The Edinburgh trio of Archibald (drums), Colin Stewart (bass) and Rebecca Sneddon (alto saxophone) play an experimental blend of doom metal and free jazz, with guests trumpeter Luc Klein and trombonist Patrick Darley, in an album that bridges heavy rock with melodic improv.
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Label: Rarenoise Records
Catalog ID: RNR-LP-068LP
Squidco Product Code: 22956
Format: 2 LPs
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: Double LP in a Gatefold Sleeve
Recorded at the Reid Hall in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Paul Archibald-drums, percussion, piano, organ
Colin Stewart-electric bass
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1. Open The Gate 4:32
2. You Are Old, Father William 6:45
3. Funambule 5:56
4. The Woods 10:09
5. Calcutta Cutie 7:56
6. Lora 7:02
7. Bicycle Day 4:16
8. Inferno Pt. 1 4:51
9. Shapeshifter 5:56
10. Always Go Left In The Maze 4:21
11. Om 8:22
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"Free Nelson Mandoomjazz are a three-piece band formed in Edinburgh playing an experimental blend of doom metal and free jazz.
Influenced principally by artists such as Black Sabbath, Electric Wizard, Sun Ra, Sonny Rollins, Albert Ayler and Wayne Shorter, they term their music 'doom jazz'.
Colin Stewart (bass), lover of everything slow, heavy, and destructive, suggested to Paul Archibald (drums), lover of all things cool, free, and melodic, if they should try and merge these two genres. They soon realised that they had a passion for each others' music, and sought out Rebecca Sneddon (sax), lover of all things absurd, to make Free Nelson Mandoomjazz.
The band recorded two EPs independently (The Shape of Doomjazz to Come & Saxophone Giganticus) before signing to Rare Noise Records. Both recordings showcased the Edinburgh-based musicians in a provocative blend of doom metal and free jazz, unforgivingly heavy with a glacial pace.
The following year came Awakening of a Capital, an evolution of the sound exploring new grounds and new sounds. This year, The Organ Grinder promises to surprise again, with radical new ideas that further the concept of Free Nelson Mandoomjazz's music."-Rare Noise Records
"Doom jazz has always felt like a micro-genre too far, something cooked up by an overenthusiastic broadsheet editor looking to lump a disparate crew of combustible performers and musicians together under one unwieldy umbrella. A moniker for a jazz breed whose hearts beat ferociously and wildly yet with a cold sliver of darkness deep within their core; a sort of fire and ice music. Yet, on the second full-length album from this Edinburgh trio, both doom and jazz hang together as equal partners in an occasionally volatile 70-minute witches brew, which rat-tat-tats out influential signposts from artists such as Pharoah Sanders and Black Sabbath and then manifests them into a fully compatible and manoeuvrable form.
It's there in the stark timbre of Rebecca Sneddon's opening solo sax riff on 'Open The Gate', a sombre blues pattern which wails starkly and bitterly against the surrounding silence before heavily reverbed drums and bass feedback build up and attempt to fill the cavernous space with white heat and light. And it does reek of doom, as Paul Archibald's drums pound and Colin Stewart's bass churns daring Sneddon to come down further to their level and do battle. Instead, Sneddon sounds almost oblivious to her sparring partners until her playing explodes into maximum demon expulsion mode, flighty squalls of ferociously jettisoned notes spraying molten sparks across the rhythm section as they dredge through catacombs and underworlds.
You can't call this out as a jazz-rock style fusion, it's more a direct grafting of one musical guiding ethos upon another. It shouldn't really work, yet in the raging interplay between the three players (with occasional augmentation on some pieces by Luc Klein on trumpet and Patrick Darley on trombone) something new and terrifyingly bright is born. When the dual pronged attack of trumpet and saxophone unleashes itself on 'You Are Old, Father William', the sound is akin to Donald and Albert Ayler turning up on an Om record. It is the sound of New Orleans carnival transplanted to a haunted parade for the feasting dead, fit to crawl the dank steep streets of Edinburgh's Old Town.
has been recorded in the Reid Hall, part of the University of Edinburgh's School of Music and one of the best and most underused performance spaces in the city: the natural echo and reverb within this 200-seat chamber, most often utilised for classical repertoire presentation, becomes its own recording tool. This is a record which makes great use of the resonant space within which it has been formed, to such an extent that one can almost feel the dark red walls of the hall looming from the grooves. But there is also huge variety across these eleven tracks, from the sparse tumble and crackle of 'The Woods', coming on like a semi-acoustic Supersilent, to 'Calcutta Cutie's delicate piano phrasing (courtesy of Archibald) reminiscent of Bill Evans in a kind of charred mood. At times, Free Nelson Mandoomjazz sound determined to hold aloft jazz's most talismanic icons, so that we may marvel once more at these riches, before burning them to ashes before our gleefully horrified ears."-Euan Andrews, The Quietus
Get additional information at The Quietus
• Show Bio for Paul Archibald
Paul Archibald is a PhD researcher at The University of Edinburgh, researching the drum kit around the turn of the twentieth century. He is a member of Free Nelson Mandoomjazz and has performed with Rob Heron & The Tea Pad Orch..-Paul Archibald Website (https://paularchibalddrums.wordpress.com/about/)
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• Show Bio for Rebecca Sneddon
"Rebecca Sneddon is a saxophonist and composer specialising in music for film and television from Carluke, Scotland.
Rebecca's musical career began at the age of ten, when she began saxophone lessons at primary school. She quickly developed a passion for the instrument and went on to study jazz saxophone under renowned saxophonist Laura Macdonald. At school, Rebecca played in various ensembles and was principle alto saxophone of the Artsnet Jazz Orchestra.
She attended the University of Edinburgh, where she read music and graduated in 2013 with a BMus (Hons) degree. During her time at the university, Rebecca studied composition under Prof. Peter Nelson and film music history under Dr. Annette Davison. Her final year dissertation focussed on the use of music in film remakes.
Rebecca is a recent graduate of the University of Bristol, where she gained her Masters degree in Composing for Film and Television under the tutelage of renowned media and contemporary composers Martin Kiszko, William Goodchild and John Pickard.
In addition to composition, Rebecca performs regularly with various groups. Most notably, she plays saxophones in experimental trio Free Nelson Mandoomjazz. Signed to RareNoise Records, she has toured internationally and performed in festivals including the Berlin Jazz Festival (Berlin, Germany), Match & Fuse (London, U.K.) and White Noise/Black Silence (Munich, Germany). The group's debut double EP album The Shape of Doomjazz to Come/Saxophone Giganticus was released in 2014 and follow-up album Awakening of a Capital was released February 2015 to positive critical reception (featuring on The New York Jazz Record's Best Albums of 2015 and Jazz Journal's Best Albums of 2015, among others). Rebecca performs with electric bassit Colin Stewart (The Blueswater), and drummer Paul Archibald (Rob Heron and the Teapad Orchestra, TJ Müller and the Dixie Six)."-Rebecca Sneddon Website (http://rebeccasneddon.weebly.com/bio.html)
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