Saturday, June 28, 2008

HurdAudio Rotation: From Andrew Drury to Zs

Andrew Drury: A Momentary Lapse. 2003. Innova: 581.

Andrew Drury: composer, drums
Eyvind Kang: violin
Briggan Krauss: alto saxophone, clarbone
Chris Speed: tenor saxophone, clarinet
Myra Melford: piano
Mark Dresser: bass

Outstanding arrangements/compositions + six great improvisers = third spin in the HurdAudio Rotation with nothing but praise to heap upon this disc. Between the variation of textures and styles of the nine compositions featured in this set and the ample room smartly extended toward each performer this one hits several sweet spots that make for an underrated 2003 release from Drury. In particular, the prominence of Myra Melford on "Geek's Revenge" was especially appreciated in this spin.

Bill Frisell/Dave Holland/Elvin Jones: Bill Frisell with Dave Holland and Elvin Jones. 2001. Nonesuch: 79624-2.

Bill Frisell: electric guitar, acoustic guitar, loops
Dave Holland: bass
Elvin Jones: drums

The already insane talents of Bill Frisell + one of the most enviable rhythm sections of all time + a beloved section of the Frisell songbook (along with a take on "Moon River" and "Hard Times") = fourth spin in the HurdAudio Rotation with ears greedily drinking up a sound even greater than the concept behind it. I hesitate to call these definitive takes on this block of compositions written to accompany a documentary about Far Side cartoonist Glen Larson, but these do make a compelling argument for these enduring and endearing Frisell originals. Hearing these pieces thrive with the support of the potentially overwhelming slice of jazz history Holland and Jones bring to this session reinforces an already high opinion of this music. This one is deserving of many more spins.

The Zs: 4 Systemz: Brown 1951. 2007. Socketscdr: 32.

4 Systems (1951) composed by Earle Brown, performed by The Zs.

Essentially a single. This is the full length version of the 4 Systems excerpt included on the Tzadik compilation Folio and Four Systems. Using Brown's graphic score the Zs navigate a quiet texture of breathtaking restraint. Each gesture is carefully added to the soundscape so that it barely leaves a ripple. The Zs demonstrate an intensity within near-silence equal to the high-decibel excursions of their late-night venue existence.


Anu said...


For many years I've kept the New Yorker ad with this image from the album cover & today I went looking to see if I cld locate it online et voila! You have it here.

I'd love to know the name of the cartoon artist so I can winkle out more of their work, I find it so amusing.

Any chance you cld check the album cover credits & see if it's there?




Devin Hurd said...

Hi Anu,

The cartoonist is Jim Woodring. His work has appeared on the cover of more than one Bill Frisell release as they are friends and an inspiration to each other.