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Jason Hwang Kao Critical Response (w/ Anders Nilsson / Michael T.A. Thompson):
Book of Stories (True Sound Recordings)

Five stories of electric jazz from composer and violinist Jason Kao Hwang, who leads his trio with electric guitarist Anders Nilsson and drummer Michael T.A. Thompson through journeys of melodically fueled and lyrically realized original compositions, each showcasing the band's virtuosic talent and tight communication, with an ear to sonic excitement. ... Click to View


Tyshawn Sorey Trio:
Mesmerism (Pi Recordings)

An alluring album of piano trio music from the NY trio led by drummer Tyshawn Sorey with Aaron Diehl on piano and Matt Brewer on bass, allowing the excitement of a first meeting between the players as they perform compositions from the American Songbook, and some songs that Sorey feels should be included in the Songbook; lyrical, sophisticated, virtuosic, beautiful. ... Click to View


Helene Breschand / Floy Krouchi / Zafer Tawil / Elliott Sharp:
disPOSSESSION (zOaR Records)

Expanding the collaboration between guitarist, saxophonist and electronic artist Elliott Sharp and electric & acoustic harpist Helene Breschand, in a quartet with Zafer Tawil performing on oud, violin & percussion and Floy Krouchi on electric bass, for an exotic, globe-embracing, groove-oriented album of unusual and often ecstatic acoustic and electric orchestration. ... Click to View


Rodrigues / Wassermann / Rodrigues:
L'Age De L'Oreille (Creative Sources)

Ute Wassermann adds a unique expressiveness to this Berlin studio session, bringing her impressive talents as a free improvising vocalist along with her bird calls and objects, providing an unusual yet extremely complementary foil to the intertwined strings of the father/son collaboration of violist Ernesto Rodrigues and cellist Guilherme Rodrigues; idiosyncratically wonderful! ... Click to View


Jean-Jacques Avenel / Siegfried Kessler / Daunik Lazro :
Ecstatic Jazz (Crypte Des Franciscains Beziers 12 Fevrier 1982) (Fou Records)

Referencing the collective NY Loft scene of the 1980's, the trio of Jean-Jacques Avenel on bass, Siegfried Kessler on piano, keys & ring modulator and Daunik Lazro on alto sax & tuba sax, are heard in a Béziers Jazz Action concert recorded in the crypt of a Franciscan theater, in two suites of collective improvisation, the 2nd adding unusual electronics from Kessler. ... Click to View


Vilhelm Bromander :
In This Forever Unfolding Moment (thanatosis produktion)

Drawing on ideas from the 60s and 70--Ornette Coleman, John and Alice Coltrane, Don Cherry, and Charlie Haden--bassist Vilhelm Bromander assembles an accomplished ensemble of Stockholm improvisers to perform three works of warmth and spiritual power, incorporating jazz, world and contemporary music in a stunning and rich album that exudes a wealth of experience and musical clarity. ... Click to View


Vilhelm Bromander :
In This Forever Unfolding Moment [VINYL] (thanatosis produktion)

Drawing on ideas from the 60s and 70--Ornette Coleman, John and Alice Coltrane, Don Cherry, and Charlie Haden--bassist Vilhelm Bromander assembles an accomplished ensemble of Stockholm improvisers to perform three works of warmth and spiritual power, incorporating jazz, world and contemporary music in a stunning and rich album that exudes a wealth of experience and musical clarity. ... Click to View


Michel Banabila :
Uprooted (Tapu Records)

Hand-numbered repress edition.
Composer Michel Banabila invited seven musicians to improvise individually, taking recordings from those sessions to create this beautifully structured set of electronic compositions, merging eBow, samplers, synth, guitar and electronics with cello, bass clarinet, viola, violin and double bass in works that display tranquility but hide deep tension below. ... Click to View


Leap Of Faith:
Transmutations (Evil Clown)

