30 giugno 2014

Una riedizione in vinile del primo album dei Matching Mole dovrebbe essere pronta per la fine di agosto. Lo annuncia Burning Shed, aprendo le prenotazioni: "A limited 180g facsimile vinyl edition of Matching Mole's self-titled debut album re-mastered from the original CBS master tapes. A Canterbury supergroup formed in 1971, Matching Mole featured former Soft Machine drummer Robert Wyatt, former Caravan keyboard player Dave Sinclair, guitarist Phil Miller, and Quiet Sun bassist Bill McCormick. This 2014 Esoteric Recordings LP is a facsimile of the original 1972 vinyl release and includes an inner bag featuring an essay by Sid Smith."


29 giugno 2014

Tornano da domani in circolazione su vinile di alta qualità gli album di Syd Barrett The Madcap Laughs e Barrett, entrambi del 1970, e Opel (1988). Li (ri)produce l'etichetta Rhino.

With The Division Bell 20th anniversary box set, vinyl (and standalone DVD) grabbing headlines with its release around this weekend depending on where you are in the world, another set of releases that are due on Monday (June 30th) in the UK and Europe, are sure to be just as eagerly awaited by the vinyl junkies amongst you, and really shouldn't be overlooked - hence this reminder for you. On that day, Rhino are releasing Syd Barrett's The Madcap Laughs, Barrett, and Opel albums on heavyweight 180g vinyl. With the resurgence of interest and take-up of vinyl, these high quality new editions are sure to be popular.
For the Syd novices out there, The Madcap Laughs was his first solo album, released January 1970. Featuring a band including David Gilmour on various instruments, Jerry Shirley, Willie Wilson and Robert Wyatt, there are some very highly regarded tracks throughout the record. Barrett was to follow, in November of the same year. Again, David Gilmour performs on the album, as does Richard Wright. The songs on the album generally have a lighter tone than Madcap, but this was to be his second and final conventional album. Opel was released in October 1988, and was a collection of unreleased material and alternate takes from the Madcap and Barrett sessions.

28 giugno 2014

Chissà che per More Places Forever la terza volta non sia quella buona... Il missaggio del 1985 - che diede origine alla prima versione, su vinile - fu superficiale e distratto, il sorprendente remissaggio del 1996 - quello del cd incluso in Monster - risultò anch'esso frettoloso e incompleto, sebbene più vicino alle intenzioni originali. La nuova versione, targata aprile 2014, dovrebbe essere quella definitiva, ed è ora disponibile - solo come file audio - presso Hearpen: David Thomas con Lindsay Cooper, Tony Maimone e Chris Cutler.

This is the second revision of the original 1985 release. The original mix for vinyl release in 1985 suffered from lack of time and distractions. It was remixed at Suma in 1996 with the radical approach that David Thomas had originally planned for. A less than good post-production process, hurried again, caused Thomas to re-visit the various mixes in April 2014. All mixes were examined and, in some cases, edits were made or alternate mixes chosen. The audio was re-EQed by Paul Hamann and attention given to the post-production processing. This is the way it was supposed to sound. Lyrics are also available from the ubuprojex.com website.


27 giugno 2014

Speciale concerto di luna nuova questa sera in area Glade al Glastonbury Festival, con un'inedita versione di System 7 (Steve Hillage e Miquette Giraudy) estesa a membri di Gong (Dave Sturt e Ian East) e Magick Brothers (Graham Clark), a rimpiazzare l'esibizione dei Gong - con ospite Hillage, nel programma iniziale - annullata per la convalescenza post operatoria di Daevid Allen. 'Sending a wave of positive Glastonbury Love and healing vibes to Daevid.'

When Gong’s much-anticipated headline slot at The Glade stage on Friday 27th June had to be cancelled due to Daevid Allen’s health problems, Steve Hillage, who was to guest with Gong that night, was asked to step in with System 7. Due to the circumstances Steve wants to do something uniquely special - the obvious choice was to invite some of the current Gong musicians to guest with him and partner Miquette Giraudy.
Together they plan to incorporate a few well known Gong instrumental tracks into a rocking System 7 set and bring it all to a rousing climax of rock/techno fusion. Joining them will be current Gong members Dave Sturt (bass and ambient sounds) and Ian East (flute and sax) plus Magick Brother and long-time Daevid Allen collaborator Graham Clark (violin). So we aim to vibe up the ailing alien allen with the positive, energising vibration of music - with the System 7, demi-Gong, Magick Brother combi, which will mix and match in new, mysterious and powerful ways, raise the holy cheeses high and send their essence around the globe - always our intent - but now with added laser-like focus.


