30 settembre 2013

Nel numero di settembre 2013 del periodico Smith's Academy Informer Kate Westbrook ricorda affettuosamente i primi incontri con Lindsay Cooper, amica e compagna di numerose avventure fin dagli anni settanta: "The first time Mike and I met Lindsay was in Bordeaux at the Sigma Festival. We were playing there and so was she. At the last minute Lindsay was roped in as page turner for the pianist accompanying the singer Cathy Berberian. The concert was one of Victorian parlour ballads. Lindsay was dressed for the occasion in a long sprigged muslin dress with blue sash and her hair huge and curly, tied up with bows and flowers. She played the demure Miss to Berberian’s grande dame. Our second meeting, by contrast was at the Roundhouse in London when the Mike Westbrook Brass Band and the band Henry Cow played at a Morning Star rally. The things that struck me then were her musical inventiveness and the sight of her pulling a small wooden cart laden with her instruments: bassoon with pedals and attendant gear, oboe, sopranino saxophone, fife. She gave me her fife at the time she told us that she had multiple sclerosis. In fact I can’t play it properly, such a tricky instrument, but I treasure it and the extraordinary Lindsay..."
Il testo prosegue richiamando le successive vicende - The Orckestra, The Cortège, Westbrook-Rossini, Music for Other Occasions, Cuff Clout - e proprio da The Cortège proviene il breve estratto video suggerito: Democratie (1982).


29 settembre 2013

L'etichetta polacca Monotype Records documenta gli incontri tenuti a Berlino e in Francia nel 2010 sotto sigla Strike da Jon Rose con i contrabbassisti Clayton Thomas e Mike Majkowski: Wood, Wire & Sparks, album in vinile a tiratura limitata. In anteprima uno dei brani, Gentrify This, in http://cloudmix.it/#/track/62240876/strike-gentrify-this

Australian string trio Strike combine pure energy, dynamic sensibilities and a bombastic approach to percussive attack, diving head-first into the chamber: a rare combination of thrash energy, sophisticated listening, and unbridled enthusiasm. Led by the pioneering experimentalist Jon Rose, the trio takes full advantage of the myriad possibilities of the string, the bow and the box.


28 settembre 2013

Lo scorso aprile a Milano, allo Spazio Sunomi, Elliott Sharp ha presentato per la prima volta in modo integrale il nuovo capitolo della serie Tectonics riservata ai suoi lavori elettroacustici per chitarra ed elettronica, Haptikon, documentato da un cd a tiratura limitata prodotto dall'etichetta Long Song Records.
Così annotava Sharp a margine del concerto: "To perform Haptikon, I prepared stereo backup tracks consisting of drums, basses, and electronics from my original ProTools files. These were played back from Ableton in a suite from my laptop while I performed the top layer on guitar. The backup track went through the small but powerful house sound system. Thanks to the room acoustics, the tracks sounded full and rich and as to my guitar, I could barely move the volume on the Fender Deluxe amp past “one” otherwise my punchy sound would go over the top into the realm of pain. This was my first performance non-stop through the entire Haptikon set and it was an exciting challenge to improvise over the sometimes unpredictable architecture that I’d built. The audience attention was concentrated and this always adds to the focus". Una ripresa video è su YouTube.


27 settembre 2013

miRthkon di passaggio l'altra sera a Trento: Matt Guggemos, Travis Andrews, Carolyn Walter, Wally Scharold, Jamison Smeltz e Matt Lebofsky, mascherati da rock band. Daddylonglegz, per esempio.

miRthkon is an amplified chamber ensemble masquerading as a rock band. This illusion is well maintained by the fact that from time to time they do, indeed, rock. Consisting of a core rock instrumentation of two guitars, bass, and drums, their unique sound is enhanced by the inclusion of two adept woodwind players covering a wide array of instruments including: piccolo, flute, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto, tenor, and baritone saxophones. Maintaining a passionate aesthetic stance that they are (quite happily) 'beneath everything', their music -- whether evoking the direct or indirect influence of progressive rock, contemporary classical abstraction, avant-garde jazz, catchy hook-laden pop, or thrash metal -- is held to a simple but firm standard. Does it sound good?


