances, with unpredictable and surprising results that reveal fascinating layers with each listen.


Makoto Kawabata / Geoff Leigh
Spatial Roots
(Acid Mothers Temple)

A live recording of the first encounter between Henry Cow/Radar Favourites/Ex-Wise Heads reed, wind and electronic artist Geoff Leigh and Acid Mother Temple guitarist and solo artist Kawabata Makoto, performing at Urbanguild, in Kyoto, Japan, in 2014 for a set of electronic, psychedelic improvisation of great detail using a vast arsenal of experimental approaches.


Boneshaker (Williams / Nilssen-Love / Kessler)
Fake Music
(Soul What Records)

Masterful, fervent free jazz from trans-Atlantic trio of Mars Williams on saxophones, Kent Kessler on bass, and Paal Nilssen-Love on drums, captured live at Elastic Arts, in Chicago in 2017 for three impressive collective improvisations of intense energy, articulate and extended expression, and ecstatic improvisation in an exceptional and cohesive concert.


Luis Vicente / Vasco Trilla
A Brighter Side Of Darkness
(Clean Feed)

Starting from silence, the improvisations on this collective and fully spontaneous album from trumpeter Luis Vicente and percussionist Vasco Trilla never reaches cathartic crescendo, but as only skilled innovators such as they can do, they captivate the listener in other-worldly environments of advanced technique and profound intention; engrossing and ineffable.


The Selva (Jacinto / Almeida / Morao)
Canicula Rosa
(Clean Feed)

The 2nd album from the Portuguese trio of cellist Ricardo Jacinto, double bassist Goncalo Almeida, and drummer Nuno Morao, blending free jazz and freely improvised music using effect pedals and electronic devices to expand their collective improvisations, textured playing influenced by folk melodies and an experimental post-rock bent; mesmerizing and passionate.


Nicola Hein L.
The Oxymothastic Objectar
(Shhpuma)

Using an electric guitar, preparations, and objects as a tool of reflection, Nicola L. Hein presents an album of philosophical bent, about the question of skepticism in music, or a skeptical form of improvisation, through tumultuous playing of impressive technique caught live at Spectrum in NYC, as each track title presents observations or questions that Hein seeks to resolve.


Mike Gennaro / Alex Ward
Running for Trains
(Confront)

Three separate live recordings from Hamburg, Gottingen and Berlin, Germany from the duo of Canadian drummer Mike Gennaro and UK clarinettist & electric guitarist Alex Ward, during their 5-stop November 2017 tour crossing Germany by train, selecting six of Gennaro's well captured recordings from their most interesting, exciting or innovative improvisations; exceptional!


Devin Gray / Ellery Eskelin / Michael Formanaek / Dave Ballou
Dirigo Rataplan II
(Rataplan Records)

Brooklyn drummer Devin Gray leads 3 musicians with Baltimore ties--Ellery Eskelin (sax), Dave Ballou (trumpet) and Michael Formanek (bass)--the rhythm team of this chord-less quartet providing the perfect platform for the diverse song structures in Gray's compositions, through tight melodic interaction or unrestricted excursions for the horn section; superb modern jazz.


Spring Roll (Helary / Mayot / Rayon / Lemetre / Davis)
Episodes
(Clean Feed)

Picking up from flutist Sylvaine Helary's 2015 Ayler release "Spring Roll/Printemps", this evolved album of chamber jazz performed with Hugues Mayot on saxophone & clarinet, Antonin Rayon on piano & Moog, Sylvain Lemetre on vibes & percussions, and Kris Davis on piano, presents sophisticated compositions from Helary, Davis, Rayon Dan Blake, and Matt Mitchell.


Arild Andersen / Clive Bell / Mark Wastell
Tales Of Hackney
(Confront)

World instrumentation of shakuhachi, thai flute, shinobue, thai mouth organ, and shruti box blends with western orchestration of double bass, percussion and electronics as Clive Bell, Arild Andersen, and Mark Wastell come together in the studio after their well-received concert at Cafe Oto in London to develop these beautifully lyrical improvisations.


Matthew Shipp Trio / Nicole Mitchell
All Things Are
(RogueArt)

Chicago and New York come together in Brooklyn to record this excellent encounter between pianist Matthew Shipp and flutist Nicole Mitchell, with Michael Bisio on bass and Newman Taylor Baker on drums, bridging exciting free playing with strong lyrical elements, balancing kinetically exuberant interaction with introspective and dark moments; inspired and masterful.


Stephan Crump / Ingrid Laubrock / Cory Smythe
Channels
(Intakt)

The NY trio of Stephan Crump on acoustic bass, Ingrid Laubrock on tenor & soprano saxophones, and Cory Smythe on piano follow-up to their "Planktonic Finales" album with this live album recorded at the Unerhort!-Festival in Zurich in 2017, in a lyrically free album of solid compositional structures that result in warmly creative and singular jazz.


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.


Satoko Fujii
Stone
(Libra)

A stunning solo album working inside and outside of the piano and coaxing electronic response from the strings from pianist Satoko Fujii, caputered at Samurai Hotel in NY in September of 2018, and in the studio in Brooklyn three months later, during her prolific 60th "kanreki" birthday year, here in 15 dynamic and far-ranging improvisations revealing her depth and creative powers.


Guillotine (Lopes / Ceccaldi / Wildhagen)
Guillotine
(Clean Feed)

Recalling the French Revolution, Portuguese guitarist Luis Lopes joins forces with French cellist Valentin Ceccaldi and Norwegian drummer Andreas Wildhagen as they slice through complex electric improvisation in a triptych for Marie Antoinette, ending in a Robespierre-like reign of terror "Orgasmic Dance"; muscular, convoluted, unsettling and exultant.


Carlos Bica / Daniel Erdmann / Dj Illvibe
I Am The Escaped One
(Clean Feed)

Portugese double bassist Carlos Bica joins forces with German saxophonist Daniel Erdmann and turntablist DJ Illvibe, the son of pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach, for a unique album of improvisation blending experimental and jazz approaches with substantive layers of genre-blending from Illvibe's record arsenal, all handled with accessible control and lyrical sophistication.


Matthias Spillmann Trio (Spillmann / Lang / Baumgartner)
Live At The Bird's Eye Jazz Club
(Clean Feed)

Matthias' Spillmann's Trio with the leader on trumpet and flugelhorn, Swiss drummer Mortiz Baumgartner and Danish Bassist Andreas Lang are caught live at Bird's Eye Jazz Club, in Basel Switzerland in 2017 for a lyrical and informed album of hard bop, seminal free jazz and jazz standards, including pieces by Ornette Coleman, Billy Strayhorn, Joe Lavano, and William C. Handy.


Satoko Fujii ma-do
Heat Wave
(Libra)

Satako Fujii's 2008 release introducing her then new ma-do quartet of Satoko Fujii on piano, Natsuki Tamura on trumpet, Akira Horikoshi on drums, and late bassist Norikatsu Koreyasu, the band name signifying "window" and "the silence between notes", in an album of superb, lively, eclectic and absolutely exciting improvisation from 9 original Fujii compositions.


Anthony Braxton / Quartet
(Santa Cruz) 1993 1st Set [REPRESS]
(Hatology)

Reissuing and remastering saxophonist Anthony Braxton's stellar release documenting his 1993 live performance with Marilyn Crispell on piano, Mark Dresser on bass, and Gerry Hemingway on percussion & marimba, demanding collective improvisation from masterful players.


In the Sea (Tristan Honsinger / Nicolas Caloia / Joshua Zubot)
Forks and Spoons
(Creative Sources)

With two magnificent albums and more than 100 concert performances, the masterful dialog from this working string trio of Canadian, European and American players--Tristan Honsinger on cello and voice; Joshua Zubot, on violin; Nicolas Caloia on double bass--is evident in their thrilling exchanges and dynamic approaches to both rapid and reflective improvisation.


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.


Anthony Braxton
GTM (Syntax) 2017 [12 CD BOX SET]
(New Braxton House/Firehouse 12 Records)

LAST COPIES! A 12-hour collection over 12 CDs of composer Anthony Braxton's Ghost Trance Music (GTM), a compositional system he developed with his superlative Tri-Centric Vocal Ensemble, GTM allowing the ensemble to generate a performance in real time in a mix of sung, spoken, and non-verbal utterances, with unpredictable and surprising results that reveal fascinating layers with each listen.


Makoto Kawabata / Geoff Leigh
Spatial Roots
(Acid Mothers Temple)

A live recording of the first encounter between Henry Cow/Radar Favourites/Ex-Wise Heads reed, wind and electronic artist Geoff Leigh and Acid Mother Temple guitarist and solo artist Kawabata Makoto, performing at Urbanguild, in Kyoto, Japan, in 2014 for a set of electronic, psychedelic improvisation of great detail using a vast arsenal of experimental approaches.


Oli Steidle & The Killing Popes (Steidle / Mobus / Nicholls / Downes / Donkin)
Ego Pills
(Shhpuma)

Rapid fire playing and a wicked humor fuels drummer Olie Steidle's album with guitarist Frank Mobus, keyboardists Kit Downes and Dan Nicholls, and bassist Phil Donkin, mashing together electro-jazz, art rock, hardcore and club music into upbeat and twisted music, building up to a narrative "Speed Junky on Funny Human Darts"; insanely embraceable and stunning.


