AMN Reviews: Three Gold Lion Cassette Releases (2015; Gold Lion Arts)

10996813_10205802210244822_7371136515264064038_nGold Lion Arts, a music space and studio in Sacramento, California, is releasing three cassette-only recordings made in house.  Featuring some of the most noted central and southern California improvisers, each of these recordings are very limited, and not scheduled for digital release.

Amy Reed – Solo Guitar (2015; Gold Lion Arts)

Recorded in the summer of 2014, Solo Guitar is a mere 13 minutes of Ms. Reed scraping, strumming, and rubbing strings. She makes use of extended techniques, found objects in particular, to evoke alternating brightness and darkness. Often, her style results in two related voices simultaneously jangling, or one sustained while the other speaks. Her tone is usually clean, but she turns up the distortion toward the end of this single track for a more aggressive, yet still thoughtful, finale.

Vinny Golia – Solo at Gold Lion Arts (2015; Gold Lion Arts)

Vinny Golia needs no introduction. On this two-track, 30-minute recording, he plays reeds, flutes, and singing bowls.  Golia begins with the latter, eliciting an otherworldly feel.  He lays down angular lines, rapid trills, and slow-morphing held notes. The combination of clean playing with distorted tones is a juxtaposition that benefits both approaches.

Ross Hammond and Catherine Sikora – Perfect Plasticity (2015; Gold Lion Arts)

Perfect Plasticity features guitarist Hammond with frequent collaborator Catherine Sikora on sax.  This duo trades off between solos accompanied by drones, and dueling leads, across four tracks.  Sikora is known in the experimental community as a player of great creativity, while Hammond seems comfortable in a variety of settings, from guitar-driven fusion to more left-of-center work. Often, Sikora is the dominant voice, improvising clean lines while Hammond strums or picks in the background. Thus, rather than a free-form blowout, Hammond and Sikora take a more subtle approach.  A whole new texture is evoked when Hammond switches over to acoustic guitar on the third track. The longest recording of these three, it is perhaps the best place to start.

Chicago Scene: March 7 – 21, 2015

English: Kent Kessler, moers festival 2010
Kent Kessler

This is a weekly overview live avant performances in the Chicago area.  Contact us if you’d like your shows listed.

Saturday, March 7th 2015

8:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western (Free)
Steve Lehman, Cory Smythe

Sunday, March 8th 2015

9:00PM at The Owl, 2521 N Milwaukee, 773.235.5300
Dave Rempis, Joshua Abrams, Avreeayl Ra

Monday, March 9th 2015

9:00PM at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W Belmont, 773.281.4444 (wheelchair-accessible)
Extraordinary Popular Delusions : Jim Baker, Mars Williams, Brian Sandstrom, Steve Hunt

Tuesday, March 10th 2015

9:00PM at The Whistler, 2421 N Milwaukee (wheelchair-accessible)
Michael Zerang and The Blue Lights, with Mars Williams, Dave Rempis, Josh Berman, Kent Kessler

Wednesday, March 11th 2015

8:30PM at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W Belmont, 773.281.4444 (wheelchair-accessible)
Splice Series
Peter Maunu, Albert Wildeman, Reid Karris, Danny Van Duerm

9:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western (Free)
Hanami Quartet : Andrew Trim, Mai Sugimoto, Jason Stein, Charles Rumback
Sound Of The City Workshop

Friday, March 13th 2015

8:30PM at No Nation, 1542 N Milwaukee, 2nd Fl, 773.790.7810
Vox Arcana : Tim Daisy, Fred Lonberg-Holm, James Falzone

Saturday, March 14th 2015

7:00PM at the Rhythm Room, 1715 Maple Ave, Evanston IL, 847.491.9723 (Free)
Jimmy Bennington Colour And Sound Trio

8:00PM at Experimental Sound Studio, 5925 N Ravenswood, 773.769.1069 ($10, or $30 series pass)
Outer Ear 2015
Becky Grajeda

Sunday, March 15th 2015

8:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western ($20-$10)
Third Coast Percussion : Sean Connors, Robert Dillon, Peter Martin, David Skidmore, with special guests Ross Karre, Rachel Beetz

9:00PM at the Redline Tap, 7000 N Glenwood, 773.465.8005 ($5) (wheelchair-accessible)
Jimmy Bennington Colour And Sound

Monday, March 16th 2015

9:00PM at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W Belmont, 773.281.4444 (wheelchair-accessible)
Extraordinary Popular Delusions : Jim Baker, Mars Williams, Brian Sandstrom, Steve Hunt

Wednesday, March 18th 2015

9:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western (Free)
Mike Reed’s Loose Assembly, with Greg Ward, Tomeka Reid, Jason Adasiewicz, Joshua Abrams
Sound Of The City Workshop

