The Squid's Ear Magazine


Berne, Tim Trio: Oceans and (Intakt)

A new trio setting from New York alto saxophonist Tim Berne with accordionist & multi-instrumentalist Aurora Nealand and long-time associate, cellist Hank Roberts, a warmly orchestrated band that allows fluid and relaxed approaches to their playing, Berne's compositions evoking exquisite tonal color and diverse conversations from pacific to tempestuous.
 

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UPC: 7640120194031

Label: Intakt
Catalog ID: ITK403.2
Squidco Product Code: 33165

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2023
Country: Switzerland
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold 3 Panels w/ booklet
Recorded at Coffey Street Studio, on Brookyln, New York, on August 9th, 2022, by Joe Branciforte.


Personnel:



Tim Berne-alto saxophone

Hank Roberts-cello

Aurora Nealand-accordion, clarinet, voice


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Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"Every time Tim Berne brings his work to a new timbre or ensemble, it makes you stop and examine. "Something is going on here. Something new." This is literally true, of course, but really what's going on is that the new timbral elements or ensemble configuration allows you to see a new angle of Berne's work. Berne's work contains Whitmanesque "multitudes," and it's a joy to still be discovering these.

Oceans And brings Aurora Nealand into Berne's orbit, not for the first time, but this one feels like a big deal. Nealand plays accordion and bass clarinet, and vocalizes. And she, of course, is not at all new at this. She's done amazing work. And I am unusually fascinated by the accordion, and its idiomatic deployment (bellows swells, preternatural legato, mechanistic fluidity) genuinely feels like SOMETHING NEW in this context.

And, with something new, something old-Berne's nearly 40 year (yikes!) partnership with Hank Roberts. Always a reason to celebrate when these two play together. The voices of Berne's alto, Roberts' cello, and Nealand's accordion blend almost alchemically. In the absence of rhythm instruments you have volumes and areas, not just points and lines. Nealand's contributions on bass clarinet and voice are equally evocative.

Overlapping, shifting longtones feel like abstract Venn diagrams laid out in close harmony. These are doleful landscapes, disquieting and lacking urgency. It's unlike any other EBV (extended Berne 'verse) music I've heard, though if I were to reach back to an analog, it would be 2008's (duck) by Buffalo Collision (Berne and Roberts, along with Dave King and Ethan Iverson). That one, also, is a fantastic, abstract, wonderfully bittersweet set of music.

What's so striking about Oceans And is, I think, the humanness of it all. Roberts has long been a master at shaping the envelope of his sound to tell organic stories, as has Berne. There are sections where they "speak" to each other with tenderness. I don't hear any wryness or irony here. Nealand's contribution to the conversation is uncanny and beautiful.

Something new is happening here."-Gary Chapin, The Free Jazz Collective


Get additional information at The Free Jazz Collective

Artist Biographies

"Tim Berne (born 1954) is an American jazz saxophonist and composer.

Described by critic Thom Jurek as commanding "considerable power as a composer and ... frighteningly deft ability as a soloist", Berne has composed and performed prolifically since the 1980s. His mainstream success has been limited Berne recorded two albums for Columbia Records but he has released a significant body of work over the decades spanning dozens of critically acclaimed recordings.

Though Berne was a music fan, he had no interest in playing a musical instrument until he was in college, when he purchased an alto saxophone. He was more interested in rhythm and blues music Stax records releases and Aretha Franklin, especially until he heard Julius Hemphill's 1972 recording Dogon A.D.

Hemphill was known for his integration of soul music and funk with free jazz. Berne moved to New York City in 1974. There Berne took lessons from Hemphill, and later recorded with him.

In 1979, Berne founded Empire Records to release his own recordings. He recorded Fulton Street Maul and Sanctified Dreams for Columbia Records, which generated some discussion and controversy, due in part to the fact that Berne's music had little in common with the neo-tradionalist hard bop performers prominent in the mid-1980s. Some regarded Berne's music as uncommercial. In the late 1990s Berne founded Screwgun Records, which has released his own recordings, as well as others' music.

Beyond his recordings as a bandleader, Berne has recorded and/or performed with guitarist Bill Frisell, avant-garde composer/sax player John Zorn, violinist Mat Maneri, guitarist David Torn, cellist Hank Roberts, trumpet player Herb Robertson, the ARTE Quartett and as a member of the cooperative trio Miniature.

Recent years have found Berne performing in several different groups with drummers Tom Rainey and Gerald Cleaver, keyboardist Craig Taborn, bassists Michael Formanek and Drew Gress, guitarists Marc Ducret and David Torn, and reeds player Chris Speed.

He is one-third of the group BBC (Berne/Black/Cline) along with drummer Jim Black and Nels Cline of Wilco. The group released a critically acclaimed album called The Veil in 2011.

Berne's complex, multi-section compositions are often quite lengthy; twenty- to thirty-minute pieces are not unusual. One critic wrote that Berne's long songs "don't grow tiresome. The musicians are brilliantly creative and experienced enough not to get lost in all the room provided by these large time frames." "

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Berne)
9/27/2023

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Over his nearly four-decade career, Hank Roberts has forged a compelling original voice as a composer and a cellist, encompassing abstract improvisation, jazz influences, soulful folk melodies, intricate new-music compositions and vigorous rock songs.

Born in Terre Haute, Indiana, Roberts made his name in the 1980s legendary New York Downtown scene. Faced with a dearth of improvisational cellist mentors or peers, he carved his own path through that fertile ground alongside such frequent collaborators as Bill Frisell, Tim Berne, Marc Ribot and John Zorn, finding a second home at the famed Knitting Factory, leading and recording with his own groups, 'Birds of Prey, 'Black Pastels', 'Little Motor People' and co-founding 'Miniature' with Tim Berne and Joey Baron, and the 'Arcado String Trio' with Mark Feldman and Mark Dresser.