Leap of Faith (David Peck on reeds, winds & percussion and Glynis Lomo on cello & aquasonic) are joined by saxophonist Bonnie Kane, former Cecil Taylor bassist Albey onBass, John Loggia on drums, Joel Simches performing real time processing, and in his debut with the Boston collective, Chris Alford on guitar & signal processing, in a dynamic jazz-oriented extended set. ... Click to View


Lucas Niggli Sound of Serendipity Tentet:
Play! (Intakt)

Surprises abound with Lucas Niggli's approach to improvised composition, using 40 playing cards that his ten-piece ensemble interpret, drawing on inspired performers from improvised, experimental and contemporary classical music, their game performed over three rounds, allowing an incredibly diverse set of approaches to reveal themselves on each unique track. ... Click to View


Michael Formanek Quartet (Smith / Davis / Malaby):
As Things Do (Intakt)

Michael Formanek's compositions run a wide range of styles and approaches to creative modern jazz, from flowing lyrical melodies to tense agitation in rapid runs, all anchored by Formanek's powerful bass and rendered with his Elusion Quartet of Tony Malaby on tenor & soprano sax, Kris Davis on piano and Ches Smith on drums & vibes; inventive jazz that continuously surprises. ... Click to View


Kris Davis:
Diatom Ribbons Live At The Village Vanguard [2 CDs] (Pyroclastic Records)

Two nights at the famed Village Vanguard from pianist Kris Davis' quintet with Terri Lyne Carrington on drums, Val Jeanty on turntables & electronics, Julian Lage on electric guitar and Trevor Dunn on basses; a thoroughly modern electric jazz group performing Davis originals, with references to Eric Dolphy, Conlon Nancarrow, Olivier Messiaen, Paul Bley, Sun Ra and Karlheinz Stockhausen. ... Click to View


Joris Ruhl:
Feuilles (Umlaut Records)

Clarinetist Xavier Charles, accordionist Jonas Kocher and percussionist Toma Gouband join French improviser Joris Ruhl for this extended improvisation of multiphonics, textures and timbres, evolving from subtle harmonics into vast waves of sound, pausing to punctuate with pointillist interaction, then expanding into dramatic waves of sound before carefully fading away; sublime. ... Click to View


Rodrigues / Rodrigues / Torres / von Schlippenbach / Kellers:
Conundrum (Creative Sources)

Part of the 2022 trio tour of violinist Ernesto Rodrigues, cellist Guilherme Rodrigues and saxophonist Nuno Torres is this studio recording in Berlin with free jazz legendary pianist Alexander von Schlippenbach and drummer/percussionist Willi Kellers, each of the 9 improvisations named for mythical beasts, appropriate to the fearsome force of these five masterful players. ... Click to View


Rodrigues / Parrinha / McDonas / Flak / Oliveira:
The Fleeting Nature Of Time (Creative Sources)

Excellent pacing with introspective richness and detail through five improvisations, as US pianist Thollem McDonas joins Portuguese improvisers Ernesto Rodrigues on viola, Bruno Parrinha on alto clarinet, Flak on acoustic guitar and Jose Oliveira on percussion for this studio recording in Lisbon, each passage reflecting a word from the title; inspired and beautiful. ... Click to View


Madly You (Lazro / Zingaro / Leandre / Loves):
Madly You (Fou Records)

Reissuing the 2002 Potlatch release of this exceptional free improvising quartet of Daunik Lazro on alto & baritone saxophones, Carlos Alves "Zingaro" on violin, Joëlle Léandre on double bass and Paul Lovens on percussion & musical saw, some of the most notable of European improvisers captured live during the 2001 "Banlieues Bleues" Festival. ... Click to View


Jason Kahn:
All Along the Way [BOOK + CD] (Editions)

Swiss sound artist Jason Kahn chronicles his 37-solo concert tour through North America from the US to Canada, exploring the state of DIY experimental music scenes post-pandemic, including a CD of concert recordings in Portland and Chicago in 2022 using local radio and field recordings from each city, along with mod synths, tube amp, electromagnetic transducers and contact mics. ... Click to View


Turbulence Orchestra:
Find The Loophole (Evil Clown)

