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Konstrukt & Joe McPhee: Babylon [VINYL] (Roaratorio)

NY saxophonist and pocket trumpeter Joe McPhee meets Turkish free-improv group konstruKt, who have collaborated with Evan Parker, Marshall Allen and Peter Brotzmann, for these fascinating improvisations mixing jazz, traditional instrumentation, and electronics.

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Label: Roaratorio
Catalog ID: ROAR 034LP
Squidco Product Code: 19537

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2014
Country: USA
Packaging: LP
Recorded live at Babylon in Istanbul, Turkey on March 18th, 2014 by Ozan Murat.


Joe McPhee-tenor saxophone, pocket trumpet

Korhan Futaci-tenor saxophone, alto saxophone, voice, Moog theremin

Umut Caglar-Micromoog, electric organ, guitar

Ozun Usta-acoustic bass, upright bass, Cura

Korhan Arguden-drums, old K Zildjian cymbals

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track listing:


1. Flyswatter 10:32

2. Simples Questions/Complex Answers 11:10


1. Involution 12:20 2. Tek'e 10:27

Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Electro-Acoustic Improv
Joe McPhee
Quintet Recordings

sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Turkish free-improv group konstruKt was formed in 2008 by Umut Çaglar, Korhan Futaci, Özün Usta, and Korhan Argüden; since their inception, they've gained notice through their collaborations with such old-guard stalwarts as Evan Parker, Marshall Allen and Peter Brotzmann. The latter introduced them to the legendary Joe McPhee at the Krakow Jazz Autumn festival, and after striking up a friendship, they invited him to join them in Istanbul for a concert in March of 2014. Babylon was recorded the day after he arrived, with no prior rehearsal or discussion, although the seamless meshing could fool anyone into thinking that they were a longtime working group. The music itself is a melding of free jazz and electronics, swinging from space-raga improv to soaring, full-throated anthemic melodies; some sort of Joe Meek jazz world where bird squeal falsettos pierce through a current of drums, only to struggle for breath, come up laughing, and take off far above. McPhee says, "These guys are the real deal," and he should know."-Roaratorio

"When Joe McPhee recorded Nation Time in 1970, a guy who looked like him didn't have to try hard to get clobbered in the streets of the USA on the taxpayer's dime. In The Wire 354, Umut Çaglar of the Turkish quartet konstruKt told Daniel Spicer about the unity of musicians and protesters against police brutality and heavy-handed, government-imposed cultural repression in Istanbul. Across the decades, free jazz and the freedom fight have linked arms again and again. The shared spirit of resistance may have helped them to find common find ground during their first concert together, which is documented by this LP.

The record has its share of tumultuous moments. On "Simple Question - Complex Answers," saxophonist Korhan Futaci uses looming organ chords, much like Miles Davis used to conduct musicians on his mid-1970s albums, as a backdrop for hyper-vocalised cries that project anguish and a bit of hysteria. Then McPhee steps up with his tenor to deliver coarse, rippling lines, and for a moment it's like a mash-up of Agharta and Archie Shepp's Fire Music. Intimations of street battle make an appearance on "Tek'e" -- the Turkish word for a billy goat -- when a siren-like theremin plows through some traditional folk stylings played on a cura (a small, two-stringed baglama) like a cop car scattering protesters; an ensuing duet by the saxophonists sounds like a lament for those who have been clubbed down. But the moments when the players sound most engaged come on "Involution," where McPhee's shift to squelchy pocket trumpet voicings enables him to join with the quartet's restless blipscape rather than simply sail over it." - Bill Meyer, The Wire

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Artist Biographies:

"Joe McPhee, born November 3,1939 in Miami, Florida, USA, is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, improviser, conceptualist and theoretician. He began playing the trumpet at age eight, taught by his father, himself a trumpet player. He continued on that instrument through his formative school years and later in a U.S. Army band stationed in Germany, at which time he was introduced to performing traditional jazz. Clifford Thornton's Freedom and Unity, released in 1969 on the Third World label, is the first recording on which he appears as a side man. In 1968, inspired by the music of Albert Ayler, he took up the saxophone and began an active involvement in both acoustic and electronic music.

His first recordings as leader appeared on the CJ Records label, founded in 1969 by painter Craig Johnson. These include Underground Railroad by the Joe McPhee Quartet (1969), Nation Time (1970), Trinity (1971) and Pieces of Light (1974). In 1975, Swiss entrepreneur Werner X. Uehlinger release Black Magic Man by McPhee, on what was to become Hat Hut Records.

In 1981, he met composer, accordionist, performer, and educator Pauline Oliveros, whose theories of "deep listening" strengthened his interests in extended instrumental and electronic techniques. he also discovered Edward de Bono's book Lateral Thinking: A Textbook of Creativity, which presents concepts for solving problems by "disrupting an apparent sequence and arriving at the solution from another angle." de Bono's theories inspired McPhee to apply this "sideways thinking" to his own work in creative improvisation, resulting in the concept of "Po Music." McPhee describes "Po Music" as a "process of provocation" (Po is a language indicator to show that provocation is being used) to "move from one fixed set of ideas in an attempt to discover new ones." He concludes, "It is a Positive, Possible, Poetic Hypothesis." The results of this application of Po principles to creative improvisation can be heard on several Hat Art recordings, including Topology, Linear B, and Oleo & a Future Retrospective.

In 1997, McPhee discovered two like-minded improvisers in bassist Dominic Duval and drummer Jay Rosen. The trio premiered at the Vision Jazz Festival in 1998 but the concert went unnoticed by the press. McPhee, Duval, and Rosen therefore decided that an apt title for the group would be Trio X. In 2004 he created Survival Unit III with Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang to expand his musical horizons and with a career spanning nearly 50 years and over 100 recordings, he continues to tour internationally, forge new connections while reaching for music's outer limits."

-Joe McPhee Website (

"Korhan Futacı: Turkish composer, saxophonist bio Gained recognition for his lyrics, compositions and saxophone performance on Tamburada's album 'Fantastik'. His audience grew with Dandadadan's album 'Sen Bana Birini Android'. Performed at Berlin, Antwerp, Istanbul, Akbank, Alanya and Afyon jazz festivals. Also innumerable times at concert venues in Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Bursa and Antalya. Shared the stage with many international artists. His debut album containing all his own lyrics and compositions was released in 2010. He worked with Andy Jackson, whom we know from Pink Floyd and David Gilmore albums. Second album 'Pavurya' met the audience in 2012. sound Chaos of İstanbul and musical journey of madness. line-up Korhan Futacı (vocal, saxophone) Özün Usta (percussion, vibraphone, acoustic effects) Ediz Hafızoğlu (drums and cymbals) Gökhan Şahinkaya (bass guitar) Selim Saraçoğlu (gitar Barlas) Tan Özemek (guitar Barlas) Görkem Karabudak (keyboards)"

-Salon (

"Umut Çağlar Born 1972, Istanbul, Istanbul, Turkey Member of Dead Country, Konstrukt Genres Free Improvisation" (

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