26 settembre 2013

Joni Mitchell compie settant'anni a novembre, ma fervono già da tempo iniziative e festeggiamenti per preparare l'evento: due concerti in suo onore - cui a sorpresa ha partecipato lei stessa, recitando e cantando - si sono tenuti a Toronto il giugno scorso, e la CBC canadese ne tiene una registrazione completa in streaming al proprio sito, differente dalla versione trasmessa in radio - piuttosto maltrattata dallo speaker di turno - e qui pressoché completa. E per l'emittente canadese c'è disponibile anche una lunga intervista realizzata qualche giorno prima: http://music.cbc.ca/#/concerts/CBC-Music-Exclusives-The-Joni-Mitchell-Interview-2013-06-04. Al sito web ufficiale della Signora intanto si tiran fuori i gioielli di casa, alcuni mai esibiti finora: rare riprese video di metà anni sessanta, le trascrizioni delle immortali pagine di Hejira, le orchestrazioni di Mike Gibbs per Paprika Plains...


25 settembre 2013

E' oggi il giorno dell'ultimo saluto a Lindsay Cooper, presso il Golders Green Crematorium a Londra. Ma altre iniziative in suo ricordo si vanno preparando: si può scrivere a lindsaycoopermemorial@gmail.com per esserne informati.
Ciao Lindsay!

24 settembre 2013

Già guardano al prossimo Pitfall per concludere idealmente il trittico noir iniziato l'anno scorso con City of NetsThe Remote Viewers consegnano in questi giorni alle stampe Crimeways, autoprodotto in tutto e per tutto nel covo londinese dell'Oxo Tower: David Petts, Caroline Kraabel, Sue Lynch, Adrian Northover, John Edwards e Rosa Lynch-Northover.


23 settembre 2013

You're Never Alone with a Drone. Informazione di guerra in tempo reale nel nuovo video di Bing Selfish: "OK, so there's not going to be a Commission. But there are war crimes, and there are videos, so let's make do with what we got. Mr Selfish's advice: Don't look up."


22 settembre 2013

L'impareggiabile Dave Stewart invita ancora una volta all'ascolto e all'analisi approfondita delle sue composizioni (relativamente) più recenti, illustrando partiture, arrangiamenti e scelte tematiche, e non di rado confidando anche qualche astuzia tecnica. Questo mese è il turno di Your Lucky Star, brano pubblicato sull'album Spin (1981) dalla premiata coppia Stewart-Gaskin e ispirato al produttore Joe Meek, artefice di una vera e propria icona musicale sci-fi dei primi anni sessanta, Telstar.
Scrive Stewart: "Producer Joe Meek is best known for the instrumental Telstar, a worldwide smash hit in 1962. I was eleven at the time, and the record quickly became one of my all-time favourites - indeed, it lifted my spirits during a period when I was struggling with the transition from primary to secondary school. Telstar's rousing tune is only half the story: Meek's turbocharged production is doused in wild sci-fi noises, the lead line seems to be played on some kind of mad space organ and the guitar breaks provide a bittersweet, lyrical contrast to the triumphantly major verse melody. Like all truly great pop singles, it's an inspired blend of good music and brilliant sound. In later life, fond memories of this wonderful track, coupled with the realisation of the tragic facts of Meek's life, inspired me to write the tribute song Your Lucky Star".


21 settembre 2013

Una rilettura integrale del celebre e amatissimo album di Fred Frith Gravity è andata felicemente in scena ieri e ierlaltro al Roulette newyorkese, dopo il debutto allo Slim's di San Francisco lo scorso 28 agosto. Con Frith c'erano Marie Abe, Jordan Glenn, Kaethe Hostetter, Kasey Knudsen, Dominique Leone, Ava Mendoza, Lisa Mezzacappa, Aaron Novik, William Winant, Wobbly e Myles Boisen, formazione che porterà il concerto l'anno prossimo al festival di Victoriaville.
Il primo bis ieri sera, Terrain, pagina indimenticabile del catalogo Art Bears, Frith lo ha dedicato alla cara Lindsay Cooper ('friend and bandmate') "libera finalmente dalla gabbia della sclerosi multipla".

