24 gennaio 2019

Jonas Mekas (1922-2019)

23 gennaio 2019

Per La musica tra le righe Paola De Angelis scopre The Rotters' Club di Jonathan Coe e ne trae (anche) qualche ascolto: Hatfield and the North, Gary Shearstone, Yes, Eric Clapton, Clash, Ralph Vaughan Williams e High Llamas. La puntata è quella di sabato scorso, ora conservata in podcast.


22 gennaio 2019

Se tanto aveva sorpreso tre anni fa con l'omaggio a Kevin Ayers, con quello a Phil Miller - diffuso oggi, che ne sarebbe il settantesimo compleanno - Billie Bottle quasi supera se stessa: Grazie Miller (No Aigrettes).

You really were high above the threshold of genius
Lounging there trying while digging in to Nan True’s hole
Part of the dance is gurning and learning to grapple with your square root:
A fleeting glance of dreaming wide awake
Out of the blue there’s a parallel mode; all that can be uncovered, recently discovered
Are you lything and gracing your god song tonight?
‘Cause the black cat it will sit down at the Inca delta borderline
Truly yours is no trick of the light, you glow
There’s a melody that Ed or Ian know
Underdub and you’ll blow
With your calyx above and your fretboard below


21 gennaio 2019

Doppio album celebrativo per i vent'anni di attività della London Improvisers Orchestra con una selezione dai concerti tenuti all'Iklectik tra il 2015 e il 2018: Twenty Years On, con gli scritti di Evan Parker e Caroline Kraabel.


20 gennaio 2019

Mark Wastell prende un testo ideato nel 1991 da John Stevens (1940-1994) dal titolo For Sake Of Joy Of Study Of Oneself Together e lo ripropone oggi in suo omaggio in un concerto organizzato negli spazi del London Review Bookshop in Bloomsbury assieme a Jennifer Allum, Steve Beresford e Stewart Lee.

"The origins of this piece date back to the 1st December 1991. I’d attended an all day concert at the Red Rose Theatre in Finsbury Park, London - a benefit gig for Terry Day - featuring dozens of musicians in various groupings throughout the afternoon and evening. One of those musicians was John Stevens. This was my first exposure to John and his music and the beginning of a fascination still very much part of my everyday. John performed three times that afternoon; with his Spontaneous Music Ensemble - comprising Nigel Coombes and Roger Smith later joined by Maggie Nicols and Phil Minton, in a trio with Larry Stabbins and Paul Rogers and in an unaccompanied role, reciting a text composed by himself. He gave no introduction or back story to the piece. It just existed as is. Gone in a few fleeting moments. A couple of years later I secured an audience recording of the concert made by Andy Isham. All of John’s activity that day was on the recording and through repeated listening over the following two decades, I became very attached to the spoken word piece. Earlier last year I finally got around to transcribing the text, hoping that one day I’d be able to include it in a project. Finally John’s inspirational words can be heard again and influence others the way they did me, as a young man, twenty seven years ago." (Mark Wastell)


19 gennaio 2019

Per il debutto in concerto del suo progetto Pakasteet con Jussi Lehtisalo il videoartista finlandese Mika Taanila ha chiesto rinforzi a Charles Hayward. Il risultato è Molten Salt, ripreso a Londra al Cafe Oto nell'ottobre 2017 e prodotto in LP da Ektro Records.


18 gennaio 2019

E ritorna anche Spiralling, formidabile exploit nel 1989 di Tim Hodgkinson, Mick Hobbs e Andy Wake con sigla The Momes. Lo recupera in vinile la catalana Guerssen Records in una sua sezione Mental Experience (!), allegando un grazioso bonus - un paio di brani su singolo anch'esso in vinile, non ignoti a chi già conosceva l'edizione in cd, più un inedito di grande interesse (Wall is Down) nella versione digitale - e un nuovo inserto con note e immagini: "They mix a kind of driving post-punk rock-lurch with beautiful lyrics, lovely Trout Mask guitar moments and plenty of twisted art-rock details", vi scrive Byron Coley.

The Momes fueron un efímero y curioso power–trio británico formado por Tim Hodgkinson (Henry Cow, The Work) a la guitarra laptop electrificada–noise / teclados, Mick Hobbs (Family Fodder, The Work, Officer!) en el bajo y Andy Wake (Unrest, Work & Play) a la batería. Poseían un abrasador pero al mismo tiempo melódico sonido que mezclaba de forma única post–punk, psych–prog y avant–rock. Spiralling fue su único álbum, grabado en los estudios Cold Storage de This Heat con el propio Charles Bullen (This Heat, Lifetones) como ingeniero de sonido. Se editó en 1989 – envuelto en una curiosa portada con guiño a los Beatles – en el sello Woof, creado por Tim Hodgkinson y Bill Gilonis. Por primera vez reeditada esta pequeña joya injustamente olvidada, incluye un single de 7" con dos fantásticos bonus tracks extraídos de las sesiones de grabación del disco, hasta ahora solo disponibles en CD. Cupón de descarga digital con el álbum más los bonus tracks, incluyendo además otro bonus track excusivo nunca editado hasta ahora.