The extended horn section from the Boston collective Leap of Faith Orchestra is heard in this ensemble session with reeds and winds from David Peck and Michael Caglianone, and brass from Eric Dahlman, Bob Moores and John Fugarino on trumpets and Duane Reed on double bell euphonium, plus Jared Seabrook on drums and all members performing on the Evil Clown extended percussion arsenal. ... Click to View


Leap Of Faith:
The Energy Of Now (Evil Clown)

Reuniting drummer Sydney Smart with Leap of Faith, the core duet from the Leap of Faith Orchestra of cellist Glynis Lomon and reed, wind & percussionist David Peck, in a sextet configuration of the Boston collective band with Ellwood Epps on trumpet, Eric Zinman on keyboards, Joel Simches performing real-time signal processing, and Smart on a variety of exotic drums and gongs. ... Click to View


James Lewis Brandon / Red Lily Quintet:
For Mahalia, With Love [2 CDs] (Tao Forms)

Composer and tenor saxophonist James Brandon Lewis' exceptional Red Lily Quintet quintet (Kirk Knuffke on cornet; William Parker on bass; Chad Taylor on drums; Christopher Hoffman on cello) pays homage to gospel and jazz singer Mahalia Jackson through a suite of original Lewis compositions, reimagining some of Jackson's best known works; CD & LP issues include a bonus download track. ... Click to View


James Lewis Brandon / Red Lily Quintet:
For Mahalia, With Love [VINYL 2 LPs] (Tao Forms)

Composer and tenor saxophonist James Brandon Lewis' exceptional Red Lily Quintet quintet (Kirk Knuffke on cornet; William Parker on bass; Chad Taylor on drums; Christopher Hoffman on cello) pays homage to gospel and jazz singer Mahalia Jackson through a suite of original Lewis compositions, reimagining some of Jackson's best known works; CD & LP issues include a bonus download track. ... Click to View


Matthew Shipp Trio:
Circular Temple (ESP-Disk)

Originally released in 1992 on the US Quinton Records label, this trio album by New York improvisers, pianist Matthew Shipp (this being his first CD under his own name), bassist William Parker and drummer Whit Dickey, presents the four-part "Circular Temple" composed by Shipp, leveraging the language of jazz in remarkable ways, particularly the 2nd movement, "Monk's Nightmare". ... Click to View


Matthew Shipp Trio:
Circular Temple [VINYL] (ESP-Disk)

Originally released in 1992 on the US Quinton Records label, this trio album by New York improvisers, pianist Matthew Shipp (this being his first CD under his own name), bassist William Parker and drummer Whit Dickey, presents the four-part "Circular Temple" composed by Shipp, leveraging the language of jazz in remarkable ways, particularly the 2nd movement, "Monk's Nightmare". ... Click to View


Evan Parker / Matthew Wright Trance Map + Peter Evans / Mark Nauseef:
Etching the Ether (Intakt)

Evan Parker and Matthew Wright are the core of Trance Map, the soprano saxophonist and live electronics duo expanding on their original 2011 concept with Trance Map+, adding guest musicians to their unique approach to electroacoustic improvisation, here in an exceptional quartet configuration with Peter Evans on trumpet & piccolo trumpet, and Mark Nauseff on percussion. ... Click to View


Marie Kruttli:
Transparence (Intakt)

Swiss pianist, composer and producer Marie Kruttli, who splits her time between Switzerland and Berlin, steps away from her trio with bassist Lukas Traxel and drummer Jonathan Barber for a sophisticated solo album of original composition and improvisations, in thirteen succinct, emotional and introspectively elegant works. ... Click to View


Joe McPhee / Mette Rasmussen / Dennis Tyfus:
Oblique Strategies [VINYL] (Black Truffle)

An unrestrained album of free jazz, unorthodox electronic excursions and vocal irascibility as legendary tenor saxophonist Joe McPhee joins the Bazuinschal duo of alto saxophonist Mette Rasmussen and percussionist & electronic manipulator Dennis Tyfus (Ultra Eczema) for this singularly unusual 2018 concert at Het Bos, in Antwerp, Belgium; magnificently indescribable! ... Click to View


