Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Weird Nightmare | Meditations On Mingus

Of the three Hal Willner tribute albums I have (posted) this is my favorite. I was searching for a copy of "Beneath The Underdog", a sales assistant at Mole Jazz Records, had warned me off the Penguin edition advising me it was an abridged version.  As the gods would have it, it was republished by Vintage books a few months into my search (around 1991) and this album followed shortly after.
What pulled me in to this recording was the strange instrumentation from instruments invented by
Harry Partch or mores to the point the excellent recording of these instruments. I'm not aware of Partch's instruments given this treatment but would be interested if anyone knows of other recordings of a similar bent. I remember some years later, dragging a girlfriend across London to watch a special presentation and film (can't remember what) on Harry Partch on one of the hottest nights of the year. The sound was irritatingly terrible as was the film presented in a room with no air-con, I think our next date was something along the lines of "it's not you it's me"...
As with the previous Hal Wilner tribute albums the line-up of musicians is pretty stellar.


Producer Hal Willner had created a reputation as a fascinating instigator, organizing homages to composers as diverse as Nino Rota and Thelonious Monk wherein he conscripted the services of musicians from all over the stylistic map, allowing them to bring their unique interpretations and approaches to bear on the subjects. For his Charles Mingus project, his central idea was as inspired as it was loony: to incorporate the amazing instruments invented and designed by another equally maverick composer, Harry Partch, into reinterpretations of Mingus' work. By and large, it works, making Weird Nightmare a strange and wonderful one-off event. There's a central band at work based around bassist Greg Cohen and guitarist Bill Frisell, with guest stars, mostly from the rock world, including Robbie Robertson, Dr. John, Keith Richards, and Chuck D Highlights abound; when Partch's Marimba Eroica is struck during "Pithecanthropus Erectus," the floors of the listener's dwelling may buckle. Elvis Costello's reading of the title song is, well, eerily weird. One special high point is the version of "Gunslinging Bird" where text from Mingus' autobiographical Beneath the Underdog is angrily and righteously declaimed by Chuck D.; it's arguably as pure and forceful as anything he ever accomplished with Public Enemy and makes one wonder why he never pursued this seemingly rewarding path. There are several missteps as well, to be sure. Most egregiously, Keith Richards' sneering condescension on "Oh Lord, Don't Let Them Drop That Atomic Bomb on Me," as though he had better things to do, is embarrassing. But eventually, it's simply the gorgeous music of Charles Mingus that carries the day, showing itself more than capable of shouldering the ghost of Harry Partch and the wayward inclinations of its interpreters. Most of the pieces glow in these unusual treatments, and make Weird Nightmare a must for any serious Mingus fan.

1. Canon (Part 1)
2. Meditations On Integration
3. Canon (Part 2)
4. Jump Monk
5. Weird Nightmare  
6. Work Song
7. Self-Portrait In 3 Colors
8. Purple Heart
9. Tonight At Noon
10. Gunslinging Bird
11. Weird Nightmare Interlude
12. Reincarnation Of A Lovebird / Haitian Fight Song Montage
13. Open Letter To Duke
14. The Shoes Of The Fisherman's Wife Are Some Jive Ass Slippers
15. Oh Lord, Don't Let Them Drop That Atomic Bomb On Me
16. Eclipse
17. Pithecanthropus Erectus
18. Freedom
19. Weird Nightmare (Reprise)

Don Alias | Art Baron | Elvis Costello | Chuck D. 
Bill Frisell | Diamanda Galas | Dr. John | Bobby Previte
Vernon Reid | Marc Ribot | Robbie Robertson
Henry Rollins | Henry Threadgill
Full line up info

Composed by Charles Mingus

Produced by Hal Willner

Label: Columbia ‎– CK 52739
Format: 320
Country: US
Released: 1992
Genre: Jazz
Style: Jazz, Avant-Garde

Friday, 12 July 2013

Amarcord | Nino Rota

After discovering the Monk album a friend lent me his copy this album which didn't get as much rotation as the Monk but non the less was a good listen. The William Fischer Medley track made it onto a few mixtapes.

This tribute to the music of film composer Nino Rota was the first of Hal Willner's unusual multiartist projects and one of his more jazz-oriented ones. Such musicians as pianist Jaki Byard, vibraphonist Dave Samuels, guitarist Bill Frisell, soprano-saxophonist Steve Lacy, trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and bands headed by Carla Bley, Muhal Richard Abrams and David Amram are heard from on these eccentric but very musical adaptations of Rota's themes from Fellini movies.


 1. Amarcord

Arranged By Jaki Byard
Piano • Jaki Byard

2. Interlude From Juliet Of The Spirits

Arranged By Dave Samuels
Vibraphone • Dave Samuels

3. 8½

Arranged By Carla Bley
Conductor, Organ, Glockenspiel • Carla Bley
Bass • Steve Swallow
Drums • D. Sharpe
Engineer • Michael Mantler, Vince McGarry
Euphonium • Joe Daley
Piano • Arturo O'Farrill
Tenor Saxophone • Gary Windo
Trombone • Gary Valente
Trumpet • Michael Mantler
Tuba • Earl McIntyre
Woodwind • Courtenay Wynter 

4. Theme From "La Dolce Vita" And "Juliet Of The Spirits"

Arranged By Dave Samuels
Vibraphone • Dave Samuels

5. Juliet Of The Spirits

Arranged By Bill Frisell
Guitar • Bill Frisell

6. La Dolce Vita Suite

6a. Introduction

Arranged By Sharon Freeman
French Horn, Piano • Sharon Freeman
Steel Drums • Francis Haynes