17 gennaio 2019

Ritorna Step Across The Border con un doppio appuntamento questa sera al Babylon a Berlino: la proiezione integrale della celebre pellicola di Nicolas Humbert e Werner Penzel (1990), preceduta da un concerto in cui Fred Frith dialogherà dal vivo con un collage sonoro tratto dal film e realizzato ad hoc dallo stesso Humbert con Marc Parisotto. Cut Up The Border!

Dieser Film hat Musikgeschichte geschrieben: Step Across the Border begeisterte 1990 eine ganze Generation für die improvisierte Musik. Zwei Jahre begleiteten die Filmemacher Nicolas Humbert und Werner Penzel Musiker wie Fred Frith, Tom Cora, John Zorn und Iva Bittová durch die Welt, filmten bei Konzerten, Proben, in Hotelzimmern und unter freiem Himmel. Dabei improvisierten sie genauso virtuos wie die Musiker.
Nur ein Bruchteil der Tonaufnahmen ist tatsächlich in den Film eingeflossen. Die Magnetbänder mit dem Rohmaterial lagerten in einer Blechkiste und entgingen nur knapp der Zerstörung durch einen Wasserschaden. 30 Jahre später hat sich Nicolas Humbert erneut an die Aufnahmen gewagt: für den Bayerischen Rundfunk und für Deutschlandfunk Kultur hat er aus diesem Material gemeinsam mit dem französischen Klangkünstler Marc Parisotto ein neues Hörstück komponiert. Beim Konzert im Babylon improvisiert der Gitarrist Fred Frith live auf diese Echos aus seiner Vergangenheit.


16 gennaio 2019

E dal suo studio in Occitania Bob Drake manda un cauto avvertimento ai visitatori dell'Anglia Orientale, basandosi su resoconti recenti di fidati testimoni oculari: Phantom Hounds of East Anglia.


15 gennaio 2019

Una prova solitaria ripresa in studio in tempo reale e senza particolari ritocchi o abbellimenti: la offre Geoff Leigh via Bandcamp con il titolo Sleeping for England. Buono anche per i Brexiters.


14 gennaio 2019

Walter Robotka di Klanggalerie è stato ospite il mese scorso di Moacrealsloa della belga Radio Panik, con intervista e proposte di ascolto tra cui Renaldo and The Loaf (con estratti dal concerto viennese da lui prodotto lo scorso giugno), Nurse With Wound, Sprung Aus Den Wolke, Snakefinger, Déficit Des Années Antérieures, Konstruktivists. Tra le principali uscite della sua etichetta annunciate per il nuovo anno ci sono titoli vecchi e nuovi per Residents, Un Drame Musical Instantané, Gordon Whitlow (uno di Mnemonists e Biota), The Darkening Scale, Étant Donnés, Ted Milton, Blaine Reininger, l'ultimo commosso saluto di Hardy Fox, un esclusivo omaggio al Commercial Album dei Residents con sole versioni a cappella...


13 gennaio 2019

(Joseph Jarman, 1937-2019)

12 gennaio 2019

Jonathan Coe rinviene con sorpresa un proprio brano nel cuore di una speciale sequenza dedicatagli dal programma francese Shake'n'Pop nel primo episodio del nuovo anno: è Kaleidoscope of Rainclouds (da Unnecessary Music, 2015), posto in tutta naturalezza tra High Llamas e Louis Philippe, un paio di estratti dagli album Beet, Maize & Corn e My Favourite Part Of You cui Coe ha collaborato o da cui ha tratto ispirazione.


11 gennaio 2019

Phil Howitt di Facelift racconta in minuto dettaglio lo svolgimento del concerto pomeridiano di domenica scorsa dedicato a Phil Miller. Comincia così: "This January would have seen the 70th birthday of Phil Miller, who sadly died in October 2017. Since Phil’s death his widow Herm, her son Kyle and fellow guitarist Doug Boyle have connected very personally with Phil’s many fans through the Phil Miller legacy website, which has developed as a truly altruistic project – with a genuine desire to reunite Phil’s fans with his music through a myriad of freely available official and unofficial releases – a true legacy from Herm to us all. But whilst a collection of musicians assembled at his funeral, and performed an impromptu series of Phil’s pieces at his wake, there had been rumblings for some of something more formal: a commemorative concert taking place in London as a memorial to his musical footprint. News emerged in the autumn of musicians from Phil’s immediate and distant path coming together to perform pieces from his songwriting repertoire, be it Delivery, Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, National Health, Short Wave and a considerable body of solo work with and without his own band In Cahoots.The genuine warmth towards Phil as a person felt by his fellow musicians, as well as a recognition of his wonderful talents as a guitarist and composer had all led to this major undertaking, with no less than 21 musicians appearing, stretching from the final Relatives and In Cahoots collaborations all the way back to surviving members of Delivery, assembled to give tribute to Phil’s extensive body of work."