I Nm I Nente (Yoshihide / Molina / Irarrazabal / Roman / Rios)
I Nm I Nente
(FMR)

A quintet of audio explorers that includes Otomo Ysohihide, recording in NY for 11 abstract non-idiomatic improvisations using electronics, drums, turntables, 4 electric guitars, double bass, analog synth, and effects to create identifiable and aberrant sound sources, elements used for reverie or building into unlikely yet cogent grooves; fascinating.


John O'Gallagher / Liam Noble / Drew Gress / Jim Bashford
Meridians
(FMR)

NY Drummer Jim Bashford brought together the quartet of John O'Gallagher on alto saxophone, Drew Gress on bass, and Liam Noble on piano, writing these lyrical free jazz compositions that they brought on a tour of the UK, recording this album in the studio in Birmingham while touring, the band on fire as they work through Bashford's martial art's-influenced pieces.


Last Exit
Headfirst Into The Flames: Live In Europe
(DMG ARC)

Last Exit's 1989 limited edition release on MuWorks is considered by many fans to be their finest hour, and ironically, their least available work. Until now!


David Torn / Tim Berne / Ches Smith
Sun Of Goldfinger [VINYL]
(ECM)

The fourth ECM album from NY Saxophonist Tim Berne and drummer Ches Smith, here in a trio with textural guitarist David Torn in three extended compositions merging jazz, rock and ambient forms, the middle track augmented with the Scorchio String Quartet and Craig Taborn, as they ebb and flow intense energy, fascinating compositional turns, and superb playing.


Davis / Mitchell / Ortiz / Shipp
New American Songbooks, Volume 2 [VINYL]
(Sound American/Pleasure of the Text Records)

The 2nd volume of Sound American's "New American Songbooks" turns from the 1st volume's group approach to the singular voices of 4 masterful pianists--Kris Davis, Matt Mitchell, Aruan Ortiz, and Matthew Shipp--as they interpret the music of traditional hymns, Carla Bley, filmaker/composer Ed Bland, and bandcamp era composers Ryan Power & Christopher Weisman.


Oli Steidle & The Killing Popes (Steidle / Mobus / Nicholls / Downes / Donkin)
Ego Pills [VINYL]
(Shhpuma)

Rapid fire playing and a wicked humor fuels drummer Olie Steidle's album with guitarist Frank Mobus, keyboardists Kit Downes and Dan Nicholls, and bassist Phil Donkin, mashing together electro-jazz, art rock, hardcore and club music into upbeat and twisted music, building up to a narrative "Speed Junky on Funny Human Darts"; insanely embraceable and stunning.


Peter Brotzmann The Octet
Machine Gun [VINYL]
(Cien Fuegos)

One of the exemplary albums of European free jazz originally issued on Peter Brotzmann's on BRO label in 1968, aggressive but astute music from now-legendary players Brotzmann, Evan Parker & Gerd Dudek on tenor sax (Brotzmann doubles on baritone sax), Peter Kowald on bass, Fred Van Hove on piano, Buschi Niebergall on bass, and two drummers - Han Bennink and Sven-Ake Johansson.


Wadada Smith Leo / Sabu Toyozumi
Burning Meditation [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)

"Burning" is an accurate description of the energetic, spiritual and enthusiastic duo of Japanese percussionist Sabu Toyozumi and NY trumpet legend Wadada Leo Smith, also performing on koto, flute, percussion and voice, caught live at C.S Akarenga in Yamaguchi City for 6 stunning dialogs, including one dedicated to late trumpeter Don Cherry.


Federico Ughi feat. Rachel Musson
Transoceanico [VINYL]
(577)

"Transoceanico" signifies the global reach of Rome, Italy-born improvising drummer Federico Ughi, celebrating 20 years since his first album recorded in London while residing there, leading to his current Brooklyn launchpad for many global tours and albums, this impressive LP realized in a superb free jazz trio with bassist Adam Lane and tenor saxophonist Rachel Musson.


Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Invisible Eyes And Phantom Cathedral [VINYL]
(Bam Balam Records)

One of the most significant Japanese psych bands, Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.'s official RSD release has a distinct Gong/Can feel about it, with the 2019 lineup of Kawabata Makoto: guitar, synthesizer, speed guru; Higashi Hiroshi: synthesizer, noodle god; Jyonson Tsu: vocal, guitar, bouzouki; Satoshima Nani: drums, another dimension; Wolf: bass, space & time.


Made to Break
Lacerba [VINYL]
(Clean Feed)

The electroacoustic quartet of Christof Kurzmann (electronics), Devin Hoff (bass), Ken Vandermark (reeds) and Tim Daisy (drums) performing live in Lisbon, an innovative and significant band developing new languages for improvisation.


Paal Nilssen-Love / Mats Gustafsson
Sin Gas [Vinyl]
(Bocian)

Powerful duo playing from frequent collaborators, saxophonist Mats Gustafsson and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love (The Thing, Original Silence, Peter Brotzmann) in three extended studio improvisations of deeply emotional and technically incredible playing.


Apuh!
Ett [VINYL]
(Palsrobot)

Debut LP of the young Gothenburg, Sweden trio of saxophonist Adrian Asling Sellius, drummer Hampus Ohman-Frolund, and double bass player Matt Dimming, drawing on elements of pop and rock, klezmer, cinematic soundscapes, experimental noise, and free jazz.


Gard Nilssen's Acoustic Unity (Roligheten / Eldh / Nilssen)
Firehouse [VINYL]
(Clean Feed)

Norwegian drummer Gard Nilssen (Zanussi 5, Bushman's Revenge, Puma, &c.) leads his new Acoustic Unity trio of Petter Eldh on double bass and Andre Roligheten (Albatrosh) on sax through 8 tightly conceived original jazz compositions with contributions from all 3 players.


Peter Brotzmann Group
Alarm [VINYL]
(Cien Fuegos)

Peter Brotzmann's 9-piece ensemble for the 164th NDR-JAZZWORKSHOP with the South African rhythm team of Harry Miller (bass) and Louis Moholo (drums), plus Frank Wright & Willem Breuker(sax), Hannes Bauer & Alan Tomlinson (trombone) and Alexander Von Schlippenbach (piano).


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

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


Starlite Motel (Alberts / Saft / Haker-Flaten / Nilssen)
Awosting Falls [VINYL]
(Clean Feed)

Scandinavian and American musicians join together to form this quartet, with Kristoffer Berre Alberts on saxes, Jamie Saft on organ and keys, Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten on electric bass, and Gard Nilssen on drums & electronics, for an album of spacey and groove oriented jazz.


Anthony Braxton
3 Compositions Of New Jazz [VINYL]
(Delmark)

Anthony Braxton's first album as a leader, recorded in 1968 with Braxton performing on sax, clarinet, flute, bagpipes, accordion, bells & snare, in the company of trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith and violinist Leroy Jenkins, each taking on a variety of instruments as well.


John Zorn
A Dreamers Christmas [VINYL]
(Tzadik)

Zorn's take on Christmas with his Dreamers (Marc Ribot, Kenny Wollesen, Joey Baron, Jamie Saft, Trevor Dunn, Cyro Baptista, with guest vocalist Mike Patton) performing 7 of Zorn's favorite Christmas songs along with 2 originals.


Brotzmann / Van Hove / Bennink (w/ Albert Mangelsdorff)
Elements [VINYL]
(Cien Fuegos)

In 1971 the quartet of Peter Brotzmann on tenor sax, Fred Van Hove on piano, Han Bennink on drums, and Albert Mangelsdorff on trombone took the stage at The Free Music Market in Berlin to perform this aggressive and informed album of prime European Free Improvisation.


Brotzmann / Van Hove / Bennink (w/ Albert Mangelsdorff)
Couscouss de la Mauresque [VINYL]
(Cien Fuegos)

The early 70s trio of tenor saxophonist Peter Brotzmann with Fred Van Hove on piano, Han Bennink on drums is joined by trombonist Albert Mangelsdorff for a live recording at Free Music Market, in Berlin for two extended and fiery improvisations of incredible skill and drive.


Gorilla Mask (Van Huffel / Fidezius / Fischerlehner)
Iron Lung [VINYL]
(Clean Feed)

An assertive album of free playing from the trio of Peter Van Huffel on alto sax, Roland Fidezius on electric bass, and Rudi Fischerlehner on drums, giving the music punk-jazz overtones in sound and rhythmic approach while clearly adhering to the heavy free jazz styles of the European masters.


Sun Ra
Discipline 27-II [VINYL]
(STRUT / Artyard)

The 2nd volume in Sun Ra's "Discipline" series was recorded during the same sessions as 1972's Impulse release "Space Is the Place", with Sun Ra on electronic keyboards and Moog, and a large band including Marshall Allen, John Gilmore, Danny Davis, Akh Tal Ebah, June Tyson, &c.


