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Paul Bley Trio:
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Reissuing two essential and innovative piano trio albums: Paul Bley Trio's 1965 album Touching with Bley on piano, Kent Carter on double bass and Barry Altschul on drums, plus the title track from the 1966 Bley album Blood with Altschul and Mark Levinson taking the double bass roll, performing compositions by Paul Bley, Carla Bley and Annette Peacock. ... Click to View


Fire! Orchestra / Krzysztof Penderecki:
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Paul Dunmall / Mark Sanders:
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Despite countless collaborations in a variety of settings, UK saxophonist Paul Dunmall and drummer/percussionist Mark Sanders have never recorded one of the most straight-forward of pairings — the saxophone and drum duo — correcting their omission with his superb album of exploratory and exuberant dialogs, five tracks showing the skill and kinship between the two. ... Click to View


Joe Lovano & Dave Douglas Sound Prints:
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Motorpsycho:
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Motorpsycho:
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The productive and excellent work of Norwegian rock band Motorpsycho, releasing an album a year for 30+ years, continues with this superb example of long form and diverse approaches to the rock medium, the core trio of Saether (bass, vocals, mellotron, &c), Hans Magnus Ryan (guitar, sax, vocals) and Tomas Jarmyr (drums) extended by Reine Fiske on guitar and Ola Kvernberg on percussion. ... Click to View


Motorpsycho:
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The productive and excellent work of Norwegian rock band Motorpsycho, releasing an album a year for 30+ years, continues with this superb example of long form and diverse approaches to the rock medium, the core trio of Saether (bass, vocals, mellotron, &c), Hans Magnus Ryan (guitar, sax, vocals) and Tomas Jarmyr (drums) extended by Reine Fiske on guitar and Ola Kvernberg on percussion. ... Click to View


Squid:
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Blurring the boundaries of popular rock, composed and electro/experimental/ea forms, with hints of The Ex, Gang of Four, Talking Heads, LCD Soundsystem and their own happily quirky sound, Squid was formed in Brigton by Ollie Judge (Drums & Lead Vocals), Louis Borlase (Guitars), Arthur Leadbetter (Keys, Strings & Percussion), Laurie Nankivell (Bass & Brass) and Anton Pearson (Guitars). ... Click to View


Hedvig Mollestad Trio:
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A scorching album of instrumental rock bridging avant, prog and jazz/rock forms, from the inspired and burning Norwegian band led by guitarist Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen and her trio with bassist Ellen Brekken and drummer Ivar Loe Bjornstad; reference John McLaughlin, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, Black Sabbath, or just focus on the powerhouse that is the Hedvig Mollestad Trio. ... Click to View


Hedvig Mollestad Trio:
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A scorching album of instrumental rock bridging avant, prog and jazz/rock forms, from the inspired and burning Norwegian band led by guitarist Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen and her trio with bassist Ellen Brekken and drummer Ivar Loe Bjornstad; reference John McLaughlin, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, Black Sabbath, or just focus on the powerhouse that is the Hedvig Mollestad Trio. ... Click to View


Ulrich Mitzlaff :
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Satoko Fujii Tokyo Trio:
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Jen Shyu & Jade Tongue:
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An articulate and important collection of songs devoted to the marginalized voices of women around the world from NY vocalist Jen Shyu, performed in a masterful quintet with Ambrose Akinmusire on trumpet, Mat Maneri on viola, Thomas Morgan on bass, Dan Weiss on drums, Shyu singing and performing on percussion, piano, Taiwanese moon lute, and Japanese biwa. ... Click to View


Guillermo Gregorio / Damon Smith / Jerome Bryerton:
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Two performances of Chicago reedist and composer Guillermo Gregorio's graphic score "Moholy 2", inspired by the artwork of László Moholy-Nagy, recorded in two conductions at the Experimental Sound Studio in Chicago in 2007 & 2008 by the trio of Gregorio on clarinets & alto sax, Damon Smith on double bass, and Jerome Bryerton on percussion, cymbals and drums. ... Click to View


