The Squid's Ear Magazine

Zorn, John

James Moore Plays The Book Of Heads Ñ Cd And Dvd Of A Film By Stephen Taylor

Zorn, John: James Moore Plays The Book Of Heads Ñ Cd And Dvd Of A Film By Stephen Taylor (Tzadik)

Zorn's "The Book of Heads" is performed by guitarist James Moore, heard on CD and seen in a DVD by Stephen Taylor, using prepared guitar to interpret Zorn's hermetic language of meticulously notated sounds inspired by contemporary classical extended techniques.

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product information:


James Moore-prepared guitar

John Zorn-composer

Stephen Taylor-filmed by

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NTSC DVD, Region free. 23 page color booklet with images, an essay by Zorn, an essay by Moore, and recording data.

UPC: 702397833727

Label: Tzadik
Catalog ID: TZA-CD-8337
Squidco Product Code: 21364

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2015
Country: USA
Packaging: Digipack CD and DVD w/ attached booklet
Recorded and filmed at Orange West Sound Studio in West Orange, New Jersey on February 14th to the 17th, and September 6th, 7th, and 8th, 2014 by James Dellatacoma and Stephan Taylor.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Composed 1976-8 and now studied by guitarists the world over, The Book of Heads is one of Zorn's most popular and oft-performed compositions. Utilizing an hermetic language of meticulously notated sounds inspired by contemporary classical extended techniques, the idiosyncratic guitar languages of free improvisation, cartoons, film noir, world music, philosophy and more, they receive a virtuosic reading by James Moore, founding member of the Dither guitar quartet.

This special edition contains both a CD and a beautifully produced DVD of a film by Stephen Taylor showcasing the eclectic techniques involved in all its insane glory. An essential CD/DVD release that gives an in-depth view into some of the most gonzo music ever created for solo guitar. Vexing and endlessly entertaining, you have to see it to believe it! "-Tzadik

NTSC DVD, Region free. 23 page color booklet with images, an essay by Zorn, an essay by Moore, and recording data.

Artist Biographies

"John Zorn (born September 2, 1953) is an American composer, arranger, producer, saxophonist, and multi-instrumentalist with hundreds of album credits as performer, composer, and producer across a variety of genres including jazz, rock, hardcore, classical, surf, metal, klezmer, soundtrack, ambient, and improvised music. He incorporates diverse styles in his compositions which he identifies as avant-garde or experimental. Zorn was described by Down Beat as "one of our most important composers".

Zorn established himself within the New York City downtown music movement in the mid-1970s performing with musicians across the sonic spectrum and developing experimental methods of composing new music. After releasing albums on several independent US and European labels, Zorn signed with Elektra Nonesuch and received wide acclaim with the release of The Big Gundown, an album reworking the compositions of Ennio Morricone. He attracted further attention worldwide with the release of Spillane in 1987, and Naked City in 1989. After spending almost a decade travelling between Japan and the US he made New York his permanent base and established his own record label, Tzadik, in the mid-1990s.

Tzadik enabled Zorn to maintain independence from the mainstream music industry and ensured the continued availability of his growing catalog of recordings, allowing him to prolifically record and release new material, issuing several new albums each year, as well as promoting the work of many other musicians. Zorn has led the hardcore bands Naked City and Painkiller, the klezmer/free jazz-influenced quartet Masada, composed over 600 pieces as part of the Masada Songbooks that have been performed by an array of groups, composed concert music for classical ensembles and orchestras, and produced music for opera, sound installations, film and documentary. Zorn has undertaken many tours of Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, often performing at festivals with many other musicians and ensembles that perform his diverse output.

Zorn's compositions cross many genres and he has stated "All the various styles are organically connected to one another. I'm an additive person-the entire storehouse of my knowledge informs everything I do. People are so obsessed with the surface that they can't see the connections, but they are there." For Zorn "Composing is more than just imagining music-it's knowing how to communicate it to musicians. And you don't give an improviser music that's completely written out, or ask a classical musician to improvise. I'm interested in speaking to musicians in their own languages, on their own terms, and in bringing out the best in what they do. To challenge them and excite them." "

-Wikipedia (

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Track Listing:

1. Etude #1 1:57

2. Etude #2 0:59

3. Etude #3 0:48

4. Etude #4 0:54

5. Etude #5 2:29

6. Etude #6 1:15

7. Etude #7 1:35

8. Etude #8 0:51

9. Etude #9 0:41

10. Etude #10 1:20

11. Etude #11 1:49

12. Etude #12 0:52

13. Etude #13 1:54

14. Etude #14 1:16

15. Etude #15 1:01

16. Etude #16 0:42

17. Etude #17 1:39

18. Etude #18 1:03

19. Etude #19 0:45

20. Etude #20 0:24

21. Etude #21 2:28

22. Etude #22 1:30

23. Etude #23 1:57

24. Etude #24 1:36

25. Etude #25 1:05

26. Etude #26 0:37

27. Etude #27 1:52

28. Etude #28 1:08

29. Etude #29 1:00

30. Etude #30 2:24

31. Etude #31 0:21

32. Etude #32 1:38

33. Etude #33 0:34

34. Etude #34 1:22

35. Etude #35 1:35

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
NY Downtown & Jazz/Improv
Zorn. John
Guitarists, &c.
Solo Artist Recordings
Instruments with Preparations

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