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

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


Sven-Ake Johansson / Alexander Von Schlippenbach
Schraubenlieder [VINYL]
(Trost Records)

Drummer Sven-Ake Johansson is also a poet, writer and visual artist; here he joined forced with Alexander von Schlippenbach in 1988 to record these songs, never previously released, sung in German and English, for a set of 9 fascinating narrations that engage the listener independent of language, as von Schlippenbach improvises with prodigious technique.


Taylor Bynum Ho
Enter the Plustet [VINYL]
(Firehouse 12 Records)

Cornetist Taylor Ho Bynum draws on a variety of techniques from improvised conduction to big band orchestration to deconstructed fanfares, with a large 15 member ensemble of impressive improvisers embodying a diversity of generations, backgrounds, ethnicities, and gender, presenting three large scale compositions that are ambitious and wonderfully accomplished.


Ab Baars & Terrie Ex
Shifting Sands [VINYL]
(Terp Records)

Dutch saxophonist Ab Baars and guitarist Terrie Ex last recorded together in 2000 for their "Hef" album, reuniting in 2015 in Amsterdam for this well-rounded and exhilarating duo album, with Ex on electric guitar and Baars on tenor and soprano saxophones, clarinet and shakuhachi, demonstrating both player's growth and continued joy in improvisation.


Cortex
Avant-Garde Party Music [VINYL]
(Clean Feed)

Cortex propels their persuasive, groove oriented approach to jazz with this swinging album that blends free jazz styles with great hard bop, in line with a band like The Thing, this Scandinavian group wants to make your body move without indulging in excess or pandering, instead following a muse that's solidly in the exuberant free jazz tradition.


Boneshaker (Williams / Nilssen-Love / Kessler)
Fake Music
(Soul What Records)

Masterful, fervent free jazz from trans-Atlantic trio of Mars Williams on saxophones, Kent Kessler on bass, and Paal Nilssen-Love on drums, captured live at Elastic Arts, in Chicago in 2017 for three impressive collective improvisations of intense energy, articulate and extended expression, and ecstatic improvisation in an exceptional and cohesive concert.


Luis Vicente / Vasco Trilla
A Brighter Side Of Darkness
(Clean Feed)

Starting from silence, the improvisations on this collective and fully spontaneous album from trumpeter Luis Vicente and percussionist Vasco Trilla never reaches cathartic crescendo, but as only skilled innovators such as they can do, they captivate the listener in other-worldly environments of advanced technique and profound intention; engrossing and ineffable.


The Selva (Jacinto / Almeida / Morao)
Canicula Rosa
(Clean Feed)

The 2nd album from the Portuguese trio of cellist Ricardo Jacinto, double bassist Goncalo Almeida, and drummer Nuno Morao, blending free jazz and freely improvised music using effect pedals and electronic devices to expand their collective improvisations, textured playing influenced by folk melodies and an experimental post-rock bent; mesmerizing and passionate.


Mike Gennaro / Alex Ward
Running for Trains
(Confront)

Three separate live recordings from Hamburg, Gottingen and Berlin, Germany from the duo of Canadian drummer Mike Gennaro and UK clarinettist & electric guitarist Alex Ward, during their 5-stop November 2017 tour crossing Germany by train, selecting six of Gennaro's well captured recordings from their most interesting, exciting or innovative improvisations; exceptional!


Devin Gray / Ellery Eskelin / Michael Formanaek / Dave Ballou
Dirigo Rataplan II
(Rataplan Records)

Brooklyn drummer Devin Gray leads 3 musicians with Baltimore ties--Ellery Eskelin (sax), Dave Ballou (trumpet) and Michael Formanek (bass)--the rhythm team of this chord-less quartet providing the perfect platform for the diverse song structures in Gray's compositions, through tight melodic interaction or unrestricted excursions for the horn section; superb modern jazz.


Spring Roll (Helary / Mayot / Rayon / Lemetre / Davis)
Episodes
(Clean Feed)

Picking up from flutist Sylvaine Helary's 2015 Ayler release "Spring Roll/Printemps", this evolved album of chamber jazz performed with Hugues Mayot on saxophone & clarinet, Antonin Rayon on piano & Moog, Sylvain Lemetre on vibes & percussions, and Kris Davis on piano, presents sophisticated compositions from Helary, Davis, Rayon Dan Blake, and Matt Mitchell.


Arild Andersen / Clive Bell / Mark Wastell
Tales Of Hackney
(Confront)

World instrumentation of shakuhachi, thai flute, shinobue, thai mouth organ, and shruti box blends with western orchestration of double bass, percussion and electronics as Clive Bell, Arild Andersen, and Mark Wastell come together in the studio after their well-received concert at Cafe Oto in London to develop these beautifully lyrical improvisations.


Matthew Shipp Trio / Nicole Mitchell
All Things Are
(RogueArt)

Chicago and New York come together in Brooklyn to record this excellent encounter between pianist Matthew Shipp and flutist Nicole Mitchell, with Michael Bisio on bass and Newman Taylor Baker on drums, bridging exciting free playing with strong lyrical elements, balancing kinetically exuberant interaction with introspective and dark moments; inspired and masterful.


Stephan Crump / Ingrid Laubrock / Cory Smythe
Channels
(Intakt)

The NY trio of Stephan Crump on acoustic bass, Ingrid Laubrock on tenor & soprano saxophones, and Cory Smythe on piano follow-up to their "Planktonic Finales" album with this live album recorded at the Unerhort!-Festival in Zurich in 2017, in a lyrically free album of solid compositional structures that result in warmly creative and singular jazz.


Satoko Fujii
Stone
(Libra)

A stunning solo album working inside and outside of the piano and coaxing electronic response from the strings from pianist Satoko Fujii, caputered at Samurai Hotel in NY in September of 2018, and in the studio in Brooklyn three months later, during her prolific 60th "kanreki" birthday year, here in 15 dynamic and far-ranging improvisations revealing her depth and creative powers.


Guillotine (Lopes / Ceccaldi / Wildhagen)
Guillotine
(Clean Feed)

Recalling the French Revolution, Portuguese guitarist Luis Lopes joins forces with French cellist Valentin Ceccaldi and Norwegian drummer Andreas Wildhagen as they slice through complex electric improvisation in a triptych for Marie Antoinette, ending in a Robespierre-like reign of terror "Orgasmic Dance"; muscular, convoluted, unsettling and exultant.


Carlos Bica / Daniel Erdmann / Dj Illvibe
I Am The Escaped One
(Clean Feed)

Portugese double bassist Carlos Bica joins forces with German saxophonist Daniel Erdmann and turntablist DJ Illvibe, the son of pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach, for a unique album of improvisation blending experimental and jazz approaches with substantive layers of genre-blending from Illvibe's record arsenal, all handled with accessible control and lyrical sophistication.


Matthias Spillmann Trio (Spillmann / Lang / Baumgartner)
Live At The Bird's Eye Jazz Club
(Clean Feed)

Matthias' Spillmann's Trio with the leader on trumpet and flugelhorn, Swiss drummer Mortiz Baumgartner and Danish Bassist Andreas Lang are caught live at Bird's Eye Jazz Club, in Basel Switzerland in 2017 for a lyrical and informed album of hard bop, seminal free jazz and jazz standards, including pieces by Ornette Coleman, Billy Strayhorn, Joe Lavano, and William C. Handy.


Satoko Fujii ma-do
Heat Wave
(Libra)

Satako Fujii's 2008 release introducing her then new ma-do quartet of Satoko Fujii on piano, Natsuki Tamura on trumpet, Akira Horikoshi on drums, and late bassist Norikatsu Koreyasu, the band name signifying "window" and "the silence between notes", in an album of superb, lively, eclectic and absolutely exciting improvisation from 9 original Fujii compositions.


Anthony Braxton / Quartet
(Santa Cruz) 1993 1st Set [REPRESS]
(Hatology)

Reissuing and remastering saxophonist Anthony Braxton's stellar release documenting his 1993 live performance with Marilyn Crispell on piano, Mark Dresser on bass, and Gerry Hemingway on percussion & marimba, demanding collective improvisation from masterful players.


In the Sea (Tristan Honsinger / Nicolas Caloia / Joshua Zubot)
Forks and Spoons
(Creative Sources)

With two magnificent albums and more than 100 concert performances, the masterful dialog from this working string trio of Canadian, European and American players--Tristan Honsinger on cello and voice; Joshua Zubot, on violin; Nicolas Caloia on double bass--is evident in their thrilling exchanges and dynamic approaches to both rapid and reflective improvisation.


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.


Daniel Carter / Watson Jennison / William Parker / Federico Ughi
Live! Volume 1: Erie [VINYL]
(577)

Working together in tours and recording since 2005, the NY trio of multi-reedist and wind player Daniel Carter, bassis William Parker and drummer/percussionist Federico Ughi are joined by saxophonist Watson Jennison also on flute, recorder and keyboards for this enlightened album of modern and transcendent jazz in a limited, remastered LP edition with bonus material.


Anthony Braxton
GTM (Syntax) 2017 [12 CD BOX SET]
(New Braxton House/Firehouse 12 Records)

LAST COPIES! A 12-hour collection over 12 CDs of composer Anthony Braxton's Ghost Trance Music (GTM), a compositional system he developed with his superlative Tri-Centric Vocal Ensemble, GTM allowing the ensemble to generate a performance in real time in a mix of sung, spoken, and non-verbal utterances, with unpredictable and surprising results that reveal fascinating layers with each listen.