'Fred Frith returns to the Roulette stage to revisit Gravity, the beloved 1979 album that also marked the guitarist/composer’s new life in New York. An experimental album that was inspired by social and dance music from around the world, Gravity is a rare “avant-garde dance record” that bounced with the “joyful noise” (BBC) of dance-friendly rhythms even as it challenged expectations and forged a new musical direction for the artist. With a new cast of friends and musical accomplices joining Frith on stage, this recreation and reinterpretation of Gravity promises to equally astound and delight today, nearly a quarter of a century after it first changed the landscape of experimental music.'


20 settembre 2013

Prende il via oggi alla Maison de la Musique di Cap'Découverte (Francia) la sesta edizione del Rock in Opposition France Event, con protagonisti da qui al 22 settembre Faust, Aranis, We Insist!, L’enfance Rouge, Soft Machine Legacy, Mirthkon, Cheer Accident, Korekyojinn, Univers Zero, Poil, Guapo, Present, Panzerpappa, Senogul, Ulan Bator e Nullstellensatz. Informazioni: http://www.rocktime.org/rio/index.php


19 settembre 2013

Oh Lindsay! (3 marzo 1951 - 18 settembre 2013)

18 settembre 2013

Esce in tiratura limitata per l'etichetta di Mark Wastell Confront Recordings la ripresa integrale di una sessione acustica in duo di Derek Bailey e Simon H. Fell tenuta a Londra nel 2001, in un assolato pomeriggio d'agosto: The Complete 15th August 2001. Informazioni: markwastell@btinternet.com

"This is the full recording - freshly remastered - of the 2001 duo gig, an excerpt from which appeared in 2002 on a long-deleted Sound 323 mini-CD which was voted a record of the year by The Wire magazine. Here at last is the full performance in all its exhilarating acoustic power; an unplugged (but very intense) set from a hot and summery Wednesday afternoon, recorded in the basement of Sound 323 in London by Tim Fletcher.

17 settembre 2013

Non ha raggiunto lo scopo prefissato la campagna di compartecipazione alle spese di pubblicazione del libro di Peter Urpeth su Evan Parker The Intensity of Purpose, promossa su Unbound fin dallo scorso anno. Il testo apparirà comunque in futuro, anche per ora non sono disponibili dettagli: un video di presentazione dell'opera, con Stewart Lee come testimonial, è tuttora diponibile in http://unbound.co.uk/books/the-intensity-of-purpose.

Through a wealth of original interviews and research, this biography details the events and contexts of the life and music of Evan Parker, and takes the reader close-in to the events and the creative process. If you haven’t heard of Evan Parker or his music, this book might just change your perceptions of what was happening in music from the 1960s to the present day, and will certainly provide new insights for those with an interest in the new and alternative arts scene in Europe and America - and just how closely linked ‘popular’ and alternative music were in that period.


16 settembre 2013

A luglio Keith Tippett è stato ospite della South West Music School (Regno Unito) per seguirne i giovani talenti in un programma didattico di composizione e improvvisazione intitolato alla memoria di David Bedford: il brano commissionato, 7 Pieces for Old Young, è ora pubblicato al profilo YouTube della scuola.
Su YouTube c'è anche una ripresa video della prima volta di Tippett al Cafe Oto londinese, lo scorso 30 aprile, in solo: la si vede - si fa per dire - in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEx--iFRjyc


15 settembre 2013

William English, curatore della serie Wavelength per Resonance FM, ha iniziato quest'estate un ciclo di trasmissioni dedicate a Red Krayola e Art & Language. I primi tre episodi sono nella sezione podcast del sito web dell'emittente londinese:

14 settembre 2013

Altro che giornate vuote... è fitta di appuntamenti l'agenda europea della brava Elaine Di Falco, a partire dalla partecipazione questa sera con Yugen ad AltrOck in Concert (Milano), prima dei concerti del trio Empty Days con Francesco Zago e Maurizio Fasoli a Banco (Svizzera), Calvenzano (BG) e Wurzburg (Germania) - anche con Not A Good Sign - poi Lainate e infine nuovamente a Milano ai primi di ottobre. La cantante/tastierista statunitense sarà anche ospite di Alessandro Achilli nella puntata di domani sera di Prospettive musicali (Radio Popolare, inizio ore 22.36), per un personale ritratto attraverso le musiche di Hughscore, Caveman Shoestore, Hugh Hopper, Robert Wyatt, Thinking Plague, Luciano Margorani, Francesco Zago, Dave Willey e amici.


