Cuneiform Artist News: Part II

More Cuneiform news:

Far Corner News Spring 2005
Far Corner is busy composing music for the next CD. Most of the music is finished & recording will begin as soon as CD #1 goes GOLD. The ensemble is also working hard scheduling performances for Spring-Fall, including a possible October ‘05 performance at Orion Studios in Baltimore. See the TOURS page for updates. The new CD has received rave reviews & has been included on several “Best of 2004” lists.

Dan & Angela were recently interviewed for the NUCLEUS Web site. The interview can be viewed at nucleusprog.com. Far Corner performed live on the Planet Prog radio show on November 7,2004. All shows are archived on the WMSE Web site for listening. Go to http://claim.to/planprog.html & follow the links to listen to never-heard-before Far Corner music. The group launched a new & improved Web site in January. Please visit http://www.far-corner.com for more news, info & all kinds of colorful pictures.

William Kopecky has been nominated for Best Bassist of 2005 by the WAMI (Wisconsin Area Music Industry) association. This is his 4th consecutive year being nominated. He won the award in 2004. Parallel Mind, another instrumental prog band he plays with will have their debut CD Colossus ADEA released in April by Unicorn Records (Canada). For song samples, go to http://www.parallelmind.com. William’s finished recording bass & sitar tracks for the next Flyin’ Ryan Brothers CD, to be released this Summer. He’ll also be recording with The Flyin’ Ryan Bros on a CD tribute to Wishbone Ash, who personally requested an appearance by The FRB. William now has his own Web site: http://www.williamkopecky.com.

Keyboardist/composer Dan Maske saw the world premiere of his chamber work And None Leads Out scored for flute, violin, bassoon, piano and tenor voice in December by L’Ensemble Portique. He has been busy gathering ideas for new Far Corner music, as well as stalking various species of wildlife with his camera.

Cellist Angela Schmidt hosted a Far Corner concert in January at Lake Mills High School where she directs the orchestra. Angela is also performing with the Watertown Chamber Orchestra this winter. She continues to bug Dan for more Far Corner music to satisfy her appetite for being a heavy metal cellist.

Craig Walkner has been busy teaching & rehearsing, as well as preparing for a relocation to Chicago in April. He will continue to perform & record with Far Corner while expanding his musical horizons in the Windy City.
http://www.far-corner.com http://www.danmaske.com

FAST ‘N BULBOUS: the CAPTAIN BEEFHEART PROJECT
featuring GARY LUCAS, arranged and conducted by PHILLIP JOHNSTON
Pork Chop Blue Around The Rind the new release by Fast ‘N’ Bulbous on Cuneiform Records has been finding a warm reception with both long-time Captain Beefheart fans and new listeners alike.

Some excerpts from early reviews:

“…Fast ‘N’ Bulbous … are the big brass band [Captain Beefheart] never had. With bellowing horns arranged by saxophonist Phillip Johnston and pinpoint swordplay by ex-Magic Band guitarist Gary Lucas, Fast ‘N’ Bulbous ignite the R&B gunpowder inside the tangled surrealism of Suction Prints and Pachuco Cadaver. The group attacks Van Vliet’s songs with the same idiosyncratic precision that he drilled into his own musicians. Fast ‘N’ Bulbous also reveal a vital truth about this music: You can dance to it,”
David Fricke, The Rolling Stone.

“The musicianship is top-notch. Kandy Korn, reconceived as a New Orleans march and then a round, climaxes with lengthy, cascading ensemble passages that must have been a bitch for the horns to finger (just whistling along is tough, since there are no obvious rests). Yet you never get the feeling Johnston set out to ‘improve’ Beefheart, all of whose edges are left jagged,”
Francis Davis, The Village Voice.

“The band rip into tracks from Trout Mask Replica with glee, transforming Pachuco Cadaver and Sugar ‘N Spikes into raucous freewheeling celebrations of Beefheart’s feral genius,”
Mike Barnes, Mojo

“ … a very joyous and highly entertaining record,” Jochem van Dijk, All About Jazz

Fast ‘N’ Bulbous will be performing at the 2005 Jazz em Agosto Festival in Lisbon, Portugal on August 13, 2005. Recent performances include the 2004 Frankfurt Jazz Festival.

Here are some updates on the individual activities of the members of Fast ‘N’ Bulbous:

Gary Lucas (guitar): New CD by Gary Lucas and Dutch lute master Jozef Van Wissem The Universe of Absence (BVHAAST). Upcoming include appearances with his trio, Gods & Monsters, with Czech underground legends The Plastic People, and solo & duo gigs. http://www.garylucas.com

Phillip Johnston (alto sax, arranger): Writing music for the Bell Shakespeare Company’s Wars of the Roses in Sydney. Touring Europe in June with his original score for F.W.Murnau’s silent film masterpiece “Faust” (1927) with Guy Klucevsek, Tomas Ulrich & Elizabeth Farnum. http://www.phillipjohnston.com

Jesse Krakow (bass): New CD Sarcast While (Tzadik) by Time of Orchids featuring vocalist Julee Cruise (“Twin Peaks”). New CD Motel by PAK (RA Sounds). Featuring Ron Anderson, Keith Abrams, Carla Kihistedt (from Sleepytime Gorilla Museum) and Tim Byrnes (Friendly Bears). http://www.jessekrakow.com

Rob Henke (trumpet): Rob Henke and the Washington Street Players newly released CD, Footnotes on the Twin Rivers label. Composing for and playing with the Spirit of Life Ensemble. New CD, A Little Oasis. Writing with and playing for Leese Walker’s Strike Anywhere theater company.

Joe Fiedler (trombone): new CD as a leader Joe Fiedler Plays the Music of Albert Mangelsdorff (Clean Feed) http://www.joefiedler.com

Dave Sewelson (baritone sax): Sewelson is currently working with The Daves and Sewelsonics. There are other rumours. http://www.sewelsonics.com.

Forever Einstein’s Spring News 2005
The biggest news from the Forever Einstein camp is the release of the b&’s fifth CD, Racket Science. This is the first CD to feature the b&’s new bassist, Keven Gerety, who joined the group shortly before they played the Prog Day Festival in 2003.

Drummer John Roulat built a new studio & engineered, mixed & edited the CD. “John is amazing inasmuch as he actually reads owner’s manuals,” guitarist Charles O’Meara says. “He got all these owner’s manuals for the new studio gear & read every single one cover to cover three or four times. He’s become a great engineer & editor.”

The album combines aspects of early albums as well as later ones, with some very short tunes reminiscent of the early Einstein CDs and some longer ones that recall the third & fourth albums. The cover was designed and photographed by Charles O’Meara, who, in another lifetime, studied art & photography at the School of Visual Arts, New York City.

Forever Einstein is currently starting work on its sixth CD with no release date or working title scheduled.

Elsewhere, O’Meara has teamed up with long-time friend and Dr. Nerve guitarist/composer Nick Didkovsky to create the Web site http://www.aphorismoftheday.com The Web site features odd aphorisms that may or may not be real, may or may not be thought provoking and may or may not be useful to you. The aphorisms change daily. Bookmark it!

Finally, Forever Einstein will be offering merchandise to buy via its Web site any day now. Please check it out at http://www.forevereinstein.com if you want to sport artwork & slogans by the b& on your coffee mug, t-shirt or underwear!