26 giugno 2014

Con Mental Shake giungono a quota dieci le autoproduzioni di Otoroku, emanazione discografica del Cafe Oto: ne sono titolari Peter Brötzmann, Jason Adasiewicz, John Edwards e Steve Noble, ripresi dal vivo a conclusione di un'infuocata residenza artistica presso il club londinese l'anno scorso verso ferragosto.

"The tenth Otoroku release sees a return to the group that kickstarted the label - the veteran German reedsman and free jazz pioneer Peter Brötzmann with the long-running London bass/drums partnership of John Edwards and Steve Noble. After the release of '…The Worse The Better' that group went on to play a series of devastating shows in Europe and to emerge as one of Brötzmann's finest working groups. Over the same period Peter was developing a deep rapport with Jason Adasiewicz, the upstart vibraphone player from Chicago. What seems on paper like an awkward pairing reveals itself on stage and on record as a symbiotic revelation. Adasiewicz's physical attack matching Brötzmann for impact whilst the extended sustain of the vibes opens up an eerie space for some of Brötzmann's most fertile lyricism. The recording is from the last set of a two-day residency at Cafe Oto that brought these two groups together for an astonishing quartet. Adasiewicz and Noble struck up an immense partnership in rhythm. Edwards wrestled with a broken house bass and failing amplifier and still managed new levels of invention - stoking the others onwards. Brötzmann was clearly energised - I swear I saw him dancing at the side of the stage whilst exchanging a shattered reed. And for all the usual rhetoric of free jazz bluster and machismo, this is a meeting characterised by the joy of communal creation that makes you want to dance - even if only in your head."


25 giugno 2014

Due nuovi titoli per la piccola e tenace etichetta londinese Fataka: About Trumpet and Saxophone, frutto dell'incontro tra Nate Wooley e Seymour Wright, e A Field Perpetually at the Edge of Disorder, con John Edwards, Mark Sanders e John Tilbury ripresi dal vivo al Cafe Oto a giugno dell'anno scorso. Brani in anteprima si ascoltano presso SoundCloud.


24 giugno 2014

Il festival Just Not Cricket! si tenne a Berlino dal 6 all'8 ottobre 2011 secondo un programma meticolosamente curato dal regista Antoine Prum, con protagonisti molti campioni storici e attuali della musica improvvisata britannica tra cui Steve Beresford, Gail Brand, Lol Coxhill, Rhodri Davies, John Edwards, Dominic Lash, Phil Minton, Eddie Prévost, Orphy Robinson, Mark Sanders, Alex Ward e Trevor Watts. Un corposo box di 4 lp - ancora disponibile tramite Bandcamp - ha già documentato le fasi salienti del festival; oggi debutta al London’s East End Film Festival il lungometraggio realizzato in quei giorni, con riprese dei concerti e conversazioni con i musicisti raccolte da Tony Bevan e Stewart Lee. Il titolo è Taking the Dog for a Walk.

The world premiere of Taking the Dog for a Walk is part of the London’s East End Film Festival 2014. A director’s cut of 128 minutes will be screened on this occasion. Many of the musicians who have participated in the film will attend.
After Sunny’s time now, his authoritative portrait of the American Free jazz drumming legend Sunny Murray, Luxembourg filmmaker Antoine Prum turns his attention to the British Free Improvised Music scene in this new feature-length music documentary. Branching out from a three-day festival in Berlin conceived and organised for the purpose of the film, Taking the Dog for a Walk maps the scene of British Improvisers, past and present. Following the leads of artistic advisor Tony Bevan, it retraces the road that leads from its emergence and emancipation from the various free music movements of the 1960s to the recent (albeit small) surge in popularity as talented new players and dynamic venues are coming to the fore.
While not trying to be exhaustive, the film talks to key players who have helped define and redefine an ever-changing musical idiom by taking on board new influences. In his search for the ‘Britishness’ of British Free Improvised Music, Prum and Bevan are assisted by stand-up comedian and bona fide Derek Bailey expert Stewart Lee, who converses with musicians from different generations and backgrounds to uncover the specifics of a genre that refutes the very notion of genre. Alternating with extended live music sequences, the conversations gravitate around the idiosyncrasies of improvisation, from playing in front of the proverbial ‘four men and a dog’ to pursuing a career in a milieu where success is not measured by mainstream criteria. Guided by its sense of humour, the film suggests that the relative confidentiality of free improvised music, rather than hampering its development, has ensured its continuing renewal.