6b. Notturno

Arranged By Muhal Richard Abrams
Conductor • Muhal Richard Abrams
Bass • Fred Hopkins
Drums • Warren Smith
Flute • Henry Threadgill
French Horn • Sharon Freeman
Piano • Amina Claudine Myers
Baritone Saxophone, Clarinet • Bobby Eldridge
Trombone • Emmet McDonald
Trumpet • Claudio Roditi
Vibraphone • Jay Hoggard

6c. Interlude

Arranged By Sharon Freeman
French Horn, Piano • Sharon Freeman
Steel Drums • Francis Haynes

6d. Valzer (Parlami Di Me)

Arranged By Chris Stein & Michael Sahl
Accordion, Percussion • Charles Rocket
Guitar • Chris Stein
Keyboards • Michael Sahl
Vocals • Deborah Harry
Drums • Lenny Ferrari 

7. Satyricon

Arranged By David Amram
Accordion, Percussion • Charles Rocket
Guitar, Penny Whistle, Double Ocarina, Shanai, Claves • David Amram
Bass • Victor Venegas
Drums • Lenny Ferrari
Flute • Jerry Dodgion
Percussion • Steve Berrios

8. Roma

Arranged By Steve Lacy
Soprano Saxophone, Gong • Steve Lacy
Engineer • Alain Cluzeau

9. Medley: The White Sheik, I Vitelloni, Il Bidone, 

The Night Of Cabiria

Arranged By William Fischer
Conductor • William Fischer
Bass • Ron Carter
Drums • Wilbert Fletcher
Piano • Kenny Barron
Tenor Saxophone • George Adams
Trumpet • Wynton Marsalis
Woodwind • Branford Marsalis

10. La Strada

Arranged By Jaki Byard
Piano • Jaki Byard

Written by Nino Rota

Produced by Hal Willner

Label: Hannibal Records ‎ HNCD 9301
Format: 320
Country: UK
Released: 1982
Genre: Jazz
Style: Free Jazz, Contemporary Jazz

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

That's the Way I Feel Now • A Tribute to Thelonious Monk

One of the many vinyl albums destroyed from a leaking roof many moons ago. Fortunate to find a rip sometime ago but I can't remember where, hope I thanked the original postee.  One of the curses (I find) of music blogs and blogging is that I hardly get time to listen to what I find, even the stuff I have been searching for forever. Gave this a bit of a listen while preparing the post and enjoyed what I was hearing.
• Stylo •

Two years after the death of pianist-composer Thelonious Monk, this very unusual and quite memorable double-LP tribute was put together. Producer Hal Willner's most successful project, the 23 interpretations of Monk originals all feature a different group of all-star players and stretch beyond jazz. Some of the performances are fairly straightforward while others are quite eccentric; certainly the crazy duet on "Four in One" by altoist Gary Windo and Todd Rundgren (on synthesizers and drum machines) and the version of "Shuffle Boil" featuring John Zorn on game calls (imitating the sound of ducks) are quite unique. There are many colorful moments throughout the project and the roster of musicians is remarkable: Bobby McFerrin with Bob Dorough, Peter Frampton, Joe Jackson, Steve Lacy, Dr. John, Gil Evans, Randy Weston, Roswell Rudd, Eugene Chadbourne and Shockabilly, the Fowler Brothers, NRBQ, Steve Khan, Carla Bley, Barry Harris, Was (Not Was) and many others. There is not a slow moment or uninteresting selection on this highly recommended set.



Arranged by Bruce Fowler

Bruce Fowler • trombones
Phil Teele • bass trombones

Tom Fowler • bass

Chester Thompson • drums

Little Rootie Tootie

Performed by NRBQ and the
 Whole Wheat Horns
Al Anderson • guitar

Terry Adams • piano
Joseph Spampinato • bass
Tom Ardolino • drums
Donn Adams • trombone

Keith Spring • tenor saxophone


Arranged and preformed by 
Steve Kahn • guitars

Donald Fagen • synthesizers

Blue Monk

Arranged and performed by
Dr. John • piano


Arranged by Carla Bley

Performed by 
The Carla Bley Band

with special guest
Johnny Griffin • tenor saxophone

Carla Bley • organ

Mike Mantler • trumpet

Gary Valente • trombone

Vincent Chancey • French horn
Bob Stewart • tuba

Steve Slagle • alto and baritone
Hiram Bullock • guitar

Kenny Kirkland • piano

Steve Swallow • bass

Victor Lewis • drums

Manolo Badrena • percussion, 
special effects

Hal Willner • the voice of death


Arranged and performed by
Barry Harris • tack piano


Was (Not Was)
David Was • flute
Don Was • guitar, synthesizer, horn arrangement
Sheila Jordan • vocal
Marcus Belgrave • trumpet
Jervonny Collier • trombone
David McMurray • alto saxophone
Michael Ward • tenor saxophone
Larry Fratangelo • percussion
Sweet Pea Atkinson • background vocal
Harry Bowens • background vocal
Carol Hall • background vocal
Donald Ray Mitchell • background vocal

Brilliant Corners

Arranged by Mark Bingham
Mark Bingham • guitar
Brenden Harkein • guitar
John Scofield • guitar
Steve Swallow • bass
Joey Barron • drums