Ne scrive anche Jonathan Coe, riportando le parole del ritrovato Benjamin Trotter in Middle England: "In my novel Middle England, the main character Benjamin Trotter, a Canterbury music fan, explains to an interviewer how Phil Miller’s methods inspired his own practice as a writer: he loves the fact that “there was this combination of freshness – originality – complete rethinking of form – while the music was very easy to listen to, it really invited the listener in”. The pieces performed on Sunday night demonstrated this: never more so than in Miller’s masterpiece Above and Below from the early 1980s. It begins with a marching rhythm over which another of his epic, seemingly never-ending melodies unrolls, but just as it appears to have reached its climax, eerie guitar chords announce a gentle middle section which creates space for a lyrical guitar solo in 5/4. (For these musicians, improvisation in 5/4 is as simple as playing If You’re Happy and You Know It Clap Your Hands.) The contrast is exquisitely judged."

Herm Mew, vedova di Phil, ringrazia e rilancia: "There was hardly room to breathe but that didn’t stop the cheering! All the musicians played magnificently and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all 21 of them from the bottom of my heart. It was a stunning performance all round and enthusiastically received by the audience. We have had a bagful of enthusiastic emails from musicians and audience members alike. It was a night I shall never forget. We filmed and recorded the entire event and will eventually post a good selection of pieces up on this site. It will take some time to edit the footage and mix the recording and I will only be posting numbers one at a time as they are finished and approved by all concerned. We would love to hear from anyone who was there and would love to post your photos and comments on this site, so please send them in."


10 gennaio 2019

Per Moonjune Records l'anno appena concluso è stato produttivo e assai movimentato, come già preannunciava Leonardo Pavkovic nell'intervista concessa qualche mese fa a Chris M. Slawecki di All About Jazz. Una sintesi è presso Bandcamp con brani tratti dalle nove principali pubblicazioni del 2018, e tra queste l'album Hidden Details, che tra le altre cose ha ripristinato la storica denominazione Soft Machine.


09 gennaio 2019

Un sunto delle pubblicazioni Cuneiform del 2018 - riprese a primavera, fortunatamente smentendo la sospensione annunciata a inizio anno - è gentilmente offerto tramite Bandcamp, con brani di Thumbscrew, Forgas Band Phenomena, Steve Tibbetts, Far Corner, Curlew e Alec K. Redfearn: https://cuneiformrecords.bandcamp.com/album/cuneiform-records-the-albums-of-2018

08 gennaio 2019

Con un bel balzo in avanti rispetto a una versione prodotta nel 2007 - tutta boschi, pietre e Anne-Sophie - Jérôme Lefdup torna a prendere ispirazione da Robert Wyatt rivolgendosi a Maryan, da Shleep (1997), con l'immortale melodia ideata da Philip Catherine (Nairam, 1976). Stavolta tripudio ed esultanza di fiori e orchidee, anche a 360 gradi.


07 gennaio 2019

Già in passato si era cimentato con Velvet Underground, Robyn Hitchcock, Syd Barrett, Brian Eno e Soft Machine. Per questo Natale Bruce Nelson ha pensato a Robert Wyatt, prendendo per la coda Little Red Riding Hood Hit The Road e trascinandola attraverso foto e filmati d'epoca fino a Memories of You. Grazie anche a Walt Disney, Buster Keaton, Karina Gazivova e ovviamente Robert e Alfie.


06 gennaio 2019

Si tengono oggi a Londra al Vortex Jazz Club - luogo a lui caro - i due concerti in memoria del compianto Phil Miller (1949-2017), che proprio tra pochi giorni avrebbe festeggiato i settant'anni: A Life In Music.


Vortex Jazz Club
11 Gillett Square
London, N16 8AZ
T: 020 7254 4097
E: info@vortexjazz.co.uk

05 gennaio 2019

Esce per Good Child Music, come il precedente Three Harps, Tuning Forks & Electronics, l'album di Zeena Parkins che presenta il progetto iniziato tre anni fa nell'isola di Captiva nell'area del Golfo del Messico assieme alla coreografa Jennifer Monson: Captiva.

