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© 2002-2018, Squidco LLC


Box Cutter (Grdina / Houle / Silins / Leowen): Unlearn (Spool)

Edge of your seat improv from this Vancouver quartet, cutting through genres and styles in a joyful mix of new and old jazz styles that mix mystery and complexity in amazing ways.
 

Price: $12.95


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product information:


UPC: 778224222927

Label: Spool
Catalog ID: SPL128
Squidco Product Code: 12698

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2006
Country: Canada
Packaging: Jewel Tray
Recorded by Shelden Zaharke at the Factory. Mixed by Francois Houle, Mastered by Graeme Brown at Zen Mastering.


Personnel:

Gordon Grdina-guitar

Francois Houle-clarinets

Karlis Silins-bass

Kenton Loewen-drums

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Artist Biographies:

"Gordon Grdina (born 18 February 1977 ) is a Canadian jazz guitarist and oud player.

Grdina worked in the 2000s in Vancouver with his own formations; In 2002 he recorded his debut album The Grdina Trio (with James Danderfer and Simon Fisk). On his album Unlearn: Gordon Grdina's Box Cutter was also co-produced by Fran¨ois Houle. In 2006, Grdina presented the album Think Like the Waves in the trio with Gary Peacock and Paul Motian, which combined elements of Arab music and jazz genres. In the field of jazz, he was involved in 14 recording sessions between 2001 and 2012.

Grdina works with his own trio (from Tommy Babin, bass, and Kenton Loewen, drums) as well as his ten-piece Haram ensemble, Mats Gustafsson, Tony Malaby, Mark Helias, Kent Kessler and Jeb Bishop. "

-Wikipedia (translated by Google) (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gordon_Grdina)
11/7/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

Francois Houle (born August 17, 1961, Lachine): "I am a Canadian clarinetist who embraces pretty much any music where the clarinet is present, or has a bit of profile or history. Although I am classically trained, I have not followed the traditional career path associated with the kind of classical training I came out of.

I studied at McGill University with Emilio Iacurto (the legendary, long-time principal clarinetist of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra) and at Yale University with Keith Wilson (whose contribution to the clarinet world is unparalleled). I've had the privilege of participating in masterclasses with some of the world's finest clarinet players, including David Shifrin, Richard Stoltzman and Alan Hacker.

It was Alan Hacker who actually opened the door for me to explore new technical and musical possibilities on the clarinet. Having been part of Fires of London and a close collaborator with composers such as Peter Maxwell-Davies, Alan's insatiable curiosity and deep scholarship inspired me to look for my own personal approach. Following a brief visit to his home in the UK in the late 80's I spent some time in Paris practicing and researching clarinet new music repertoire. At that time I still didn't know what I was going to do with my life, except that I had a deep desire to "make it" in the music scene. It was during this period that I discovered the music of Steve Lacy.

Steve Lacy's career actually began as a dixieland clarinetist, eventually shifting to the soprano saxophone, an instrument very few jazz musicians had investigated since the great Sydney Bechet due to its range, smaller embouchure and faulty intonation. Steve dedicated his life to bringing this instrument at the forefront of creative music (legend has it that he turned John Coltrane on to the soprano's expressive qualities).

At the time I had one occasion of hearing him play live at the New Morning jazz club, and bought a newly released duo recording called "Paris Blues" (Owl Records, 1987) with the great Gil Evans on piano. Heading back to Canada, that was the only music I could listen to for quite a while, being transfixed by Lacy's and Evan's telepathic playing. It was the first time that I had found a jazz performance that rivalled with the finest chamber music making I was then more familiar with. It was a game changer as far as I was concerned. It opened the door for further exploration and discoveries; Anthony Braxton, John Carter, Jimmy Giuffre, all important figures in the development of creative music on the clarinet. It is interesting and deplorable to note that not once were these names ever mentioned in all my years of university clarinet seminars and lessons. It was only a few years later that he agreed to meet with me for one on one lessons at his Paris apartment. His main advice to me was to stick with the clarinet, and forge ahead with my musical thoughts and ideas, no matter how difficult the road ahead may be.

After a stint at the Banff Centre, where I worked on my technique and practiced improvisation (the centre has a great library with an extensive jazz and creative music collection), I relocated to Vancouver in the winter of 1989, where I began playing on the creative music scene and met many musicians who eventually became fantastic collaborators; Claude Ranger, Roger Baird, Tony Wilson, amongst many others. At the time, the New Orchestra Workshop Society was approaching its golden years, with the founding of the legendary Glass Slipper, the "go to" venue for creative music on the West Coast. The Vancouver Jazz Festival was well on its way to establishing itself as one of the most innovative international music happening, not only programming some of the biggest names in the business, such as Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis, but also the most creative musicians on the planet; Cecil Taylor, Evan Parker, John Zorn, Dave Douglas, Anthony Braxton, William Parker, and a whole sleuth of European 1st generation of improvisors such as Misha Mengelberg, Han Benning, ICP, AMM, and the Italian Instabile Orchestra. It was at the 1992 Jazz Festival that I had my first high profile gig, my first band "Et Cetera" sharing the bill with the Steve Lacy Sextet!

As I was making my first steps in the improvised community, I also became involved with the contemporary music scene, collaborating with composers such as John Oliver and Paul Dolden, as well as freelancing with established organizations; Vancouver New Music, Vancouver Pro Musica. In 1992 I became a founding member of the Standing Wave ensemble. My activities in both creative music and new music allowed me to forge a strong profile, eventually expanding to collaborations with international musicians, and getting international touring opportunities. Some long standing collaborations were forged during that fruitful period, with luminaries such as Benoît Delbecq and Joëlle Léandre among others.

I have since been constantly involved in the advancement of creative music, pursuing collaborative projects with composers and musicians of all persuasions. My work continues to test the boundaries, looking for new vistas and connections with listeners everywhere."

-Francois Houle Website (https://www.francoishoule.ca/about)
11/7/2018

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Canadian drummer Kenton Loewen is a member of The Crackling, Gordon Grdina Trio, Gordon Grdina's Box Cutter, The Coat Cooke Trio, Dan Mangan and Blacksmith, and the Egyptian fusion orchestra Haram.

-Squidco 11/7/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
track listing:


1. Titlewave 5:37

2. Cworky 7:41

3. Kenton & I 5:50

4. Pads 3:52

5. Say 6:12

6. Distant 6:28

7. Origin 4:14

8. Soul Suite 10:44

9. Albert The Monk 6:18

10. Platform 6:05
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Box Cutter cuts through stylistic boundaries. The players weave in and out of free-form improvisations, grooves, and lyrical melodic statements with equal enjoyment. The band leaves no stone unturned, making use of every possibility that presents itself. This is a band that loves to improvise. It will make music out of anything: the sound of wind, a chime, a feel, a phrase, a tune... Box Cutter feels equally at home making music out of pure sound and texture as making a soulful melody sing."-Spool

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Vancouver and Western Canada
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
Quartet Recordings
Canadian Composition & Improvisation


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