Ask Me Now

Arranged and performed by
Steve Lacey • soprano saxophone
Charlie Rouse • tenor saxophone

Monk's Mood

Arranged by Sharon Freeman
Sharon Freeman • French horn, celeste
Featuring special guest
Willie Ruff • solo French horn
Vincent Chancey • French horn
Bill Warnick • French horn
Gregory Williams • French horn
Kenneth Barron • piano
Buster Williams • bass
Victor Lewis • drums, percussion

Four In One

Arranged and performed by
Todd Rundgren • synthesizers, 
keyboards, guitar, drum machines
Gary Windo • alto saxophones


Arranged and performed by 
Randy Weston • piano


Arranged and performed by  
Steve Lacey • soprano saxophone 
and Elvin Jones • drums

Shuffle Boil

Arranged by John Zorn
John Zorn • game calls, alto saxophone, clarinets
Arto Lindsay • guitar vocal
Wayne Horvitz • piano, organ, celeste, electronics
M. E. Miller • drums, timpani

In Walked Bud

Performed by Terry Adams and Friends
Roswell Rudd • trombone
Pat Patrick • alto saxophone
Terry Adams • piano
John Ore • bass
Frankie Dunlop • drums

Criss Cross

Arranged and performed by 
Eugene Chadbourne • acoustic, electric guitars
Mark Kramer • piano, organ, bass guitar, alto trombone, 
Dad's clocks, tapes
David Licht • drums, percussion


Mark Bingham • guitar
Brenden Harkein • guitar
John Scofield • guitar
Steve Swallow • bass
Joey Barron • drums
Additional horns
David Buck • trumpet
Don Davis • clarinet
Mars Williams • clarinet, tenor saxophone
Ralph Carney • bass saxophone, whistle

'Round Midnight

Arranged by Joe Jacckson
Joe Jackson • piano
Sharon Freeman • conductor
Jerry Little • concertmaster
Melanie Baker • violin
Sandra Billingsles • violin
Karen Gilbert • violin
Cheryl Hong • violin
Stan Hunt • violin
Crystal Garner • viola
Maxine Roach • viola
Muneer Abdul Fatah • cello
Enrique Orango • cello
Lawrence Feldman • clarinet
Steve Slagle • clarinet
Ken McIntyre • bass clarinet
Bob Cranshaw • bass
Buddy Williams • drums

Friday The Thirteenth

Original tracks arranged and performed by
Bobby McFerrin • vocals
and Bob Dorough • vocals
Dave Samuels • vibes, marimba, percussion


Chris Spedding • guitars, arrangement, concept
Peter Frampton • guitars, solo
Marcus Miller • bass
Anton Fig • drums

Gallop's Gallop

Arranged and performed by 
Steve Lacey • soprano saxophone


Arranged and performed by 
Steve Slagle • alto saxophone
Dr. John • piano
Steve Swallow • bass
and Ed Blackwell • drums

Bemsha Swing

Arranged and performed
by Steve Lacey • soprano saxophone
and Gil evans • electric and acoustic pianos

ALL MUSIC COMPOSED BY THELONIOUS MONK Published by Thelonious Music BMI except: "Bemsha Swing" written by Thelonious Monk and Denzil Best 
 "'Round Midnight" published by Warner Bros. Music, and is registered as written by Thelonious Monk, Cootie Williams, and Bernie Hanighen 
"In Walked Bud" and "Monk's Mood" published by Embassy Music BMI

Recorded and mixed at
MEDIASOUND STUDIOS through MediaMax Corporation.
Recording and mix engineer Doug Epstien

Produced by Hal Willner


Label: A&M Records ‎– SP 96600
Format: 320 
Country: US
Released: 1984
Genre: Jazz
Style: Bop, Post Bop

Sunday, 30 June 2013

Allen Ginsberg ‎• The Lion For Real

producer notes:
During the summer of 1986 I met Michael Minzer who runs Paris Records in Dallas. Michael always had a major interest in literature and produced many concerts and recordings of poetry and music. He was looking for someone to produce an album with Allen Ginsberg for his company - Michael had already recorded Allen performing Blake's "Nurses Song" with Steven Taylor and the Garland Chamber Symphony for a compilation album "Made Up in Texas"(1986) and was ready to record a full album with Allen. Familiar with some of my multi-artist tribute productions, Michael thought I'd be the right person to do this project.

I knew much of Allen's work. I've seen him read from his works a number of times and owned a few of his recordings including "Kaddish" (1963) on Atlantic Records, "First Blues" (1982) a double album on John Hammond's label, and "Howl" (1959) on Fantasy. Those records worked wonderfully in their own way (basically documenting the moments) - but I felt that this record should be something different. Ken Nordine's "Word Jazz" records were spoken word LPs, yet came across as music albums. I wondered if an album with Allen could do the same thing. It was a challenging project and always looking to get involved in potentially dangerous situations, I took Michael's offer.

At the first meetings, Allen seemed suspicious. He obviously had gone through some strange experiences with making records before, and that I had only some general conceptual ideas didn't really help. A few months later an album that I produced for Marianne Faithfull ("Strange Weather") was released and Marianne played the record for Allen at the Naropa Institute in Colorado where they were both teaching. Allen liked the album and with some encouragement from Marianne, he became enthusiastic about our project. Shortly thereafter an approximate recording period was scheduled.

