четверг, 26 ноября 2015 г.

Gilbert Holmströms Kvintett ‎– Utan Misstankar (1965, 2010 reissue)

 Gilbert Holmströms Kvintett ‎– Utan Misstankar (Megafon, 1965; Moserobie, 2010)

Gilbert Holmström: tenor saxophone
Arne Larsson: cornet
Hans Löfman: bass
Clas Fehling: piano
Anders Söderling: drums
Åke Johansson: piano (on "Novotec")
Sven Hessle: bass (on "Novotec")

01 - Kontrast
02 - Ballad för Max
03 - Modul
04 - Resan till Hellas
05 - Ruby my dear
06 - Tryck på alla knappar
07 - Dissapointment
08 - Novotec

As his first re-release Jonas Kullhammar’s Moserobie choses one of the best Swedish jazz records from the 60s: the Gothenburger Gilbert Holmstrom’s “Utan Misstankar” (“Without Suspicions”), which before cost a pretty penny to lay a hold on and only can be found as an original LP from 1965. It is a fantastic balance of melodic and freer jazz, the latter having just started to form through the work of American musicians such as Albert Ayler, Archie Shepp and John Coltrane.
One of the things I associate best with “Utan Misstankar” is its immense drive. Musicians are so strongly bound and constantly strive forward with an equal amount of curiosity and desire. Holmström’s solo in “Modul” is incredibly forward-looking when he spins up the notes in swirls with one note cutting through the others’ fairly soft sound mass. Arne Larsson fills in with his cornet with a warm glowing sound. Improvising at the same time was generally quite unusual at the time. Only a few years earlier John Tchicai, Archie Shepp and Don Cherry of the New York Contemporary Five had waited obediently for each other to finish.
The aforementioned drive is a lot thanks to drummer Anders Soderling, bass player Hans Löfman and pianist Clas Fehling. They play with honour! [Sound of Music]


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понедельник, 16 ноября 2015 г.

The Spanish Donkey - Raoul (2015)

The Spanish Donkey - Raoul (RareRareNoise, 2015)

Joe Morris: guitar 
Jamie Saft: Hammond organ, Korg organ, MiniMoog, piano
Mike Pride: drums

01 - Raoul
02 - Behavioral Sink
03 - Dragon fly Jones

The second Spanish Donkey release begins somewhere beyond where the last ended. Joe Morris' seething and scalding guitar is a hot iron pressed again the flesh, and the microtonal keyboard work of Jamie Saft is grinding and eviscerating.

Direct and relentless, the 33 minute epic 'Raoul' begins with Morris' fuzzed-out melody and drummer Mike Pride adding muscle and flair. As Saft creeps in on the organ, the tension rises and Morris begins a wholehearted embrace of the wah-wah pedal. The piece is a tremendous tone poem that could be dedicated to mastodons sinking into tarpits as lava pouring down a volcano ignites the forest around it.

The album is a less about the individual voices as it is the dark and foreboding movement of sound. It's at once sludgy, defiant, nuanced and textured. The shapes of the sounds are as important as the notes themselves which, like on the track 'Behavioral Sink' rises from the slash of Saft's organ and the metallic clang of Morris' guitar.

A hearty listen to say the least! [FreeJazzBlog]


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вторник, 10 ноября 2015 г.

Slobber Pup - Pole Axe (2015)

Slobber Pup - Pole Axe (RareNoiseRecords, 2015)

Mats Gustafsson: saxophone
Jamie Saft: organ, keyboards
Joe Morris: guitars
Balazs Pandi: drums

01 - Pole of Combustible Memory
02 - Bring Me My Desire and Arrows to Shoot
03 - Incendiary Axe

 There is a certain liquidity found in the stables of RareNoise Records keyboardist Jamie Saft is both everywhere and nowhere, a part of Berserk!, Metallic Taste of Blood, Plymouth, and Saft Swallow, & Previte. But perhaps Saft's most interesting project this that of Slobber Pup: a post-apocalyptic tenor + jazz organ trio, shot full of morphine and uranium, giving off neutron vibes laying waste to all in earshot. When the psalmist wrote of "joyful noise" he or she most certainly had Slobber Pup in mind. The band's inaugural recording, Black Aces (RareNoise, 2013) met with positive reviews. Not satisfied with the crime scene that recording left, Saft and company have returned with Pole Axe, an aural metaphor for what the listener may expect.

