The follow-up to 2008's Brotzmann/Lonberg-Holm duo album on Atavistic, "The Brain of the Dog in Section", this limited LP was recorded in 2011 at The Loft in Koln, Germany, bringing multi-reed legend Peter Brotzmann together again with Chicago cellist and electronic artist Fred Lonberg-Holm for a thrilling album of diverse, dynamic, and superb improvisation.
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Label: Astral Spirits
Catalog ID: AS043
Squidco Product Code: 25703
Recorded at the Loft, in Koln, Germany, on January 18th, 2011, by Stefan Deistler.╩
╩ Fred Lonberg Holm-strings, electronics╩
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• Show Bio for Peter Brotzmann
"Born Remscheid, Germany on 6 March 1941; soprano, alto, tenor, baritone and bass saxophones, a-clarinet, e-flat clarinet; bass clarinet, tarogato.
Peter Brötzmann's early interest was in painting and he attended the art academy in Wuppertal. Being very dissatisfied with the gallery/exhibition situation in art he found greater satisfaction playing with semi-professional musicians, though continued to paint (as well as retaining a level of control over his own records, particularly in record sleeve/CD booklet design). In late 2005 he had a major retrospective exhibition jointly with Han Bennink - two separate buildings separated by an inter-connecting glass corridor - in Brötzmann's home town of Remscheid.
Self-taught on clarinets, he soon moved to saxophones and began playing swing/bebop, before meeting Peter Kowald. During 1962/63 Brötzmann, Kowald and various drummers played regularly - Mingus, Ornette Coleman, etc. - while experiencing freedoms from a different perspective via Stockhausen, Nam June Paik, David Tudor and John Cage. In the mid 1960s, he played with American musicians such as Don Cherry and Steve Lacy and, following a sojourn in Paris with Don Cherry, returned to Germany for his unorthodox approach to be accepted by local musicians like Alex von Schlippenbach and Manfred Schoof.
The trio of Peter Brötzmann, Peter Kowald and Sven-Ake Johansson began playing in 1965/66 and it was a combination of this and the Schoof/Schlippenbach Quintet that gave rise to the first Globe Unity Orchestra. Following the self-production of his first two LPs, For Adolphe Sax and Machine gun for his private label, BRÖ, a recording for Manfred Eicher's 'Jazz by Post' (JAPO) [Nipples], and a number of concert recordings with different sized groups, Brötzmann worked with Jost Gebers and started the FMP label. He also began to work more regularly with Dutch musicians, forming a trio briefly with Willem Breuker and Han Bennink before the long-lasting group with Han Bennink and Fred Van Hove. As a trio, and augmented with other musicians who could stand the pace (e.g. Albert Mangelsdorff on, for example, The Berlin concert), this lasted until the mid-1970s though Brötzmann and Bennink continued to play and record as a duo, and in other combinations, after this time. A group with Harry Miller and Louis Moholo continued the trio format though was cut short by Miller's early death.
The thirty-plus years of playing and recording free jazz and improvised music have produced, even on just recorded evidence, a list of associates and one-off combinations that include just about all the major figures in this genre: Derek Bailey (including performances with Company (e.g. Incus 51), Cecil Taylor, Fred Hopkins, Rashied Ali, Evan Parker, Keiji Haino, Misha Mengelberg, Anthony Braxton, Marilyn Crispell, Andrew Cyrille, Phil Minton, Alfred 23 Harth, Tony Oxley. Always characterised as an energy player - and the power-rock setting of Last Exit with Ronald Shannon Jackson, Sonny Sharock and Bill Laswell, or his duo performances with his son, Casper, did little to disperse this conviction - his sound is one of the most distinctive, life-affirming and joyous in all music. But the variety of Brötzmann's playing and projects is less recognised: his range of solo performances; his medium-to-large groups and, in spite of much ad hoc work, a stability brought about from a corpus of like- minded musicians: the group Ruf der Heimat; pianist Borah Bergman; percussionist Hamid Drake; and Die like a dog, his continuing tribute to Albert Ayler, with Drake, William Parker and Toshinori Kondo. Peter Brötzmann continues a heavy touring schedule which, since 1996 has seen annual visits to Japan and semi-annual visits to the thriving Chicago scene where he has played in various combinations from solo through duo (including one, in 1997, with Mats Gustafsson) to large groups such as the Chicago Octet/Tentet, described below. He has also released a number of CDs on the Chicago-based Okka Disk label, including the excellent trio with Hamid Drake and the Moroccan Mahmoud Gania, at times sounding like some distant muezzin calling the faithful to become lost in the rhythm and power of the music.