Oli Steidle & The Killing Popes (Steidle / Mobus / Nicholls / Downes / Donkin)
Ego Pills
(Shhpuma)

Rapid fire playing and a wicked humor fuels drummer Olie Steidle's album with guitarist Frank Mobus, keyboardists Kit Downes and Dan Nicholls, and bassist Phil Donkin, mashing together electro-jazz, art rock, hardcore and club music into upbeat and twisted music, building up to a narrative "Speed Junky on Funny Human Darts"; insanely embraceable and stunning.


I Nm I Nente (Yoshihide / Molina / Irarrazabal / Roman / Rios)
I Nm I Nente
(FMR)

A quintet of audio explorers that includes Otomo Ysohihide, recording in NY for 11 abstract non-idiomatic improvisations using electronics, drums, turntables, 4 electric guitars, double bass, analog synth, and effects to create identifiable and aberrant sound sources, elements used for reverie or building into unlikely yet cogent grooves; fascinating.


John O'Gallagher / Liam Noble / Drew Gress / Jim Bashford
Meridians
(FMR)

NY Drummer Jim Bashford brought together the quartet of John O'Gallagher on alto saxophone, Drew Gress on bass, and Liam Noble on piano, writing these lyrical free jazz compositions that they brought on a tour of the UK, recording this album in the studio in Birmingham while touring, the band on fire as they work through Bashford's martial art's-influenced pieces.


Last Exit
Headfirst Into The Flames: Live In Europe
(DMG ARC)

Last Exit's 1989 limited edition release on MuWorks is considered by many fans to be their finest hour, and ironically, their least available work. Until now!


Chris' McGregor Brotherhood Of Breath
Procession - Live at Toulouse
(Ogun)

With 23 minutes of additional music, this reissues and painstakingly restores the original masters from this 1978 Ogun release featuring Chris McGregor's UK/South African band with Mike Osborne, Dudu Pukwana, Louis Moholo, Evan Parker, &c.


Cecil Taylor
Garden 1st Set
(Hatology)

Reissue and 2015 remaster of Cecil Taylor's superb live set at Grosser Saal Volkshaus, in Basel, Switzerland in 1981, performing solo over three extended improvisations, presented for the first time in the original concert sequence.


Makoto Kawabata / Geoff Leigh
Spatial Roots
(Acid Mothers Temple)

A live recording of the first encounter between Henry Cow/Radar Favourites/Ex-Wise Heads reed, wind and electronic artist Geoff Leigh and Acid Mother Temple guitarist and solo artist Kawabata Makoto, performing at Urbanguild, in Kyoto, Japan, in 2014 for a set of electronic, psychedelic improvisation of great detail using a vast arsenal of experimental approaches.


Michael Pisaro
Nature Denatured and Found Again [5 CD Box Set]
(Gravity Wave)

A 5 CD box set of compositions written by Michael Pisaro using field recordings captured along the Grosse Muhl River in Austria during the 2011-15 Flussaufwartstreiben project, now accompanying performances made along that river by Antoine Beuger (flute), Jurg Frey (clarinet), Marcus Kaiser (cello), Radu Malfatti (trombone), Andre Moller (guitar), and Kathryn Pisaro (oboe).


NAO (Vaz / Silva / Marques)
Arcana
(Shhpuma)

With sections of dark grooves, wild free improv, seething electronics, and even moments of "Set the Controls..." surrealism, the trio of Alexandre Vaz on keys, guitar & saxophone, Joao Silva on synths & drum machine, and Vasco Marques on bass & synth, take their listeners on an unexpected and wide-ranging journey of uneasy and informed, rich exploration.


Eric La Casa / Eamon Sprod
Friche : Transition
(Swarming)

Making something out of "nothing", audio explorers and sonic organizers Eric La Casa from France and Australian Eamon Sprod spent a week on the waste grounds in the North East of Paris along the Canal Ourcq, capturing field recordings which they used to develop these active compositions, captivating by morphing everyday sounds into something intriguingly mysterious and remarkable.


London Experimental Ensemble
Child Ballads
(Split Rock Records)

Drawn from 305 traditional ballads from England and Scotland alongside their American variants, anthologised by Francis James Child during the second half of the nineteenth century, are here sung by Ed Pettersen in the fascinating intersection of traditional lyrics and experimental interpretations of melodies, performed by the 11-piece London Experimental Ensemble.


Terry Rusling
The Machine Is Broken
(Spool)

Retrospective of Terry Rusling, a Canadian composer of electronic music working for the CBC in the 60's, who was introduced to the Electronic Music Studio at the University of Toronto, where he was awarded the title of Research Associate, receiving a Canada Council Grant to travel and work in Belgium, Utrecht, Paris, &c.; 2 of his graphic scores are part of John Cage's "Notations" project.


Eugene Chadbourne / Cat Jammers
Invitation To A Jam Session
(Chadula)

In the 1980's guitarist and eccentric sound artist Eugene Chadbourne started a series of cassettes that ultimately became the LP "Country Music in the World of Islam"; this new and astonishing archive collection culls material from that and blends it in studio collage with live material from Elliot Sharp, Sun City Girls, Jon Rose, phone messages from Derek Bailey, &c &c.


Skyline
Bark (Noiseotica 2)
(Harsh House)


Alessandro Bosetti
Il Fiore della Bocca
(Rossbin)


Akio Suzuki
Tubridge 99-00
(Edition Rz)

Japanese installation and sound artist Akio Suzuki in recordings made at the New Taiza Tunnel in Tango Kyoto, 1999, rich and pure works of ambient environments.


Lionel Marchetti
Une Saison
(Monotype)

Two large and intricate works from the mid-90s of concrete music from electroacoustic composer Lionel Marchetti, working with field recordings, electronic and analog synthesis.


Peter Cusack
Sounds From Dangerous Places (2 CD's + 90 Page Hardback Book)
(ReR)

Two CDs and a 90 page hardback book with photos, info and interviews from audio documenter and experimenter Peter Cusak, recording in Chernobyl, The Caspian Oilfields, and various dangerous locations in the UK.


RLW & Srmeixner
Just Like A Flower When Winter Begins
(Monotype)

An interesting mixture of sound and spoken word originally recorded as a DJ set by RLW for a birthday celebration that was remixed with help from Stephen Meixner.


Marc Baron
Hidden Tapes
(Potlatch)

Five fascinating works composed from old cassette tapes accelerated or slowed down, layered and transformed with analog devices, with the addition of sources from movies soundtracks and classical or liturgical music extracts.


Gen Ken & AMK
Smile [CASSETTE]
(Banned Production)

A collaboration of NYC sound artist Gen Ken Montgomery (Generator) and West Coast sound improviser AMK (Anthony Michael King), in an extended work of electronic improvisation presented over two cassette sides, a varied program that never overloads its listeners.


Maja Ratkje S. K.
In Dialogue with Eugeniusz Rudnik
(Bolt)

Two compositions from Eugeniusz Rudnik, and a large work from vocalist Maja S. K. Ratkje performed live at The Polish Radio Experimental Studio using Rudnik's samples, her voice, and her own concrete elements in a virtual "dialog" with the composer.


Rudolf Eb.er / Joke Lanz / GX Jupitter-Larsen / Mike Dando
Wellenfeld
(Fragment Factory)

The finale for the 2012 "Extreme Rituals" concert was this performance, where each artist used a wireless EEG headset to send brainwave signals to audio engineers who transformed them into audio, as the performers sculpt sound using meditative and ecstatic trance states.


Graham Lambkin / Taku Unami
The Whistler [2 CDs]
(erstwhile)

Sound artists Graham Lambkin and Taku Unami create two large works using material which they recorded together, and then which independently assembled into a single CD each, with "Whistler Vanishes in Wind" composed by Taku Unami, and "Small Mistakes in Nature" by Graham Lambkin, both fascinating collages that alternately distract and absorb the listener.


Stephen O'Malley / Anthony Pateras
Reve Noir
(Immediata)

Pianist Anthony Pateras and guitarist Stephen O'Malley (Sunn O))) performed a concert in 2011 at Instants Chavires in 2011, which they took into the studio to deconstruct and recompose on 1/4 inch tape, creating a compelling landscape of fractured musique concrete, introspective meditations, electro-acoustic textures and heavy guitar; includes a 20 page interview with O'Malley.


John Zorn
The Urmuz Epigrams
(Tzadik)

With the collaboration of percussionist Ches Smith, John Zorn creates a magnificent and dreamlike series of parallel tracks, a "modern reconstruction" and a set of faux 78rpm albums purportedly from 1923, as an homage to pre-dada absurdist, Romanian writer Urmuz (Demetru Dem), using the studio and card-file composition to create a bizarre and astonishing set of 8 x 2 pieces.


