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Abraxas / John Zorn

The Book Beri'ah Vol 5: Gevurah

Abraxas / John Zorn : The Book Beri'ah Vol 5: Gevurah (Tzadik)

Blending a punk rock sensibility with Sephardic tribalism via a taste of North African Gnawa magic, Abraxas is one of the most primal and rocking ensembles in the Masada family, here taking on the 5th edition of Masada Book Three, "The Book Beri'ah", recording in Bill Laswell's studio for 9 joyfully exuberant and intensely executed interpretations of Zorn's compositions.
 

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product information:


UPC: 702397510529

Label: Tzadik
Catalog ID: CD-TZA-5105
Squidco Product Code: 27445

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard sleeve, sealed
Recorded at Orange Music, in West Orange, New Jersey, in January, 2016, by James Dellatacoma.


Personnel:

John Zorn-composer

Aram Bajakian-guitars, banjos

Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz-gimbri, bass, percussion

Eyal Maoz-guitars, Saz

Kenny Grohowski-drums, percussion

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Artist Biographies:

"John Zorn (born September 2, 1953) is an American composer, arranger, producer, saxophonist, and multi-instrumentalist with hundreds of album credits as performer, composer, and producer across a variety of genres including jazz, rock, hardcore, classical, surf, metal, klezmer, soundtrack, ambient, and improvised music. He incorporates diverse styles in his compositions which he identifies as avant-garde or experimental. Zorn was described by Down Beat as "one of our most important composers".

Zorn established himself within the New York City downtown music movement in the mid-1970s performing with musicians across the sonic spectrum and developing experimental methods of composing new music. After releasing albums on several independent US and European labels, Zorn signed with Elektra Nonesuch and received wide acclaim with the release of The Big Gundown, an album reworking the compositions of Ennio Morricone. He attracted further attention worldwide with the release of Spillane in 1987, and Naked City in 1989. After spending almost a decade travelling between Japan and the US he made New York his permanent base and established his own record label, Tzadik, in the mid-1990s.

Tzadik enabled Zorn to maintain independence from the mainstream music industry and ensured the continued availability of his growing catalog of recordings, allowing him to prolifically record and release new material, issuing several new albums each year, as well as promoting the work of many other musicians. Zorn has led the hardcore bands Naked City and Painkiller, the klezmer/free jazz-influenced quartet Masada, composed over 600 pieces as part of the Masada Songbooks that have been performed by an array of groups, composed concert music for classical ensembles and orchestras, and produced music for opera, sound installations, film and documentary. Zorn has undertaken many tours of Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, often performing at festivals with many other musicians and ensembles that perform his diverse output.

Zorn's compositions cross many genres and he has stated "All the various styles are organically connected to one another. I'm an additive person-the entire storehouse of my knowledge informs everything I do. People are so obsessed with the surface that they can't see the connections, but they are there." For Zorn "Composing is more than just imagining music-it's knowing how to communicate it to musicians. And you don't give an improviser music that's completely written out, or ask a classical musician to improvise. I'm interested in speaking to musicians in their own languages, on their own terms, and in bringing out the best in what they do. To challenge them and excite them." "

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Zorn)
11/20/2019

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

"The music of guitarist, composer and educator Aram Bajakian has been called "a masterpiece" (fRoots, July 2017), "shape-shifting" (FreeJazzCollective, January 2017), and "astonishing" (Georgia Straight, March 2017).

As an instrumentalist, Bajakian had the privilege of performing alongside Velvet Underground frontman Lou Reed during his last two tours in 2011 and 2012. In 2013, Bajakian toured in Diana Krall's band, performing over 100 concerts with the multiple-Grammy-award-winning singer, along with violinist Stuart Duncan (Yo-Yo Ma's Goat Rodeo, Robert Plant) and drummers Karriem Riggins (Kanye West, Common, J-Dilla) and Jay Bellerose (Elton John, Rhiannon Giddens). Through these tours and others, Bajakian has had the opportunity to play in many of the world's greatest venues, including Carnegie Hall, Royal Albert Hall, the Acropolis, L'Olympia, as well as the Montreaux, Newport, Northsea, Monterey and Antibes jazz festivals, among others.