Hedvig Mollestad :
Weejuns [VINYL 2 LPs] (Rune Grammofon)

Teaming up with Norwegian keyboard player Ståle Storløkken of Elephant9 & Supersilent and drummer Ole Mofjell, guitarist Hedvig Mollestad Thomassen introduces her new trio with this double album of live recordings from three separate concerts in Oslo and Stavanger, Norway, in dynamic performances of blistering, building prog and jazz fusion-oriented rock forms. ... Click to View


Foussat / Parrenin / Rollet:
Haut-Coeur (Fou Records)

Emphasizing the electronic aspect of ea-improv, the trio of Jean-Marc Foussat on Synthi AKS, voice & toys, Emmanuelle Parrenin on hurdy-gurdy & voice and Quentin Rollet on alto and sopranino saxophones & small electronics, are heard in an immersive performance at Allumes du Jazz, in Le Mans, France in 2023, for a superb concert of unrestricted free improvisation. ... Click to View


Daunik Lazro / Carlos Zingaro / Sakis Papadimitriou / Jean Bolcato:
Periferia (Fou Records)

Reissuing the 1995 In Situ album of the sublime 1993 concert at Vandoeuvre-Les-Nancy in France from the free improvising quartet of Daunik Lazro on alto & baritone saxophones, Carlos Zingaro on acoustic and electroacoustic violins, Sakis Papadimitriou on piano and Jean Bolcato on double bass & voice, in a highly focused set of concentrative collective expression. ... Click to View


Joelle Leandre / Paul Lovens :
Off Course ! (Fou Records)

Bringing together two masterful and legendary players from the European Free Improv scene -- French double bassist and vocalist Joëlle Léandre and UK drummer & percussionist Paul Lovens -- heard in this live performance at Les Temps du Corps, in Paris, free playing in two parts with an incredible sense of communication, timing, humor, virtuosity and finesse. ... Click to View



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  Roger Doyle 
  The Ninth Set  
  (Die Stadt) 

   review by Darren Bergstein
  2008-05-07
Roger Doyle: The Ninth Set (Die Stadt)

UK composer Doyle has produced a small but unimpeachable body of work for well over three decades. "Classically" trained, he long ago shucked the world of formal composition and embarked on studying electronic and electroacoustic music applications, first at the famed Institute of Sonology, then later in Utrecht. His earliest acts of creation were as Operating Theatre, releasing a series of curious (and stellar) works for Steve Stapleton's (aka Nurse with Wound) United Dairies label. Some of those recordings have been recently unearthed and subsequently reissued - they are a handy primer to Doyle materiÚl Mk I; however, it is important to understand that his work since O.T. has revealed a mature composer who remains criminally under-recognized to this day.

The Ninth Set should change that situation, provided it gets out to the right folks, although one would have thought the previous 5-CD magnum opus Babel might have been responsible for that. Nevertheless, this new Doyle recording ranks as some of his finest yet, an over hour-long, five-part electronic/collagist "symphony" of sorts that incorporates daring sleights of (sampling) hand and an expert grasp of both analog and digital synthesis. The beginnings of parts one and four incorporate almost "traditional"-sounding, Teutonic synth dissonance (of the hoary Tangerine Dream variety), but Doyle isn't one to submit to laissez-faire models - such textures reside at the margins of perception, as Doyle upsets the surroundings with haunted-house creaks and groans, arching tremolos, brief gusts of noise. It is a simultaneously becalming and cathartic experience, though the proceedings often become far too busy fluctuating amongst a barrage of mysterious, ectoplasmic sounds to maintain balance (or keep the listener on an even keel).

If there is one certainty to Doyle's precise means of execution, it is that he confounds expectations along the journey - the hesitant, subtly beautiful expanses of the final, fifth piece reveal a pearlescent ambience suggestive of late 70s Eno-culations were it not for Doyle's persistent desire to hover between minimalist and maximalist states. Such eclecticism holds him in good stead, however, and posits The Ninth Set as an extremely poised and often powerful piece of work.





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