Chesterfield (Burkhard Stangl / Angelica Castello)
Consuelo
(Mikroton Recordings)

Expanding on Burkhard Stangl colo concert at the 2014 Reheat festival at Kleylehof based on Consuelo Velazquez's song "Besame Mucho", the duo of Stang and Angelica Castello recomposed it, mixing new pieces with old plus home recordings, accidental recordings, live performances, &c, creating a Chesterfield diary of songs, of noise, of longing and of dreaming.


Luc Ferrari
Atelier De Liberation De La Musique [VINYL]
(Alga Marghen)

Six recordings from Luc Ferrari's Atelier De Liberation De La Musique, a collective he created together with Martin Davorin Jagodic (electric piano), Philippe Besombes (synthesizer), and Alain Petit (sax, clarinet & flute) in 1975 for a series of performances at the Galliera Museum in Paris to take place within an audio-visual labyrinth.


Hal Hutchinson
Factory Metal Sound [CASSETTE]
(Banned Production)

British noise artist Hal Hutchinson (Der Bunker Records) in a record of apparent field recordings of metallic factory sounds, a machinist's daydream of rotating and subdued lathe sounds, each side of the cassette with a distinct timbre and recording ambiance as the mysterious sounds provide a cantankerously complex set of audio environments.


Lucio Capece / Marc Baron
My Trust In You
(erstwhile)

Two electroacoustic improvisers and composers--Lucio Capece on reeds, analog synths, effects, field recordings, drums machines, speakers in motion, and Marc Baron on field recordings and analog devices--developed these 6 extraordinary recordings that blend motion, perspective, sound and noise, and concrete references in a mystifying and mesmerizing journey in sound.


Laura Mello
Esta Verde!
(Creative Sources)

Using multiple voices, field recordings and electronics, Brazil-born composer living in Berlin Laura Mello works with spoken language as she explores human perception of acoustic phenomena in relation to spoken language, here in 8 compositions or excerpts that reveal hallucinatory and unusual aspects of speech complemented by elusive aural environments.


Morton Feldman
Three Voices (performed by Juliet Fraser)
(Hat [now] ART)

Soprano Juliet Fraser performs Morton Feldman's late work for 3 voices, performed by 1 vocalist (originally Joan La Barbara) who performs with themself on tape, in a work that Feldman described as "lucious", "sexy", and "gorgeous", as heard in Fraser's beautiful rendering.


Noriko Hisada
Prognostication
(Hat [now] ART)


Udo Kasemets
Pythagoras Tree
(Hat [now] ART)

Pianist Stephen Clarke plays seven works for solo piano by Estonian-born, Canadian-naturalized composer Udo Kasemets that focus on specific designs of micro-detail.


John Zorn
The Interpretation Of Dreams
(Tzadik)

A new set of works from Downtown New York composer John Zorn inspired by the surrealism of Luis Bunuel and the psychotropic dream world of William S. Burroughs, in three compositions performed by Jack Quartet, the rhythm section from the piano quintet Obscure Objects of Desire, plus vivbraphonist Sae Hashimoto, pianist Steve Gosling, and drummer Tyshawn Sorey.


Satoko Fujii / Yuko Yamaoka
Diary 2005-2015: Tuko Yamaoka plays the music of Satoko Fujii [2 CDs]
(Libra)

A double CD of Satoko Fujii compositions, 56 short compositions from a series she started around 2005 to expand her skills as a composer, many of which fueled her many band's repertoires; in 2018 she asked respected classical pianist and educator Yuko Yamaoka to record this set of compositions as part of her 60th birthday monthly album set.


Phill Niblock
T H I R [DVD]
(Von)

Named for "Ten Hundred Inch Radii", a performance of film and music from the series "Environments" by composer and filmaker Phill Niblocks, shot in upstate New York in 1972 and released now for the first time on DVD, a mesmerizing and hypnotic film with two soundtracks: the original 1972 from analog tape, and a 2008 edition from the Nelly Boyd Ensemble updated in 2015


James Tenney (Maelstrom Percussion Ensemble)
Pika-Don
(Hat [now] ART)


George Crumb
Vox Balaenae
(Hat [now] ART)


Isaac Babel
The Sin Of Jesus
(Hat [now] ART)

Transcription of Soviet writer Isaac Babel's The Sin of Jesus into music by applying a rule system where words determine melody, letters determine rhythm & harmony, &c.


Christian Wolff
Early Piano Pieces
(Hat [now] ART)

Early works from avant-garde composer Christian Wolff, including pieces for prepared piano influenced by John Cage's ideas for the same instrument.


Transatlantic Swing
Works For Piano
(Hat [now] ART)

American pianist John Snijders performing the music of European composers Christopher Fox, Ivo Van Emmerik, Richard Rijnvos, James Rolfe, and Luca Francesconi.


Luciano Berio & Edison Denissow
Works For Voice And Chamber Ensemble
(Hat [now] ART)

Remastered ed. of the '93 release of Berio's "Folk Songs" and "Chamber Music", and Edison Denissow's "La Vie en rouge" performed by the Ensemble for New Music Zurich.


Sergei Prokofiev & Dmitri Shostakovich
Works For 2 Pianists Under Soviet Rule
(Hat [now] ART)

Two works for piano composed under Stalinist rule by Dmitri Shostakovich and Sergei Prokofiev, recorded in 2009 by pianists Ufuk & Bahar Dorduncu.


Josef Riedl Anton
Klangregionen 1951-2007
(Edition Rz)

Two CD set of electronic and concrete compositions from German composer Riedl, with recordings from Siemens-Studio for elektronische Musik and Studio for konkrete Musik.


Harley Gaber
Indra's Net
(Edition Rz)

A hybrid acoustic tape piece of solo violin on four track tape, and a work for four violins, composed in 1974 by Harley Gaber, delicate pieces that he considered complements to his large work "The Winds Rise in the North".


John Cage
Ryoanji
(Hat [now] ART)

21 years after visiting the sparse rock and sand garden Ryoan-ji (Peacful Dragon) in Kyoto he wrote this piece, here in a remastered and redesigned 2nd edition.


Jakob Ullmann
fremde zeit addendum 4
(Edition Rz)

An extract from Berlin composer Jakob Ullman's 2012 3-CD box set on Edition Rz, presenting "solo III for organ" (1992/1993), an hour long work of tone and tension performed by Hans-Peter Schulz at the Big Organ in Abteikirche Neresheim.


Clarence Barlow
Musica Derivata
(Hat [now] ART)

Composer Clarence Barlow, like Beethoven, builds his own labyrinths, brick by brick, and then searches for an escape by creating conceptual forms to get around the traps of time, tonality, and style.


Dane Rudhyar
Works For Piano
(Hat [now] ART)

Pianist Steffen Schleiermacher plays six spiritual pieces by composer Dane Rudhyar that are not meant to be analyzed and thought about, but to be felt and experienced.


Richard Rijnvos
Block Beuys
(Hat [now] ART)

A series of compositions by Richard Rijnvos that were inspired by an installation in the Hessisches Landesmuseum consisting of an arrangment of about 270 objects known as the 'Block Beuys'.


Liza Lim
The Heart's Ear
(Hat [now] ART)

Although she has probably become known as one of Australia's best-known composers, Liza Lim's compositions undermine centuries-old Eurocentrism and are largely inspired by Asian culture.


Dieter Ammann
The Freedom of Speech
(Hat [now] ART)

The Ensemble fur Neue Musik Zurich plays seven pieces by Swiss composer Dieter Ammann, each made through a very slow creative process that contrasts the very lively and gestural music.


Laurence Crane / Apartment House
Chamber Works 1992-2009 [2 CDs]
(Another Timbre)

A double CD of UK's experimental music ensemble Apartment House performing 14 chamber pieces composed by and under the supervision of Laurence Crane, beautiful and informed minimal work from a unique voice in modern composition.


Chistopher Fox
Works For Piano, Philip Thomas piano
(Hat [now] ART)

Four large and distinctive works by composer Christopher Fox performed by pianist Philip Thomas, who also writes the liner notes about the works, revealing and explaining the compositional elements, piano preparations, and physical requirements placed on the performer.


Liza Lim
Orchestral Works
(Hat [now] ART)

Composer Liza Lim presents 3 lesser known works: "The Compass" for orchestra with solo parts for flute and didgeridoo; "Pearl, Ochre, Hair String" featuring a cello solo using a guiro bow; and "The Guest" written for recorder soloist Jeremias Schwarzer.


Don Cherry
Home Boy, Sister Out
(WeWantSounds)

Trumpeter Don Cherry recorded this funk album in France in 1985 with a set of multi-ethnic Paris players including Elli Medeiros and produced by Ramuntcho Matta, the songs crossing funk with jazzy vamps, rock roots and modern approaches, reissued with new liner notes and 5 bonus tracks including the cult 1983 single "Kick" featuring legendary author Brion Gysin.


Orchestra Of The Upper Atmosphere
Theta Four
(Discus)

Declaring Terry Riley, Magma, Krautrock, and Sun Ra as influences, this is the fourth album from wind and keyboard player Martin Archer's Orchestra Of The Upper Atmosphere, an augmented six-piece UK ensemble whose rock affinities also embrace improvisation and minimalism, a heady mix of virtuosic playing with melodic intention and extremely detailed tapestries of sound; dreamy and elegiac.


