Art Ensemble of Chicago Profiled

Source: Rolling Stone.

Fifty years after the Art Ensemble of Chicago first became an internationally known force in avant-garde music, co-founder Roscoe Mitchell has no plans to make any major changes to the group’s working method, which unifies musical strands ranging from deep blues and heavy funk to rigorous composition, ritualistic soundscapes and beyond under the tagline “Great Black Music — Ancient to the Future.”

AMN Reviews: Andrew Voigt and Ed Herrmann – Three Duets [Pan y Rosas pyr270]

Dating back to 1991, Andrew Voigt and Ed Herrmann’s Three Duets delves into some of the creative possibilities of the then somewhat novel pairing of saxophone and analogue modular synthesizer. Nearly thirty years after it was recorded, the set still stands as compelling music.

As musicians, the two have explored different paths. Saxophonist Voigt was a founding member of the Bay Area ROVA Saxophone Quartet—he’s the “V” in “ROVA”; at the time these improvised duets were recorded in San Francisco, he’d recently left the group after having stayed with them for a decade. Herrmann, in addition to being an improviser and composer, is a sound engineer and instrument maker who leads audio tours of Chicago. As these improvisation show, though, different paths can converge quite effectively.

Voigt and Herrmann’s collaboration tends to center on the linear mobility of pitch rather than on the more abstract qualities of timbre as such, although certainly there are moments where the quality of a sound becomes its preeminent feature. Assault of the Palindrome, the opening track, finds Voigt’s serpentine lines weaving around and between Herrmann’s uncanny simulation first of upper register plucked strings and then of a low-register, snapping elastic band. Deferring Delusion follows with the two instruments closely overlapping in sound and timbre and then dissolves into the rumble and hum of synthesizer overlaid with the soft twitter of the saxophone. For the third and final piece, Succumb to Mercury, Herrmann sets the textural atmosphere as Voigt explores a range of extended techniques.

Daniel Barbiero

RIP Scott Walker

Source: 4AD.

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Scott Walker. Scott was 76 years old and is survived by his daughter, Lee, his granddaughter, Emmi-Lee, and his partner Beverly.

For half a century, the genius of the man born Noel Scott Engel has enriched the lives of thousands, first as one third of The Walker Brothers, and later as a solo artist, producer and composer of uncompromising originality.

Scott Walker has been a unique and challenging titan at the forefront of British music: audacious and questioning, he has produced works that dare to explore human vulnerability and the godless darkness encircling it.

Mikroton New Releases

Source: Mikroton.

Ken Ganfield x Kurt Liedwart x Petr Vrba
Something Wrong There

The science fiction yearning for utopia sometimes falls into dystopian space. Kurt Liedwart with Ken Ganfield and Petr Vrba tried to follow the impulse of getting to the ideal world but their most powerful and fearful predictions and prophesies came to the fore and “Something Wrong There” happened all the time. Liedwart recently became dissatisfied with the improvisation’s disability to create sonically fresh sound worlds and completely remixed the studio recordings. Did it prevent him from making something wrong here? Try to guess. What you hear is a combination of elements of trogged-out electronic psychedelia with a deadly serious mid-European minimalism and dreamy modal ambient improvisations that owe more to the outer limits of cutting-edge electronic music and burnt-out free music from Germany. Pulpy quasi-cinematic tension, blasts of voidal motorik, raptures of psychedelic intensity, these dangerously seductive imagery exists in the space between the serious and the banal, science and mysticism, experiment and pop, knowledge and intuition, mastership and failure.

Wabi Experience
Wabi Experience

It all began in 2002, or it might have been also in 2001, I don’t remember anymore. For whatever reason, I had an idea to remix songs of Czech country hero Wabi Daněk, who’s music I remembered from my childhood, from singing around the fireplace. I thought this will be some sort of funny game for me, with which I will spend few weeks the most. I worked with sampler Roland JS-30, borrowed from a friend. It had no external memory, so I had to always keep it on. The result was not so special, but I got hooked on the material. I continued exploring its possibilities, which I just began to see. At some point I deliberately erased everything I had, so I would start again from zero. I started working with computer and various softwares and I totally changed the course of where the whole thing was heading previously. I stopped talking about remixing and started to think about deconstruction. I did some stuff, which I finally liked, but then my computer crashed and I lost everything again. I started again, with new computer, new software, new direction. I still wanted to finish this project, it became a kind of obsession. I felt this needed to be finished, one way or another.