10:30PM at Honky Tonk BBQ, 1213 W 18th, 312.907.7895
Keefe Jackson Trio with John Sutton, Mikel Avery

Thursday, March 19th 2015

8:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western ($15-$10)
Nicole Mitchell, Tomeka Reid, Mike Reed

9:00PM at Elastic, 3429 W Diversey, #208, 773.772.3616 ($10)
Ten x Ten
Josh Berman, Paul Giallorenzo, Anton Hatwich, Keefe Jackson, Peter Maunu, Eli Namay, Ryan Packard, Cameron Pfiffner, Jason Stein, Phil Sudderberg, Salvador Andrade, Jerome Bryerton, Uriel Correa, Rob Funderburk, Trevor Goosen, Andrew Holmquist, Hannah Ireland, Vesna Jovanovic, Alexander Stewart, Cynthia Weiss

Friday, March 20th 2015

9:00PM at Elastic, 3429 W Diversey, #208, 773.772.3616 ($10)
Cooper Crain
Jim Baker, Michael Zerang Duo
Perfect Villain
KG Price, Carol Genetti, Graham Stephenson, Albert Wildeman

Saturday, March 21st 2015

9:30PM at Constellation, 3111 N Western ($10)
Ben Goldberg, Michael Coleman, Hamir Atwal

For more information, such as directions, as well as upcoming performances, see:,,,,,,,,,,,,

Coming to the Vortex Jazz Club

English: John Etheridge guitarist
John Etheridge

From London’s Vortex:

SAT 7 MARCH 2015 / 20.00 / £13 / MD
Guitar legend John Etheridge distills the bluesier side of his musical world in a repertoire that manifests intensity subtlety, fluidity and interaction. The repertoire is edgy and engaging with a forceful drive and bravura performances. With Pete Whittaker (organ) & Mark Fletcher (drums).

MON 9 MARCH 2015 / 20.00 / £5
Known for its wild, totally free evenings of challenging and uplifting improvisations, Freedom will see an opening set from a specific ensemble and that will be followed by a constantly shifting set of soul-stirring improv session open to all.

TUE 10 MARCH 2015 / 20.00 / £10 / MD
Tony Kofi (alto saxophone), Larry Bartley (double bass) & Rod Youngs (drums) pay homage to the music of Ornette Coleman, to celebrate Coleman’s 85th birthday (the day before).

WED 11 MARCH 2015 / 20.00 / £10 / MD
Pioneer of free improvisation Maggie Nicols is also a soulful and innovative interpreter of well-loved songs and compositions. With Deirdre Cartwright (guitar), Alison Rayner (bass), Asaf Sirkis (drums). Bristol-based quintet Dakhla Brass (one drummer, four horn players) combine evocative harmonies, intricate rhythms and absorbing soundscapes.

Christian Wolff marks 80 years with a pleasurable night of his music

From New York Classical Review:

“The New York School Died,” wrote artist Ray Johnson, on an envelope piece of mail art. Not quite yet. The New York School lives on, outlasting in Christian Wolff, who will turn 80 on Sunday. He celebrated his birthday publicly at Roulette Thursday night, playing his own chamber music in a warm, convivial concert.

The New York School—John Cage, Morton Feldman, Earle Brown and Wolff—was not so much ideological but social. The composers shared some of the same values—Brown and Cage worked together, Wolff studied counterpoint with Cage, but their musical directions differed. Taken together, they cover a vast amount of the territory of post-WWII avant-garde and experimental American classical music.

Augusta Read Thomas’s Spiritual ‘Resounding Earth’ Performance Reviewed


“Resounding Earth,” a 30-minute work for percussion quartet that received its New York premiere at Miller this week by the commandingly elegant Third Coast Percussion, calls for a battery of some 300 metal instruments, including tiny cymbal-like crotales, giant gongs, Burmese temple bells and metal coils. The work was developed in close collaboration with the Third Coast players and has been released on a beautiful CD by New Focus Recording.

Just Outside Reviews

From Just Outside:

Cyril Bondi/Tom Gouband – Hi no Tori (Insub)
Insub Meta Orchestra – Archive #3 (Insub)
Free Nelson Mandoomjazz – Awakening of a Capital (Rare Noise)
Frédéric Nogray/Yannick Dauby – panotii auricularis (Univers International)
Philippe Petitgenêt/François Martig – P.A.S. (Univers International)
Birgit Ulher/Leonel Kaplan – Stereo Trumpet (Relative Pitch)
See Through Trio – Parallel Lights (Woods and Waters)
Diatribes – A New Castle (Caduc)
Chris Strickland – Animal Expert (Caduc)