13 settembre 2013

Tutto in un giorno il programma di AltrOck in Concert, domani a Milano (La Casa di Alex, via Moncalieri 5) a partire dalle ore 17.00: Calomito, Sonata Islands Kommandoh, Yugen con ospite Elaine di Falco e Mirthkon. Informazioni e prenotazioni in http://altrockfading.blogspot.it


12 settembre 2013

Inizia domani una lunga e articolata residenza artistica di Otomo Yoshihide presso il Cafe Oto londinese, con concerti in diversi contesti, incontri, conversazioni e collaborazioni con musicisti di varia nazionalità fino al 21 settembre. Il programma completo si legge in http://cafeoto.co.uk

A unique opportunity to see the legendary Otomo Yoshihide, one of the most important musicians of the Japanese underground/avant-garde, play in a number of contrasting contexts. Across six nights Otomo will perform with and give a talk on the remarkable Oto Asobi, guest with the coruscating free-jazz of FIRE!, and renew collaborative relationships with London-based musicians whom he played with at his first residency back in 2009.


11 settembre 2013

Negli anni formativi di Christophe Petchanatz - alias Klimperei - pare sia stato determinante l'ascolto, istigato da un amico, dei Quadri di Modest Musorgskij. Via EL&P, naturalmente. Oggi la rivincita (o piuttosto una vendetta?): Les Tableaux D'Une Exposition D'Après Modeste Moussorgski, 1874, in vinile 12 pollici per InPolySons.


10 settembre 2013

Nel nuovo numero di Point of Departure Michael Rosenstein presenta il box di sette cd The Art of David Tudor 1963-1992, prodotto di recente dall'etichetta New World Records. Lo stesso fa Peter Margasak per il Chicago Reader: "In August 1952, when John Cage premiered his landmark composition 4'33", the guy who sat at the piano occasionally turning a page but never hitting any keys was David Tudor. An avant-garde pianist and experimental composer born in Philadelphia in 1926, Tudor is inextricably linked to Cage—he performed the premiere of just about every piano piece the older man wrote in the 50s and early 60s. He was also a key collaborator of many of Cage's peers from the New York School of the 50s, such as Morton Feldman, Earle Brown, Christian Wolff, all of whom helped pioneer the use of graphic notation and indeterminacy. Tudor interpreted work by other radical composers of the era as well, including Karlheinz Stockhausen, La Monte Young, Sylvano Bussotti, and Stefan Wolpe. Rigorously trained and technically brilliant, he thrived in situations where he had to make creative choices, deciding how to interpret deliberately loose instructions. Once he got a taste of that freedom, though, he seems to have wanted more and more—within just a few years he'd all but abandoned the instrument he'd spent decades mastering. In the early 60s, after ten years or so holding positions as pianist in residence and instructor at progressive institutions such as Black Mountain College in North Carolina and the Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik in Darmstadt, Germany, Tudor started composing his own music. He rejected not only the piano but also the rigidity of conventional scores, moving instead toward a structured but chance-dependent form of electronic music where the performer (usually Tudor himself) wouldn't be able to completely control the output of the hardware. From that point until his death in 1996 at age 70, he wrote such compositions exclusively."


09 settembre 2013

Al sito web della rivista inglese The Wire si segnala la pubblicazione - ormai imminente, il 10 ottobre - dell'album di inediti di Robert Wyatt, '68, su Cuneiform Records: "An album of Robert Wyatt solo recordings, made in the US in 1968 are being issued by Cuneiform. The material is unreleased, and includes some early versions of Soft Machine tracks. Some of the material has barely been heard, having only resurfaced last year. It was recorded during and after Soft Machine's second tour of the US with Jimi Hendrix, with Hendrix on bass for a version of The Wilde Flowers's Slow Walkin' Talk included here. '68 is due out 10 October on CD, vinyl, and digitally".