To start, both Minzer and I read Allen's complete works, now easily available in two volumes by Harper & Row. We each made a list of about twenty poems that we thought would work well with music. Allen picked about eighty. One night he read almost all these to me in his apartment accompanied by a neighbor screaming out of his window to shut up. We then decided on about fifty poems to consider. Next I called about a dozen of my favorite composer/musicians that I felt would be right for the project, gave some his collected poems, and invited them to A&R Studios in New York to hear Allen record.

Ginsberg read poems that we picked out, with additional requests from the musicians, for about six hours in the studio while we sat in the control room - an amazing night. We gave the evening's tape copies to musicians and invited them to pick about three poems and compose music. We met separately later that week and picked the best poems for each to work on.

The week that we spent recording went extremely well. Each night everyone would arrive between seven and eight in the evening and pieces would be presented by the composer, rehearsed and recorded with Allen reading the work live. Then we'd go to the next composition. After the first performance broke the ice ("Refrain"), everyone's nervousness disappeared and the sessions went by quickly and smooth. We averaged four poems recorded each night. Character contrasts were great, from an insane Gary Windo arranged number to a beautiful Steve Swallow composition within a few hours; personalities from Beaver Harris to Arto Lindsay would float in and out of songs. Allen, who was never quite in a situation like this before, adapted quite well and kept everyone's spirits high. At the end of the week, we had twenty-one numbers recorded, of which we decided to complete all but one.

Chris Blackwell and Kim Buie of Island Records heard the results and immediately wanted to release it to start a series of spoken word great poet/musician collaborations on their newly formed Jones label. After a few sequence changes and interesting debates on what tracks to delete, the record was finished.

Thanks go to everyone associated with this project. Of special mention is Joel Tornabene who put Michael Minzer and myself together, Joe Ferla for being alive, Fran Tose for her help at the start of the album, Marianne Faithfull for her valuable friendship, and especially Allen Ginsberg for putting himself and his art in our world and taking the chance. I still don't know what the reaction will be, but hope the enjoyment that went into the record shows.

I'll be seeing you.
Hal Willner

1. SCRIBBLE (: 48)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Blair)
Casual note, a long melancholy affectionate 1956 thought about the late irascible Bay Area anarchist Poet, Kenneth Rexroth, might be 4 AM in the soul that Michael Blair's music mirrors.

(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: G. Windo)
1949 lyric influenced by Thomas Wyatt's My Lute, Awake! & Wm. Butler Yeats' Crazy Jane-part of The Shrouded Stranger of the Night concept conceived same time as Kermac's Dr. Sax. Gary Windo's free jazz sounds a variant of drunken Mexican Day of Dead dancing skeleton band.

3. XMAS GIFT (1: 49)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/M. Bingham)
The calm Princetonian world of XX Century science, a hint of Psychedelic Cosmic Consciousness discussing the Universe's origin (as Buddhist wd say 'Unborn'), a flash of comfy Country Club and odd awakening to the Bomb 1972. I was too Shy to rebuke kind Mr. Einstein for this hideous karma. Mark Bingham's strains carry this literal dream.

4. TO AUNT ROSE (3:29)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Ribot)
A memory flash 1958 Paris. My favorite Aunt Rose (19009-1940) took car of me weekends when my mother was ill-Books named are my late father Louis Ginsberg's. It was a big event to publish a volume of poetry those days! Rose Gaidemak died of septicemia. Note delicate music box time travel invention by Marc Ribot.

Sound effects by Richard Fussco (thanks to WDST; Woodstock, NY)
'Be mute for me, Contemplative Idol': epigraph from Tristan Corbiere's last stanza, Rhapsody of a Deaf Man. Retrospective account of a .mystical experience' 1948 described elsewhere (Paris Review interviews: Writers at Work 3'd Series, Penguin, NY 1986), the Lion representing Divine Presence. I then thought it necessary to break thru the wall of reality & confront God Eternity Death face to face. Five years later Tibetan Lama Dudjom Rinpoche advised me, 'If you see something horrible, don't cling to it; if you see something beautiful, don't cling to it.' Ironic Quatrain structure switching to prayer last stanza roughly follows Corbiere's poem's dynamics. Gary Windo's circus sax announces the poem's burlesque symbolism, Beaver Harris's drum follows the drama.

6. REFRAIN (3:29)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: Michael Blair)
Among the earliest writing in this suite, echoing late Yeats' style. "Shadow changes into bone,"was my Kerouackian motto 1948, intending to say that eternal prophetic intuition (shadow) will turn out to be real (bone). Having heard Blake's voice I was headed for the booby-hatch for a season. Michael Blair's arrangement's midnight reflectiveness fits this rhyme's mood & meter.

A Blakean Lyric, drawn from a childhood boogeyman sex dream under Paterson, N.J. choo-choo train Broadway overpass, my best 1949 rhymed poem, Kerouac liked the genius of "I hide & wait like a naked child/Under the bridge my heart goes wild." Marc Ribot's setting captures the railroad shufflebones wispy phantom rhythm - rill this version I never realized the stranger's gasping graveyard groan was a Hungry Ghost's hopeless cry for sexual help.

(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: Bill Frisell)
A little anecdote the poet Corso told me around 1951, Bill Frisell's delicate setting turns around this memory of buried innocence.