Space Quartet (Toral / Antunes / Morao / Torres):
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Innanen / Pasborg / Piromalli:
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The Hammond organ takes the lead sound on this straight-up, melodically grooving and fast-paced album, with compositions coming mostly from Finnish saxophonist Mikko Innanen performed in this trio with French organist Cedric Piromalli and Danish drummer Stefan Pasborg; an album that puts one foot in the history of 60's jazz and one foot firmly in the creative present. ... Click to View


IKB:
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IKB, a ten-piece reductionist electroacoustic ensemble of strings, reeds, guitar, computer, percussion, piano, drums & objects, continues their exploration of exotic animal species with this 2020 live performance at O'Culto da Ajuda in Lisbon, Portugal, long-billed shore bird Limosa through detailed, restrained and remarkable expression. ... Click to View


Michael Sarian / Matthew Putman:
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The first of two planned volumes of studio improvisations between Brooklyn trumpeter & flugelhorn player Michael Sarian and keyboardist Matthew Putman, recorded in Sarin's home studio during the 2020 pandemic, allowing freedom in exploration as they sought out cadences, rhythms and melodies, this 1st volume presenting the finest of their investigations. ... Click to View


Joel Futterman / Ike Levin:
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An almost hour long "Rhizome" of free improvisation and a brief "Renewal" from the duo of Joel Futterman on piano and Ike Levin on tenor sax & bass clarinet, performing live at Constellation in Chicago in 2017, for a wonderfully evolving work of suspense, release, technical brilliance and exuberant expression, a dialog that only two such frequent collaborators can evoke. ... Click to View


Ian Power:
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Two works for solo instrumentalists by Baltimore composer Ian Power, both written in 1984: "mahrem bir eser | a private work" using microtonal harmonics and electronic noise, performed by cellist Mariel Robers and recorded in 2016 at Brandeis Univeristy; and "swathe" using overtone and microtone performed by clarinetist Gleb Kanasevich and recorded in NYC in 2019. ... Click to View


Anthony Braxton :
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Newly Distributed in 2021: 12-CD set presenting Braxton in dialogue with three distinctive duet partners: violinist Erica Dicker, vocalist Kyoko Kitamura and bassoonist Katherine Young. Recording dates: August 14 & 15 (Kyoko Kitamura), August 21 & 22 (Erica Dicker), August 28 & 29 (Katherine Young). ... Click to View


Ivo Perelman / Nate Wooley:
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Tight interaction in an incredible weaving of creative ideas and technical prowess from the duo of tenor saxophonist Ivo Perelman and trumpeter Nate Wooley, the two New York-based improvisers recording in the studio in Brooklyn in 2020 for ten dialogs, a perfect distillation of their work together after four CDs in larger group efforts; captivating. ... Click to View


Courvoisier / Rothenberg / Sartorius:
Lockdown (Clean Feed)

Recording in the studio in Switzerland, the trio of Sylvie Courvoisier on piano, Ned Rothenberg on alto saxophone, clarinet, bass clarinet & Shakuhachi, and Julian Sartorius on drums & percussion perform a mix of compositions, with 3 from Courvoisier and 1 by Rothenberg, and 4 collective improvisations; a unified and accomplished album of diverse approaches to free improv. ... Click to View


Cortex (Hoyer / Nilssen / Alberts / Johansson):
Legal Tender [VINYL] (Clean Feed)

Seriously joyful and consequential "avant-garde party music" from the Norwegian Cortex quartet of Ola Hoyer on double bass, Gard Nilssen on drums & percussion, Kristoffer Berre Alberts on saxophone, and Thomas Johansson on trumpet, in their 6th album of irresistible, upbeat free jazz. ... Click to View


Dominique Pifarely Quartet (w/ Rayon / Chevillon / Merville):
Nocturnes (Clean Feed)

Following his ECM album Trace Provisoire, violinist Dominique Pifarély's new album with his quartet of Antonin Rayon on piano, Bruno Chevillon on double bass and Francois Merville on drums, expands on the merging of compositional and improvisational form in this set of Pifarély compositions, alongside two co-written with Bruno Chevillon and two with Antonin Rayon. ... Click to View