Bajakian's collaboration with his wife, vocalist, actress and ethnomusicologist, Julia Ulehla, entitled Dálava, reimagines folk songs collected over 100 years ago from a single village in Moravia by her great-grandfather. Their performances and two albums have received universal critical acclaim. Dálava's latest album, The Book of Transfigurations (Songlines, 2017) was listed by the Georgia Straight as one of "50 Albums That Shaped Vancouver" in their May 2017 edition celebrating the magazine's 50th year in print. Bastiaan Springer, in his August 2017 fRoots review said, "Every now and then an album appears that is so overwhelming and so intense that it is hard to put into any category. Such is the case with The Book Of Transfigurations, the second release by Dálava...Saying that The Book Of Transfigurations is a masterpiece is not an exaggeration."

Bajakian's 2014 solo guitar album, Music Inspired by the Color of Pomegranates, an alternate soundtrack to Parajanov's iconic film, received 4.5 stars from All About Jazz and was featured in the documentary Shepherds in the Cave, which tells the story of the restoration of frescoes in ancient Italian caves. there were flowers also in hell (2014, Sanasar Records), was called "One of the best instrumental rock records of recent years," by New York Music Daily. Village Voice critic Robert Christgau said of the album, "Every track singular, every track strong. A MINUS." Released by John Zorn's Tzadik Label, Aram Bajakian's Kef, which explores Armenian dance music of the same name, was listed as one of the Best World Music Albums of 2011 by PopMatters.

Bajakian has worked with numerous artists over the years and has been featured on several of composer and saxophonist John Zorn's projects. Bajakian performs in bassist Shanir Blumenkranz' (Yo-Yo Ma, Cyro Baptista) band Abraxas, which has recorded two albums of John Zorn's music: Book of Angels Volume 19, and Psychomagia. Bill Milkowski called their first album a "Twin 6 String assault," in Downbeat Magazine. A third album of material, entitled Book Beriah: Gevurah, was released in 2018 as part of an 11 CD box set which also featured albums by Bill Frisell, Craig Taborn, Julian Lage and Secret Chiefs 3.

Since 2014, Bajakian has performed in Frank London's (The Klemzatics) Glass House Orchestra, which recreates the musical culture of Hungarian Jewish communities destroyed by the Holocaust. Their debut record was nominated for three German Critics' Best of the Year Awards in October 2017.

Bajakian received his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he studied with Dr. Yusef Lateef. He holds a Masters Degree in Music Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and Master of Music degree in Music Composition from the University of British Columbia, where he studied electronic music with Dr. Keith Hamel. When not touring, he works as the Music Curator for the Western Front in Vancouver, one of Canada's leading artist run spaces for art and new music."

-Aram Bajakian Website (http://arambajakian.com/about)
11/20/2019

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

"Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz (born 1975 in Brooklyn, NY) is an American bassist and oud player who has recorded and performed extensively with Cyro Baptista's Banquet of the Spirits, Daniel Zamir's Satlah, Rashanim, and Pharaoh's Daughter, and John Zorn. Blumenkranz studied at the Manhattan School of Music, the Rimon School of Music in Israel, and holds a B.A. in Performance from Berklee College of Music in Boston. In 2012 he released the first album under his leadership Abraxas: Book of Angels Volume 19 featuring compositions by John Zorn."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shanir_Ezra_Blumenkranz)
11/20/2019

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

"Eyal Maoz (born 1969, Haifa) is an Israeli-born American guitarist, bandleader, solo performer and composer. His music has been described as a synthesis of rock, jazz and avant-garde, tinged with deep electronic and radical Jewish-middle-eastern music.[1]

He leads a number of original music ensembles, including Edom, Dimyon, and Crazy Slavic Band. He also co-leads the Maoz-Sirkis Duet, the Maoz-Masaoka Duet (with koto player Miya Masaoka) and Hypercolor (with Lukas Ligeti and James Ilgenfritz), and is a guest member of John Zorn's Cobra.

Eyal's ensembles have performed at major music festivals worldwide such as the Montreal International Jazz Festival, NYC 2007 Winter Jazz Fest, Brooklyn BAM Next Festival, Verizon Jazz Festival, the New York Jewish Music and Heritage Festival, Florida Music Harvest, The Jewzapalooza Festival in NYC and many more.