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.


Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Invisible Eyes And Phantom Cathedral [VINYL]
(Bam Balam Records)

One of the most significant Japanese psych bands, Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.'s official RSD release has a distinct Gong/Can feel about it, with the 2019 lineup of Kawabata Makoto: guitar, synthesizer, speed guru; Higashi Hiroshi: synthesizer, noodle god; Jyonson Tsu: vocal, guitar, bouzouki; Satoshima Nani: drums, another dimension; Wolf: bass, space & time.


Ruins
Tzomborgha
(Magaibutsu)


This Heat
This Heat (1st album)
(This Is/Recommended Records)


Erica Pomerance
You Used to Think
(ESP-Disk)

Folk songs with poetic influences from Erica Pomerance in her 1968 ESP release with an eclectic mix of classical, improvisational, folk and rock musicians.


PAK & Ron Anderson / Nonoko Yoshida / Tatsuya Yoshida
NYJPN
(Magaibutsu)

A CD to complement the 2014 Japanese tour of PAK (Nonoko Yoshida on sax & Tatsuya Yoshida on drums) with NY bassist Ron Anderson, complex avant rock with strong melodic hooks and crazy technical prowess, highly recommended!


The World Heritage (Yamamoto Seiichi / Katsui Yuji / Kido Natsuki / Nasuno Mitsuru / Yoshida Tatsuya)
The Land of Light
(Magaibutsu)

The Japanese improvising rock quintet The World Heritage--Yamamoto Seiichi, Katsui Yuji, Kido Natsuki, Nasuno Mitsuru, and Yoshida Tatsuya--with two guitars, violin, bass and drums, in a live recording of dynamic collective improvisation at Akihabara Goodman in 2013.


Eugene Chadbourne
There'll Be No Tears Tonight
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

A much-needed reissue of Eugene Chadbourne's ground-breaking free country improv album recorded in NYC with a great Downtown NY lineup including Tom Cora, John Zorn, Scott Manring, and David Licht, performing twisted takes on classics by Paycheck, Haggard, Miller, &c.


Henry Cow
Vol. 10: Vevey 1976 [DVD]
(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.


Orchestra Of The Upper Atmosphere
03
(Discus)

The improvising rock group Orchestra Of The Upper Atmosphere, led by Martin Archer, Chris Bywater, and Steve Dinsdale, in their 3rd album of innovative improvisation, haunting hypnotic grooves and blasts of sheer exuberance, with the band augmented by strings and trombone to give them a larger and more intense sound.


Sista Maj
Series Of Nested Universes [2 CDs]
(Space Rock Productions )

Organized by Camper van Beethoven violinist Johan Segal, Sista Maj is an instrumental psychedelic rock trio with Mikael Tuominen on bass, baritone guitar and sitar, and Andreas Axelsson on drums and percussion, with Segal also on organ, electric guitar, synth and bass, for a double CD exploring sophisticated heavy electric rock, jazz, hypnotic, and space music.


Connie Converse (Anderson / Patton / Halvorson & Pavone / Haden / Kang / Wainwright / Elysian Fields / Tweedy / Amidon / ...)
Vanity Of Vanities - A Tribute To Connie Converse
(Tzadik)

A pioneer of the modern singer/songwriter genre from the 50s, little is known of Connie Converse except her exceptional songbook, given life here in a tribute to her work through 16 songs interpreted by an amazing set of singers and instrumentalists, including Laurie Anderson, Petra Haden, Mary Halvorson, Mike Patton, Eyvind Kang, Oren Bloedow, Jessica Pavone, &c. &c.


Peter Blegvad
Go Figure
(Recommended Records)

Peter Blegvad expands his trio with Henry Cow alumni, drummer Chris Cutler and bassist John Greaves, this time with Karen Mantler on keys and chordal instruments, and Bob Drake on guitar, voice and percussion, reworking songs from his solo career and work with Slapp Happy, alongside new numbers of classic Blegvad wordplay, wit, depth and humor; like the label, Recommended!


Nick Millevoi's Desertion Trio (w/ Jamie Saft)
Midtown Tilt
(Shhpuma)

Leaning more towards rock than jazz, but blending compelling blues-based improv, NY guitarist Nick Millevoi leads his Desertion project through a look at Wildwood, NY, the core of the trio as bassist Johnny DeBlase (Many Arms, Sabbath Assembly) and drummer Kevin Shea (Mostly Other People Do The Killing, Talibam!), with Jamie Saft on organ throughout.


The Ex
27 Passports [VINYL]
(Ex Records)

After several years of Brass Unbound, Getatchew Mekuria, festivals and countless side projects, The Ex return to The Ex, a 4-piece led by the trio of guitars from Andy Moor, Terrie Hessels and Arnold de Boer driven by drummer Katherina Bornefeld, de Boer acerbic and insightful on this seriously great rock record; plus a 36-page photo book from Andy Moor.


Martin Archer & Engine Room Favourites
Safety Signal From A Target Town
(Discus)

Saxophonist Martin Archer composed the five works on this, the 3rd release for Engine Room Favorites, his AACM-influenced big band with a tremendous orchestration of horns with drums, vibes, piano and bass, here with their most complex yet melodic and rich release yet, including melodic elements of folk music, powerful rhythms from prog-oriented rock, and free improv and jazz.


Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Sacred And Inviolable Phase Shift
(Bam Balam Records)

Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O.'s studio album with 5 extended improvised psychedelic rock pieces from guitarist Kawabata Makoto, bassist Wolf, drummer Satoshima Nani, synth player Higashi Hiroshi, and new guitarist/vocalist Jyonson Tsu also on bouzouki; wonderfully detailed and completely spaced out rock from the Japanese masters of the form.


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.


The Momes
Spiralling [VINYL LP + 7"]
(Mental Experience)

An essential reissue of the only album from this Rock in Opposition supergroup, with two members of Henry Cow & The Work--bassist Mick Hobbs and Tim Hodgkinson playing "Hawaiian laptop noisy guitar" and keyboards--and Andy Wake from Unrest Work & Play, in a great set of songs with a literate and post-punk viciousness and unusual approaches to rhythm and sound.


Hedvig Mollestad Trio
Smells Funny [VINYL + CD]
(Rune Grammofon)

The sixth album from guitarist Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen's scorching Norwegian instrumental rock trio, having built a strong following through their impressive approach to rock, schooled from both early hard/progressive band but also driving fusion bands, with a penetrating edge in authoritative soloing and intense rhythmic interplay.


King Champion Sounds / Surplus 1980 (Moe! Staiano)
Split [7" VINYL]
(Tractor Notown)

A split 7": on one side Sleepytime Gorilla Museum percussionist/drummer/composer Moe! Staiano's West Coast rotating ensemble Surplus 1980 in a teaser for an upcoming release with G.W. Sok, Kyle Bruckmann, members of Fred Frith Trio and Total Shutdown; on the other side King Champion Sounds featuring G.W. Sok, formerly of the Dutch band the Ex.


AMM
An Unintended Legacy [3 CDs]
(Matchless)

A beautiful 3-CD set with a hardcover book presenting 3 full concerts from 2015 & 2016 of the AMM trio configuration of John Tilbury (piano), Keith Rowe (guitar) and Eddie Prevost (percussion). The 70 page book, dedicated to saxophonist Lou Gare, includes an AMM discography, plus photos, and essays by Paige Mitchell and Allen Fisher; Keith Rowe; Eddie Prevost; and Seymour Wright.


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.


Henry Threadgill 14 or 15 Kestra: Agg
Dirt... And More Dirt
(Pi Recordings)

Composer, saxophonist and flutist Henry Threadgill presents 2 full-length works for his 15 piece band "14 or 15 Kestra: Agg", as he explores new ways of integrating composition with group improvisation, here using an entirely new system of improvisation based on preconceived series of intervals realized in multi-layered counterpoint, rigorous polyphony, and timbral contrasts.


Milford Graves
Babi [2 CDs]
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

Recorded in 1976 at WBAI-FM/Free Music Store in New York, drummer percussionist Milford Graves goes head to head with two reedists, Arthur Doyle and Hugh Glover, an absolute stunner of percussive momentum and force, drawing the reeds into a frenzy of unbridled free playing; issued with a 2nd CD of a private recording of Graves plus unpublished photos.


Tim Berne / Matt Mitchell Duo
Angel Dusk
(Screwgun)

Following on New York pianist Matt Mitchell's solo album of Tim Berne compositions, the two join in the studio to record these 8 compositions in a dynamic album of dialogs that includes energetic interaction, explorative playing, and beautiful lyrical work, a profoundly intimate and connected release borne from their long history of collaboration.


Myra Melford's Snowy Egret (w/ Miles / Ellman / Takeishi / Sorey)
The Other Side Of Air
(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.


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.


John Butcher / Eddie Prevost
Visionary Fantasies
(Matchless)

A series of inspired solo and duo performances from AMM founder, percussionist Eddie Prevost and free improvising saxophonist John Butcher, captured live at London's Iklectik in 2018, splitting the album between solo and duo work as the two morph their instruments into incredible sonic devices, with intense concentration and dialog nothing short of fantastic.