Jonas Cambien Trio (w / Roligheten / Wildhagen):
Nature Hath Painted The Body (Clean Feed)

Cleverly complex yet melodically embraceable, the trio of Beligan pianist residing in Norway, Jonas Cambien's trio with Andre Rolighete on tenor and soprano saxophone and drummer Andreas Wildhagen perform eleven original Cambien compositions, a mix of astute, joyful and irrepressibly creative approaches to jazz and free improvisation. ... Click to View


Hearth (Silva / Rasmussen / Rave / Draksler):
Melt (Clean Feed)

Meeting for the 1st time at the 2016 October Meeting in Holland, the quartet performance there of Susana Santos Silva on trumpet, Mette Rasmussen on alto sax, Ada Rave on tenor sax & clarinet and Kaja Draksler on piano, inspired the formation of Hearth to develop soundscapes focusing on moods and textures, as heard in these six rich, explorative collective improvisations. ... Click to View


Andre Fernandes (w/ Sambeat / Campos / Heliodoro / Pereira):
Kinetic [VINYL] (Clean Feed)

Active Lisbon guitarist and producer André Fernandes formed the band Kinetic to perform the lyrically upbeat and sophisticated works of composers he admires--David Binney, Ohad Talmor, Akiko Pavolka, Sara Serpa, Perico Sambeat and Xan Campos--in a band that includes saxophonist Sambeat and pianist Campos, along with bassist Frederico Heliodoro and drummer João Pereira. ... Click to View



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  Susanna Gartmayer / Christof Kurzmann 
  Smaller Sad  
  (Klang Galleries) 


  
   review by Brian Olewnick
  2021-04-26
Susanna Gartmayer / Christof Kurzmann: Smaller Sad (Klang Galleries)

A fairly brief (<35 minutes) set of four pieces, three done in studio and a longer live performance, from the intriguing duo of Gartmayer (bass clarinet) and Kurzmann (ppooll — a software he's been using for a good while — voice and rubber band)

On the first track, "Smaller Forms", Gartmayer begins in a kind of post-Dolphy free jazz mode, though she quickly shifts to a lower, more brooding set of iterated phrases, Kurzmann undergirding them with soft swells, this being gradually intruded upon by higher wails (overdubbed bass clarinet, I think, but possibly software). The music thickens, becomes more agitated while maintaining a slow-ish pace, acquires a vaguely threatening feeling — very strong. "Little Rage" is ghostlier, reminiscent of distant winds howling over a village in which some arcane ritual (heard here as deep, somewhat altered male vocals, perhaps of Eastern European or Central Asian origin). As on the prior track, the music grows increasingly dense, including the infiltration of off-kilter beats, Gartmayer once more drifting in and out of dirge-like lines. The briefer "Dip" is lighter, a percussive series of bass clarinet key pops ushering in a smoky, shifting drone of sorts that splays out in a wide, sonorous delta at the track's conclusion.

The live piece, "Novi Sad", occupies almost half of the release. The opening is bleak, a sound like a distant, distorted air raid siren (the Hungarian city by that name was heavily bombed during the Kosovo War) played against smaller, flittering, insectile squeaks. The construction seems somewhat freer, evoking a kind of languidness even when the sounds intensify, a conversation between close acquaintances, Gartmayer patiently plumbing the lower range of her instrument only to rise in a gently questioning manner, Kurzmann content to provide a soft, rumbling bed of sounds. The agitation grows (I believe this is where the rubber band appears), though the atmosphere remains spare. Kurzmann has often spoken/sung on previous recordings. His voice is quiet, grainy and earnest. Here, the piece concludes with Kurzmann singing/reciting e.e. cummings' 'it is at moments after i have dreamed' over koto-like sounds, a moving, intimate work and a lovely way to end the release.



Susanna Gartmayer / Christof Kurzmann: Smaller Sad
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