His music was featured in the movie Keepers of Eden by Yoram Porath, Israeli's Cinema History documentary by Raphaël Nadjari, as well as at the MTV show Undress. WNYC/NPR recently interviewed him and dedicated a 90-minute program to his music.

Eyal started to explore jazz, rock and avant-garde music at an early age. He led the Lemon Juice Quartet which performed regularly at the Red Sea International Jazz Festival, released three CDs and was heralded for their CD Peasant Songs, a version of Béla Bartók and Erik Satie's music on Piadrum Records.

Eyal's collaboration with long-time childhood friend and drummer Asaf Sirkis has resulted in two duo CDs; the most recent "Elementary Dialogues" released in June 2009 by Ayler Records (France).

His Jewish music acoustic ensemble, Dimyon, has earned critical acclaim after performances in Israel and Italy. After a solo tour in Austria, Eyal completed a guitar tour in China,

Hope and Destruction, his second CD on Tzadik Records, with his ensemble Edom was released in 2009. The group's debut CD, featured Maozwith, John Medeski, Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz, and Ben Perowsky."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyal_Maoz)
11/20/2019

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

"Brought up in a musical household in Miami, 29-year-old drummer, Kenny Grohowski has been performing since the age of 14. His rich musical background is demonstrated through the growing list of his collaborators and guest artists, including Vernon Reid, Corey Unger (of Blood Has Been Shed), Emeline Michel, Peter Cincotti, Jorge Sylvester, Bobby Sanabria, Bill T. Jones, Rory Stuart, Cassandra Wilson, Richie Ray & Bobby Cruz, Giovanni Hidalgo, John Benitez, Francis Mbappe, Domingo Quinones, and Bobby Valentin.

Grohowski has been a member of bassist Lonnie Plaxico's band since 2003, and a member of Andy Milne's Dapp Theory since 2006, having come back from a successful US/Canada tour with Dapp Theory, with Highlight shows in Vancouver opening for Jazz and Bass legend, Stanley Clarke, and performed in the 2007 Latin Grammy Awards Live from Madison Square Garden with the award winning group RBD. He has appeared on several recordings, including Plaxico's hit "So Alive" [Sony, Japan]. As of 2009, Grohowski has become a new member of acclaimed Haitian singer/cultural figure Emeline Michel's Accoustic Quintet, and has also performed at the Museum of Modern Art with the Ze Luis Quartet as part of their Live Art performances. Grohowski has also toured across the United States, South America, and Europe, as well as in Australia and China with New Classical Composer Daniel Bernard Roumain (a.k.a. DBR). Kenny has also performed regularly with acclaimed bassist Felix Pastorius and his group since 2010, performing regularly at such New York City venues as Zinc Bar and The 55 Bar. Recently, Grohowski has written and recorded for Grammy Award winning Producer and Arranger Victor "Papo" Ortiz on the album "Eres Santo".

When not working with his various affiliated ensembles, Grohowski enjoys a steady and fast paced Free lancing schedule, working with many of New York City's top Jazz, Rock, and Brazilian artists, as well as a multitude of others, and has recorded on over 40 albums. [...]"

-Kenny Grohowski Website (http://kennygrohowski.com/about/)
11/20/2019

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


1. Din 5:18

2. Pagam 3:02

3. Tamidi 5:47

4. Da'at 4:31

5. Bittul 4:43

6. Kavannot 6:26

7. Qiyyum 7:06

8. Tzelem 4:43

9. Betzaltzel 5:41
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Blending a punk rock sensibility with Sephardic tribalism via a taste of North African Gnawa magic, Abraxas is one of the most primal and rocking ensembles in the Masada family. After extensive touring with music from the Book of Angels, they stormed into Bill Laswell's studio to record an even more intense CD of Masada Book Three. Upheld by the pulsating sound of Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz's gimbri and the dynamic drumming of Kenny Grohowski, Aram Bajakian and Eyal Maoz push their guitars to the limits. Hypnotic grooves and trance-inducing guitar solos with arrangements that stop on a dime create a CD of white hot intensity. "-Tzadik

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Tzadik
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