08 settembre 2013

Termina a quota venti pubblicazioni l'avventura dell'etichetta canadese Reel Recordings, nata sei anni fa per opera di Mike King, aiutato dalla compagna Miki Dandy, con l'intento di portare alla luce rari e inediti documenti audio - e anche qualche video - recuperandoli dai nastri originali e trasferendoli su cd con criteri di massima accuratezza sonora. Venti produzioni importanti, che raccontano una storia parallela e dimenticata nel jazz e rock d'avanguardia soprattutto britannici a cavallo degli anni sessanta e settanta, e che colmano diverse lacune nella discografia ufficiale di Gary Windo, Lol Coxhill, Soft Heap, Ian Carr, Mike Osborne, Kevin Ayers, Robert Wyatt, Soft Machine, Elton Dean, Keith Tippett, Trevor Watts, Harry Miller e G. F. Fitz-Gerald tra gli altri.
Tra i motivi della decisione di King ci sono la crescente disillusione verso gli attuali sistemi di diffusione commerciale della musica, il peso esorbitante dei costi di produzione - e soprattutto di spedizione - di cd e manufatti vari, le clausole capestro imposte a piccole etichette indipendenti da distributori generalisti tipo Amazon, il contrasto stridente tra lo spessore, l'emozione e le qualità sonore del nastro analogico e l'anonimato dell'imperante mp3. Alla cui pochezza, squalificante e astorica, King allude nelle note proprio dell'ultima pubblicazione di Reel Recordings, Trad Dads, Dirty Boppers And Free Fusioneers, prezioso cd antologico associato all'omonimo libro di Duncan Heining: "The recordings presented herein remain extant thanks to the technology of its time: electro-magnetic analogue tape. Each tape has frozen within its oxides not only a audio capture of a time and place, but also the presence of jazz as it is being communicated through collective performance, naturally in real time. The auditory portal enabled by such recording values allows us to experience musical personalities bringing their impassioned art to life. Such aesthetic potential, along with the laws of physics, are relinquished by the compromised mp3 format. Great musical engagement is not served through convenience".

Alla notizia della chiusura reagisce l'amico Bruce Lee Gallanter, della newyorkese Downtown Music Gallery: "Reel Recordings crept into the archival restoration in 2007, somewhat under the cloak of obscurity, but word spread that their CD issues of unearthed archival recordings and rare album reissues are not only audiophile gems for the digital age, but some of the most honest and beautiful-sounding CDs on the market. The process by which Reel Recordings are mastered and packaged is one that keeps the sheer integrity of the artist intact, and that's what sets these discs apart from their brethren. Unlike some audiophile specialty labels, Reel Recordings concentrate on the far-left field of contemporary improvisation and avant-rock. Rarely has free music been captured with this much care and dedication to the sound of the medium."
Ma nulla andrà perduto, grazie al cielo, della passione, della meticolosità e della competenza di Mike King in qualità di audiofilo, storico e archivista: chiuso il glorioso capitolo Reel Recordings, per lui è tutto di nuovo in gioco a partire dalle prossime - strabilianti! - uscite di casa Ogun e Gonzo Multimedia. Tadaaa!

Ciao Reel Recordings, e grazie!

RR 001 Pam & Gary Windo - Avant Gardeners (2007)
RR 002 Kevin Ayers And The Whole World - Hyde Park Free Concert 1970 (2007)
RR 003 G.F. Fitz-Gerald & Lol Coxhill - Echoes Of Duneden (2007)
RR 004 Ken Hyder's Talisker - Dreaming Of Glenisla (2007)
RR 005 Ray Russell - Secret Asylum (2007)
RR 006 Mike Osborne - Force Of Nature (2008)
RR 007 Steve Miller Trio Meets Elton Dean (2008)
RR 008 Soft Heap - Al Dente (2008)
RR 009 Kevin Ayers - What More Can I Say ... (2008)
RR 010 Command All Stars - Curiosities 1972 (2008)
RR 011 Bob Downes Open Music - Crossing Borders (2009)
RR 012 Harry Miller's Isipingo - Full Steam Ahead (2009)
RR 013 Splinters - Split The Difference (2009)
RR 014/015 Soft Machine - Live At Henie Onstad Art Centre 1971 (2009)
RR 016 Don Rendell Ian Carr Quintet - Live At The Union 1966 (2010)
RR 017 Radar Favourites - Radar Favourites (2010)
RR 018/019/020 Dreamtime - Double Trouble (2010)
RR 021/022/023 G.F. Fitz-Gerald & Lol Coxhill featuring Ian Hinchcliffe - The Poppy-Seed Affair (2011)
RR 024/025 Elton Dean's Ninesense - The 100 Club Concert 1979 (2012)
RR 026 Various - Trad Dads, Dirty Boppers And Free Fusioneers: British Jazz 1960-1975 (2012)


