8 duos recorded in the studio between bassist Damon Smith and free vocalist Carol Genetti, and 4 trio tracks adding Fred Lonberg-Holm on violoncello and performing live at Chicago's Empty Bottle.
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Label: Balance Point Acoustics
Catalog ID: bpa005
Squidco Product Code: 15196
Packaging: Jewel Tray
Recorded on January 29th, 2002 and January 30th, 2002 by Bob Falesch.
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1. Wuppertal Is An Idyll 7:37
2. The Hard And The Soft I 4:02
3. Urbanch Method 2:30
4. Simulate Bearability 2:55
5. Fragility Itself 6:14
6. Experimental Sentences 4:09
7. Ore, Oil, Open 4:39
8. Overhearing 4:10
9. Deadly Togetherness 6:43
10. Pouring Out Civilities 8:01
11. Self-Perpetuating Duplicity 9:49
12. A Sudden Fit Of Abstraction 5:20
Unusual Vocal Forms
Chicago Jazz & Improvisation
sample the album:
"For a while, bassist Damon Smith's preferred free improvising unit was the trio, as his previous releases on Balance Point Acoustics testify. But despite its triple bill, Sense of Hearing consists mostly of duets with singer Carol Genetti -- cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm joins in only for the last four pieces, representing half an hour of music. The duets have been recorded in the studio; the trio tracks are taken from a live performance at the Empty Bottle in Chicago.
Genetti plays her voice like an instrument, drawing on the legacy of Phil Minton and Maggie Nicols to develop her own identity. Several of her idiosyncrasies evoke bird songs (ululating, in particular), but she also uses a lot of croaking and half-enunciated nonsense sentences (similar in that to Morgan Guberman's vocal art), along with jazzier-sounding scat lines. Her tone is raspier than Aurora Josephson, another Bay Area singer often performing with Damon Smith (see their quintet CD, Zero Plus), and if she's not the most striking improv vocalist in America, she delivers a touching performance.
The eight duets presented on this disc range in duration between two and seven minutes. They showcase a musical language that is still growing or undergoing a certain mutation: the vocabulary isn't fixed, there is tension in the delivery, like an incertitude in how to interpret given signifiers. That provides an attention-grabbing level of unrest, especially in "The Hard and the Soft I" and "Experimental Sentences," the latter exploring softer, more fragile sounds. The trio pieces, performed the day after the studio session, are more assured, transmuting the previous tension into confident energy. "Self-Perpetuating Duplicity," with its train whistles, stands out as a potent free improv statement."-Francois Couture, All Music
Get additional information at All Music
• Show Bio for Damon Smith
"Damon Smith studied double bass with Lisle Ellis and has had lessons with Bertram Turezky, Joëlle Leandré, John Lindberg, Mark Dresser and others. Damon's explorations into the sonic palette of the double bass have resulted in a personal, flexible improvisational language based in the American jazz avant-garde movement and European non-idiomatic free improvisation. Visual art, film and dance heavily influence his music, as evidenced by his CAMH performance of Ben Patterson's Variations for Double Bass, collaborations with director Werner Herzog on soundtracks for Grizzly Man and Encounters at the End of the World, and an early performance with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company.
Damon has collaborated with a wide range of musicians, including: Cecil Taylor, Marshall Allen (of Sun Ra's Arkestra), Henry Kaiser, Roscoe Mitchell, Michael Pisaro, Wadada Leo Smith, Marco Eneidi, Wolfgang Fuchs, Peter Brötzmann and Peter Kowald. After many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, and five great years in Houston, Texas working regularly with Alvin Fielder, Sandy Ewen, David Dove & Chris Cogburn, Damon will move to the Boston area in the fall of 2016. Damon has run Balance Point Acoustics record label since 2001, releasing music focusing on transatlantic collaborations between US and European musicians."-Balance Point Acoustic Website (https://www.balancepointacoustics.com/damon-smith/)
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