The "Chicago Tentet" was first organized by Brötzmann with the assistance of writer/presenter John Corbett in January 1997 as an idea for a one-time octet performance that included Hamid Drake and Michael Zerang (drums), Kent Kessler (bass) and Fred Lomberg-Holm (cello), Ken Vandermark and Mars Williams (reeds), and Jeb Bishop (trombone). The first meeting was extremely strong and warranted making the group an ongoing concern and in September of that same year the band was expanded to include Mats Gustafsson (reeds) and Joe McPhee (brass) as permanent members (with guest appearances by William Parker (bass), Toshinori Kondo (trumpet/electronics), and Roy Campbell (trumpet) during its tenure) - all in all a veritable who's who of the contemporary improvising scene's cutting edge. Though the Tentet is clearly led by Brötzmann and guided by his aesthetics, he has been committed to utilizing the compositions of other members in the ensemble since the beginning. This has allowed the band to explore an large range of structural and improvising tactics: from the conductions of Mats Gustafsson and Fred Lonberg-Holm, to the vamp pieces of Michael Zerang and Hamid Drake, to compositions using conventional notation by Ken Vandermark and Mars Williams, to Brötzmann's graphic scores - the group employs almost every contemporary approach to composing for an improvising unit. This diversity in compositional style, plus the variety in individualistic approaches to improvisation, allows the Tentet to play extremely multifaceted music. As the band moves from piece to piece, it explores intensities that range from spare introspection to all out walls of sound, and rhythms that are open or free from a steady pulse to those of a heavy hitting groove. It is clear that the difficult economics of running a large band hasn't prevented the group from continuing to work together since its first meeting. Through their effort they've been able to develop an ensemble sound and depth of communication hard to find in a band of any size or style currently playing on the contemporary music scene."-EFI (European Free Improvisation Pages) (http://www.efi.group.shef.ac.uk/mbrotzm.html)
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• Show Bio for Fred Lonberg Holm
"Fred Lonberg-Holm (born 1962) is an American cellist based in Chicago. He relocated from New York City to Chicago in 1995. Lonberg-Holm is most identified with playing free improvisation and free jazz. He is also a composer of concert works. As a session musician and arranger, he is credited on many rock, pop, and country records. Lonberg-Holm currently leads the Valentine Trio, with Jason Roebke (bass) and Frank Rosaly (drums). This jazz trio performs original compositions as well as tunes by both jazz composers (e.g. Sun Ra) and pop songwriters (e.g. Jeff Tweedy, Syd Barrett). The group released its first album Terminal Valentine, in 2007, which was reviewed by AllAboutJazz critic Nils Jacobson.
He coordinates and directs performances of his Lightbox Orchestra, an improvising ensemble with a flexible, ever-changing membership. Lonberg-Holm does not play an instrument in this group, but rather conducts its non-idiomatic improvisations via the "lightbox" and by holding up handwritten signs. The lightbox contains a light bulb for each musician which Lonberg-Holm switches on or off to suggest when they should play. Collective groups of which Lonberg-Holm is a member include Terminal 4 who released an album, in 2003, called When I'm Falling that received four and a half stars, and AMG Album Pick by Allmusic, and it was reviewed by Allmusic's Joslyn Layne, The Boxhead Ensemble, Pillow, the Lonberg-Holm/Kessler/Zerang trio (with Kent Kessler and Michael Zerang), and the Dörner/Lonberg-Holm duo (with Axel Dörner).