Così descrive il lavoro la danzatrice: "Zeena and I created a process of tracing photographs of tide lines along the beach to generate rhythmic patterns. We used these rhythms to develop 5 short pieces. We decided on a limited palette, designating particular rhythms/sounds/movements/spatial states as our focus. Zeena uses every part of the harp to give the music specific and unorthodox pitches and tones and often adds objects to prepare the harps or to activate the strings. She is highly gestural: whether sitting/standing, moving around the harp or playing it from behind. She also created a drum machine utilizing lowed pitched sine waves generated from an oscillator. The tide tracing rhythms were generated in the computer and played back through a speaker placed under the drum head, that excited the snare drum to ‘play itself ’. The dancer pares movement down to work inside of the rhythms with particular body parts as well as internal and external arrival points in the body. This is juxtaposed with sensed improvisational states. These compositions are never performed exactly the same way twice but have distinct and recognizable characteristics (harmonically/texturally/gesturally) and in that way, movement and music components juxtapose/co-exist/fit together like a puzzle."


04 gennaio 2019

Nel 2019 compiono entrambi cinquant'anni di attività l'etichetta Ecm e l'Art Ensemble of Chicago. E di questi, parecchi trascorsi insieme. Per festeggiare c'è un libro commemorativo di trecento pagine con una collezione di ventuno cd: The Art Ensemble of Chicago and Associated Ensembles.

The Art Ensemble of Chicago and Associated Ensembles is a 21-CD limited and numbered edition issued as the standard-bearers of Great Black Music prepare to celebrate their 50th anniversary. Both the Art Ensemble of Chicago and ECM Records were founded in 1969, and there have been many shared experiences. As Roscoe Mitchell says, “It has been amazing to have taken this journey together.”
With their first ECM album, the widely-acclaimed Nice Guys, the Art Ensemble’s revolutionary and polystylistic “ancient to the future” mix of musics - from the deeply spiritual to the fiercely experimental - was illuminated in new detail in Manfred Eicher’s panoramic production, and the stage set for many adventures to follow. These included the albums Full Force, Urban Bushmen, and The Third Decade with the classic AEC quintet line up of Roscoe Mitchell, Joseph Jarman, Lester Bowie, Malachi Favors Maghostut and Famoudou Don Moye. All of Bowie’s and Mitchell’s subsequent ECM recordings are also gathered together here. Charismatic trumpeter Lester Bowie is heard here with his Brass Fantasy group, with Wadada Leo Smith and with Jack DeJohnette. Multi-reed master and primary AEC conceptualist Roscoe Mitchell appears with his Note Factory band, with the Transatlantic Art Ensemble co-founded with Evan Parker, and with an historic trios project recorded at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art. Along the way, numerous distinguished creative musicians make appearances – the long list includes Muhal Richard Abrams, Henry Threadgill, Craig Taborn, Vijay Iyer, Matthew Shipp, Tyshawn Sorey, Fontella Bass, Charlie Haden, Kenny Wheeler, Corey Wilkes, Gerald Cleaver, Phillip Wilson, George Lewis, William Parker, John Abercrombie, Eddie Gomez, and many others, in ECM recordings made between 1978 and 2015.
This beautifully-designed box set incorporates a 300-page book reprising all original album covers, liner notes and poetry (by Joseph Jarman), as well as quotes from Art Ensemble members and the press, new texts by Craig Taborn, Vijay Iyer and George Lewis, a preface by Manfred Eicher, and an introduction by Steve Lake. Plus: many photographs (some previously unpublished), archival documents, and more.


03 gennaio 2019

Un lungo saluto al 2018 anche per Eddie Prévost, con tre album prodotti dal vivo a Londra all'Iklectik e al Cafe Oto: Visionary Fantasies (con John Butcher), Darkened, Yet Shone (con N.O. Moore e John Edwards) e The Whole Moon Rests In A Dewdrop On The Grass (con Ken Ikeda).


02 gennaio 2019

Due uscite contemporanee per Ni Vu Ni Connu per festeggiare il settantacinquesimo compleanno di Sven-Åke Johansson e congedare il 2018: grau​-​grün​-​welk​-​satt (Johansson da solo, in studio) e puls​-​plus​-​puls (in duo con Jan Jelinek, dal vivo).

Right in time for Johansson’s 75th anniversary, Ni-Vu-Ni-Connu releases two new records in December. puls plus puls is a duo concert with Jan Jelinek (electronics) recorded during the Syn/cussion Festival at Radialsystem in Berlin in 2017. grau-grün-welk-satt is a solo set recorded at SÅJ Studio in Berlin in 2017 that reconnects with Johansson’s seminal first solo record Schlingerland. Diedrich Diederichsen has written the liner notes for both albums.


01 gennaio 2019

Capodanno audace all'Isola dei Lupi, seguendo la vertiginosa ascesa chissà dove di Zampa Grigia...