Muzikas: The Bartok Album. 1999. Rykodisc: HNCD 1439.
Peter Eri: viola, guitar, percussion, flute
Daniel Hamar: bass, small cimbalom, gardon, percussion
Laszlo Porteleki: violin
Mihaly Sipos: violin
with guests -
Marta Sebestyen: vocals
Alexander Balanescu: violin
Janos Kovacs: tamboura
Zoltan Juhasz: long flute
Marton Eri: cello
Zoltan Porteleki: cimbalom
Zoltan Farkas: gardon, drum, dance
Ildiko Toth: dance
The Hungarian folk tunes that infused the music of Bela Bartok come full circle in this recording as the animated melodies and dance rhythms that appeared in and inspired chamber and orchestral music return to the eastern European countryside where they are played with verve as folk music. One can hear the melodic twists and vibrant qualities that caught Bartok's ear in this recreation of how this music might have sounded as Bartok was documenting and exploring it. Muzikas give this music an energy and vitality that is irresistible that conveys incredible insight into how striking this body of music is and why it triggers a yearning to preserve its spirit and sound.
Chicago Tentet: American Landscapes 2. 2007. Okka Disk: OD12068.
Peter Brötzmann: composer, clarinet, tarogato, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone
Mats Gustafsson: baritone saxophone, slide saxophone
Ken Vandermark: clarinet, baritone saxophone, tenor saxophone
Joe McPhee: trumpet, alto saxophone
Hannes Bauer: trombone
Per-ake Holmlander: tuba
Fred Lonberg-Holm: cello
Kent Kessler: bass
Paal Nilssen-Love: drums
Michael Zerang: drums
Peter Brötzmann's aggressive energy and harshly beautiful large ensemble sound finds deep resonance with the anxieties and anger lurking beneath the calm exterior of the human experience. These American Landscapes are long-form bursts of sustained sonic intensity that find introspective pockets within a willingness to exude wild bursts of noise. Brötzmann continues to be a fascination at HurdAudio and these Chicago Tentet pieces - with their accurate reflection of the "American Landscape" rendered in sound - lend this German saxophonist and composer an Alexis de Tocqueville quality for a different medium in a different age.
Matana Roberts: Matana. 2007. Individually painted CD-R available from the composer.
Matana Roberts: saxophone
This one is a live solo set dedicated to the great Steve Lacy. Matana Roberts has a riveting voice on her instrument and a deep sense of personal history. This recording is a tantalizing - and all too brief - glimpse of what she has to say and the artistry she brings to what she plays. After hearing her perform live at this year's High Zero festival and putting an ear to this disc I continue to anticipate the music yet to be heard from this emerging artist and happily drink in the music currently at hand.