Among groups led by other people, he is a member of the Vandermark 5, the Joe McPhee Trio, the Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet, Keefe Jackson's Fast Citizens, and Ken Vandermark's Territory Band. When he lived in New York, Lonberg-Holm frequently collaborated with the rock group God Is My Co-Pilot pianist and composer Anthony Coleman as well as multi-instrumentalist Paul Duncan of Warm Ghost. In Chicago, he has worked with Jim O'Rourke, Bobby Conn (on "Llovessonngs"  and "The Golden Age" ), The Flying Luttenbachers, Lake Of Dracula, Wilco, Rivulets, Mats Gustafsson, Sten Sandell, Jaap Blonk, John Butcher, and a great many others.
Lonberg-Holm's concert works have been premiered by William Winant, Carrie Biolo, the Austin New Music Co-Op, Subtropics Ensemble, Duo Atypica, the Schanzer/Speach Duo, New Winds, Paul Hoskin, Kevin Norton, the E.S.P. Ensemble, and others. His scores for dance have been performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and Dance Theater Workshop as well as many other venues. He is a former composition student of Anthony Braxton and Morton Feldman. He performed improvised music in the role of a troubled composer who finds inspiration in the love of a couple he spots on the street in a short film for the Playboy channel."-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_Lonberg-Holm)
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1. The Circle 6:04
2. The Figure Eight 13:43
1. The Spiral 16:09
2. The Fusion of Opposites 4:47
sample the album:
"The long awaited follow-up to 2008's Brotzmann/Lonberg-Holm duo album "The Brain of the Dog in Section" (Atavistic)....in fact Ourorboros was recorded during a 2011 European tour in support of said album. Although these recordings date from 7 years ago, they find both Brotzmann and Lonberg-Holm in top form. "The Figure Eight" is the highlight of the record featuring a rare turn of Brotzmann on Bass Clarinet, which isn't often heard these days. The duo recording also may be of particular interest in comparison with Fred Lonberg-Holm and Ken Vandermark's 2015 duo LP Resistance (Bocian). Lonberg-Holm plays counterpoint to two very strong and individual players in surprising and unique ways on both albums."-Astral Spirits
"Faced with a daunting discography that tallies to triple digits, it's easy to forget that Peter Brötzmann has also been a prolific visual artist for the entirety of his professional career. The two forms expression still regularly cross-pollinate in his work with original paintings and woodcut prints serving as album cover art and the vivid and visceral feelings conjured by his uncompromising music fueling the coarse and stark subject matter of said imagery. A painterly dynamic is particularly present in his many duo encounters. Most commonly with percussionists, but also increasingly with less intuitively-matched instruments that supply texture and color field focused canvases upon which he can scrawl and scribble in bold and often bruising strokes by way of his battery of reeds. Ouroboros is a vinyl document of one such dialogue, recorded at The Loft in Köln, Germany in early 2011 and pressed to just 300 copies.Steel guitarist Heather Leigh and vibraphonist Adasiewicz are two relatively recent conscripts to the tandem-geared side of Brötzmann's relentless output. Cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm is a compartively older associate, first joining the German in the vaunted Chicago Tentet and later in other aggregations. Four years separate this date from an earlier one for the now defunct Atavistic label from 2007, but the two together are very much of a piece. Lonberg-Holm uses electricity to turn the strings and body of instrument into a chameleonic sound generator. Parts of "The Figure Eight", which closes the first side of the album, find him mimicking extended reed sounds. Brötzmann moves from throaty bass clarinet purrs to piercing shrieks, the latter exhortations sounding like the aural embodiment of a bullmastiff violently shaking some smaller mammal mightily in its jowls before summarily snapping its neck."The Circle", which commences the concert, is shorter in scope, but equally fraught as Lonberg-Holm sculpts an introduction of scraped and stridently bowed shapes that presage Brötzmann's bellowing entrance on overblown alto. Opening Side B, "The Spiral" repeats the combination, this time with tattered shreds of melancholic melody wrought through the cascade of caustically-charged sound. Longberg-Holm shaves smoldering ribbons from his strings and the measured aggression has the flavor of calculated combat with surprisingly beautiful interludes of restorative détente. Last on the freely improvised bill is "The Fusion of Opposites", less rumination on the duality of the participants than a final foray into contrastive, but still highly complementary communication styles as Brötzmann voices a tenor variation on his venerable and wounded blues theme "Master of a Small House" against electronics-enhanced arco accompaniment."-Derek Taylor, Dusted Reviews
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