Recording in Switzerland at La Becque Residency Center, the experimental improvising duo of Francisco Meirino on synth & field recording and Jerome Noetinger using electronics, tape, reel to reel player & radio, create a 6-part series of unusual sonic interactions, patiently exposing unidentifiable sounds and synthetic punctuation, neither subtle nor explosive but wonderfully engaging.
After The Work and his involvement with This Heat, guitarist Mick Hobbs formed Officer!, a shape-shifting RIO band that presented Hobb's unique, amusing and incisive songs, releasing three proper albums and, in 1989, a cassette on the Swiss label No Records that is here reissued, half of the album written for a stage play called Bandagen by Grazia Pergoletti.
Their impetus motivated by the 60's & 70's London improv scene, epitomized by Derek Bailey's Company group, guitarist Dirk Serries leads this assemblage of quick-witted improviser as they challenge each other through pointillistic and sublime passages; from Tom Jackson (clarinet), Colin Webster (sax), Martina Verhoeven (piano), Dirk Serries (guitar) & Teun Verbruggen (drums).
A new improvising trio from Berlin by Meinrad Kneer on double bass, Rudi Fischerlehner on drums & percussion and Olaf Rupp on electric guitar, an energetic project that borrows from free jazz with electroacoustic elements and clamorous intersections from Fischerlehner, as the trio runs the gamut from nearly chaotic interaction to deep contemplation in four diverse movements.
Interdisciplinary Spanish percussionist Núria Andorrà whose background includes contemporary music and improvisation with performers including Agustín Fernández, Joëlle Léandre, Mats Gustafsson, Nate Wooley, and Joe Morris joins Fred Frith in Santa Maria de Palautordera for studio and concert recordings of eleven far-ranging dialogs of unusual and imaginative technique and concept.
Describing their improvisation as a chemical reaction of positive and negative ions, the central trio of the ensemble Skein--Achim Kaufmann (piano), Frank Gratkowski (winds) and Wilbert de Joode (bass)--are heard in this incredible 2018 concert at Konfrontationen Festival as a septet with Tony Buck (drums), Richard Barrett (electronics), Liz Allbee (trumpet) and Uchihashi Kazuhisa (guitar).
Netherlands pianist Martina Verhoeven's quintet with Goncalo Almeida on double bass, Onno Govaert on drums, Dirk Serries on guitar and Colin Webster on saxophone is captured live in their debut performance at the Roadburn Festival 2022 Paradox in Tilburg for an extended 2-part improvisation of both dense and thrilling interaction and deep introspection, a spectacular and informed set.
The incredible first meeting between legendary saxophonist Joe McPhee and double bassist John Edwards is this performance at the 2019 Artacts festival in Austria, a powerfully reflective free jazz concert with McPhee speaking & preaching about the loss of giants John Coltrane, Albert Ayler and James Baldwin, as they stand upon their shoulders through free music.
Extended and captivating improvisations using complex and extended techniques from the duo of prepared pianist Annie Lewandowski (London Improvisers Orchestra, Powerdove, Xiu Xiu) and guitarist Fred Frith (Henry Cow, Skeleton Crew, &c &c) in a thoroughly modern improvised conversation, here reissued with 11 minutes of previously unreleased material.
The first new Bootstrappers album since 1992, joining band leader Elliott Sharp for this 3rd album are longtime collaborators Melvin Gibbs on electric bass and Don McKenzie on drums, for seven assertive rock-based improvisations fueled by electronics, free jazz, no wave and electroacoustic sound, manifesting a hardboiled NY ethic of focused grooves and free playing.
Reissued as the inexplicable avant rock band The Residents celebrate their 50th year, this compilation album from 1979 includes tracks from San Fransisco peer bands Chrome (Damon Edge/Helios Creed), Art rockers from Indiana, MX-80 Sound, SF electronic new wave band Tuxedomoon, and four tracks from The Resident's themselves, two with Fred Frith on guitar.
Including three previously unreleased live tracks, one of Downtown NY's supergroups of drummer Samm Bennett, reed & wind player Ned Rothenberg and guitar & bass player Elliott Sharp's 2nd album is reissued, bringing this collection of seemingly endless possibility in improvisation back to the foreground, sounding as modern today as it did in the percolating creativity of 1987.
Joyfully assertive and somewhat twisted, the first of three improvisations on this live album at Wels Unlimited 2020 is the duo of Austrian pianist Elisabeth Harnik and drummer Didi Kern, starting at high speed then shifting to unusual approaches in a quirky dialog, made quirkier with Jaap Blonk adding wonderfully nonsensical vocalizations on the last two pieces.
One of the most intense and unusual of the 80s Downtown NY groups merging rock and improvisation with strong attitudes and incredible musical concepts, these live recordings, including songs never before released, are taken from American and European concerts by the trio of guitarist Fred Frith, cellist Tom Cora, and either electric harpist Zeena Parkins or reedist Dave Newhouse.
A startling and energetically exciting collision of cleverly eclectic sound sources when Swiss turntablist and sound artist Joke Lanz met Austrian improviser and turntablist Dieb13 (Dieter Kovacic) for this amazing 2020 concert at GrillX in Vienna, using three turntables to create an incredible collage of sounds from the humorous to the awe inspiring.
Recordings from two European jazz festivals in 2020--Klangspuren festival in Austria and Moers Festival in Germany--from the duo of pianist Elisabeth Harnik and multi-wind & reedist Frank Gratkowski performing on alto & soprano saxophones, clarinet & bass flute, both of whom bring classical training to their spirited, diverse and far-ranging improvisations.
An outstanding pair of concerts from Austrian pianist & vocalist Igrid Schmoliner and Chicago drummer & percussionist Hamid Drake, Schmoliner coming from a compositional/avant background, Drake merging jazz and world approaches to his playing, together creating something wonderfully informed and exciting, making their complex interplay radiantly lucid to their audience.
Essential performers on the 80s Downtown NY scene, cellist Tom Cora and percussionist & vocalist David Moss released this album in 1983 on Fred Frith's Rift label, ten active and often absurd duo improvisation of informed interaction, intertwining strings, drums, odd rhythmic sources and strange vocal utterances, yielding to both serious improv and whimsical notions.
Elliott Sharp's fifth compilation bringing a diverse and global view on modern solo guitar work continues the series on a new record label and with the same exceptional ear for superb musicians, here including Anthony Pirog, David Watson, Liberty Ellman, Matteo Liberatore, Mike Baggetta, Chris Vine, Craig Green, Jerome Harris, Philip L'Epee, Will Bernard, &c.
Recorded in a winery in Gorizia, Italy, in 2019, Austrian based pianist and composer Elisabeth Harnik, who works in both composed and improvised music, joined with Italian-born American composer, percussionist, multimedia artist and Ictus label leader Andrea Centazzo to perform this series of creative and authoritative "Duophonic Landscapes".
A uniquely eccentric free improv album by Fred Frith on electric guitar and Lol Coxhill on soprano sax, originally released in 1983 on the French AAA label, the album assembles recordings from the "Musiques de Traverses" Festival 1981, 1978 concerts in Sainte Croix, in Poitiers, and at M.J.C. Aliénor D'Aquitaine in Limoges, plus additional material from 1999 in Munchen & London.
The first meeting between the Austrian duo of bass clarinetist Susanna Gartmayer and Christof Kurzmann, here using ppool software, voice and rubber band, creating 4 elusive and immersive works that float somewhere in the void between experimental electronics, improvisation and song, creating diaphanous tension and mysterious environments; spellbinding.
Portugese tenor saxophonist Rodrigo Amado met Belgian electric & acoustic guitarist Dirk Serries for this live performance at Jazzblazzt in The Netherlands in 2018 for two extended conversations, the first set finding Serries on electric and the 2nd on acoustic, as the two push and pull each other, intertwining or finding complement in their discourse.
An excellent example of the 80s Downtown NY approach to improvisation from the trio of wind player Ned Rothenberg on alto & tenor saxophones, bass clarinet & flute, Elliott Sharp on guitar, bass & violin, and Samm Bennett on drums, percussion & electronic drums, all in the height and excitement of the new music being developed and performed in NYC in the 1980s; awe-inspiring!
Combining concerts from a number of festivals and venues between 2009 & 2017, this album presents the best of the collaboration between London free improvising vocalist Phil Minton and Austrian turntablist and experimenter Dieb13, each of them masterfully unleashed in overwhelmingly creative, outlandish, sometimes frightening/sometimes uproarious, truly unique music.
The first meeting for the trio of Tuvan free improvising vocalist & throat singer Sainkho Namtchylak, saxophonist Ned Rothenberg and turntablist Dieb13, captured in performance at Music Unlimited 33, at Alter Schlachthof Wels, Austria in 2019 for 2 improvisations — the 40 minute "Shave and a Haircut" and the 11 minute "Two Bits" — in incredibly creative and formidable music.
Recorded in 2005 with an ensemble of like-minded instrumentalists and then edited and collaged for the next year and a half, this was a project of Charles Hayward during his time at The Albany in Deptford, London, using their digital recording suite to create a large work using a variety of strategies and developed in a dramatic story form, issued here for the 1st time.
Fred Frith's solo performances are amongst some of his most fascinating, and this live album at Ateliers Claus in Brussels, 2018 does not disappoint, Frith using every inch of his guitar and an arsenal of objects, in tandem with his masterful creative intent, to present an extended and fascinating journey in sound, remarkable in its breadth and bold inventive power.
This Heat and Camberwell Now drummer, songwriter, vocalist, experimenter and sociological observer Charles Hayward steps away from his drums for an intimate album of song, performing on piano with minimal accompaniment as he presents new songs and new versions of songs including pieces from Camberwell Now; powerfully fragile, insightful, fascinating.
Fred Frith's solo career started on the West Coast Ralph Records label, home of The Residents; Frith met Residents front man Hardy Fox in passing in 1991, making recordings on a Pacific beach using Fox's Walkman, which they brought to a multi-track studio to record the basis for an ultimately unreleased album, now revived decades later as Fox rediscovered this fascinating material.
Few musicians better represent the Downtown NY scene's early years than late cellist Tom Cora, a key player who performed and recorded with John Zorn, Fred Frith, Polly Bradfield, Samm Bennett, &c, &c, bridging and blurring the lines between jazz, improv, rock, and compositional music, heard here in an exuberant and masterful solo set live at Vancouver's The Western Front in 1986.