At first glance, the title of clarinetist Marianne Gythfeldt’s Only Human would appear to be ironic. The album is a collection of work for clarinet and bass clarinet augmented by electronics in various capacities; the resulting sounds are more than just what human breath produces when vibrating a reed. But in fact there’s no irony: the technology never overshadows the essentially human rhythms underlying the music and the equally human urge to convey, though sound, an expressive message from one person to another.
Gythfeldt brings a depth of experience to the music here. She is on the faculty of the Brooklyn College Conservatory as well as a member of the Zephyros Winds ensemble; her repertoire is diverse, encompassing classical and contemporary chamber music as well as the kind of work represented on Only Human. The album shows something of Gythfeldt’s history with electroacoustic music, since earliest composition on the CD, Robert Morris’ 1999 On the Go, was also the piece that introduced her to the possibility of integrating electronics with her clarinet. In structure if not in the particulars of sound, Morris’ work is fairly conventional. It is modeled on a concerto for solo clarinet on one side and a lush, yet unmistakably synthetic quasi-orchestra on the other; the two parts seem to move with a high degree of independence, but in doing so they throw off a counterpoint that seems as inevitable as it is unpredictable.
The CD’s title track was composed for Gythfeldt in 2005 by John Link. The piece, for clarinet and stereo sound, has Gythfeldt playing against a virtual ensemble made up of prerecorded, largely unprocessed samples of herself. The multiplication of voices turns a fractured, register-leaping lead line into a series of echoing hockets and long harmonies. Like Only Human, Mikel Kuehn’s Rite of Passage (Hyperresonance V) of 2014 was composed for Gythfeldt. Here she plays bass clarinet, threading her way through a more or less dense thicket of electronic sound as she circles around a bass clarinet part taken from Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. Elizabeth Hoffman’s And when the white moths were on the wing (2017), a three-movement work for clarinet and live electronics, was composed for Gythfeldt through a collaborative process of improvisation and conversation. The collaborative spirit of the piece’s composition translates out into its sound: the clarinet and electronics are dynamically balanced and well-integrated, with each voice serving as an atmospheric complement to the other. Eric Lyons’ Little History of Photography (2015), for clarinet and interactive computer, takes Gythfeldt’s real-time performance as input for live manipulation. Gythfeldt’s part consists of a vigorous, rising and falling flurry of notes embroidered at the edges with timbral effects courtesy of computer processing. Licorice Stick Groove by David Taddie matches live clarinet with a prerecorded soundtrack that cycles through a series of energetic rhythms.
Source: In On the Corner.
Drone Trio – Lantskap Logic (Clean Feed Records)
Du Yun / International Contemporary Ensemble – Dinosaur Scar (Tundra Records)
Timespine – Urban Season (Shhpuma Records)
Flavio Zanuttini Opacipapa – Born Baby Born (Clean Feed Records)
Claudio Scolari, Daniele Cavalca & Simone Scolari – Natural Impulse (Principal Records)
Source: I CARE IF YOU LISTEN.
PROTOTYPE: OUT OF BOUNDS | PROTOTYPE FESTIVAL
PROTOTYPE presents its third iteration of Out of Bounds, a platform for new vocal performance pieces taking place in unlikely locations throughout New York. Through the works, public sites will become temporary spaces of contact, exchange, and refreshed social dynamics. Out of Bounds 2019 will feature Partita for 8 Voices, where composer Caroline Shaw’s defining work meets the vast illuminated canyon of Times Square for its first ever publicly staged performance.
Monday, January 7 at 4:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Times Square, Broadway between 43rd Street and 44th Street, New York, NY
DREAMS & PRAYERS: DAVID KRAKAUER, KATHLEEN TAGG, OMER QUARTET
This iteration of Music Mondays features David Krakauer, Kathleen Tagg, and Omer Quartet.
Monday, January 7 at 7:30 PM
Advent Lutheran Church, 2504 Broadway, New York, NY
WILD UP, ZOLA JESUS & WILLIAM BRITTELLE | ECSTATIC MUSIC FESTIVAL
wild Upwild Up
The singer-songwriter Nika Danilova shares the bill with William Brittelle, and both will collaborate with the Los Angeles-based ensemble wild Up.
Monday, January 7 at 7:30 PM
Merkin Concert Hall, 129 West 67th Street, New York, NY
ACME, CAROLINA EYCK, CLARICE JENSEN
German-born composer, vocalist, and internationally renowned theremin virtuosa Carolina Eyck; multi-faceted cellist Clarice Jensen; and the dynamic American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME) join forces for a performance at DROM, each performing an engaging 30-minute set.
Monday, January 7 at 8:30 PM
DROM, 85 Avenue A, New York, NY
NEW YEAR’S CELEBRATION
North/South Chamber Orchestra performs four compositions by composers from the US and Venezuela. Featured will be music by Christopher James, Max Lifchitz, Alex Rodriguez, and John Winsor.
Sunday, January 13 at 3:00 PM
Christ and St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 120 West 69th Street, New York, NY
Source: Downtown Music Gallery.
Sunday, January 6th:
6pm: JORGE NUNO / ARON NAMENWIRTH / REGGIE SYLVESTER – Two Guitars & Drums
7pm: WILL GREENE – Guitar / JESSE HEASLY – Electric Bass / RAF VERTESSEN – Drum
Sunday, January 13th:
6pm: DISSIPATED FACE 2019: STEPHEN POPKIN / KURT RALSKE / DANIEL CARTER /
WILL DAHL / BILL MILKOWSKI – In memory or our guitarist Michael Lublin who passed in 2018
7pm: DAVID MEIER / JONATHAN MORITZ / TODD NEUFELD – Drums / Sax / Guitar
Sunday, January 20th:
6pm: MATANA ROBERTS and DARIUS JONES – Alto Sax Duets – First Time Duet!
7pm: RaaDie: LORENZ RABB – Trumpet Electronics / CHRISTOF DIENZ – Zither Electronics
Sunday, January 27th:
6pm: MATTEO LIBERATORE / JON IRABAGON / TOM RAINEY – Guitar / Saxes / Drums
7pm: EMILY DENISON / ANDREW FURLONG – Trumpet / Bass
DMG is located at 13 Monroe St. (between Catherine & Market Sts) in a basement below a small gallery. Take the F train to East Broadway or the 6 train to Canal or the B or D to Grand, or the M-15 bus to Madison & Catherine. Come on Down, the Sunday Music Series is Always Free & the Vibes are Always Cosy. You can check the weekly in-store sets through our Instagram feed
Source: El Intruso. Once again, this poll has provided a great consensus view of the best releases of 2018. My entry is below – I had to skip many categories due to time, unfortunately.
Músico: John Zorn, Gabriel Zucker, Kyoko Kitamura
Músico Revelación: Philipp Gropper, Ari Chersky, Stephanie Richards
Grupo: Albatre, Anguish, Josh Sinton’s Predicate Trio
Grupo Revelación: Big Heart Machine, Cruel Diagonals
Álbum: Ari Chersky – Fear Sharpens the Dagger (Independiente), Philipp Gropper / Philm – Live at Bimhaus (WhyPlayJazz), Anguish – Anguish (RareNoiseRecords)
Sello Discográfico: RareNoiseRecords, Iluso Records, ESP Disk