23 giugno 2014

Prophetika e Saturnia: essenziali per collezionisti e appassionati di Sun Ra!!!

Prophetika Perfume's ancient formula invokes a mirage of memories and mysteries and incites a call to action. Hints of Cairo and Chicago -- and Casseopia!
Saturnia Perfume is created from the highest quality Neroli distillate of bitter orange blossoms. Native to the Far East and cultivated in Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia, this heavenly scent stimulates the brain waves and works well as an Afrodisiac. Note that Neroli was the seductive essence of Narcisse Noir, created in 1911, immortalized in Sunset Boulevard, and was, more importantly, singing brakeman Jimmie Rodgers' favorite fragrance. Neroli blossoms would transport Jimmie far from tuberculine huff and smokestack lightning. Now let the scent transport you out of the doom and into orbit as you ponder 'This Planet is doomed'. Saturnia was bottled during the Capricornus July full hay moon. This is the constellation that provides passage for the soul at death. Saturnia is truly... out of this world!


22 giugno 2014

E il mese scorso a Carla Bley ha conferito il dottorato onorario per meriti musicali il New England Conservatory di Boston (Stati Uniti). Se ne fa un vanto l'ECM, nel darne notizia: "New England Conservatory has bestowed honorary Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) degrees on distinguished musicians and scholars at its 143rd annual Commencement Exercises, Sunday, May 18 at 3 p.m. in NEC’s Jordan Hall. The recipients included jazz composer and bandleader Carla Bley and Estonian-born composer Arvo Pärt. Carla Bley’s notable recorded works include A Genuine Tong Funeral, written for Gary Burton, the jazz opera Escalator Over the Hill, Fleur Carnivore, The Carla Bley Big Band Goes to Church, Looking for America, and The Lost Chords amongst many others. One of the pioneers in the development of artist-owned record labels, she and her second husband Michael Mantler created WATT Records, for which she recorded many of her works and which has been distributed through ECM since the 1970s. In September 2013 Trios, her first album for ECM itself, produced by Manfred Eicher in Lugano, was released to critical and public acclaim. Bley has been honored with a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1972 and the German Jazz Trophy “A Life for Jazz” in 2009."


21 giugno 2014

Karen Mantler torna in gran stile all'XtraWATT con un album di grazia e umorismo sublimi: Business is Bad. Con lei Doug Wieselman e Kato Hideki, felici collaboratori e compagni in Plastic Spoon - peccato dal quale Karen ha dovuto però redimersi, per severo volere del Giudice Arnold - nonché componenti del Trio che prossimamente presenterà il lavoro dal vivo.

Karen Mantler is back, with a new collection of songs about the human condition and troubles large and small. Nonchalantly and disarmingly, Karen sings of homeless people in the park, the disappearance of friends, the frustrations of being monolingual, the challenge of improvisation, music with a mind of its own, and encounters with bill collectors, lawyers, snowstorms, and ash-spewing volcanoes. Through it all she sounds like a survivor, monitoring mishaps with deadpan humour.
Almost 20 years have passed since the recording of her last XtraWatt album, Farewell, which praised and buried Arnold, Mantler’s meanwhile legendary cat. Since then, Mantler has kept herself busy by the most diverse means. She was briefly a Virgin artist with her Pet Project recording of 1999, and has appeared on several albums with parents Michael Mantler (The School of Understanding) and Carla Bley (The Carla Bley Big Band Goes To Church, Looking for America, Appearing Nightly), been a member of the Golden Palominos, participated in diverse Robert Wyatt tribute bands (Wyatt responded by recording some of her tunes on Cuckooland), as well as hommages to Disney and Nino Rota. She has also played accordion on street corners, given harmonica lessons, and served coffee in SoHo.
The struggle to maintain her own projects has perhaps strengthened Karen’s idiosyncratic songwriting. The cast of Business is Bad is smaller than on her previous discs and, arguably, more effective. Her voice, and her distinctive chromatic harmonica and piano are foregrounded. Subtle and supple support in the realization of the pieces is provided throughout by Kato Hideki - who also co-produced the album - and Doug Wieselman.


