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Nate Wooley (trumpet), Chris Corsano (percussion) and Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten (bass) recording in Austin, TX for their first proper release as Icepick, 3 tracks of powerfully creative and downright smoldering modern jazz using exceptional skill and passion.

Icepick (Nate Wooley, Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten & Chris Corsano)

Icepick (Nate Wooley, Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten & Chris Corsano): Amaranth [VINYL + DOWNLOAD CODE] (Astral Spirits)

Label: Astral Spirits    
Released in: USA    

"This record (along with McPhee's Zurich (1979)) is one of the first from Astral Spirits to see a vinyl release instead of their traditional cassette & download format.

As Astral Spirits labelhead Nate Cross and I continued our discussion, he said of this album:

"As you know, the first release on Astral Spirits was Icepick's 'Hexane' tape (which was a live recording that had more of a lo-fi quality to it, but was still incredible). As part of my Astral Spirits label launch, I was able to get Nate Wooley and Chris Corsano down to Austin for a weekend to play a show here in Austin. I also set them up at a studio while they were in town and 'Amaranth' is the result of these studio recordings. They recorded with Ian Rundell (who is in Ghetto Ghouls, a great punk rock band on Monofonus Press) so it definitely has a more punk feel I think - nothing fancy at all used in the recording but it sounds perfect. These guys literally knocked out this entire album (and more) in four hours one afternoon. I really wanted to present this as [one of] my first LPs because it shows the growth of Icepick and what they can do."

So what does the "growth" sound like?

"Rosso Corsa" reveals the whole trio almost immediately. Four minutes in, Wooley drops, followed by Corsano - previously all over his kit - a minute later. Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten's bass is left to pizzicato solo. Wooley returns around the 6:30 mark with a savage, almost drunken moan. Are there voices? It's hard to say. Corsano's kit sounds like shells falling all around; shots: unheard. Wooley's horn becomes more insistent, then aggressive. Fluidity isn't sacrificed but neither is buzzed spit. With two minutes remaining in the track, overblown notes from Wooley phase into a fucking beautiful loungey blues noir followed by a muscular sprint to a reigned in - though not exhausted - finish.

"Fuchsia" smells a bit of brilliance. On a three-song album, it's the palette cleanser, a track of radio-play length sitting directly between the two long-form jams. Wooley puckers up and you can hear the sawdust falling from Haker-Flaten's bow as the opening bars belong to a tandem trying to literally scratch its way into the song. This is a prime example of what was missing on last year's debut. Poor recording and crowd noise provide that awesome live atmosphere but what is sacrificed is this. "Fuchsia" is a four-and-a-half minute masterstroke. By the start of the first minute, Wooley's incredible torturing of a spiritual blues is topped in thrills by Haker-Flaten's mad calligraphy. Imagine the sound Beethoven's pen must have made writing Eroica. Those ink splots and furious curls. It sounds like that. Wooley's trumpet rises though. First to diseased barks and then into something more beautiful before he blows out his air - all of it - and gives the song back to to Haker-Flaten. By song's end, the bassist's tragic arco has watched and heard Wooley's trumpet sputter around the room like a deflating balloon. It lands. I repeat, a masterstroke.

"Rare Rufescent" follows and closes the record. The opening bars belong to Haker-Flaten's solo percussive bass. His notes pop like the soundtrack of a spaghetti western, all saloon doors and dusty boots and revolvers. Corsano enters. At almost the minute mark, Wooley follows with a series of increasingly intense trills. Haker-Flaten keeps slapping the shit out of his instrument. Wooley becomes a tad more soulful before corrupting his phrase with an overblown note and launching into a passage that sounds pure New Orleans.

Voices again?

Wooley introduces a short vamp before deconstructing it in every way possible through fiery and limber lines, themselves sabotaged by the occasional overblown note. Finally, the horn releases to Haker-Flaten's bellowing, motor-like arco. Corsano propels but keeps the focus on Haker-Flaten who continues to move his instrument between a dying man's groan and an ocean liner's throaty roar. Midway through the song, Haker-Flaten's "ship" closes in on land and Wooley blows a scattering of warnings. For the next few minutes, it's a barren carnival of rust: the only sounds, like those of a decaying swingset. From this, Wooley rises with long, solemn notes, buoyed by Haker-Flaten's arco. When Corsano returns, it's on the heels of the trumpet providing scales touched by that twisted New Orleans sound. Corsano begins to coax a tad more momentum and touch more nasty from his kit as Wooley soars above with a gorgeous lament. It's red all over. Jazz was born here. In this "place". In this shade."-Joel Barela, FreeJazz Blog

"Nate Wooley was born in 1974 in Clatskanie, Oregon, a town of 2,000 people in the timber country of the Pacific Northwestern corner of the U.S. He began playing trumpet professionally with his father, a big band saxophonist, at the age of 13. His time in Oregon, a place of relative quiet and slow time reference, instilled in Nate a musical aesthetic that has informed all of his music making for the past 20 years, but in no situation more than his solo trumpet performances.

