Saturday, March 14, 2009

HurdAudio Rotation: Improvising with Thick Slabs of Paint and Grit

Wolf Eyes & Anthony Braxton: Black Vomit. 2006. Victo: cd 099.

Nathan Young: electronics, metal, harmonica, voice
John Olson: electronics, metal, saxophones, gong
Mike Connely: electronics, metal, guitar, voice
Anthony Braxton: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, sopranino saxophone

Let's face it. No music collection is even remotely complete without something called Black Vomit. And the obvious thing to do is make a big deal about the collaboration between the forces of noise driven, industrial sound of Wolf Eyes and the Avant free jazz powerhouse of Anthony Braxton. But as the waves of sound pealing off this disc demonstrate, these two entities of creatively driven musicians are not that far apart to begin with and they are more than capable of putting together a sound built upon intensity and brains. Visceral, appealing and demanding. This collaboration builds up their texture slowly, feeling out the volcanic terrain at hand before piecing together dense slabs of material.

William Parker Double Quartet: Alphaville Suite: Music Inspired by the Jean Luc Godard Film. 2007. Rogue Art: ROG 0010.

William Parker: bass
Rob Brown: alto saxophone
Lewis Barnes: trumpet
Hamid Drake: drums
Mazz Swift: violin
Jessica Pavone: viola
Julia Kent: cello
Shiau-Shu Yu: cello
Leena Conquest: vocalist

A decisive documentation of living, vibrant jazz carving an irresistible expressive space along Godard's cinematic contours. Conceptually excellent. Outstanding performances. Superb production standards. This one simply deserves many more ears. Lewis Barnes is a standout presence on trumpet in this set while the rhythm section of Hamid Drake and William Parker is perhaps one of the best ever assembled. The cello-heavy string quartet arranging takes this material well beyond the "horn with strings" sound in favor of working a twist upon film-inspired textures.

Arrington de Dionyso/Gust Burns: Ataque Holotropical. 2006. CD-R produced by Arrington de Dionyso.

Arrington de Dionyso: bass clarinet
Gust Burns: piano

Arrington de Dionyso is a driven improviser. Once the mouthpiece hits breath he's determined to make something happen. With Gust Burns as his partner in crime, this document reveals an aggressive set of creative, fire breathing free improvisation that blisters its way through time. Each player prodding the other toward aggressive swaths of musical territory. The sonic equivalent of a dripping canvas once two artists come at it with buckets of paint.

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