More KFJC Reviews

Sun Ra Arkestra 19 Nov 05 Ruta Maya Austin TX
Image by birzer via Flickr

KFJC is on a review kick and just won’t stop!

Zilverhill – “ eotvos ” – [Adept Sound]

Zilverhill is Schuster (Perth, Australia) & pRESENT dAY bUNA (Sheffield UK), two projects that have been collaborating for awhile. Tracks are experimental, electronic and unique. From long droned out meditating waves, to crunchy looped vocal fuzziness. Dark and gloomy, sometimes it feels like you’re in the deep ocean waters. Some bleeps and bloops. Lots of repetitiveness with samples and loops, they seem to like the “phone call”-esque sounding vocals. Shorter tracks have more samples and quirk to them, longer tracks are more mellow and empty outer space sounding.

Lindberg, John / Ragin, Hugh – “Team Work ” – [Cecma]

Unusual pairing of bass and trumpet. Virtuosos Lindberg and Ragin show their spectacular technique in this 1982 recording. Great fun hearing this instrumental combination, made me grin and say “yeah”!

Sun Ra – “Secrets of The Sun ” – [Atavistic (Unheard Music)]

Atavistic’s 2008 re-issue of this little known Sun Ra Saturn recording from the early 1960’s. Ra on piano, sun harp and gong is his usual goofy brilliant self. Other fine “usual suspect” sidemen such as John Gilmore, Marshall Allen, and Ronnie Boykins. I was especially impressed by Calvin Newborn (brother of pianist Phineas Newborn) on guitar on track 1 and 7.

Dolphy, Eric – “Out There ” – [Prestige Records Inc.]

Dolphy’s second album as a leader (1960). Like much of his work, it’s not instantly accessible but gives great rewards to those who stick with it. Some contemplative and slow tracks that are good for quiet moods: 2,4,6,7.

Bradford, Bobby Extet – “Midnight Pacific Airwaves ” – [Entropy Stereo (Mi)]

The first four tracks were recorded KPFK in Los Angeles in April of 1977 with Bradford on cornet, the fine flute of James Newton, and strong contributions from Richard Rehwald on bass and John Goldsmith on drums. Bradford said that since he just played with whoever showed up, he had an extet – X being the unknown in the algebraic sense. Fine improv on all, swinging rendition of the standard Blue Monk.

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Marshall Allen and Sam Hillmer at Zebulon

Marshall Allen
Image via Wikipedia

Zebulon in Brooklyn is featuring Marshall Allen and Sam Hillmer in an upcoming show.

Trouble and Zebulon present

REGATTAS Record Release Party


(Sun Ra Arkestra)


(Sam Hillmer)

OCTOBER 19, 2008 9PM


Celebrating the release of Regattas’ first album (out October 19th on Shinkoyo) Regattas (Sam Hillmer) and legendary saxophonist Marshall Allen, long time leader of the Sun Ra Arkestra team up for a show at Zebulon on October 19th at 9pm. Hillmer will be accompanied by Darius Jones (Little Women) on alto sax, Jason Ajemian (Chicago Underground Trio) on bass, John Fell Ryan (Excepter) on keyboards, and John McClellan (Joe Maneri) on drums. DJs Coitus Mayfield (Skeletons/Shinkoyo) round out the bill.

Marshall Allen is a free jazz and avant-garde jazz alto saxophone player best known as the leader of Sun Ra’s Arkestra. Allen met Sun Ra around 1956, joining the pianist’s legendary Arkestra two years later. He would go on to lead its reed section for more than four decades, over time earning renown as one of the most distinctive and original saxophonists of the postwar era. Since the departure of Sun Ra and John Gilmore, Allen has led the Arkestra, and has recorded two albums as their bandleader.

Allen’s mastery of effects on the alto is well known; he has said that he “wanted to play on a broader sound basis rather than on chords”. He also developed his own reed instrument (dubbed the “morrow”) by attaching a saxophone mouthpiece to an open-hole wooden body. Allen collaborated regularly with Babatunde Olatunji, emerging as one of the first jazz musicians to fuse the avant-garde with traditional African music.

Sam Hillmer (aka Regattas) co-founded the band/chamber ensemble Zs as well as Wet Ink, a new music presenting organization, ensemble, and composer’s collective. In addition to his work with Zs, Hillmer is currently playing and performing with Regattas, Dirty Projectors, MOTH, and John Dwyer (of Ohsees).

Hillmer is also active as a curator and educator. In collaboration with artist Laura Paris, he organizes the biannual performance festival and installation YOU ARE HERE: 21 nights of performance in a sculptural maze. Hillmer is currently producing the youth hip-hop recording series Representing NYC. The first volume, The Fly Girlz’ “Da Bratz From Da Ville”, is due out this November on Wisdom Through Music and Socketts CDs.

Hillmer has had the privilege of working with and playing the music of Mick Barr, Weasel Walter, Joe Maneri, Christian Wolff, Phill Niblock, Roscoe Mitchell, Petr Kotik, Louis Andriessen and Larry Polansky. Recordings of his music are available on labels threeoneg, Planaria Recordings, Epicene Sound Systems, Tzadik, Zum, Gilgongo, Socketts, New Sonic, and Troubleman Unlimited.

Shinkoyo is the ectoplasm connecting a diverse group of composers, visual artists, improvisers, instrument builders, thinkers, scholars and healers exploring new syntheses of sound and art. We operate on terms of collectivity and collaboration, while supporting the individual voices of all Shinkoyos. Shinkoyo submits to no genres, but Ancient Futurism, Noise Age, and True Age are terms to be discovered. Born in 2000 at the Oberlin Conservatory, we began releasing music in fall of 2002. Shinkoyo has spread its wings from California to New York, with its headquarters at the Paris London West Nile Performance/Gallery Space – Brooklyn’s donation-based center for experimental performance and art. In summer 2008, Shinkoyo launched its SHINKOJUKO free jukebox and donation-based online music store, showcasing our catalog of music releases from 2002 to the present.

About Zebulon: “Akin to a smoky beatnik bar in Montparnasse, French-owned-and-operated Zebulon offers free experimental live jazz and blues nightly by mind-blowing local musicians and drop-ins by the occasional vagabond. Pale yellow spheres of light illuminate the dark room like a dozen mini-Parisian moons. The decor feels fresh with a smattering of old jazz concert posters and album covers. Perch atop a bar stool or sit at a stage-side table for an unfettered view of the action.”

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