The list of names with whom Roberts has shared stages or recording studios with includes Gavin Friday (with the members of U2), Sting, Jeff Buckley, David Sanborn, Mamadou Diabate, Andy Summers, Gary Burton, Marty Ehrlich, Arto Lindsey, Gerry Hemingway, Don Byron, and Julius Hemphill.

He is currently a member of Bill Frisell's 858 Quartet and Big Sur Quintet, and appeared on the guitarist's Grammy-winning 2004 release Unspeakable. He's recorded 10 albums on the 'Winter & Winter' label, along with numerable self-released recordings. His solo performances are singularly compelling and unpredictable, wending from jagged dissonance to intoxicating pop songcraft.

Nürnberger Zeitung: the American cellist, Hank Roberts, dares to present magical musical field tests, which sound as delicate as a moribund musical box or intoxicating emotional like a pop song. ...ingenious."

His 2008 CD Green, with drummer Jim Black and guitarist Marc Ducret, won that year's German Recording Critics' Award in the Jazz category. "There's a wisdom and patience and catholicity in this record ('Green'). 'It's all one song,' goes the hip musician's cliché, but Mr. Roberts walks that walk." Ben Ratliff, NY Times

Based since 1989 in Ithaca, New York, Roberts finds inspiration in the area's thriving music scene. He performs and records locally with a host of uniquely talented musicians and plays annually at the Finger Lakes Grassroots Festival, which spans a range of music from old-timey Americana to African and Cajun music. He's shared that stage with artists such as Ti Ti Chickapea with Richie Stearns and Eric Aceto, Tenzin Chopak and Rockwood Ferry, Kevin Kinsella, Mamadou Diabate, Jeb Puryear, Keith Secola, Nery Arevalo, Martin Simpson, the Sim Redmond Band, John Brown's Body, and Donna the Buffalo.

Roberts contributed musical arrangements and appears in the film Greetings From Tim Buckley, which premiered at the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival."

-Hank Roberts Website (http://www.hankrobertsmusic.com/bio/)
9/27/2023

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Aurora Nealand: An established bandleader, composer, performer and improviser, Aurora Nealand has become a prominent force in the New Orleans music scene since she first arrived in 2004. Combining the "formal education" - a music composition degree from Oberlin Conservatory and training at the Jacques Lecoq School of Physical Theatre in Paris - with the "informal" experience of playing music in the streets and clubs of New Orleans and throughout the northern Hemisphere, Nealand has emerged as an innovative, sensitive and daring music creator and performer.

She is most recognized for her performance on saxophones, clarinet and vocals and has been at the forefront of the revival of New Orleans Traditional Jazz amongst the younger generation of the city's musicians. After playing and learning as a sideman in established New Orleans Bands for several years, (Panorama Jazz Band, VaVaVoom, The New Orleans Moonshiners), in 2010 she formed her own Traditional Jazz band "The Royal Roses". The Royal Roses released it's first album, "A Tribute to Sydney Bechet: Live at Preservation Hall" to national acclaim and Nealand was voted as one of Downbeat Magazines top ten rising stars for soprano saxophone in 2010.

Nealand grew up in a musical family in California listening to Preservation Hall Jazz Band recordings side by side with Stravinsky, Joan Baez and the Pixies. Later, during her time at Oberlin College/Conservatory she was exposed and fell in love with the recordings of Mingus, the soundscapes of Mort Subotnik and the performances of Laurie Anderson. With a strong interest in interdisciplinary work and sound for theatre and installation, she moved to Paris to study at the Ecole du Theatre Physical Jacques Lecoq. Upon returning to the states, she bicycled cross-country collecting audio interviews and stories in rural America to be used in a series of compositions about true "American Dreams". This bicycle trip landed her in New Orleans, which has acted as her home base since 2005. In New Orleans she began playing traditional jazz, jazz manouche of Django Reinhardt, as well as Balkan/Klezmer music. She quickly became involved in the local improvisation scene as well, making frequent appearances at the Open Ears series playing her own compositions with various ensembles and artists.

In addition to leading the Royal Roses, Nealand is also the leader/frontman ofNew Orleans premier rockabilly band "Rory Danger and the Danger Dangers", and as performs frequently with her solo project, "The Monocle". She also is a member of Panorama Jazz Band and Why Are We Building Such A Big Ship. In 2010 and 2011 she appeared frequently as herself in the HBO TV series, "Treme".

Nealand has performed extensively in New Orleans at clubs, in the Jazz and Heritage Fest, FrenchQuarter Fest and Satchmo Fest. She has also performed frequently in New York City at Lincoln Center Summer Festival in NYC, the BlueNote, Knitting Factory, Barbes and has premiered original works at Symphony Space and Alice Tully Hall. Internationally she has appeared at the Istanbul Jazz Festival, London Swing Festival, Barcelona Swing Out, and has toured several times around Irealand, Sweden, Germany , France and the Balkans."

-Aurora Nealand Website (http://www.auroranealand.com/details)
9/27/2023

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.


Track Listing:



1. The Latter 7:02

2. Framed 4:07

3. Eez 5:32

4. Low Strung 3:26

5. Clustard 5:51

6. Mortal And Pestered 5:42

7. Frosted 6:30

8. Fess 5:16

9. 10tious 12:19

10. Sutile 7:16

11. Partial 2 4:23

12. Peeled 4:40

Related Categories of Interest:


Intakt
Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
NY Downtown & Metropolitan Jazz/Improv
Trio Recordings
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
New in Improvised Music
Recent Releases and Best Sellers

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