colinmce

Modern/Avant New Releases: A running thread

2,176 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

1 hour ago, mjazzg said:

Mark at Confront sent a short film of their last gig to his email subscribers a couple of weeks ago, did you get it?

Yes, it's a nice one. Helps understand who is producing which sound. 

 

Edited by Д.Д.

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Thanks for the reminder. Time to dispense some largesse like a drunken 17th century lord.

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Posted (edited)

Gents, I think this is a pretty stunning album: Hafez Modirzadeh "Facets" on Pi, https://hafezmodirzadeh.bandcamp.com/album/facets . Tenor / piano duos. The pianos are retuned and the sonorities created are fascinating. The pianists are Craig Taborn, Tyshawn Sorey and Kris Davis - each has a very different approach. Modirzadeh's playing is highly original. Innovative, unpredictable stuff, I have it on repeat for a week now. It's available for steaming on Apple Music.      

Edited by Д.Д.

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6 minutes ago, Д.Д. said:

Gents, I think this is a pretty stunning album: Hafez Modirzadeh "Facets" on Pi, https://hafezmodirzadeh.bandcamp.com/album/facets . Tenor / piano duos. The pianos are retuned and the sonorities created are fascinating. The pianists are Craig Taborn, Tyshawn Sorey and Kris Davis - each has a very different approach. Modirzadeh's playing is highly original. Innovative, unpredictable stuff, I have it on repeat for a week now. It's available for steaming on Apple Music.      

Tyshawn Sorey plays piano? 

Added it to the wishlist anyway.

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2 minutes ago, Rabshakeh said:

Tyshawn Sorey plays piano? 

Yes, he is a good piano player. He is the least jazzy of the three. 

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39 minutes ago, Rabshakeh said:

Tyshawn Sorey plays piano? 

Added it to the wishlist anyway.

He’s also an excellent trombonist. I think he’s a very very good pianist - I’ve seen him play in bands with pianists were not as good as he was when he sat on the piano bench for a portion of the shows.

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I'm not sure why I am surprised to be honest. His approach to percussion is so melodic that it might have been obvious in retrospect.

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Sonics on the Paul Bley ezz-thetics CD are excellent, I'd recommend picking it up for anyone who likes this music. A little disappointing that only "Blood" is represented from that album due to space limitations, but this will definitely be my go-to for Touching.

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13 hours ago, colinmce said:

Sonics on the Paul Bley ezz-thetics CD are excellent, I'd recommend picking it up for anyone who likes this music. A little disappointing that only "Blood" is represented from that album due to space limitations, but this will definitely be my go-to for Touching.

What? Is it not a proper twofer at all?

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4 hours ago, Rabshakeh said:

What? Is it not a proper twofer at all?

11193518-ezz_thetics_1108-4_600x540px_pa

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There are a couple of reviews of an artist called David Peck, AKA PEK, on the Free Jazz Blog today. I haven’t heard of him before, but the reviews sound interesting, making him out to be some sort of visionary, but without being particularly glowingly effusive about the music itself.

Does anyone know anything about him or his music?

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All of know is that he releases stacks of stuff, always appearing on the DMG weekly list.  Never listened to any of it, don't know why

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Posted (edited)

In addition to the above, I thought it would plug Nate Woolley’s new Mutual Aid Music. I’m sure most people who read this thread have already heard it, but, if not, it’s worth checking out.

I thought I was saturated with Woolley but it turns out I am not.

Edited by Rabshakeh

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I'd not bought a Wooley release for a while, since the first 'Battle Pieces' I think (had far too much) I think but bought both 'Mutual Aid Music' and his duo with Perelman. Really enjoying both.  Did get very weary, very quickly with all the theorising around MAM though.

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What was the theorising? Overwrought liner notes? I hate that sort of art gallery curator verbiage that is increasingly becoming the norm when talking about avant garde music.

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Posted (edited)

The review on Free Jazz and a couple of others made very heavy work of the link between mutual aid and improvisation. Something I thought was bleeding obvious.

I didn't read the liners but suspect they may have been the source. I like Woodley a lot and admire his Sound American initiative but I do fear he over- theorises a touch. The noise around MAM seemed to be an extreme example but maybe I'm just a cynical old Hector these days...

Edited by mjazzg

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I think that the academic theory in notes and press releases is getting a bit much.

To me it just fades into an institutionalised version of corporate marketing speech. Copy production for the sake of filling the required space.  Woolley is one of the worst for that, although he certainly isn’t alone. Unreadable but vapid prose has been a widespread problem in the art world for a while now and it is dispiriting to see it making inroads into new music.

I find that trend, together with the linked trend of increasingly gushingly uncritical reviews of every new release, a bit of a turn off for new music, and I hope that they both fade out, although I doubt they will. I have dropped my subscription to the Wire in the last year because it has become increasingly difficult to identify the plain meaning in the overcomplex pseudotechnical marketing guff that now fills the columns and glowing write ups of every single release.

This is not to say that music or music journalism shouldn’t be complex. 

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I dropped my subscription to Wire ten years ago and partly for that reason and partly because its sheer editorial eclecticism was leaving me behind. Not Wire's fault.

I"m with you on uncritical reviews. This, I think is bolstered by star rating with critics seemingly listening to music always 3.5 - 5 stars good. It's most telling when a release receives a number of reviews and the extracts from the press kit are readily identifiable in all of them 

I'm not sure I read many reviews these days but use sites like Free Jazz Collective as a handy new releases listing instead. I realise typing this that I've not even read Point Of Departure for ages, one of the better sources.

As for writing on art I have never found a periodical that doesn't completely confound me, despite attempts over 30+ years.  I stick with my catalogues (just now thoroughly enjoying the Tate Agnes Martin catalogue again) and the fabulously staid magazine that comes with my Art Fund membership.

Listening to 'Mutual Aid Music' now, prompted by this exchange. Really enjoying it.

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Posted (edited)

The only type of liner notes I enjoy reading is the one that describes the circumstances of the session and gives some background on the musicians. I have no interest in reading about the music itself - and even more so when it is some convoluted musicological theory blah blah. Give me some anecdotes from the artists' lives.

Regarding musical journalism, I think in the age of streaming it is close to totally irrelevant. I did enjoy reading the reviews by Eugene Chadbourne (whose writing I prefer to his music) and Dan Warburton (enjoy his music too!) when they were still reviewing stuff. I also liked short and to-the-point reviews by François Couture. But in general, as far as I am concerned, if the musical journalism dies out completely - good riddance.  

I hate the fanboy (and often quite an illiterate fanboy at that) style of Free Jazz Blog reviews, I also mainly use it to see what's been released. Never bother with the reviews themselves. Even their motto "Free = liberated from social, historical, psychological and musical constraints. Jazz = improvised music for heart, body and mind" is as trite as it can possibly get. 

    

Edited by Д.Д.

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I agree fully with both above posts.

POD I think is still solid. Shoemaker has such a depth of understanding that he never needs to drop fully into the guff.

On the Free Jazz Blog, I think the reviews' amateurishness is part of what keeps me reading it, because there I can read behind the reviews quite easily, in a way that I cannot with the much more polished Wire, and tell whether a release is worth bothering with. The best bit of FJB though is that it frequently links back to earlier releases by the artists and their affiliates, which allows you to pick up threads that you ignored at the time and get a deeper understanding.

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