20 giugno 2014

Sono in vendita da oggi i biglietti per lo specialissimo concerto che la sera del 21 novembre 2014 vedrà riunirsi a Londra, nell'ambito dell'annuale London Jazz Festival, quattro leggendarie formazioni per ricordare Lindsay Cooper ed eseguirne le musiche: Henry Cow, Music For Films, News From Babel e Oh Moscow. Un evento a dir poco irripetibile. O quasi. Accadrà di nuovo la sera seguente, al Contemporary Music Festival di Huddersfield, nel West Yorkshire.

To celebrate the life and work of Lindsay Cooper (1951-2013), four legendary bands are coming together from points halfway across the earth to perform Lindsay’s music at the Barbican as part of EFG London Jazz Festival. The concert will feature Henry Cow (1968-1978, who said they’d never re-form), Lindsay Cooper’s Music for Films (1982-1986, which does what it says on the label), News From Babel (1984-1986, who never performed live), and Oh Moscow (1987-1993, assembled to play the song-cycle of the same name). The confirmed lineup features Alfred Harth, Anne-Marie Roelofs, Chris Cutler, Dagmar Krause, Fred Frith, John Greaves, Michel Berckmans, Phil Minton, Sally Potter, Tim Hodgkinson, Veryan Weston and Zeena Parkins.
Lindsay Cooper, in common with most film composers, was poly-stylistic and no respecter of musical convention; less commonly, she also understood performance dynamics and the chemistry of bands. The concert, produced by Serious, offer a unique and never-to-be-repeated opportunity to hear some extraordinary repertoire, as well as to catch these four exceptional and now legendary bands.

19 giugno 2014

Prende il via domani l'undicesima edizione dell'Avantgarde Festival, speciale evento organizzato da Jean-Hervé Peron e la moglie Jeanne-Marie Varain presso la propria casa di campagna nell'area di Schiphorst, nel nord della Germania non lontano da Amburgo. Musicisti e artisti di diversa esperienza e provenienza si incontrano - e incontrano il pubblico - in modo amichevole e informale, dando vita a svariate attività musicali, artistiche e sociali oltre le convenzioni e le restrizioni spazio-temporali dei comuni appuntamenti festivalieri. Nel fitto programma delle tre giornate è suggerito anche un inedito incontro tra Mani Neumeier, Zappi Diermeier, Chris Cutler, Geoff Leigh, Yumi Hara Cawkwell e Jean-Hervé Peron che ruba (o presta?) il sottotitolo all'intero weekend: Jump for Joy!
Scrivono gli organizzatori: "With the celebration of the 10th Avantgarde Festival in 2013, we had achieved more than we had ever hoped for. Year on year things improved: more groups, better technical equipment, larger audiences, but yet retaining the intimate and homely atmosphere of Schiphorst. Now, forward into a new decade! The Avantgarde Festival offers an ideal platform for artists to express themselves: excellent technical conditions, efficient organization, yet a relaxed atmosphere... and above all an attentive, knowledgeable and open minded audience. The experiments and spontaneous collaborations of previous festivals remain most important to us. This year we shall again offer and expand these possibilities in our Annex - a large stage area within the festival site, which offers space for performances of all kinds, running independently to the main programme. Part of the special flavour of the Avantgarde Festival is our continuing policy of no artists’ backstage and all have the opportunity to relax and talk over dinner, at the bar or around the bonfire. Everybody here is a headliner, whether guest, crew member or artist; they all contribute to the success of the festival. "Three days of utopia" according to Chris Cutler. So, what does it mean to organize a festival which calls itself avantgarde and which claims to be utopian? For us, these are nothing but names, pseudonyms for an idea, for a path; for us it is more about an experimental approach to art, about the desire to create something new and to share it with others, a non-interest in the raging torrent of art-marketing. For us, it is simply dedication and uniqueness. This is how we want it and this is how our Utopia, our dream shall live again this year!".


