Saturday, October 22, 2011

HurdAudio Rotation: Neither From Nor Towards

Marc Ducret: Un Certain Malaise. Screwgun Records: screwu 70005.

Marc Ducret: guitar

Marc Ducret has a healthy amount of crazy in his sound when he's within a group. Here he's a free range crazy guitar as he slashes his way through this live 1998 set. Somewhere along the way he powers through what has become one of my favorite solo guitar recordings over the years. Working a language of strings and electricity with a performance that stays balanced along a sense that his energetic bursts could dart in any direction at any speed at any moment for an extended period of time.
LinkMisha Mengelberg: The Root of the Problem. 1997. Hat Hut Records: hatOLOGY 504.

Misha Mengelberg: piano
Steve Potts: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone
Thomas Heberer: trumpet
Michel Godard: tuba, serpent
Achim Kremer: percussion

Misha Mengelberg draws upon a deep well of jazz history and intuition for his improvisational craft. He can be ruthlessly abstract without losing his sense of humor or even taking a turn toward swing. With The Root Of The Problem he teams up in duos and trios with Steve Potts, Thomas Heberer, Michel Godard and Achim Kremer as equal collaborators. Often times these collaborators are absent for long stretches before hitching along with the whimsical rides that Mengelberg sets out with his "roots." The collaboration between piano and tuba is surprisingly compelling in this set. The dialog between improvisers feels so natural, so unforced that it is startling to hear this music move through so many extremes. This is a dialog that bears repeated listening and keeps the intellect guessing.

Thelema Trio: Neither From Nor Towards... 2010. Innova: 752.

Ward De Vleeschhouwer: piano
Peter Verdonck: saxophones
Marco Antonio Mazzini: clarinets

Tres Danzas Episkenicas by Rafael Leonardo Junchaya
Shadowing by HyeKung Lee
The Devil His Due by Keith Carpenter
neither from nor towards (ballade) by Eric Honour
Imprevisio by Marco Antonio Mazzini
Refractions by Kevin Walczyk
Five Miniatures by Fernando Benadon

Chamber music that eschews trans-Atlantic roots in favor of a current body of music drawn from the Americas - both North and South. Featuring works by composers from Peru, Argentina and the United States, this is just a sampling of a repertoire that has yet to be fully realized. Eric Honour's neither from nor towards is strikingly beautiful and Marco Antonio's short clarinet solo Imprevisio makes dramatic use of the instrument's extreme dynamics and register. Each of these works leave an impression while contrasting strongly with the other works in this set. They also remind these hungry ears (that are so frequently gorging upon new music) that there is a great deal of music yet to be heard.

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