(Words-- A. Ginsberg/Music: R. Carney)
Spoken originally to tapemachine driving thru ephemeral Cleveland's Industrial flats June 1966, bewilderment at 'The Fall of America' in Vietnam Wartime, what will future generations think? The collage concludes with Mantra to Buddha's human aspect as Sakya family wiseman, followed by Highest Perfect Wisdom Mantra: 'Gone gone totally gone totally gone over the top, wakened mind, So, ah! ' -Ralph Carney's setting fits free-verse open form modem poetry style to variable melancholy cadenced musical phrasing.

10. THE END (2:04)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Ribot)
A psychedelic condensation of the Tibetan Book of the Dead, scary & somewhat theistic in conception, in continuous rhythm as if there were a great being like Father Fisheye at the end or bottom of the 1960 Universe. Marc Ribot's music's appropriately eerie.

(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: L. Pickett)
I was working graveyard shift 1949 as copy boy Associated Press office writing midnight stanzas, Thomas Wyatt mode, analyzing money, sex, hipness, heroism etc. somewhat uncannily prophesying 'back to the Land' & Beat fame. Lenny Pickett built sophisticated multiple wind instrument cadenzas timed around my one-shot solo recitation he took home from studio to work with.

10. THE END (2:04)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Ribot)
A psychedelic condensation of the Tibetan Book of the Dead, scary & somewhat theistic in conception, in continuous rhythm as if there were a great being like Father Fisheye at the end or bottom of the 1960 Universe. Marc Ribot's music's appropriately eerie.

(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: L. Pickett)
I was working graveyard shift 1949 as copy boy Associated Press office writing midnight stanzas, Thomas Wyatt mode, analyzing money, sex, hipness, heroism etc. somewhat uncannily prophesying 'back to the Land' & Beat fame. Lenny Pickett built sophisticated multiple wind instrument cadenzas timed around my one-shot solo recitation he took home from studio to work with.

12. SUNSET (1:42)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: L. Picket)
Written riding on Susquehanna train N.Y. to New Jersey, newly out of mental hospital visiting home in Paterson in 1949 one dusk, realizing a sad gentle fact that night here brings day elsewhere on the Planet. Bill Frisell muses into sunrise with clear birdsong.

13. HUM BOM! (4:00)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: S. Swallow)
Written at Atlanta 1971 interracial Vietnam Peace Protest, based on Shivite ganja-smoker mantra to Creator/Destroyer, performed as sound poem 1984 at Folk City. Don Cherry alchemized my complaining downer cry 'Whom Bomb?' by turning it around, "You don't wanna bomb! Who Said Bomb?" & I picked up how to transmute the bomb fear mode to straightforward constructive suggestion: "We don't bomb.' Steve Swallow surprised me, sophisticating raw paranoia into laid-back disco propaganda.

14. KRAL MAJALES (5:11)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Bingham)
I was elected King of May 1965 as poem describes, I was kicked out of Prague, wrote this on airplane to England; same week found myself in Croyden Hotel room with Dylan & the Beatles, later stood on Thames Embankment watching poet Dylan flash Subterranean Homesick Blues key phrases on display cards for his historic Dont Look Back movie camera.

This poem's closest to poetic ideal of a majestic cadenced proclamation. Ralph Carney's Circle of Fifths continuously evolves in horns' circular breathing (like Australian Aborigines' Didgerey Doo) matching voice-text power to make the most perfect poetry music recording I've done- unobstructed exaltation, every syllable chanted conscious.

15. GURU (3:30)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: S. Swallow)
Brief poem writ rising from a summer afternoon nap on Primrose Hill's grass, overlooking London's misted skyline 1965. Steve Swallow's music suggests the same galactic vastness of Space & Time. Listen hard, we buried the 'Guru' in the music.

16. ODE TO FAILURE (2:45)
(Words: A. Ginsberg/Music: M. Blair)
The most recent poem (1980) on this record. Michael Blair's music changes with shiftings of thought, & punctuates my phrasing. Whitman from Song of Myself: "Vivas to those who have fail'd/And to those whose war-vessels sank in the sea!...Not a mutineer walks handcuff'd to jail but I am handcuff'd to him and walk by his side,/I am less the jolly one there, and more the silent one with sweat on my twitching lips.' Vladimir Mayakovsky: "Die, my verse, die, like the rank & File,/as our unknown, unnumbered, fell/in storming heaven" (At Me Top of My Voice, 1930. Tr. Herbert Marshall). Yes I failed, everyone born dies, accepting failure makes success of life. 

Allen Ginsberg
Mark Bingham, Michael Blair, Ralph Carney,
Bill Frisell, Beaver Harris, Arto Lindsay
Lenny Pickett, Praire Prince, Marc Ribot,
G.E. Smith, Steve Swallow, Rob Wasserman,
Gary Windo, Garo Yellin
and others

Produced by Hal Willner

Buy here

Label: Antilles ‎– AN 8750
Format: Vinyl 320
Country: UK
Released: 1989
Genre: Classical, Pop
Style: Spoken Word, Contemporary

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Various • Mutant Beats

Here's the subtitle: "Abstrakt Hip-Hop, Future Funk & Science Fiction Soul." That about sums it up. This is a compilation of tracks by artists from the U.S. and the U.K., all of them dedicated to creating innovative groove music in various ways. It is, frankly, a nearly perfect album, for the simple reason that everything on it is musically interesting and compellingly funky but no two tracks sound much alike. Highlights include "Do Yourself Some Good" by Heavy Handed, which moves from gritty soul-funk to frantic jungle over the course of three minutes; "Soul Skankin" and "Shadow" by the reggae-informed Rude Kulcha, the former of which combines a strutting reggae bassline with what sounds like an urban field recording of girls singing; and the dub-inflected abstraction of Moonstar's "Matrix." Best of all is an untitled track credited to Euphonic vs. Soothsayer and Dr. Israel, a jungle/hip-hop fusion experiment on which Soothsayer raps and Dr. Israel toasts over an expansive drum'n'bass backing track. Excellent.
Rick Anderson