18 giugno 2014

Un sunto dei concerti tenuti lo scorso autunno in Giappone da you me & us - Daevid Allen, Chris Cutler e Yumi Hara - è in un cd prodotto in proprio, distribuito ai concerti e su richiesta: Poesy at Play. Con lo zampino di Bob Drake.
Sull'esito - buono, grazie al cielo - dell'operazione che ha impedito a Daevid Allen di partecipare al nuovo giro di concerti poche settimane fa, così riferisce la stessa Yumi: "Great news from Gong's beloved Dingo Virgin/Bert Camembert otherwise known as Daevid Allen. The operation was a success and the surgeons particularly commendable for taking extra special care with the nerves and tendons vital to Daevid's ability to continue performing. Daevid sends a huge special thank-you to everyone who has been sending their love and their time concentrating on him and his health, it has made a huge difference!! Well done everyone! Still some big hurdles to overcome yet - but, PHEEEEEEW... Spread the news and let's keep that energy focused on seeing him happy, perfectly healthy and jumping around stage like a teenager again!".


17 giugno 2014

Tra i nomi di spicco in cartellone al Moers Festival quest'anno c'era anche Fred Frith, con la presentazione dal vivo delle musiche del suo celebre album Gravity. Il concerto è tra quelli ripresi da Arte Tv, trasmessi in diretta e ora disponibili in archivio sul web: si possono rivedere tra gli altri Marc Ribot "Protest Songs", Arto Lindsay in duo con Paal Nilssen-Love, Han Bennink con Oscar Jan Hoogland, Joey Baron con Robyn Schulkowski e l'euforica Sun Ra Arkestra.


16 giugno 2014

Trova un primo 'naturale' sbocco su vinile - ma i brani sono distribuiti anche in formato digitale via iTunes - il lavoro documentaristico di Alex Steyermark e Lavinia Jones Wright The 78 Project, sorta di viaggio etnomusicologico in varie aree urbane e rurali degli Stati Uniti intrapreso sull'esempio storico di Alan Lomax allo scopo di raccogliere esempi e testimonianze di forme musicali, canti, brani originali o della tradizione. Le registrazioni sono state effettuate nell'arco di tre anni nei luoghi più disparati in pubblico e in privato, sul campo e in presa diretta, catturando all'istante le performance dei vari interpreti e trasferendole immediatamente su disco usando un Presto degli anni Trenta. Tra i nomi presenti nel primo volume antologico ci sono Richard Thompson, Loudon Wainwright III, Marshall Crenshaw, Leah Siegel, Joe Henry e Dawn Landes. L'impresa ha avuto ampio rilievo sul web attraverso siti, blog dedicati e campagne di finanziamento, ed è ora confluita anche in un film dallo stesso titolo.

The 78 Project is a documentary and recording journey inspired by Alan Lomax and his quest to capture music where it lived throughout the early 20th century. Our project brings the spirit of his work into the present as we pair breakthrough musicians with the songs and the fascinating recording technology of the past. With just one microphone, one authentic 1930′s Presto direct-to-acetate disk recorder, and one blank lacquer disc, musicians are given one take to cut a record anywhere they choose. What we have found is that the film, music and feelings that result defy space and time, living music inspired by ghosts.


15 giugno 2014

Miles Mellough di Birds with Broken Wings traccia un ritratto di Stuart Moxham nella brevissima stagione di Young Marble Giants e The Gist all'esordio degli anni Ottanta, appena prima delle opere soliste: Lo-Fi King for a Day. In attesa del nuovo capitolo con Louis Philippe, ormai di imminente pubblicazione.

Amidst the din of the unrestrained punk rock that surrounded them back in 1979, the Cardiff, Wales, trio of coolly, detatched vocalist Alison Statton, songwriter-guitarist-organist Moxham, and his bass-playing brother Philip eschewed noise at all costs. With just an organ, guitar, and vocals, played over beats emanating from a crude, tiny nuts 'n' bolts drum machine that had been recorded on a cassette tape, Young Marble Giants unleashed a uniquely quiet, ever-so-subtle strain of lo-fi, post-punk pop. Moxham and his band mates stripped their sound down to the very bone - removing all the meat and leaving behind no fat whatsoever. Theirs was absolutely the most skeletal that could be achieved; no overdubs and no production values whatsoever save the occasional guitar reverb. The drum machine beats I mentioned were virtually identical to those they used in their live show (apparently the solitary cassette tape was the only source for drum sounds that they ever had, or needed). The trio recorded Colossal Youth over a period of five short days, and completed the mixing in a mere 20 minutes. Yet despite its austerity, the atmosphere contained in Colossal Youth remains unparalleled by any other recording made prior, or since. As writer, Ken Taylor has said of the the group and their sole LP, "Young Marble Giants secretively brought more darkness and angst into the record collections of British kids than any smack-addled punk band ever could. Alison Statton's disaffected voice so strangely belies the emotions that were written into Moxham's brokenhearted tunes. The band left us with years of stereo-side analysis, mystery, and miserable beauty with just that one record."


