The Squid's Ear Magazine

  Rapid SSL





  American Express

© 2002-2017, Squidco LLC



FME: Montage (Okka)
Label: Okka    
Released in: USA    

Fourth release from the prolific Chicago reed player Ken Vandermark and his FME trio (Free Music Ensemble). This double disc of live recordings presents several concepts, each dedicated to a film legend (Orson Welles, Stanley Kubrick, Sergio Leone, Buster Keaton, etc). Vandermark is a leading free player, and he doesn't disappoint, with consistently challenging and enthusiastic playing from this incredibly talented set of musicians. Not to be missed!

"Born in Warwick, Rhode Island on September 22nd, 1964, Ken Vandermark began studying the tenor saxophone at the age of 16. Since graduating with a degree in Film and Communications from McGill University during the spring of 1986, his primary creative emphasis has been the exploration of contemporary music that deals directly with advanced methods of improvisation. In 1989, he moved to Chicago from Boston, and has worked continuously from the early 1990's onward, both as a performer and organizer in North America and Europe, recording in a large array of contexts, with many internationally renowned musicians (such as Fred Anderson, Ab Baars, Peter Brötzmann, Tim Daisy, Hamid Drake, Terrie Ex, Mats Gustafsson, Devin Hoff, Christof Kurzmann, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Joe McPhee, Paal Nilssen-Love, Paul Lytton, Andy Moor, Joe Morris, and Nate Wooley). His current activity includes work with Made To Break, The Resonance Ensemble, Side A, Lean Left, Fire Room, the DKV Trio, and duos with Paal Nilssen-Love and Tim Daisy; in addition, he is the music director of the experimental Pop band, The Margots. More than half of each year is spent touring in Europe, North America, and Japan, and his concerts and numerous recordings have been critically acclaimed both at home and abroad. In addition to the tenor sax, he also plays the bass and Bb clarinet, and baritone saxophone. In 1999 he was awarded the MacArthur prize for music."

-Ken Vandermark Website (

"Paal Nilssen-Love was born in Molde, Norway, Dec 24. 1974, and raised at a jazz club in Stavanger, run by his parents. It was natural to choose his fathers drums as his instrument and jazz as his work. From 1990 on he took actively part in the jazz milieu in Stavanger and joined bands with established musicians such as trumpeter Didrik Ingvaldsen and saxophonist Frode Gjerstad. In many ways, these collaborations were essential as they pointed out the directions for Paal's later musical development and career. During his studies at the Jazz dept at the University in Trondheim, where the first self initiated bands were established, things developed really fast - and Paal was nationally acknowledged at the age of 20.

The forming of the quartet Element in 1993 in many ways represented the start of a new phase in Paal's musical life. Element musically became a platform for several other groups with bassist Flaten and pianist Wiik, and lead to collaborations with Iain Ballamy and Chris Potter, amongst others. Paal moved to Oslo in 1996, where he joined and/or took part in the forming of bands like Vindaloo, SAN, Håkon Kornstad Tio, The Quintet and Frode Gjerstad Trio. He later on got more into self initiated projects and collaborations with Swedish musicians, such as pianist Sten Sandell and saxophonist Mats Gustafsson.

Paal played his first solo concert in 1999, and since then the solo concept has been an important part of his work: "Everyone should try doing some solo work, just to feel who you really are and what gets you going". His solo album "Sticks and stones" was put out in 2001 on SOFA Rec.

Being active in several bands at the same time has always been Paal's deliberate working method. He is constantly conscious about the projects he is in, as his participation in each and one of them is fully dedicated. Playing is not about getting from start to goal, but rather being in an everlasting process, a continuous movement where each new piece of music performed is a prolongation of the latest. Hence, keeping focused and concentrating all energy around what's happening there and then is of greatest importance - as is the freedom in the music, the ability of being free within the expression.

All bands, although various styles and musical versatility in general, represent important pieces that make up a total, and all bands are formed or joined with a clear vision. Today Paal's portfolio includes Atomic, School Days, The Thing, Frode Gjerstad Trio, Sten Sandell Trio, Scorch Trio, Territory Band, FME, and various duo projects such as with reedmen Ken Vandermark, John Butcher, Mats Gustafsson, organist Nils Henrik Asheim and noise wizard Lasse Marhaug. And not to forget the recently joined Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet."

-Paal Nilssen-Love Website (

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
November 2006
Ken Vandermark
Chicago Jazz & Improvisation
Paal Nilssen-Love
Trio Recordings

Search for other titles on the Okka label.

Recommended & Related Releases:
Price: $16.95
In Stock


Shipping Weight: 6.00 units

Quantity in Basket: None

Product Information:

Label: Okka
Catalog ID: OKKA 071CD
Squidco Product Code: 6941

Format: 2 CDs
Condition: New
Released: 2006
Country: USA
Packaging: 2 CDs in a single Jewel tray
CD 1 Recorded live at Artists At Large in Hyde Park, Massachusetts, September 22nd, 2005. CD 2 Recorded live at the Suoni Per Il Popolo Festival in Montreal, Quebec, September 23rd, 2005


Ken Vandermark-reeds

Nate McBribe-bass

Paal Nilssen-Love-drums

Highlight an artist name or instrument above
and click here to Search

Track Listing:

CD 1: Boston

Set One

1) a. On A Wire (for Sergio Leone)

b. Montage (for Sergei Eisenstein)

c. False Rabbit (for Federico Fellini)

Time [19:34]

2) a. But Only Almost (for Takeshi Kitano)

b. Looking At Dutch Stairs (for Buster Keaton)

Time [17:17]

Set Two

3) a. Drift (for John Cassavetes)

b. Decoder (for Stanley Kubrick)

Time [14:56]

4) a. New Reference (for Peter Greenaway)

b. Ottica (for Akira Kurosawa)

c. Exit The Republic (for Orson Welles)

Time [19:01]

CD 2: Montreal

Set One

1) a. Exit The Republic (for Orson Welles)

b. Drift (for John Cassavetes)

c. Ottica (for Akira Kurosawa)

d. New Reference (for Peter Greenaway)

e. Decoder (for Stanley Kubrick).

Time [35:03]

Set Two

2) a. But Only Almost (for Takeshi Kitano)

b. False Rabbit (for Federico Fellini)

c. Montage (for Sergei Eisenstein)

Time [26:05]

3) a. On A Wire (for Sergio Leone)

b. Looking At Dutch Stairs (for Buster Keaton)

Time [16:06]

All compositions by Ken Vandermark (ASCAP)

Other Releases
With These Artists: