Slovenian percussionist Zlatko Kaucic reinforces the title of his "Diversity" box set over 5 CDs in a variety of solo, duo, trio and quartet setting, including some of the UK & Europe's finest improvisers--Evan Parker, Agusti Fernandez, Lotte Anker, Artur Majewski, Rafal Mazur, Phil Minton, and Johannes Bauer--an excellent example of his wide-ranging work as an improviser.
Six "Dances" of a deeply turbulent nature as legendary French bassist Joëlle Léandre meets Brazilian bassist Vinicius Cajado for a 2022 live concert in Vienna at Alte Schmiede, both employing massively powerful techniques, Léandre vocalizing at times to push their dialog into tempestuous territory; at times darkly explosive but illuminated by incredible creative intent.
Recorded during the 2019 Kraków Jazz Autumn Festival, NY trombonist Steve Swell leads a series of small groups and a large ensemble, recording at Radio Kraków and at Alchemia with some of Europe's most active improvisers: Gebhard Ullmannm, Elisabeth Harnik, Niklas Barno, Paal Nilssen-Love, Jon Rune Strom, Carlos Zingaro, Mikolaj Trzaska, Signe Emmeluth, Hanne de Backer, Elisabeth Coudoux, & Per Ake Holmlander.
The second release from the duo of Spanish percussionist Vasco Trilla and Chicago reedist Mars Williams, the latter performing both on reeds and on toy instruments, each using extraordinary and extended technique to create exotically energetic conversations and beautifully meditative environments, in five creative, playful and impressively informed dialogs.
An exciting and often unorthodox concert of free improvisation between Austrian pianist Elisabeth Harnik and Slovenian drummer/percussionist Zlatko Kaucic, captured live in 2022 at the Kulturhalle in Eggersdorf, Austria for a diverse 5-movement freely improvised and very open-minded work, with both performing inside and outside of their instruments, and literally, underneath the piano.
Two days of concerts in 2018 at Alchemia Club, in Krakow, Poland and a recording at Radio Krakow the next day from English composer, band leader and a bass player Barry Guy, in varying configurations at Alchemia of duos & trios with some of Europe & The UK's leading improvisers, culminating in an 11-piece ensemble at Radio Krakow performing the large work "For To End Yet Again".
To celebrate its 50th year since bassist Barry Guy assembled the London Jazz Orchestra for its first 1970 performance on BBC Radio, the now multinational band convened in Poland in 2020 for a series of concerts at Alchemia Club and Manggha Hall in configurations of duos to quintets, culminating in a full ensemble performance of two magnificently powerful works: "Flow" and "Harmos-Krakow".
The continued evolution and renewal of the Nu Band anchored by the rhythm section of drummer Lou Grassi and bassist Joe Fonda, with Thomas Heberer in his 2nd album with the band taking the palce of late trumpeter Roy Campbell, and guitarist Kenny Wessel taking the place of late saxophonist Mark Whitecage; superb melodic free playing with compositions from all four members.
Uniquely orchestrated with all three members bringing a trove of objects & percussion, the trio of Martin Küchen on saxophones, Agustí Fernández on piano and Zlatko Kaučič on drums are heard in this two-part live concert at BUMF festival in Smartno, Slovenia, for a superb example of intent listening and use of space around confident, stunningly creative & virtuosic playing.
Dedicated to the memory of reed & wind players Perry Robinson and Mark Whitecage, both of whom have passed since they took part in this tremendous 2015 live recording recorded at the 20th VisionFest in NYC, in a quartet with bassist Ken Filiano and drummer Lou Grassi for three collective free improvisations, particularly the extended first piece dedicated to late trumpeter Roy Campbell.
The 3rd album from the touring trio of Joe McPhee on trumpet & tenor sax, John Edwards on double bass and Klaus Kugel on drums, following their previous NotTwo releases A Night In Alchemia and Journey To Parazzar, here captured live at FreeJazzSaar 2019, in Saarbrucken, Germany for a boisterously exciting set of three collective improvisations, including a tip of the hat to Charles Gayle.
Featuring compositions from both trombonist Steve Swell and tenor saxophonist & bass clarinetist Gebhard Ulmann, the second album from The Chicago Plan with cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and drummer Michael Zerang is captured in the studio in Augsburg, Germany for six exceptional modern jazz recordings from a profoundly masterful and experienced transatlantic band.
A collection of four concerts, each presented on a single CD, from the chamber-oriented and technically superb trio of Tim Trevor-Briscoe on alto saxophone & clarinet, Szilard Mezei on viola and Nicola Guazzaloca on piano, captured at at Korzo Zenehaz in Hungary; Cultural Centre of Vojvodina in Novi Sad Serbi; Regional Creative Atelier in Serbia; and Harom Hollo in Budapest.
Two burning improvisations from the Chicago / Norwegian trio Ballister of Dave Rempis on alto & tenor saxophones, Fred Lonberg-Holm on cello & electronics and Paal Nilssen-Love on drums & percussion, performing live at Alchemia in Krakow, Poland in 2019 in an exuberantly assertive concert from three incredibly active artists in the trans-Atlantic community of improvising musicians.
Barcelona pianist Agustí Fernández and Polish bass guitarist Rafał Mazur correspond through solo tracks recorded in their respective studios, each missive an unusual and impressive free improvisation using extended techniques, inside playing and inexplicable exclamation, in a five-part exchange where each message is alternately addressed "Dear Agusti" and "Dear Rafał".
A tribute to NY reedist & wind player Mark Whitecage, who passed away in March 2021, in a concert at Rochester's BopShop in 2018 by the band he is probably best known for: Nu Band, with trumpeter Thomas Heberer taking Roy Campbell's original seat, plus Lou Grassi on drums and Joe Fonda on bass, a great concert blending modern creative jazz with passionate playing and a bit of hard bop.
A leader on the Portuguese free jazz scene, tenor saxophonist Rodrigo Amado assembles a collective quartet with three exemplary Norwegian improvisers--Thomas Johansson on trumpet, Jon Rune Strom on double bass and Gard Nilssen on drums--for a dynamic concert at ZDB club in Lisbon in 2017, three dialogs of sparking, fiery interactions and a final "Response".
Satako Fujii's 2008 release introducing her then new ma-do quartet of Satoko Fujii on piano, Natsuki Tamura on trumpet, Akira Horikoshi on drums, and late bassist Norikatsu Koreyasu, the band name signifying "window" and "the silence between notes", in an album of superb, lively, eclectic and absolutely exciting improvisation from 9 original Fujii compositions.
The first Wandering The Sound album in 2018 was the trio of Argentinian reedist Guillermo Gregorio, Spanish drummer Ramón López and Polish bassist Rafał Mazur, here extended to a quintet with pianist Satoko Fujii and trumpeter Natsuki Tamura for a 2019 concert at Alchemia in Poland, a masterful example of free improv based on a poem by Ikkyu Sojun, a Zen master from the 15th century.
Michael Marcus composed these lyrical jazz works to create a message about "New York City realities", recorded in two studio sessions with Marcus on soprano & tenor sax, octavin, A clarinet & tarogato, along with Denton Darien on piano, John Austria on Fender Rhodes, Tyler Mitchell on bass, Warren Smith on drums & percussion, and Lawrence Feldman on alto flute.
Taking its album title and the titles for three compositions from poems by Laura Winter, the German jazz quartet led by clarinetist Theo Jörgensmann with Christopher Dell on vibes, Christian Ramond on double bass and Klaus Kugel on drums present an advanced example of modern creative, chamber-oriented collective free jazz with a stunning level of communication.
Live concert recordings at Alchemia club in Krakow captured during the Krakow Jazz Autumn Festival 2019 while double bassist Joëlle Léandre held residence, 3 CDs presenting first a quartet with Zlatko Kaucic on drums & percussion, Mateusz Rybicki on clarinets and Zbigniew Kozera on bass, then one disc in a duo with Zlatko Kaucic and another with guitarist Rafal Mazure.
Drum and percussion improviser Barry Altschul leads his trio with Jon Irabagon on tenor, sopranillo saxophones & alto clarinet and Joe Fonda on bass in their fourth release since forming in 2013, here with five original compositions in free jazz form with strong melodic heads that manifest in tremendous soloing from his players and outstanding drum work.
An exotic album of tradition-spanning improvisation from the trio of tenor saxophonist Ivo Perleman, oud player Gordon Grdina and percussionist Hamin Honari on tombak and daf, avoiding any cliches of "world fusion" as the effusive Middle Eastern rhythmic devices propel Perelman and Grdina into joyful flights of ecstatic playing that bridge the East and West.
A beautiful and authoritative set of duo performances by London-born, Japanese-raised and now residing in NYC, saxophonist & clarinetist Yuma Uesaka, and pianist Marilyn Crispell, performing a program of Uesaka compositions, each based around a poem by Rushi Vyas, realized in confident dialogs of powerful yet sensitive expression; a satisfying and lyrical collection.
The extended and absorbing live performance between Austrian pianist Elisabeth Harnik and Chicago drummer Michael Zerang at Španski Borci,in Ljubljana, Slovenia in 2019 begins in restful interaction, Harnik often inside the piano and Zerang scraping and coaxing sound, building to a disruptive dream of intense interaction that ends in a turbulent awakening.
Pianist Carlo Morena leads this lyrical and energetic piano trio with bassist Joe Fonda and drummer Fˇlix Lecaros Herrera, performing 6 Morena compositions and one piece by Emil Boyd, recording at the Firehouse 12 studio in Connecticut for the 3rd album under the Step In name, and the first with drummer Herrera; upbeat but never cloying, a very compelling album.
A truly unique duo album of sax and drums from Chicago reedist Mars Williams and Spanish percussionist Vasco Trilla, using their immense technical skills to pivot reflective and meditative playing around exuberant free jazz spirit, maintaining a sense of journey and sonic introspection through unusual and extended technique; a beautifully balanced album.
While on a tour of Japan in 2019, Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii and Spanish drummer Ramon Lopez asked trumpeter Natsuki Tamura to join them, and to join in a challenge to write a new piece of music for the trio each day while on tour; this studio album selects the finest of those compositions, performed with nearly telepathic control in a mix of fire and lyrical beauty.
Celebrating 40 years of Zlatko Kaucic's professional career as a musician, the quartet of Joelle Leandre on acoustic bass, Evan Parker on tenor saxophone, Agusti Fernandez on piano, and Zlatko Kaucic on drums & objects are heard live at the 23th Cerkno Jazz Festival in 2018 for an extended and stunning set, from the most active to the most introspective of moments.
The tenth Conference Call album and the first with drummer Dieter Ulrich taking over for former drummers Matt Wilson, Han Bennink, George Schuller and Gerry Hemingway, the 20 years journey for this transatlantic band leading to this album captured in the studio in Central NY while on tour, performing 3 original compositions from Ullman, 2 from Fonda, and 2 from Stevens.
An essential asset of the NY Downtown scene since the 70s, trombonist Steve Swell leads and composes for an exemplary and uniquely orchestrated sextet bridging generations: Jason Kao Hwang on violin, viola & electronics, Ariel Bart on harmonica, Fred Lonberg-Holm on cello & electronics, Robert Boston on piano & organ, and Andrew Cyrille on drums & percussion.
A meeting in the studio of long-time friends and collaborators, pianist Matthew Shipp and Daniel Carter performing on alto, tenor & soprano saxes, clarinet & trumpet, having played together in many groupings this is only their first duo recording, in a thoughtful set of free improvisations with an innate lyricism and beautiful sense of pacing; masterful and evolved.
Not Two Records celebrates their 20th Anniversary with a festival in Wlen, Poland, inviting 13 of the finest European & US improvisers--Guy, Leandre, Mazur, Nilssen-Love, Kaucic, Fernandez, Gustafsson, Vandermark, Trzaska, Brotzmann, Swell, Holmlander, & Homburg--performing in configurations from duo to quintet, released in a limited 5-CD wooden box set.
Recording in Graz, Austria in 2019 at the club Tube's, Chicago alto saxophonist Dave Rempis and drummer Michael Zerang, frequent collaborators with Ken Vandermark and The Resonance Ensemble, joined with Austrian improvising and classical pianist Elisabeth Harnik to record three exuberant and incredibly informed improvisations: "Triple Tube" I through III.
Japanese pianist Satoko Fujii and trumpeter Natsuki Tamura (The NatSat Duo) launch their project Pentas with this album, their 7th as a duo, with compositions from each musician and dedicated as a tribute to Eric and Chris Stern, elder inspirational fans who spoke with the duo after the NY premiere of this music, upon learning that Eric passed away that very night.
Released for their 50th anniversary, The LJCO, in configurations of up to 21 musicians including Derek Bailey, Trevor Watts, Evan Parker, Peter Brotzmann, &c., perform works by Kenny Wheeler, Barry Guy, Paul Rutherford and Howard Riley, captured live at the Berliner Jazztage in 1972; at Donaueschingen Musiktage in 1972; in the studio in 1980; and London's Round House in 1980.