1. Do Yourself Some Good • Heavy Handed
2. A.P.B. (Funky Hammond Mix) • Faceless
3. Trife (Jurassic Mix) • Black Pearl
4. Soul Skankin • Rude Kulcha
featuring Bill Laswell & Afrika Baby Bambaataa
5. My Stories • Lazy K.
6. Euphonic vs. Soothsayer & Dr. Israel • Euphonic vs. Soothsayer & Dr. Israel
7. Matrix • Moonstar
8. Twilight • Survival Soundz
9. Logic Part 3 • Adam Pierce
10. The Dark, The Day (remix) • Faceless
11. Shadow • Rude Kulcha
12. Hard To Maintain • Black Pearl

Compiled by David Wolin and Mr. Morgan
Buy Here

Label: Mutant Sound System ‎– MSS 0017-2
Format: 320
Country: US
Released: 1997
Genre: Electronic, Hip Hop
Style: Abstract, Downtempo, Hip Hop

Monday, 24 June 2013

Ira Cohen • The Majoon Traveler

Inspired by a post at E.O.M.S.


Ira Cohen, the Majoon Traveler & his DJ fellow, the ritual music explorer, bring along their aquarian friends: Don Cherry, Ornette Coleman, Bill Laswell, Ed Blackwell, Lights In A Fat City, Joujouka.... The groovy readings are complemented by some traditional Moroccan pieces recorded in Tangier & Marrakesh by Ira Cohen, Paul Bowles & Brion Gysin. For the first time, we can listen to Angus MacLise (he played with John Cale, La Monte Young, Terry Riley...) playing cembalum & other percussion in a rare piece recorded in 1964, a year before his collaboration with the early Velvet Underground.

1. Blind Violinist

Recorded By Ira Cohen

2. Imagine Jean Cocteau

3. Song To Nothing/Letter To Caliban/End Of A Line

Ching, Cymbal, Bells • Eddy Sayer
Didgeridoo • Stephen Kent
Naut Humon Suling, Piri, Sampler • Kenneth Newby
Lights In A Fat City
Recorded By Naut Humon

4. Kathmandu Dream Piece

Flute • Loren Standlee
Guitar • Raja Samyana
Organ • Hetty MacLise
Percussion • Angus MacLise
Recorded By Ira Cohen, Ira Landgarten Voice, Ziska Baum

5. Cembalism

Harpsichord • Angus MacLise 

6. Tangier Telegram From The Majoon Traveler/From The Moroccan Journal 1987

Recorded By Ira Cohen

7. Allah Moulana Jilala

Recorded By  Brion Gysin, Paul Bowles

8. Even The King Of The Ginza Must Sometimes Sleep/For Yamaguchi Kenjiro/Tokyo Birdhouse/For Kazuko Shiraishi

Drums • Ed Blackwel
Dousso N'gouni, Flute, Keyboards • Don Cherry
Recorded By Hans Christian Reumschüssel

9. Ornette Comes Home

Alto Saxophone • Ornette Coleman
Clarinet • Robert Palmer
The Master Musicians Of Jajouka

10. This Is Real Timing

11. Djemaa El Fna

Recorded By Ira Cohen

All Poems And Prose by Ira Cohen
Ira Cohen Recorded by Bill Laswell (4, 6, 8, 9)
Naut Humon (2, 3, 10)

Full recording info

 Produced, edited, mixed By 

DJ Cheb I Sabbah


Ira Cohen's Death


Label: Sub Rosa ‎– SR 062
Format: 320
Country: Belgium
Released: 1994
Genre: Electronic, Jazz, Non-Music
Style: Spoken Word, Field Recording, Ambient

Monday, 17 June 2013


For some reason the post text has become  blue and my blogroll  purple. I have been trying to work out why this is as I haven't messed with my settings. If anyone can help drop me a line.
Will post in the meantime. ..maybe I'll just leave blogspot.


Thursday, 6 June 2013

Polytime • Polytime

Five freestyle tunes by one of the world's most prolific electronic musicians working with the famous vibes player Karl Berger. I'm just recently opening up to jazz, so this disc was a good purchase for me. This and Conjoint from David Moufang's label often get played just after dinnertime, and they seem appropriate for that kind of mood. Polytime presents a new direction for Fax releases: wholesome, genuine lounge and jazz with the electronics held at bay about 40% of the time. Not really something you absolutely must hear, but definitely a welcome change.

Worldwide Roaming: The intro track. Synth theme opener, backing chords, and a trademark synth solo by Namlook. About halfway through, some rambunctious drums drop by. Also includes a nice guitar solo.

Insight: Starts with about five and half minutes of vibraphone playing, then the synth theme from the 1st track is reintroduced, and new background chord layouts are brought up and the vibes continue. Overall, a gentle track which evokes a slow jazzy atmosphere. A well-shaped song. It takes several turns without losing the theme, and each section leads smoothly into the next. The 60's organ from Jet Chamber III is also present.

