Seven "hyperactive and urgent improvisations" of the reunited trio of guitarist Sandy Ewen, double bassist Damon Smith and drummer Weasel Walter, performing at the NMASS festval in Austin, Texas, and two venues in Houston, Texas; rugged and rewarding exploratory playing.
Ewen / Smith / Walter
Live in Texas
Label: Balance Point Acoustics
Released in: USA
"Live in Texas offers seven hyperactive and urgent improvisations of the reunited trio of Ewen, Smith and Walter, three were recorded recorded in Austin at the NMASS festival in 2014 and the other four in two venues in Houston - Cactus Records and Avant Garden - with no mention of the time of the latter recordings. This is a hard-working trio, busy searching for uncharted, alien terrains, exploring intense dynamics and then deconstructing its them with sheer brutal force, melting their sound universe into a buzzing, explosive unity and always opts for abstract, structural disruption."-Eyal Hareuveni, freejazzblog.org
Biography for: Sandy Ewen
"Sandy Ewen was born in Toronto, Canada in 1985, Sandy Ewen received a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin in 2008. Since then she has resided in Houston, TX where she pursues musical and visual projects and her architecture license. Ewen has released several albums, including a duo with guitarist Tom Carter, a trio with bassist Damon Smith & drummer Weasel Walter, and a rock album with Austin's Weird Weeds. Ewen's visual work is closely tied to her work in sound; she uses both mediums to explore texture, composition and materials.
Ewen's microcollages, enlarged through projection and digital printing, are an exploration of material and technique. Using a unique process pioneered by the artist, natural materials and polymers are torn, liquefied, scorched, melted, cut, and fused. When enlarged, the microscopic nuances of these manipulations are manifested in exquisite detail. Ewen has presented prints of her work at 14 Pews (2012), Spacetaker/Fresh Arts (2012), Khon's (2013) & Galeria Regina (2014).
As an improviser in both art and music, Ewen sees herself as guiding materials and space rather than executing a preconceived composition. "I like to explore mediums and materials and tease out their essence," says Ewen. "Working with slide projections has focused my eye on the subtitles of natural processes of decay and transformation. Through my work, I am asking questions of the materials rather than dictating answers." "-Sandy Ewen Website (http://www.sandyewen.com/about/)
Biography 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/)
Biography for: Weasel Walter
"Weasel Walter (real name Walter Wyzowski) is a composer and instrumentalist who founded the band The Flying Luttenbachers in Chicago in 1991 with a current member of Cellular Chaos and Behold...The Arctopus. Over the years, The Flying Luttenbachers included noted Dylan Posa, and Michael Colligan, while creating a body of music drawing equally from no wave, death metal, gamelan, noise music, hardcore punk and modern classical. Walter moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2003, where he formed the latest of many Luttenbachers lineups, remaining on percussion with the addition of bassist Mike Green (Burmese), and virtuoso guitarist Ed Rodriguez (ex-Colossamite, Gorge Trio). Singular guitar phenomenon Mick Barr (Krallice, Octis, Orthrelm) joined the group in 2005. The Flying Luttenbachers ceased to operate in late 2007. On November 25, 2009, Weasel Walter announced that he was moving to New York City to join the band Behold... The Arctopus on drums and will be writing "new, more extreme material from scratch." He also formed Cellular Chaos with Marc Edwards (drummer), Admiral Grey and Ceci Moss."-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weasel_Walter)
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Label: Balance Point Acoustics
Catalog ID: bpaltd 808
Squidco Product Code: 22650
Recorded at the NMASS festval in Austin, Texas, and two venues in Houston, Texas, by Weasel Walter.
Damon Smith-double bass, electric upright bass
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1. NMASS 1 17:10
2. NMASS 2 5:31
3. NMASS 3 6:55
4. CACTUS 1 11:57
5. CACTUS 2 5:51
6. AVANT GARDEN 1 14:53
7. AVANT GARDEN 2 11:04