14 giugno 2014

E splendida l'opportunità di rivedere in azione, sempre la settimana scorsa a Fasano (Br), Keith & Julie Tippett: Couple in Spirit!


13 giugno 2014

12 giugno 2014

Voiceprint raccoglie in quattro cd in cofanetto digipak a tiratura limitata due documenti dei Soft Machine dal vivo già pubblicati qualche anno fa, Breda Reactor e Somewhere in Soho (questo poi uscito anche in vinile come Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club): Live in 1970, a Breda (Olanda) il 31 gennaio e a Londra (Regno Unito) dal 20 al 25 aprile, transitando da quintetto (Mike Ratledge, Elton Dean, Lyn Dobson, Hugh Hopper, Robert Wyatt) a quartetto (senza Dobson) alla vigilia delle registrazioni di Third. Ne ricorda la storia Brian Hopper, nelle note di copertina.


11 giugno 2014

Adele Schmidt e José Zegarra Holder di Zeitgeist Media annunciano di voler procedere entro fine anno alla realizzazione di un nuovo capitolo, il terzo, nella serie di documentari intitolata Romantic Warriors-A Progressive Music Saga. Al centro dell'attenzione sarà questa volta la cosiddetta 'scuola di Canterbury', con materiali d'archivio e contributi da parte dei principali protagonisti di quell'epoca - Wilde Flowers, Soft Machine, Caravan, Gong, Egg, Matching Mole, Hatfield and The North, Gilgamesh e National Health naturalmente, ma anche Quiet Sun, Supersister e The Muffins - oltre a numerose interviste raccolte ai giorni nostri. Una campagna di finanziamento dell'opera - dal titolo, forse provvisorio, Canterbury Tales - è in corso presso Indiegogo.

It is our pleasure to introduce to you our third film in the Romantic Warriors-A Progressive Saga series that will guide you through the amazing history, development of the Canterbury Scene and its influence on contemporary bands. The Canterbury Scene of the late 60s and early 70s marked a remarkable period in the history of British progressive rock music and, most notably, the development of jazz rock. A number of later bands that formed outside of Canterbury have been labeled as “Canterbury bands” (including a few in Europe and the US), some of these bands were founded by a member of Soft Machine or Caravan while others were obviously influenced by these Canterbury groups. The scene was a breeding ground for world class players of considerable harmonic sophistication who innovated and expanded the music of their time. Through interviews with "Canterbury Scene" musicians, clips of live performances, photographs, and current/archival footage, the film takes a closer look at the bands that are now considered a part of the Canterbury Family Tree.


10 giugno 2014

Su YouTube e Inconstant Sol è iniziata, con il consenso dell'autore, la diffusione delle opere di Paul Dunmall pubblicate in proprio a partire dagli anni Novanta con etichetta Duns Limited Editions e distribuite inizialmente in cd-r in poche decine di copie. Registrazioni di gran pregio che documentano l'evoluzione e l'incessante ispirazione del sassofonista e che lo ritraggono in contesti diversi, dall'ottetto al quintetto, dal trio al solo, alle prese con sassofoni - tra cui anche il saxello che fu di Elton Dean - flauti e cornamuse di vario tipo.
Di questa cospicua autoproduzione Steve Lake scrisse un gran bene, quando il catalogo constava di una ventina di titoli (giunti poi oltre quota settanta): "Once upon a time, it's said, record companies were able to keep pace with the inspirations of creative musicians. And whenever a Coltrane or a Miles or a Monk needed to document a new period, phase or idea, the microphones were there. An idyllic era in retrospect, it was a long time ago. Today, the relationship of the improviser to the music business is more distanced than ever. Sales plummet in the mainstream, the "death of jazz" is trumpeted once again in the trade press, the number of jazz musicians still courted by the majors dwindles by the week. Many fine musicians are reduced to paying their way onto one of the pseudo-independent labels that now define the "cockroach capitalisrn" of the alternative jazz marketplace. Small wonder that others throw up their hands and go it alone. Click on the European Free Improvisation Pages on the Internet for a glimpse of just how many. Yet the feeling persists in some quarters that self-made CDs are not "real" records – they won't be reviewed in the dailies, say, if they don't carry the imprimatur of a commercial label or have "proper" distribution. If the same criteria were applied to literary production, history would have been deprived of such self-published classics as Joyce's Ulysses, Twain's Huckleberry Finn, Whitman's Leaves of Grass, Lawrence's Women In Love, and the complete works of William Blake. For instance. I don't know how many Joyces or Whitmans there are in the world of improvisation but for sheer prolificacy and range and intensity, few contemporary artists in any idiom can hold a candle to Paul Dunmall. The South London-born saxophonist's resumé as a player takes in work with everybody from Johnny Guitar Watson to the London Jazz Composers Orchestra, from Alice Coltrane to Robin Williamson. He's one of the most open-minded, open-eared improvisers anywhere and that openness is reflected in Duns Limited Edition, arguably the most exciting home-grown label to have shot up in our new century."


