AMN Reviews: Leblanc / Gibson / Vicente / Mira / Ferreira Lopes – Double on the Brim [atrito-afeito 011]; Up and Out – s/t [Amirani Records AMRN060]

The cosmopolitan nature of improvised music has been an established fact for decades now. Two new recordings show improvisation providing a common meeting ground for musicians from North and South America, Europe and Africa.

Double the Brim features the international quintet of Canadian pianist Karoline Leblanc, Brazilian saxophonist Yedo Gibson, and trumpeter Luís Vicente, cellist Miguel Mira and drummer Paolo J. Ferreira Lopes of Portugal. The group play an emphatic, expansive improvised music informed by classic free jazz. Although there are times when lead voices break through the collective sound, the majority of the music consists of an urgent polyphony in which foreground and background exchange places fluidly and one musician’s solo line imperceptibly mutates into an embellishment of another’s. Leblanc’s hyperkinetic pianism and Ferreira Lopes’ energetic drumming provide a solid foundation for these six intense tracks.

Like the ensemble on Double the Brim, Up and Out is a quintet, this time of five musicians from five different countries. The group was assembled ten years ago by Berlin-based, Finnish-born soprano and sopranino saxophonist Harri Sjöström and includes violinist Philipp Wachsmann, a native of Uganda; the Mexican vibraphonist Emilio Gordoa; double bassist Matthias Bauer, from Germany; and the Norwegian drummer Dag Magnus Narvesen.

In contrast to Double the Brim’s hot expressionism, Up and Out’s style of improvisation is emotionally cooler and concerned with space. The music is made up of collective improvisation oriented toward timbral interplay and changeable textural densities. Much of the textural drama comes from the group’s expert crafting of rising and falling dynamics and mastery of restrained playing. The relationship between the violin and saxophones is especially compelling: a beautiful duet in the middle of the second improvisation highlights the instruments’ similarity of compass at the same time that it emphasizes their differences in timbre. Sjöström is particularly attentive to the sound quality of the soprano and sopranino saxophones, often softening their strident voices with mutes; both Wachsmann and Bauer make best use of their instruments’ range of plucked and bowed sounds. The final piece on the album, Wachsmann’s composition Three Draft Pistons, is a fittingly sparse and episodic recreation of the understated, sound-oriented improvisation developing in the UK in the 1980s.

Daniel Barbiero


Earshot Jazz Festival in Seattle

Source: Earshot Jazz comes to Seattle this month. Many concerts, with highlights including:

Kris Davis’ Diatom Ribbons w/ Terri Lyne Carrington & Val Jeanty
October 4 @ 8:00 pmSeattle Art Museum (Downtown)

Jamaaladeen Tacuma Trio feat. Gary Bartz
October 6 @ 7:30 pmLangston Hughes Performing Arts Institute

Kneebody / Trio Subtonic: Galen Clark, Dan Balmer, D’Vonne Lewis
October 9 @ 8:30 pmNectar Lounge

Wally Shoup
October 10 @ 7:30 pmThe Royal Room

Tribute to Tony Williams Lifetime (Early Show)
October 11 @ 6:30 pmThe Royal Room

Tribute to Tony Williams Lifetime (Late Show)
October 11 @ 9:30 pmThe Royal Room

Makaya McCraven (Early Show)
October 12 @ 7:00 pmThe Royal Room

Afro-Electric: Val Jeanty & Ravish Momin / Fay Victor & Myra Melford
October 12 @ 7:30 pmTown Hall Seattle – The Forum

Julian Lage Trio
October 12 @ 8:00 pmColumbia City Theater

Makaya McCraven (Late Show)
October 12 @ 9:30 pmThe Royal Room

Darius Jones
October 14 @ 7:30 pmChapel Performance Space at Good Shepherd Center

Seattle Modern Orchestra w/ Darius Jones & Wayne Horvitz
October 15 @ 7:30 pmTown Hall Seattle – The Forum

Aaron Parks Little Big
October 16 @ 7:30 pmColumbia City Theater

Knife Knights 
/ Darius Jones and Stas Thee Boss
October 16 @ 7:30 pmLangston Hughes Performing Arts Institute

Shai Maestro Trio / Wayne Horvitz & Sara Schoenbeck
October 20 @ 7:30 pmSeattle Art Museum (Downtown)