Polytime: The title track is for funk lovers. A wah-wah riff enhances straight up jazz guitar. If you were to listen to this without knowing anything about it, Fax might be the furthest thing from your mind. But then again, there are a few clues. Another guitar solo, this time a bit more active.

Tina: It's too bad that my favorite track on this disc also happens to be the shortest, at just under 6 minutes. In 3 parts, the track begins with some great solo acoustic bass work, much like the Dark Side of the Moog IV track 6. Very deep and evocative. A short pause, and then the synth takes its turn. A warbling wave jumps up the scale and pitchflips to different notes. Finally, the wave falls silent and a spacious bass guitar takes the spotlight. Reminds me somewhat of the really nice guitar sections on Jet Chamber IV. The texture of the strings is similar to the theme initiated in track 1. Conjures a blissful, almost melancholic feeling. Floydian to the max.

True Blue: The track will do well with anyone who likes the Twin Peaks kind of jazz. It's a slow tempo track complete with bass, vibes, and some light pseudo-jazz brush sequences. Some drums make a momentary appearance about 3/4 through it, as does some classic sounding distant slide guitar.
review by no@h

1. Worldwide Roaming
2. Insight
3. Polytime
4. Tina
5. True Blue

Pete Namlook • Guitar, Electronics
Karl Berger • Vibraphone

all tracks written by Pete Namlook and Karl Berger
Recorded at Klanglabor Hödeshof

Produced by Peter Kuhlmann

R.I.P. Pete Namlook

Label: Fax +49-69/450464 ‎– PK 08/140
Format: 320
Country: Germany
Released: 01 Jun 1998
Genre: Electronic
Style: Future Jazz, Ambient

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Close Erase • Dance This

Close Erase turned electric on their third album, Dance This (Bp 01010). Together with producer Reidar Skår, Close Erase released an album which redefines the standards of modern jazz music without compromises. With references to Miles Davis in the seventies, Aphex Twin, Squarepusher and the Norwegian group Supersilent, Dance This appeals to a wide audience, stretching from dark clubs to jazznerds headphones. The album has received reviews comparable to standing ovations by most critics, including highest rating by Norwegian critic Terje Mosnes (Dagbladet).

1. Dance This Part I
2. Dance This Part II
3. Zoo Solitude Part III
4. Zoo Solitude Part II
5. Zoo Solitude Part III
6. Zoo Solitude Part IV
7. Rigid Digit

Ingebrigt H. Flaten • Bass
Per Oddvar Johansen • Drums / Electronics
Christian Wallumrød • keyboards

Produced by  Reidar Skår and Close Erase

Label: BP – bp01010
Format: 320
Country: Norway
Released: 2001
Genre: Electronic, Jazz
Style: Abstract, Future Jazz

Conjoint • Earprints

The sophomore album from Conjoint charts many of the same vibes as 1997's self-titled album for KM20, though that's hardly a drawback. Moufang and Hodge wrap Berger's laid back vibraphone lines and Ruit's sparse guitar pickings -- plus a variety of guests on reeds and organ -- with a fabric of similarly gentle (but often free-form) atmospherics and electronics. The beats range from crackly trip-hop ("Strange Ideas," "Four Nine") to more precise electro programming ("Walk On!"), even while the surface music remains surprisingly similar. Most of the songs are bookended by short interludes termed "earprints" -- unfortunately, the large number of different pieces often gives the experimentation a slight meandering quality. Though it may not survive a full listen, Earprints includes a lot of intriguing music.
John Bush

1. Earprint Nr1
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Breath Noise • Anna-Lena Fiedler
2. Strange Ideas
Vibraphone, Melodica, Conversation • Karl Berger
Shaker, Drum Programming, Conversation • Jamie Hodge
Juno 106, Pro-one • David Moufang
3. Earprint Nr2
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Fender Fretless • Jamie Hodge
4. Walk On!
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus
Human Beatbox • Andrew Pekler
Programming • Jonas Grossmann
5. Earprint Nr3
Vibraphone • David Moufang
Oboe, Breath Loop • Anna-Lena Fiedler
6. Four.Nine
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Bass, Slit Drums • David Moufang
Ms-20, Drum Programming • Jamie Hodge
Clarinet • Christoph Reimann
Oboe • Anna-Lena Fiedler
7. Earprint Nr4
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus

8. La Pluie Et La Seine
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Organ, Guitar • David Moufang
Clarinet • Christoph Reimann
9. Earprint Nr5
Slit Drums • David Moufang
Saxophone • D.D.
10. The Joint
Organ • Jamie Hodge
Juno 106, Micro Modular, Electric Piano • David Moufang
Sh-101 • Kai Kroker
11. New York Mary Disaster
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Fender Fretless, Drum Programming • Jamie Hodge
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus
Juno 106, Organ, Drum Programming • David Moufang
Saxophone, Voice • D.D.

12. Born Under A Rhyming Planet At The Foot Of The Odenwald
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus
Programming • Jonas Grossmann
13. Earprint Nr6
Slit Drums • David Moufang
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus
Saxophone • D.D.