09 giugno 2014

E' disponibile al sito web dei Westbrook il nuovo numero dello Smith's Academy Informer, con un resoconto delle molteplici attività svolte nel primo semestre 2014 e il calendario delle prossime iniziative. Oltre agli impegni estivi con la Big Band, in vari contesti e con differenti repertori, spicca il concerto del solo Mike - evento assai raro - questo fine settimana a Lille (Francia), in occasione del Lille Piano(s) Festival dedicato appunto al pianoforte e a compositori del periodo tra le due guerre mondiali. Non mancherà comunque di intervenire anche Kate, come ospite, con testi di Owen, Sassoon e Arcos tra gli altri.

La guerre n’a pas épargné les compositeurs qui se sont battus, ont été blessés ou sont morts au combat. La musique porte l’empreinte de ces temps di ciles, y réagissant par un surcroît d’énergie, de créativité. Alors que débutent les commémorations de la Première Guerre mondiale, le festival fait une large place aux compositeurs qui furent confrontés à cette guerre et à la Seconde. Autour de quelques gures emblématiques, celles de Paul Wittgenstein, qui perdit son bras droit sur le front russe et suscita la création d’un vaste répertoire qui lui permit de poursuivre sa carrière, d’Albéric Magnard, qui fut tué en défendant son manoir contre l’envahisseur, ou de Claude Debussy, qui vécut ses dernières années malade de la guerre et du cancer. Autre guerre, autres musiques, celles qui virent le jour au Camp de Terezin, ou les trois Sonates “de guerre” de Prokofiev .
Pour interpréter ces musiques liées à la guerre ou programmées pour d’autres raisons, plus de quarante pianistes, de tous âges, de tous horizons. Des concertos, des récitals, d’autres concerts destinés aux mélomanes en herbe et aux familles. Des concerts en images, d’autres aux formes plus originales encore, telle une “battle” pianistique paci que sur fond de jeu vidéo. Sans oublier quelques incursions hors du classique, concoctées avec Jazz en Nord ou Muzzix.

Le compositeur et pianiste Mike Westbrook et sa femme Kate, parolière et chanteuse, ont fêté en 2013 leurs 40 ans de travail commun. Ce couple anglais a développé un répertoire de créations originales, adaptant en musique des œuvres de la poésie européenne. À l'honneur ici les poètes de la Première Guerre mondiale comme Wilfred Owen, Siegfried Sassoon ou René Arcos, des improvisations sur des thèmes de Duke Ellington et Billy Strayhorn ainsi que sur des compositions de Mike Westbrook lui-même.


08 giugno 2014

E stasera, Keith & Julie Tippett: Couple in Spirit. "We never rehearse together or talk about what we're going to do. You're living on your nerve ends. It's like being in a dream and yet awake at the same time because you have to respond as well as to instigate, and your whole body is tuned to going for the magic."
A Fasano (Br), Teatro Sociale, alle ore 21.00.


07 giugno 2014

Nel cuore del programma di quest'anno del Fasano Jazz c'è il concerto dell'Artchipel Orchestra con ospiti illustrissimi - Keith & Julie Tippett e Phil Miller - le immagini di AU + Fabio Volpi e Rosarita Crisafi e le musiche di Fred Frith, National Health, Soft Machine, Keith Tippett e del leader Ferdinando Faraò.
A Fasano (Br), Teatro Kennedy, questa sera alle ore 21.00.