Nate moved to New York in 2001, and has since become one of the most in-demand trumpet players in the burgeoning Brooklyn jazz, improv, noise, and new music scenes. He has performed regularly with such icons as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Eliane Radigue, Ken Vandermark, Fred Frith, Evan Parker, and Yoshi Wada, as well as being a collaborator with some of the brightest lights of his generation like Chris Corsano, C. Spencer Yeh, Peter Evans, and Mary Halvorson.

Wooley's solo playing has often been cited as being a part of an international revolution in improvised trumpet. Along with Peter Evans and Greg Kelley, Wooley is considered one of the leading lights of the American movement to redefine the physical boundaries of the horn, as well as demolishing the way trumpet is perceived in a historical context still overshadowed by Louis Armstrong. A combination of vocalization, extreme extended technique, noise and drone aesthetics, amplification and feedback, and compositional rigor has led one reviewer to call his solo recordings "exquisitely hostile".

In the past three years, Wooley has been gathering international acclaim for his idiosyncratic trumpet language. Time Out New York has called him "an iconoclastic trumpeter", and Downbeat's Jazz Musician of the Year, Dave Douglas has said, "Nate Wooley is one of the most interesting and unusual trumpet players living today, and that is without hyperbole". His work has been featured at the SWR JazzNow stage at Donaueschingen, the WRO Media Arts Biennial in Poland, Kongsberg, North Sea, Music Unlimited, and Copenhagen Jazz Festivals, and the New York New Darmstadt Festivals. In 2011 he was an artist in residence at Issue Project Room in Brooklyn, NY and Cafe Oto in London, England. In 2013 he performed at the Walker Art Center as a featured solo artist.

Nate is the curator of the Database of Recorded American Music ( and the editor-in-chief of their online quarterly journal Sound American ( both of which are dedicated to broadening the definition of American music through their online presence and the physical distribution of music through Sound American Records. He also runs Pleasure of the Text which releases music by composers of experimental music at the beginnings of their careers in rough and ready mediums."

-Nate Wooley Website (

"First spellbound by freely improvised music in the mid-1990s after witnessing performances by TEST, William Parker, Cecil Taylor, and others, Chris Corsano began a long-standing, high-energy partnership with Paul Flaherty in 1998. A move from western Massachusetts to the UK in 2005 led Corsano to develop an expanded solo music of his own, incorporating sax reeds, violin strings and bows, pot lids, and other everyday household items into his drum kit. In February 2006 he released his first solo recording, The Young Cricketer, and toured extensively throughout Europe, USA, and Japan. He spent 2007 and '08 as the drummer on Björk's Volta world tour, all the while weaving in shows and recordings on his days off with the likes of Evan Parker, Virginia Genta, and C. Spencer Yeh. Moving back to the U.S. in 2009, Corsano returned focus to his own projects, most notably a duo with Michael Flower, Rangda (with Sir Richard Bishop and Ben Chasny) and solo work, now revamped to include synthesizers and contact microphones in addition to his drum set and home-made acoustic instruments.

In addition to the those mentioned above, he's also worked with, among others: John Edwards (released by: Clean Feed/Dancing Wayang), Jim O'Rourke & Akira Sakata (Drag City/Family Vineyard), Paul Dunmall (ESP-Disk), Nels Cline (Strange Attractors), Jessica Rylan (Load Records), Jandek (Corwood), Sunburned Hand Of Man (Manhand), MV&EE (Eclipse/Time-Lag), Vampire Belt (Open Mouth), Joe McPhee (Roaratorio), and Wally Shoup (Leo/Columbia Japan)."

-Chris Corsano Website (

Includes MP3 download code.

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Product Information:

Includes MP3 download code.

Label: Astral Spirits
Catalog ID: MF100/AS018
Squidco Product Code: 20898

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2015
Country: USA
Packaging: LP
Recorded in Austin, Texas on September 20th, 2014 by Ian Rundell.


Nate Wooley-trumpet

Chris Corsano-drums

Ingebrigt Haker-Flaten-bass

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Track Listing:


1. Rosso Corsa 12:15

2. Fuchsia 4:28


1. Rare Rufescent 19:13

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