Briggan Krauss
October 21 @ 7:30 pmChapel Performance Space at Good Shepherd Center

Jenny Scheinman & Allison Miller’s Parlour Game w/ Carmen Staaf & Tony Scherr
October 24 @ 7:30 pmTown Hall Seattle – The Forum

Tyshawn Sorey Quintet
October 25 @ 8:00 pmTown Hall Seattle – The Forum

Dreamstruck: Marilyn Crispell, Joe Fonda, Harvey Sorgen
October 26 @ 7:30 pmChapel Performance Space at Good Shepherd Center

Options: Eric Revis/Bennie Maupin/Nasheet Waits
October 30 @ 7:30 pmLangston Hughes Performing Arts Institute

Travis Laplante
November 4 @ 7:30 pmChapel Performance Space at Good Shepherd Center

Amendola vs. Blades w/ Skerik, Jeff Parker & Cyro Baptista
November 6 @ 7:30 pmTriple Door

Vijay Iyer Coming to the Miller Theatre 

Source: Miller Theatre at Columbia University.

Miller Theatre at Columbia University School of the Arts
continues its
20th season of Composer Portraits
Vijay Iyer

Jennifer Koh, violin
The Knights
Vijay Iyer, piano

Program features a world premiere commissioned by Miller Theatre
as part of Columbia University’s “Year of Water”
and three New York premieres

Thursday, October 24, 2019, 8:00 P.M.
Miller Theatre (2960 Broadway at 116th Street)

Song for Flint (2019) world premiere, Miller Theatre commission
Crisis Modes (2019) New York premiere
Trouble (2017) New York premiere
The Law of Returns (2017) New York premiere

Jennifer Koh, violin
The Knights
Vijay Iyer, piano

Cecil Taylor Tribute Concert Coming to the New England Conservatory

Source: Boston’s New England Conservatory.

Fri, October 18th, 2019 | 7:30pm
NEC: Jordan Hall | Directions290 Huntington Ave.
Boston, MA
United States
Among NEC’s many prominent alumni, Cecil Taylor stands out for his influence over the history of jazz.

Taylor’s significant legacy will be recognized with a series of piano solos featuring NEC faculty and alumni Ran Blake, Bruce Brubaker, Ethan Iverson, Matthew Shipp and Dan Tepfer. Ensemble performances will include Steve Lacy’s “Rain” as well as an ensemble led by NEC faculty members Joe Morris and Dominique Eade.

There will be a pre-concert panel discussion with Ken Schaphorst (moderator), Carl Atkins and Marvin Gilmore, open to public, at 5 p.m. in Brown Hall.

Bruce Brubaker/John Cage: Before Dream/Dream
Bruce Brubaker, piano

Matthew Shipp: 2-X-Z
Matthew Shipp, piano

Dan Tepfer, piano

Victor Young and Ned Washington: Stella By Starlight
Ethan Iverson, piano

Ethan Iverson: Showdown
Ethan Iverson, piano

Ran Blake, piano

Zero Hour
Dominique Eade, voice

Joe Morris: Morning Group
Alison Burik, alto saxophone
Chi Wen Lo, piano
Joe Morris, guitar
Zach Lavine, bass
Mario Fabrizio, drums

Ruth Lepson: Poetry

NEC Jazz Orchestra

Cecil Taylor: Bulbs
NEC Jazz Orchestra



September 26, 2019
Matthew Howard Stull, Ståle Liavik Solberg, Matt Mottel, Record Shop
Matt Mottel Ståle Liavik Solberg Matthew Howard Stull

September 26, 2019
Joanna Mattrey Solo, Record Shop
Joanna Mattrey

September 26, 2019
Susana Santos Silva, Chris Pitsiokos, Torbjörn Zetterberg, Record Shop
Chris Pitsiokos Susana Santos Silva Torbjörn Zetterberg

September 26, 2019
Bloor, Record Shop
Henry Fraser Jason Nazary Andrew Smiley Sam Weinberg

September 25, 2019
Makoto Kawashima Solo, Blank Forms
Makoto Kawashima

September 23, 2019
Susana Santos Silva, Chris Pitsiokos, Torbjörn Zetterberg, Eric’s House Of Improv
Chris Pitsiokos Susana Santos Silva Torbjörn Zetterberg