06 giugno 2014

Trasmesso dalla BBC Radio 4 nell'ottobre 2012, ma non più recuperabile negli archivi web dell'emittente, il programma di Alan Hall di Falling Tree The Voices of Robert Wyatt è riapparso presso SoundCloud: "Robert Wyatt has been recognised as a prog-rock drummer, jazz composer, avant-garde cornet player, artist and activist in a wheelchair. But, above all else, he has been known by one of the most instantly recognisable and distinctive voices of the last fifty years. Forever associated with Shipbuilding, Elvis Costello's song written in reaction to the Falklands War, Wyatt's voice and the causes he gives voice to are intricately entwined. This intimate radio portrait, in his own words, traces Wyatt's journey from the psychedelic excesses of Soft Machine (appearing both with Jimi Hendrix and at the BBC Proms), through the life-changing accident that has confined him to a wheelchair for almost forty years, to recent celebrated musical projects that are reaching new audiences."


05 giugno 2014

A proposito di Lol Coxhill, Canterbury Scores recupera traccia scritta del suo intervento - l'unico - nell'album di Kevin Ayers The Confessions of Dr Dream (1974), una breve evoluzione bluesy'n'boozy in It Begins with a Blessing (cioè Why Are We Sleeping), perfetta per l'occasione ("My head is a nightclub / With glasses and wine"...).


04 giugno 2014

Sub Rosa condensa nel doppio Mondo Black Chamber tutto ciò che David Toop ha prodotto per l'etichetta negli anni tra il 1996 e il 2003, brani sparsi e album interi: Boneless, Kolade Spirit, Tricyrtis Latifolia, 37th Floor at Sunset e Black Chamber, prezioso quest'ultimo anche per la presenza dell'indimenticabile Lol Coxhill.

Scrive Niels Van Tomme per Other Music: "The album Black Chamber, from 2003, occupies the majority of the second disc of this double CD of recordings made by David Toop for the renowned Sub Rosa label. A brooding, sensual, noirish sound spectacle, it pushes the idea of ambient music towards exciting new territories. Touching upon a multitude of avant-garde escapades, such as field recording, improvisation, exotica, sound collage, and noise, to only name the most immediately apparent ones, the record offers the culmination of Toop's multifaceted musical interests, which famously have their origins in the 1970s London improv scene. The album starts, rather misleadingly, with chirping, unpleasant high-frequency tones, after which a vaguely Japanese sound design and weirdly shuffling rhythm make room for Lol Coxhill's dark saxophone arpeggios. This bold, accomplished sense of musical deception remains fully realized throughout the record's brilliant, sometimes irritating but always amusing, 50-plus minutes, which offer a truly captivating, kaleidoscopic sense of musical adventure."

03 giugno 2014

Registrato dal vivo al Forte Fanfulla a Roma, Tell Me è il nuovo capitolo per Truth in the Abstract Blues ed esce su vinile in tiratura limitata, per Ethbo Music: Mike Cooper, Roberto Bellatalla, Fabrizio Spera lo presentano domani sera proprio al Fanfulla, prima che chiuda.


02 giugno 2014

I concerti di Offering dell'anno scorso al club Le Triton a Les Lilas (Francia) sono riassunti in un corposo documento audio e video ora pubblicato ufficialmente da Seventh Records: Concert Triton 2013.

In 1983, motivated by a strong artistic desire to return to his roots in the Coltrane sound, Christian Vander created the ensemble Offering, focused on vocals, keyboards and percussion. More experimental, leaving much more space for improvisation, this group allowed the musicians to explore new avenues. Thirty years have flown by, removing Offering from the sight and hearing of younger generations. Now they also can benefit from this wonderful gift that was Offering, Christian Vander and his musicians having decided to celebrate this anniversary by recreating the music with the same enthusiasm of the original. This initiative will delight all fans of the Magma experience, regardless of their age .


01 giugno 2014

Gioie e dolori del suo trentennale rapporto - da tempo interrotto - con la società francese che presidia i diritti d'autore, la Sacem, raccontati con l'ausilio delle illustrazioni di Plonk & Replonk: Mais monsieur Marcoeur, comment se fait-il que vous ne soyez pas venu nous voir plus tôt?!, di Albert Marcoeur.

C'est le titre d'un ouvrage relatant les aventures d'Albert Marcoeur à la Sacem de 1973 à 2002. Il est illustré par Plonk & Replonk, préfacé par Jean-Luc Porquet, comprend 104 pages, une trentaine d'images inédites, et est disponible dans 'toutes les librairies méritant cette appellation'. A bon entendeur, bon lecteur...