Frode Gjerstad / John Stevens / Johnny Mbizio Dyani
Detail 83
(FMR)

A significant release from the history of the Detail trio of Frode Gjerstad on reeds, John Stevens on drums, and Johnny Dyani on bass, recorded at the Red Seahouses in Norway in 1938 during Detail's first trio tour, a smoking set of free jazz showing the power of these innovative players around the time of their first album, "Backwards and Forwards".


Henry Threadgill
Double Up, Plays Double Up Plus
(Pi Recordings)

Composer Henry Threadgill's Double Up band does not include Threadgill himself, but for this second release with the group he adds a 3rd piano (also doubling on harmonium) alongside two alto saxophones, cello, tuba, drums and percussion, the octet performing Threadgill's complex yet effortlessly intricate and distinctive compositions that allow his performers to shine.


This Is It! (Satoko Fujii / Natsuki Tamura / Takashi Itani)
1538
(Libra)

Part of pianist Satoko Fujii's "Kanreki" (60th Birthday) tour and monthly album release, the "This Is It!" Trio with trumpeter Natsuki Tamura and drummer/percussionist Takashi Itani is heard at Koendori Classics, in Tokyo, Japan, in January 2018, for an incredible album of Fujii's compositions that include quirky asides in coherent and effusive playing.


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.


Jemeel Moondoc Quartet
The Astral Revelations
(RogueArt)

Saxophonist Jemeel Moondoc takes his masterful NY quartet of pianist Matthew Shipp, bassist Hilliard Green, and drummer Newman Taylor Baker to perform live at Bimhuis in Amsterdam in 2016, capturing four remarkable improvisations of Moondoc compositions including an extended rendering of "Cosmic Nickelodeon", the band balancing lyricism with intensely creative playing.


Ingrid Laubrock / Tom Rainey
Utter
(Relative Pitch)

After their 2016 tour of the US West Coast, husband and wife free improvising duo Ingrid Laubrock (tenor & soprano sax) and Tom Rainey (drums) entered a Brooklyn studio with a set of co-written compositions, which they weave together with free improv, relying on cues that can trigger a given composition at any time, adding a unique layer of communication to their exuberant playing.


Satoko Fujii
Solo
(Libra)

A stunning album of solo performances, the first of 12 monthly releases from Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii celebrating her 60th birthday, in an impressive set of seven original compositions illustrating her incredible skills in both profoundly beautiful and technically spectacular playing inside and out of the piano, an exceptional start to the series.


Paul Dunmall / Jon Irabagon / Mark Sanders / Jim Bashford
The Rain Sessions
(FMR)

Dedicated to Cecil Taylor and taking advantage of NY saxophonist Irabagon's UK visit, this album presents four drum duets "time two", as two tenor saxophonists--Paul Dunmall and Jon Irabagon--meet two lyrical drummers--Mark Sanders and Jim Bashford--following Dunmall long-standing interest in drum and sax duets, the results this ebullient and remarkable album.


Steve Lacy
Stamps [2 CDs]
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

Originally released on the Hat Hut label in 1979, this 2-CD set of saxophonist Steve Lacy's quintet with Steve Potts on saxophone, Irene Aebi on cello, voice & violin, Kent Carter on bass, and Oliver Johnson on drums, are heard live in two tour-de-force concerts, first at the 1977 Jazz Festival, in Willisau, Switzerland, then in 1978 at Jazz Au Totem in Paris, France.


Tomeka Reid / Kyoko Kitamura / Taylor Ho Bynum / Joe Morris
Geometry of Caves
(Relative Pitch)

Bringing New York and Chicago performers together, the quartet of cellist Tomeka Reid, guitarist Joe Morris, cornetist Taylor Ho Bynum and free vocalist Kyoko Kitamura present an album of expressive and creative collective improvisation, bridging chamber forms and free jazz with a captivatingly eccentric appeal from Kitamura's wordless vocalese.


Thumbscrew (Michael Formanek / Tomas Fujiwara / Mary Halvorson)
Ours
(Cuneiform Records)

The New York free improvising jazz trio Thumbscrew with long-time collaborators guitarist Mary Halvorson, double bassist Michael Formanek and drummer Tomas Fujiwara in the 1st of 2 albums on the reborn Cuneiform label, here presenting creative original compositions from each of the three musicians in 9 virtuosic, sometimes quirky, and always warmly adventurous tunes.


Thumbscrew (Michael Formanek / Tomas Fujiwara / Mary Halvorson)
Theirs
(Cuneiform Records)

The second of two albums from the reborn Cuneiform label by New York free improvising jazz trio Thumbscrew with long-time collaborators guitarist Mary Halvorson, double bassist Michael Formanek and drummer Tomas Fujiwara, here presenting compositions from jazz greats Benny Golson, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Nichols, Stanley Cowell, Misha Mengelberg, &c.


Moholo-Moholo's, Louis Five Blokes
Uplift The People
(Ogun)

Drummer Moholo-Moholo, a member of Blue Notes, Elton Dean's Ninesene, Foxes Fox, London Improvisers Orchestra, a sideman for Brotzmann, Keith Tippets sideman and drummer and most importantly, band leader in a rich, lyrical and spiritual album recorded live at Cafe Oto in 2017 with Alexander Hawkins (piano), John Edwards (bass), Shabaka Hutchings (sax) and Jason Yard (sax).


Joelle Leandre / Marc Ducret
Chez Helene
(Ayler)

Jean-Marc Foussat recorded the French improvising duo of electric guitairst Marc Ducret and double bassist Joelle Leandre at 19PaulFort in May, 2018, the title drawn from a poem by Edgar Allen Poe, as the two trade acoustic and electric string approaches in a sophisticated dialog of exceptional technique and inventive approaches; superb.


Satoko Fujii
Ninety-Nine Years
(Libra)

Composer-pianist Satoko Fujii's new Orchestra Berlin, a ten-piece ensemble, presents a powerful work written specifically for this group in thought-provoking compositions of and uninhibited energy, with performers including saxophonists Gebhard Ullmann, Paulina Owczarek & Matthias Schubert, trombonist Matthias Muller, bassist Jan Roder, and drummers Peter Orins and Michael Griener.


Joe McPhee / John Edwards / Klaus Kugel
Journey to Parazzar
(Not Two)

Recorded at Metallurgov House Of Culture in the Ukraine as the 2nd concert of their tour, the trio of Joe McPhee (trumpet, alto saxophone), John Edwards (double bass), and Klaus Kugel (drums) present a masterful concert that includes a 29-minute "Re-Hairing In Zaporozhye" a 19-minute "To Rush At The Wind", and a wonderfully unconventional tribute to Cecil Taylor.


Misha Mengelberg / Peter Brotzmann / Evan Parker / Peter Bennink / Paul Rutherford / Derek Bailey / Han Bennink
Groupcomposing
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

Authoritative and playful free improvisation in the European Free Jazz style, this 1978 album on Misha Mengelberg and Han Bennink's Instant Composers Pool (ICP) label, included the pianist and drummer along with Peter Brotzmann, Peter Bennink and Evan Paker on sax, Paul Rutherford on trombone, and Derek Bailey on guitar, in a much-need reissue of this seminal album.


Mars Williams presents
An Ayler Xmas Volume 2
(ESP)

After releasing "An Ayler Xmas: The Music of Albert Ayler & Songs of Christmas" on Chicago saxophonist Mars Williams' Soul What? Label, ESP approached him for a 2nd volume, resulting in this joyful and quirky holiday record with contributions from Josh Berman, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Kent Kessler, Jeb Bishop, Christof Kurzmann, Didi Kern, Thomas Berghammer, Steve Hunt, Jim Baker and Hermann Stangassinger.


Joe McPhee / Hamid Drake
Keep Going
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

The second duo album between saxophonist & pocket trumpeter Joe McPhee and drummer/frame drummer Hamid Drake begins with McPhee reciting words by Harriett Tubman (Keep Going), as the two inform and astound through masterful playing, together and solo, shaking the listener through intense and unambiguously clear playing, with pieces reflecting our world situation.


Joe Morris / Do Yeon Kim
Macrocosm
(Glacial Erratic)

Performing on the Korean gayageum (also known as kayagum), Do Yeon Kim joins Joe Morris performing on guitar for five incredible string improvisations using a diversity of approaches from both players, including pointillistic improv, rich rivers of chords, languid moments of beauty, and moments where it's difficult to discern who's playing what.


Cornelius Cardew / London Experimental Ensemble
Treatise
(Split Rock Records)

The full two-hour performance of Cornelius Cardew's entire 193-page legendary Treatise graphic score, performed at Iklectik in London, England on January 28, 2017 in an 11-member ensemble of some of London's most interesting improvisers including participants in Scratch Orchestra, in a double CD release with liner notes by AMM founder Eddie Prevost.


Mahobin (Fujii / Anker / Tamura / Mori)
Live at Big Apple in Kobe
(Libra)

Continuing the celebration of pianist Satoko Fujii's 60th birtday by releasing one CD each month, this quartet brings an excellent set of electroacoustic improvisation to the collection in a quartet with trumpeter Natsuki Tamura, New York saxophonist Lotte Anker, and New York electronic artist and former DNA drummer Ikue Mori, performing live at Tokyo's Big Apple in 2018.