This Week in New York 


CompCord Big Band runs amok on a program featuring premieres by Aaron Alter, John Clark, Dan Cooper, Gerson Galante, Franz Hackl, Carlton Holmes, Peter Melnick, Melanie Mitrano, Ginka Mizuki, Alon Nechushtan, Gene Pritsker, Sebastian Pritsker, Zinovy Pritsker, Daniel Schnyder, Dave Soldier, David Taylor, and Stefan Zeniuk.
Thursday, March 28 at 7:00 PM
The Bitter End, 147 Bleecker Street, New York, NY

Composer/performer Kate Soper curates and performs a program that includes excerpts from her new opera, The Romance of the Rose. The evening will also feature songs by Kaija Saariaho, and Natacha Diels, and a set of vocal/electronic improvisations by Charmaine Lee and Sam Pluta.
Thursday, March 28 at 7:30 PM
The DiMenna Center for Classical Music, 450 West 37th Street, New York, NY

This Portrait features two new works by Tyshawn Sorey, written for ensembles with which he has close ties.
Thursday, March 28 at 8:00 PM
Miller Theatre, 2960 Broadway, New York, NY

This concert celebrates the release of Zeena Parkins’s project for acoustic harp and electronics, Captiva, on Good Child Music. A duo improvisation with trombonist Jim Staley will follow the Captiva pieces.
Thursday, March 28 at 8:00 PM
Roulette, 509 Atlantic Avenue, Brooklyn, NY

Nils Frahm performs music from his album All Melody at Brooklyn Steel.
Friday, March 29 & Saturday, March 30 at 8:00 PM
Brooklyn Steel, 319 Frost Street, Brooklyn, NY

ISSUE presents composers and instrumentalists Daniel Fishkin, Cleek Schrey, and Ron Shalom — the U.S.’s only extant daxophone consort. The daxophone is a thin wooden strip played with a bow, which was created by the German improviser/inventor Hans Reichel in 1987. The instrument’s sound, somewhere between a cello and badger, ranges from furtive gurgles and delicate whistles to wild screams.
Saturday, March 30 at 8:00 PM
ISSUE Project Room, 22 Boerum Place, Brooklyn, NY

All About Jazz Reviews

Source: All About Jazz.

Vijay Iyer And Craig Taborn
The Transitory Poems (ECM Records)

Live At Moods (7d Media)

DKV & Joe McPhee
The Fire Each Time (Not Two Records)

Jason Kao Hwang & Burning Bridge
Blood (Self Produced)

Iro Haarla, Ulf Krokfors & Barry Altschul
Around Again: The Music Of Carla Bley (TUM Records)

Liudas Mockūnas
Hydro 2 (NoBusiness Records)

Choi Sun Bae
Arirang Fantasy (NoBusiness Records)

Christoph Irniger Pilgrim
Crosswinds (Intakt Records)

Michael Gregory Jackson Clarity Quartet

Neuköllner Modelle
Zyklus 1 (Umlaut Records)

New Dark Companion Releases

Source: Dark Companion.

A Mid Autumn Night’s Dream faithfully report a one-shot concert that took place at Conservatorio Nicolini in Piacenza on October 1st, 2016. The four giants of new music never played together before: Keith Tippett, Julie Tippetts, Lino Capra Vaccina, and Paolo Tofani.

Vincenzo Ramaglia is a Roman composer active in contemporary music experimentation and in what he calls PEM (“popular experimental music”). After the academic training — at the end of which he won the TIM (Tournoi International de Musique) with an orchestral work — his music research insinuates itself into the alchemy between score and improvisation, between electronics, acoustic instruments (often investigated in their extended techniques) and voice.

Dark Companion label head Max Marchini on Hamdelaneh Intimate Dialogues (January 2019): “Another true masterpiece from Dark Companion Records. I met Markus Stockhausen after inviting him and his wife to ‘Musiche Nuove In Piacenza’ festival in autumn 2018.”