07 settembre 2013

E' soddisfatto del suo nuovo, ennesimo autoritratto R. Stevie MoorePersonal Appeal, una quindicina di brani del periodo 1973-2001 pescati dal suo infinito catalogo di produzioni ufficiali e autoproduzioni domestiche (dieci anni fa qualcuno ne aveva contate più di quattrocento): "This is a great list of track choices! Finally, not the hits again, but hidden gem obscurities. I dig it lots...”.


06 settembre 2013

Rassegne e festival quest'anno han fatto un po' a gara ad ospitare concerti ed eventi collegati al sessantesimo compleanno di John Zorn - compiuti pochi giorni fa, precisamente il 2 settembre - e la serie di iniziative non è ancora esaurita: sono attesi tra l'altro concerti per organo, nuove maratone Masada, ampie retrospettive di composizioni cameristiche e orchestrali e di musiche per il cinema. Al sassofonista newyorkese rende omaggio questo mese la rivista francese Jazz Magazine/Jazzman, con uno speciale dossier di 32 pagine, mentre un'intervista concessa l'altro giorno a Fresh Air - per la National Public Radio - è in http://www.npr.org/2013/09/03/217195249/at-60-challenges-are-opportunities-for-john-zorn

John Zorn, a true New York icon and one of the city’s most influential musicians, turns sixty this September. A composer, performer, arranger, producer, improvisor, impresario, and MacArthur Fellow, Zorn has explored a vast and impressive spectrum of genres — including jazz, rock, hardcore punk, classical, klezmer, popular, and improvised, among many others — over the past four decades. His hometown celebrates with a festival of Zorn@60 performances exploring his epic oeuvre, from the summer through the fall of 2013. Well over 100 musicians, many of them Zorn’s longtime collaborators and all of them hand-selected by the composer, will participate in the performances. These concerts are part of a global celebration of the composer’s 60th that includes events throughout Europe, Asia, and the Americas.


05 settembre 2013

Si è tenuta a Deià (Maiorca) lo scorso 16 agosto, nel giorno del suo sessantanovesimo compleanno, la cerimonia di ultimo saluto a Kevin Ayers, con la partecipazione di amici e famigliari e con un festoso omaggio alle sue canzoni più celebri. Ne hanno dato notizia diversi giornali locali e alcuni siti web: "Família i amics pujaren cantant i ballant el "Singing a Song in the Morning", seguit del "We Did It Again", fins al cementiri de Deià per donar l'últim adéu a Kevin Ayers. La seva filla, Galen Champagne Ayers, anava al davant de la comitiva, descalça, amb un vestit de seda color xampany, mentre abraçava les cendres del músic, cobertes amb un petit sac també de seda, però vermella, com les dues roses que deixaria després damunt la làpida del pare. L'enterrament de Kevin Ayers, a una estreta terrassa que mira al poble i a la mar, on també descansen els seus amics, el músic i company de sempre Ollie Halsall, i el pintor Mati Klarwein, va ser un acte de celebració de l'amistat. Entre les paraules de Galen Ayers, de Diandra Douglas i, entre d'altres, del compositor John Altman, la veu de Bridget St. John, i la guitarra de Pere Colom, sonà el "May I?", l'educat "puc?", cançó memorable de Kevin Ayers. També se li dedicà un "Happy birthday", als 69 anys que ahir hagués celebrat el músic fundador de Soft Machine."


04 settembre 2013

Elton Dean, Paul Dunmall, Paul Rogers e Tony Bianco registrati in duo, trio e quartetto a Londra il 9 febbraio 2004: Remembrance, doppio cd per la lituana NoBusiness Records.