Steve Coleman and Five Elements
Live at the Village Vanguard, Vol. I (The Embedded Sets) [2 CDs]
(Pi Recordings)

With his earliest and most current performance history tied to the enduring Manhattan jazz club The Village Vanguard, alto saxophonist Steve Coleman records his Five Elements in a 2017 live show with Jonathan Finlayson on trumpet, Miles Okazaki on guitar, Anthony Tidd on bass, and Sean Rickman on drums for a fiery, exuberant and masterful concert of modern jazz.


Sun Ra
Astro Black
(Modern Harmonic)

From 1973-75 the Impulse! label released a few Sun Ra albums, the first of which was "Astro Black" with a large Arkestra-like ensemble of well-known collaborators making up the band as they perform the title track, "Discipline, "Hidden Spheres" and "Cosmo-Fire", reissued as a 2018 Record Store Day releases in its first proper reissue.


Fish-Scale Sunrise (Ab Baars / Kaja Draksler / Joe Williamson
No Queen Rises
(Relative Pitch)

Their name taken from a poem by Wallace Stevens, the Netherlands-based trio of Ab Baars on sax and clarinet, Kaja Draksler on piano, and Joe Williamson on bass represent the spirit of the poem in seven compositions from Ab Baars plus two collective improvs, a great mix of serious and playful performance that diverts from detailed interaction to spacious reflectiveness.


Moore / Edwards / Prevost
Darkened, yet shone
(Matchless)

Combining free improvisation, free jazz, rock, and electronic/EA-improv, the trio of Eddie Prevost (drums), NO Moore (guitarist), and bassist John Edwards are caught live at IKLECTIK in London, 2017, for a concert that changes pace from vigorous riffs to unconventional introspection, with masterful playing and profound technique, an exceptional performance.


Rudi Mahall / Alexander von Schlippenbach
So Far
(Relative Pitch)

Pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach and clarinetist Rudi Mahall have been exploring the music of jazz and free improvisation for decades in their own bands or together in Globe Unity Orchestra; here they are heard in their essential element as a duo, pushing their music in rapid runs and elegant and emotional moments with imposing technique and authoritative confidence.


Marty Ehrlich
Trio Exaltation
(Clean Feed)

With a history of playing together in the Andrew Hill Sextet, Marty Ehrlich immediately chose bassist John Hebert and drummer Nasheet Waits to join Ehrlich in his new trio endeavor, the multi-wind & reed player on alto sax, clarinet, bass clarinet and wooden flutes as they perform 9 lyrical and sophisticated Ehrlich compositions, plus one by Andrew Hill.


Mette Rasmussen / Chris Corsano
A View Of The Moon (From The Sun)
(Clean Feed)

Following their Relative Pitch album "All the Ghosts at Once", the free improvising duo of alto saxophonist Mette Rasmussen and drummer Chris Corsano, also on slide clarinet, release their 2nd album, a live concert at Cankarjev dom, in Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2015, pushing the limits on both instruments through radical technique and inventive approaches to their playing.


Drone Trio (Davis / Frith / Greenlief)
Lantskap Logic
(Clean Feed)

Recording in the Bay Area at the Mills College Chapel in Oakland, the Drone Trio of Fred Frith on electric guitar, Phillip Greenlief using extended techniques on alto & tenor saxophones, and Evelyn Davis on the Chapel's pipe organ, use the natural resonance of the chapel and their masterful skills as improvisors to evolve fervid and powerfully sonorous environments.


Satoko Fujii Orchestra Tokyo
Kikoeru, Tribute to Masaya Kimura
(Libra)

Completing a year of monthly albums for pianist Satoko Fujii's "kanreki", or 60th birthday, is this impressive and cathartic album written for Fujii's Orchestra Tokyo as a tribute to late tenor saxophonist and 10 year orchestra member Masaya Kimura, with four compositions from Fujii and two from trumpeter Natsuki Tamura, in an album of both profound testimonly and celebratory release.


The Thing (Gustafsson / Haker Flaten / Nilssen-Love + McPhee)
Again
(The Thing Records)

The Thing "again" as Gustafsson on saxophones, Haker Flaten on electric and acoustic bass, and Nilssen-Love on drums & percussion present 3 extended blues-based, Ayler-inflected free jazz pieces, with Gustafsson's powerfully emotional playing over Haker-Flaten and Nilssen-Love's powerful polyrhythmic foundations; Joe McPhee joins for one track taking on a Frank Lowe piece.


Dave Holland Feat. Evan Parker / Craig Taborn / Ches Smith
Uncharted Territories [2 CDs]
(Dare2 Records)

Reuniting bassist Dave Holland with saxophonist Evan Parker, a longtime friend from their early days in London, and joined by Craig Taborn on piano and electronics, and Ches Smith on percussion, as the group performs as a quartet and also in a variety of permutations of duo and trio configurations, in a set of rich and informed dialogs of masterful skill.


Don Cherry Trio
Studio 105, Paris 1967
(Hi Hat)

The complete broadcast on the French radio station ORTF of Don Cherry's work at Studio 105, Maison de l'ORTF, Paris in March of 1967, finding multi-instrumentalist/trumpeter Don Cherry, also on cornet, piano, bamboo flute, gong, performing with Karl Berger on vibes, marimba, piano, celeste & percussion, and Jacques Thollot on drums, bells, & timbales.


Anthony Braxton
Braxton: (Willisau) 1991 Studio [2 CDs]
(Hatology)

Reissuing and remastering the two studio albums from the 1992 4-CD boxset of Anthony Braxton's Quartet with Marily Crispell (piano), Mark Dresser (double bass) and Gerry Hemingway (drums & marimba) recording in Willisau, Switzerland, realizing 10 Braxton numbered compositions with masterful skill and virtuosity, an exceptional set of modern jazz.


Mars Williams presents (w/ Berman / Lonberg-Holm / Baker / Kessler / Sandstrom / Hunt)
An Ayler Xmas: The Music of Albert Ayler & Songs of Christmas
(Soul What Records)

Chicago saxophonist Mars Williams directs his Albert Ayler tribute band, Witches and Devils, to merge Ayler-esque compositions with Christmas songs, performed by Josh Berman (cornet) Fred Lonberg-Holm (cello), Jim Baker (keys, viola), Kent Kessler (bass), Brian Sandstrom (bass, guitar, trumpet); an unexpected and welcome present for your free jazz festivities!


Rempis / Piet / Daisy
Throw Tomatoes
(Astral Spirits)

Bringing together two live shows from 2017 of the trio of Chicago luminaries, Dave Rempis on saxophones, Tim Daisy on drums, and Matt Piet on piano, in an exhilarating album of free jazz that shows the excitement of all three in what are only their 3rd and 4th live gigs together, each driving the other to enthusiastic heights amidst contemplative and playful moments.


Mats Gustafsson / Jason Adasiewicz
Timeless
(Corbett vs. Dempsey)

Unexpected directions in this meeting between Swedish saxophonist Mats Gustafsson and Chicago vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz, in an introspective album of beautiful tonal conversations, relaxed and sophisticated dialogs that mostly eschews the more aggressive side of both musicians in deference to a thoughtful, reflective and elegant set of tunes.


Paul Dunmall / John O'Gallagher / John Edwards / Mark Sanders
Freedom Music
(FMR)

Live recordings at Hexagon Theatre in Birmingham in 2018 from the UK free improvising quartet of Paul Dunmall on tenor saxophone, John O'Gallagher on alto saxophone, John Edwards on bass, and Mark Sanders on drums, the two saxophonists bringing distinct approaches together as they weave and parry over the powerhouse rhythm duo of Edwards and Sanders.


Amado / Mcphee / Kessler / Corsano
A History Of Nothing
(Trost Records)

Following up their 2015 Not Two album "This is Our Language", the quartet organized by tenor saxophonist Rodrigo Amado with Joe McPhee on soprano saxophone and pocket trumpet, Kent Kessler on double bass, and Chris Corsano, a superb album of intense communication and soloing from a collective that merges free and lyrical playing, from ballads to full-on fury.


Ikeda / Prevost
The Whole Moon Rests in a Dewdrop on the Grass
(Matchless)

Performing live at Cafe OTO in London, 2018, Japanese sound artist and composer Ken Ikeda comes together with percussionist and Matchless label-leader Eddie Prevost for a concert of resonant, rich improvisation, Ikeda's electronics complementing Prevost's bowed cymbals as the duo builds to a diverse offering of powerful yet controlled sonic uproar; stunning.


The Way Ahead (Roligheten / Alberts / Barno / Aleklint / Stahl / Hoyer / Ostvang)
Bells, Ghosts And Other Saints
(Clean Feed)

An incredibly informed and modern album of free jazz drawing on an Albert Ayler influence from the Norwegian and Swedish septet of Andre Roligheten on tenor saxophone, clarinet, Kristoffer Alberts on alto saxophone, baritone saxophone, Niklas Barno on trumpet, Mats Aleklint on trombone, Mattias Stahl on vibraphone, Ola Hoyer on double bass, and Tollef Ostvang on drums.