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Freely improvised clarinet duets featuring rapidly shifting patterns of melodic interplay from Italian Alberto Popolla and British Noel Taylor (LIO), with distinct approaches to the instrument resulting in episodic interplay.

Popolla, Alberto & Noel Taylor
All Fall Down

Popolla, Alberto  & Noel Taylor: All Fall Down (Citystream)
Label: Citystream    
Released in: Great Britain    

"Freely improvised clarinet duets featuring rapidly shifting patterns of melodic interplay.Alberto Popolla and Noel Taylor came to know each other's playing through the internet, and eventually met to play together while Popolla, from Rome, was touring the UK. Popolla's playing is generally more complex, full of arabesque figures and rapid fingering, whereas Taylor tends to more linear phrasing. Although their clarinet playing styles are very different, it is nevertheless frequently difficult to work out who is playing what. They both respond very rapidly to each other, and the music takes on an episodic quality as they chase the hints that are tossed between them as they improvise. The overly simple, off-kilter melodies that sometimes leap out are often triggered by some perverse logic of phraseology or stray inflection. There is sometimes a quality of things half-remembered, briefly appearing before being carried along on the next musical suggestion that breaks to the surface."-Noel Taylor Website

"This 14 track CD is possibly one of the most delightful wind duos I've heard for a long time, and it's easy listening! By using the words easy listening I'm certainly not trying to evoke the image of James Last or Bert Kaempfert, here we have music that whilst pushing at barriers is quite unpretentious, even the length of the tunes is very modest, with the majority of the pieces having an average of 2 to 3 minutes. Yet that makes the music even more enjoyable, and of course you hear that the musicians enjoyed playing together.

It seems that Alberto and Noel met via MySpace and started to work together, I assume this is the first fruit of that meeting, if so it's real success as the music on the album is enchanting. The duets are (I imagine) improvised and much of the music has an almost pastoral quality. Yet there are moments of strong energy and dissonance, and due to the quality of the recording you get a spacial sound, giving the impression that the two clarinettists are in the same room as you. With titles such as 'Damselfly,' 'Cats Tango' or 'A-Tishoo! A-Tishoo!,' one can understand that much of the music has impressionistic qualities, and what also makes the music most listenable is the clear interest that the two clarinettists have in finding and developing melody. In fact it's this ingredient that makes this album such a success and will give the listener endless fun in discovering and re-discovering each tracks details, a little like returning to an art gallery to view a painting more than once.

Although this disc doesn't invent new territory it's excellent example of user friendly improvisation which at moments reminds me of some contemporary classical music. Of course it will be interesting to see what Noel Taylor and Alberto Popolla do next in this format, and one hopes that they'll continue what looks and sounds like an extremely fruitful partnership. Tags for this excellent disc could be-The Clarinets, and umm, err, any suggestions for any (all) clarinet groups welcome!"-Joe Higham, All About Jazz

"(b. 1956, Melbourne, Aust.) has been involved in the Melbourne experimental, art rock/punk rock scene since the mid-seventies with such groups as False Start, Signals and Dumb and the Ugly. The first two of these groups began from associations made around the time he was completing a diploma of fine arts.

Current projects include punk jazz band bucketrider, lazy an improvising duo with percussionist Sean Baxter, improv/sound art group Western Grey with Baxter and Philip Samartzis, psychedelic electronic duo Terminal Hz with KK Null from Japan, prepared improvisational group Pateras/Baxter/Brown, electric free jazz group Embers as well as more occasional groups The Greg Kingston Big Band and The Crowded Foxhole, the latter with son Louis Peake.

The focus of the solo project candlesnuffer has increasingly centred on the development of composing techniques which meld opposing streams like conventional electro-acoustic methods with noise and rock and also the development of a vocabulary of tiny acoustic sounds enlarged outside their normal context for performance and composition.

In all these projects Brown has continued to develop a vocabulary that runs the gamut from rock bassist through experimental guitarist to sound artist. In addition, his activities as a solo improviser and composer have been consolidated by, or germinated from, a return to education with the aim to research the relationship between digital recording and improvisatory techniques, concluding in an M.A. completed at RMIT in 2001. Currently Brown is undertaking a PhD research project at RMIT University investigating the use and benefits of electroacoustique compositions and field recordings within a hospital Emergency Department.

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
European Improv, Free Jazz & Related
London & UK Free Improvisation Scene
Duo Recordings

Get additional information at All About Jazz

Search for other titles on the Citystream label.

Price: $12.95
In Stock


Shipping Weight: 5.00 units

Quantity in Basket: None

Product Information:

UPC: 884502714302

Label: Citystream
Catalog ID: CTYCD00104
Squidco Product Code: 15449

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2010
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: Jewel Tray

Noel Taylor-soprano clarinet, alto clarinet, bass clarinet

Alberto Popolla-soprano clarinet, bass clarinet

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Track Listing:

1. Swaying In Green Shoes 1:47

2. Snowfall 1:47

3. Damselfly 1:13

4. Cat's Tango 3:39

5. And Then There Was Spring 4:26

6. The Tock-Tick-Tock 2:43

7. Flip The Lid 2:19

8. Tutti Giu Per Terra 4:01

9. Green Space 4:27

10. Giro, Giro, Tonda 2:57

11. Mammy In The Teapot 2:54

12. A-Tishoo! A-Tishoo! 2:01

13. Departure Gate 5:48

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