AMN Reviews: Tellef Øgrim – What Is It [SIMLAS010]

The title of this release of solo music for acoustic guitar poses a question, and one that turns out to be more complex than it first appears. On the face of it, what it is is a single instrument, but the farther-reaching answer guitarist Tellef Øgrim gives in his program note is, “a means to connect.” Øgrim, a Norwegian who often plays fretless guitars, sees the apparent simplicity of the lone, unaugmented acoustic instrument as in fact harboring a complex richness of expression and sound that can communicate in as unmediated a way as is possible with an attentive listener.

For this recording, an EP-length collection of eight brief pieces, Øgrim used two guitars with subtly different voices. One, a Martin he acquired after it apparently was abandoned while being repaired, has a deeply resonant voice; the second, a smaller guitar of obscure origins, has a less ringing sound. It’s probably the latter guitar that opens the recording with a gentle, though slightly dissonant, chord sequence pivoting on minor seconds; the agitated, staccato piece that follows has a ringing sound that most likely is the Martin’s. With these as with each of the other pieces, Øgrim keeps focused on a single stylistic trope. These range from the folk-like melodies and arpreggios of P.O. through the rock rhythms and chords of Bestum Plesvark, to the free chromaticism of Horse. It’s a well-recorded set that succeeds in offering challenging substance in an intimate atmosphere.

Daniel Barbiero

All About Jazz Reviews

Tim Berne

Source: All About Jazz.

Dave Rempis
Lattice (Aerophonic Records)

Slægt (Mom Eat Dad Records)

Aki Takase
Cherry ‎– Sakura (Intakt Records)

Marco Von Orelli – Max E. Keller – Sheldon Suter
Blow, Strike & Touch (Hatology)

Shilpa Ray
Door Girl (Northern Spy Records)

Tim Berne
Incidentals (ECM Records)

Mark Guiliana
Jersey (Motéma Music)

Chicago / London Underground
A Night Walking Through Mirrors (Cuneiform Records)

Michael Attias
Nerve Dance (Clean Feed Records)

Roscoe Mitchell
Discussions (Wide Hive Records)

This Week in New York


Kronos Quartet, tenor Rinde Eckert, and Vietnamese musician Vân-Áhn Võ perform Jonathan Berger’s monodrama My Lai at BAM’s 2017 Next Wave Festival for the work’s East Coast premiere. The libretto by Harriett Scott Chessman is a character study of Army Warrant Officer Hugh Thompson Jr., who tried to intervene during the infamous Vietnam War massacre at My Lai in 1968, in which American soldiers slaughtered more than 500 Vietnamese citizens, nearly all of them women, children, and the elderly.
Wednesday, September 27 to Saturday, September 30 at 7:30 PM
Tickets $28-$55
BAM Harvey Theater, 651 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, NY

Trumpeter and composer Peter Evans debuts a new ensemble featuring Joel Ross on vibraphone, Jordan Morton on bass and Max Jaffe on drums. Being & Becoming marks a new chapter in Evans’ work as a player and composer. The evening will open with Tom Blancarte premiering a new piece for solo bass following the success of his new album, The Shortening of the Way.
Wednesday, September 27 at 8:00 PM
Tickets $15-$20
Roulette, 509 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, NY

Boston-based chamber orchestra A Far Cry makes their Miller debut, joining pianist Simone Dinnerstein for the New York premiere of Glass’s Piano Concerto No. 3, written for them.
Thursday, September 28 at 8:00 PM
Tickets $35-$65
Miller Theatre, 2960 Broadway, New York, NY

This Blank Forms concert features the music of Philip Corner, a composer, performer, and visual artist whose work explores the intermedia between music and philosophy in the pursuit of an ultimate simplification of musical material.
Thursday, September 28 at 8:00 PM
Tickets $20, $15 members
San Damiano Mission, 85 North 15th Street, Brooklyn, NY

Adjacencies is a graphic score for two percussionists and electronics written in 1965 by Maryanne Amacher. The work directs performers in sending their microphone signals to a changing array of speakers surrounding the audience, combining otherwise distinct worlds of sound. Though the piece has not been performed since 1966, Blank Forms has collaborated with Amy Cimini and Bill Dietz to unpack and analyze the score for its posthumous realization.
Friday, September 29 & Saturday, September 30 at 8:00 PM
Tickets $20
The Kitchen, 512 West 19th Street, New York, NY

Longleash will perform a concert celebrating the September 22 release of their debut album, Passage, on New Focus Recordings. The evening will feature selections from the album, including Francesco Filidei’s Corde Vuote, Clara Iannotta’s Il colore dell’ombra (Movt. 1), and Christopher Trapani’s Passing Through, Staying Put, as well as solos and duos by Suzanne Farrin and Anthony Cheung. Longleash will be joined by guest pianist/composer Nils Vigeland.
Sunday, October 1 at 5:00 PM
Tickets $15-$20
Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecker Street, New York, NY


This concert assembles six introspective works that manipulate our sense of time and space—using the force of memory, imagination, or emotion to render what was once familiar strange and unearthly. Works include the U.S. premiere of Michael Small’s White Space; a world-premiere version of Entrückung (“Rapture”), the finale of Arnold Schoenberg’s second quartet, with theremin replacing the usual soprano; and Elizabeth Brown’s Piranesi, as well as works by Alyssa Weinberg, Biber, and Kee Yong Chong.
Sunday, October 1 at 7:00 PM
Dixon Place Theater, 161 A Chrystie Street, New York, NY

Philip Glass Comes at the New York Philharmonic Reviewed

Source: The New York Times.

With these performances of the Glass concerto, featuring the splendid pianists Katia and Marielle Labèque as soloists, Mr. van Zweden has filled a gaping hole in the Philharmonic’s history. Overlooking Mr. Glass’s work had to have been a deliberate choice by a succession of music directors, because, love him or hate him, he has been an influential figure in contemporary classical music for some 40 years.