The 13-piece Krakow Improvisers Orchestra approaches their music through conduction and improvisation, founder Paulina Owczarek leading the ensemble in an impressive 3-part work recorded in the studio, an exciting and quirky set using mostly acoustic instrumentation through reeds, brass and two drummer/percussionist, 2 bass players, free vocal improv, synth & guitar.
The 3rd volume of saxophonist Mars Williams' Albert Ayler-infused holiday records, bring free jazz to the holidays in a unique holiday mash-up of songs with titles like "Noel Omega - Twas The Night Before The Frosty Island Harvest Xmas", in a quintet with Jaimie Branch (trumpet), Knox Chandler (electric guitar), Mark Tokar (bass) and Klaus Kugel (drums).
Marilyn Lerner (piano), Ken Filiano (bass & effects) and Lou Grassi (drums & percussion) extend their trio work after their previous two NoBusiness releases with this album of profound collective improvisation, blending lyrical and abstract work in energetic but never frenetic conversation, in a range of mood performed with incredible technical and inventive skill.
An exciting trio recording of the creatively unorthodox and superb collective piano trio of German pianist Uwe Oberg, Spanish drummer & percussionist based in Berlin Lucia Martinez, and New York bassist Joe Fonda, also on flute, performing at the the 2019 Just Music Festival in Weisboden, the band's implicit joy of their performance clearly heard in these recordings.
Recorded during Ken Vandermark's residency titled "The Unexpectable", in Krakow in 2017 at Klub Alchemia, plus concerts at Hevre and Black Box in Germany, with duos, trios and quartets in a variety of configurations with artists including Ken Vandermark, Nate Wooley, Ikue Mori, John Butcher, Kent Kessler, Steve Noble, Mette Rasmussen, Eddie Prevost, Joe McPhee &c.
The performing duo of pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach and drummer Dag Magnus Narvesen bring two strong voices from different generations of free improvisers, creating a unique sound that merges the creative energies and vocabulary of each in dynamic and subtle expressions of vigorous movements that unravel in layered improvisation, rewarding their listeners.
The working trio of New York trumpeter & saxophonist Joe McPhee, London double bassist John Edwards, and German drummer Klaus Kugel, actively touring through Europe since 2017, are heard live at Alchemia in Krakow, Poland in 2018, for four monumental examples of free improvisation in superlative playing with intense rhythmic interaction and deeply expressive soloing.
A set of Jeb Bishop compositions performed at The Hungry Brain in Chicago, from the inventively lyrical quartet of Jeb Bishop (trombone), Russ Johnson (trumpet), Frank Rosaly (drums), and Jason Roebke (bass), performing music written for this same quartet at the invitation of Ken Vandermark for the Okka Festival 7 in Milwaukee; optimistic and joyful modern jazz!
The New York trio of pianist Jerome Kitzke, bassist Steve Rust on electric and acoustic, and drummer/percussionist Harvey Sorgen, alternate consummately clever approaches to collective playing with Kitzke's humorously ironic and insightful reading of four poems by Lawrence Ferlinghetti from his book "A Coney Island of the Mind", in honor of his 100th birthday.
The UK/Europe trio of Albert Cirera on saxophones, Rafal Mazur on bass guitar, and Nicolas Field on drums, in five ordinal improvisations recorded at Alchemia Club in 2018, for a concert of vigorously assertive playing and seething interactive layers, laying back at times to build their progressions, ending the concert with an explorative "Fifth" improvisation.
Recording two days after their concert in British Columbia, BC at Alternator Centre for Contemporary Art's Skin And Bones Music Series, the trio of pianist Matthew Shipp, guitarist Gordon Grdina and bassist Mark Helias captured these collective improvisations at Afterlife Studios in Vancouver BC, titling their album after their well-received concert.
The trio of bassist Joe Fonda, drummer Harvey Sorgen and clarinetist Christopher Rocher in an album dedicated to reedist Perry Robinson, a heartfelt album balancing structured composition and collective work, with authoritative free playing from all three as Rocher switches between bass clarinet and b-flat, Fonda plucks and bows, and Sorgen skilfully mixes it up.
Official issue of the drumming duo of Jay Rosen (Trio X, Cosmosomatics) and Brian Wilson (Pauline Oliveros, Ivo Perelman), performing at Whitman Hall in Brooklyn College in 2008, presenting 5 concertos for two drums written by both performers, through pristine recordings demonstrating melodicism through rhythm as they explore a wide range of timbre and color.