03 settembre 2013

Per la prima volta un album di Carla Bley viene pubblicato - e non soltanto distribuito - dalla ECM, con la produzione di Manfred Eicher: Trios, una selezione di classici registrati a Lugano lo scorso anno ad aprile, con Steve Swallow e Andy Sheppard.
Scrive S. Victor Aaron su Something Else! Reviews: "Carla Bley returns to her long running drum-less threesome featuring electric bassist Steve Swallow and tenor saxman Andy Sheppard with an album by this ensemble. Trios is the name, though there’s only this one trio performing the songs, all five numbers which Bley had written and recorded on prior albums. This small combo was last represented on record with 1995′s live album Songs With Legs. For the first time on a Carla Bley-led record, she’s recording under direction of a producer other than herself for this album, and that person is ECM head Manfred Eicher. Along with that, she is recording for the ECM label proper for the first time (her records from the WATT imprint are only distributed by ECM). Since this trio has been an ongoing entity for some twenty years, it’s doubtful that there was much left for Eicher to add in terms of arrangements, but he did choose which Bley songs to record and the running order of those songs, which did much to shape the character of Trios."



02 settembre 2013

Esce tra pochi giorni in cd l'importante nuovo lavoro di Kate e Mike Westbrook The Serpent Hit, ciclo narrativo e musicale ispirato ai temi del declino dell'umanità e della distruzione del pianeta, presentato in concerto già in un paio di occasioni - il debutto fu nell'aprile 2011 - e qui proposto in una registrazione di studio perfezionata poche settimane fa con l'aiuto e la supervisione di Jon Hiseman. Chris Parker ne illustra succintamente i contenuti per LondonJazz, commentando: "Beautifully illustrated by Kate’s cover painting and flawlessly and enthusiastically performed by a crack band, The Serpent Hit, despite its ostensibly grave subject matter, is – somewhat paradoxically – an inspiring and oddly uplifting listening experience. The Westbrooks have never been afraid to address the ‘big issues’ – their profound and deeply moving meditations on the Great War in the London Bridge, for instance, should surely form part of any self-respecting forthcoming public commemorations of that earth-shattering conflict – and The Serpent Hit, infectiously lively and immediately accessible as it is, constitutes another considerable artistic triumph for them".
L'album inaugura ufficialmente l'etichetta Westbrook Records: informazioni in dettaglio sono in www.westbrookjazz.co.uk/serpent/index.shtml.


01 settembre 2013

Con il concerto di stasera al Cafe Oto celebra il quindicesimo anno di attività la London Improvisers Orchestra: ai festeggiamenti prendono parte Alison Blunt, Henry Lowther, Caroline Kraabel, Ricardo Tejero, Terry Day, Dave Tucker, Noel Taylor, Rowland Sutherland, Steve Beresford, Harrison Smith, Ansuman Biswas, David Ryan, Nick Malcolm, Manuel Miethe, Cheng-Ying Chuang, Anna Kaluza, amici e ospiti vari. Auguri!

The London Improvisers Orchestra was born from the embers of Lawrence D. “Butch” Morris’s Contemporary Music Network tour in 1997, which featured musicians from London’s thriving improvising community in a group known as The London Skyscraper, using Morris’s ‘conduction’ techniques for large-scale improvising. Steve Beresford, Evan Parker and Ian Smith, who were part of the Skyscraper group, and later also Caroline Kraabel & Pat Thomas, who were not, discussed the possibility of continuing this approach to creative music-making, and of putting together an orchestra of improvisers that would gather regularly to work on various ideas for conducted improvising, but that would also differ from the Skyscraper group in trying to evolve and improve listening and playing skills for sustained and completely free improvisation by a really large group, something that has always been difficult and problematic, but that was felt to be very worthwhile.
For nine years, the London Improvisers Orchestra had a monthly residency on the first Sunday of every month (except January and sometimes December) at the legendary Red Rose Club in Finsbury Park; since the Red Rose closed, this residency continues at the Café Oto, Dalston (quarterly) and in other venues (for the remaining months). Each monthly event begins with a rehearsal covering conducted improvisations and exercises in free improvisation, and then continues as a public performance. Tonight's concert sees the fifteenth anniversary of the remarkable pool of London’s improvising musicians that is the London Improvisers Orchestra – coming from what Evan Parker rightly calls “the richest music scene in the world”.