Pole Axe is comprised of a scant three pieces. The opening "Pole of Combustible Memory" is a dense half-hour of electric paroxysm introduced by drummer Balazs Pandi, guitarist Joe Morris and saxophonist Matts Gustafsson, in quick succession. Gustafsson picks ups where Archie Shepp left off at New Thing at Newport (Impulse!, 1965) and where Pharaoh Sanders picked up on Karma (Impulse!, 1969), committing chordal genocide at light speed. Morris gets extended solo space to probe with the speed of Shawn Lane and the aural lovechild of James Blood Ulmer and Link Ray. Saft quiets things down to a slow simmer summoning Jon Lord from "Lazy" (Made in Japan (Warner Bros., 1972)) and Garth Hudson's "Genetic Method." Anti-peace is restored at 18 minutes as the band begins its descent into the spasmodic coda of the Cthulhu Mythos.

"Bring Me My Desire and Arrows to Shoot" begins as introspectively as this band is capable, but an immediate anxiety permeates the sonic landscape. Dripping-water motifs punctuated with low reeds growls provides a foreboding backdrop for the cataclysm sure to be around the corner. "Ambient music for the schizophrenic," "Bring Me My Desire and Arrows to Shoot" illustrates, in music the dangers of recreational drug use among amateurs. Things ramp up at 9:00 with an anguished tenor cry, reaching a death crescendo before falling into a Placydil-induced narcosis.

The "straightest" of the three pieces, "Incendiary Axe" recalls the marathon saxophone-drum duets of John Coltrane and Elvin Jones. Critical mass is achieved on this brief, 4-minute piece illustrating that Slobber Pup can command all elements of jazz, rock, and blues since the big band. There is something very appealing about this anarchy of noise that makes this "music" vital. It exists as a wakeup call for all who have been hypnotized into an artificial slumber of safety and contentment, and all the while the wolves are barking to get in... [Allaboutjazz]


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среда, 4 ноября 2015 г.

Joshua Abrams - Magnetoception (2015)

Joshua Abrams - Magnetoception (Eremite, 2015)

Joshua Abrams: Guimbri, Bass, Celesta, Clarinet, Harp [Small], Bells
Hamid Drake: Frame Drum, Tabla, Congas, Drums [Trap Kit]
Emmett Kelly: Electric Guitar
Jeff Parker: Electric Guitar
Lisa Alvarado: Harmonium
Ben Boye: Autoharp [Chromatic Electric Autoharp]

01 - By Way Of Odessa
02 - Lore
03 - Of Night
04 - Broom
05 - Translucent
06 - Of Day
07 - Magnetoception
08 - Spiral Up
09 - The Ladder

In a recent Invisible Jukebox interview in The Wire, Chicago bassist Joshua Abrams speaks about “constructing an environment” through his music. “One is creating a space to immerse the listener in sound,” he explains, “and creating room for slowness, for a different rate of attention perhaps.” Magnetoception, Abrams’s third Natural Information Society album for Eremite, demonstrates this concept wonderfully. 

Fans of 2010’s Natural Information and 2012’s Represencing will find themselves in familiar territory here, marked most notably by Abrams’s guimbri (among his other instruments) but also by Emmett Kelly and Jeff Parker’s electric guitars, Lisa Alvarado’s harmonium, and Ben Boye’s autoharp. (Hamid Drake, a new addition to this particular project, plays a variety of hand percussion as well as drum kit.) But as a double LP Magnetoception gives the group a new opportunity to stretch out, breathe, and craft an immersive sound environment.

The album opens with “By Way of Odessa,” a side-long piece whose meditative ambient patience, punctuated by Drake’s frame drum, focuses the listener’s attention not by grabbing it but by creating space for it. Eventually the guimbri picks up, before dying down again. The rise and fall of the track’s energy foreshadows the album’s larger structure, more an organic sinuous movement with multiple climaxes than a simple linear escalation.

One climax comes at the beginning of the third side with “Translucent.” The tune’s odd-meter ostinato, carried by the guitars and Abrams on acoustic bass, keeps us entranced but alert, as if we’re burrowing down towards the heart of something, yet not quite there. That heart might come soon enough with the title track. “Magnetoception” finds the album at its densest and perhaps most dramatic, a tightly woven sonic textile of jittery muted guitar, insistent guimbri, and tireless drumming. The group’s natural, protean interplay is in evidence here too, with Drake wrenching the breakneck 6/8 groove into a shuffle for a few glorious bars at one point. Elsewhere brief solo interludes like “Of Night” (Abrams on clarinet) and “Of Day” (autoharp) provide contrast and help contract the scope of the music before opening out again.

The Ladder” brings things to a close with mid-tempo interlocking guimbri and tabla overlaid by shimmering autoharp and carefully measured guitar lines. This final track leaves us neither too high nor too low, but safely in the middle ground of the album’s dynamic energies. And if Abrams is as inspired by the Gnawa tradition of ritual healing as he is by their use of the guimbri, then “The Ladder” can be said to deliver us out of Magnetoception’s restorative environment better than we entered it. [Free Jazz Blog]

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