14. Bar Rock
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Vibraphone, Talkbox, Guitar, Drum Programming • David Moufang
15. Earprint Nr7
Vibraphone • David Moufang
Oboe • Anna-Lena Fiedler
16. Instructions
Vibraphone, Instructions • Karl Berger
Drum Programming • David Moufang
Instructions • Jamie Hodge
Guitar •  Gunter Ruit Kraus
Additional Drum Programming • Burkhard Höfler

17. Deductions (Who Can Get Me The Phone# For Mark Hollis Or Tim Friese Greene?)
Melodica • Karl Berger
Clarinet • Christoph Reimann
Oboe • Anna-Lena Fiedler

18. Earprint Nr8
Vibraphone • David Moufang
19. Die Implosion Des Sterns (... Und Das Absolute Nichts Danach)
Conductor, Guitar • Gunter Ruit Kraus
Drum Programming • David Moufang
Bass • Ralf Keydel
Drums • Alex Wormit
Tenor Horn • Stefan
Organ • Holger Selig
Tenor Saxophone • Constanze Krauß
Tenor Saxophone • Dorit Schradi
Tenor Saxophone • Elmar Lehmann
Tenor Saxophone • Tilmann Westhäuser
Trumpet • DJ B
20. No Balls
Vibraphone • Karl Berger
Guitar • Gunter Ruit Kraus
Rhythm Guitar, Drum Programming • David Moufang
Clarinet • Christoph Reimann

Recorded and mixed at reSource Studio, Heidelberg
Produced by Conjoint

Buy Here

Label: Source Records ‎– 991234
Format: 320
Country: Germany
Released: 2000
Genre: Electronic
Style: Abstract, Future Jazz, Downtempo

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Berger | Hodge | Moufang | Ruit • Conjoint

Fusion. Electronics and soloists. Bridging generations.
Vibraphonist Karl Berger born In Heidelberg/Germany, started his career in the late fifties. In the early sixties he moved to Paris where he met Don Cherry. After touring europe with Don Cherry in '65 he moved to New York where he established himself as one of the top vibraphonists in the Avantgarde Jazz scene.
He recorded with musicians like Ornette Coleman ("Symphony for improvisers", Blue Note ) and Lee Konitz ("Duets" , Milestone ) aswell as releasing several albums as bandleader for Milestone (with Ed Blackwell, Dave Holand, Jim Hall......) and other labels.
Later he worked with Bill Laswell and George Clinton (including string arrangements for "Material" albums (axiom).

Guitarist Gunther Ruit Kraus from Ruit/Germany is living in Heidelberg. With his bands he played most of the major jazz festivals in Europe like Moers, Holland and Frankfurt, Germany as well as countless concerts in clubs throughout Germany.

Jamie Hodge from Chicago released his first record as "Born under a rhyming planet" 1994 on Richie Hawtins legendary "+8" label (Detroit). It became a straight classic.Other releases on "+8" and "Plug Research" followed to make Jamie Hodge one of the most respected artists in the electronic music scene.

David Moufang aka Move D, co-founder of Source Records, released several solo projects like the electronic-listening classic "Kunststoff" on Source Records, a 12" on Warp Records and"Solitaire" on Fax Records.
He also worked in several colaboration projects such as "Reagenz" (with Jonah Sharp aka Spacetime Continuum), "View to View" (with Robert Gordon), "Koolfang"/"Move D & Namlook" (with Pete Namlook) and "Deep Space Network" (with Jonas Grossmann).
He is the grandmaster of smooth and groovy techno.
Source Records

1. The Catch
2. Neue Serie
3. Mountaineer
4. Ruit Valley
5. Tee Dum
6. Schokoladenmilch
7. Walk!
8. Deta
9. Concessions

Karl Berger • Vibraphone 

Jamie Hodge • Synthesizer, Organ, Guitar, Bass, Vocals, Programming
David Moufang • Synthesizer, Organ, Guitar, Piano, Vocals, Percussion, Programming
Gunter "Ruit" Kraus • Guitar

Produced by
David Moufang & Jonas Grossmann

Label: KM 20 – km2003
Format: 320
Country: Europe
Released: 1997
Genre: Electronic
Style: Abstract, Jazztronica

Monday, 27 May 2013

Peeni Waali ‎• Peeni Waali

In 1987 Fizzé invited the reggae Heart Beat Band to record a maxi single with him, but they hesitated because they knew he had no reggae experience.
Determined to do the recording, Fizzé flew to Jamaica and met the late producer W. 'Jack Ruby' Lindo who took him to Kingston’s Dynamics Studio to hear a Sly and Robbie session, to meet musicians, buy records and to learn. One evening in Oracabessa, Fizzé was mesmerised by the extraordinary phenomenon of thousands of fireflies. It was an inspiring moment that would be the start of a 12 year exploration of a myriad of cultures.
Eventually Fizzé also met Rico Rodriguez who was to influence him greatly. Fizzé returned to Switzerland and recorded 3 tracks for Heart Beat Band, plus some of his impressions of Jamaica and its firefly, the Peeni Waali.
Fizzé returned to Jamaica in 1988 and recorded more music and overdubbed the rhythms he had prepared, working with percussionist Leon 'Scully' Simms, Robbie Shakespeare, saxophonist Dean 'Big D' Frazer, Leroy 'Horsemouth' Wallace and Felix 'Deadly Headly' Bennet .
Fizzé was hooked on reggae, loving its parallels with the blues but also its freshness.
Fizzé returned to Switzerland and worked in advertising for another two years but Rodriguez often recorded for him. Jerome Van Jones visited and recorded Duke Ellington’s Satin Doll and Blue Moon to Fizzé's reggae lines. In 1989 Fizzé contacted Linton Kwesi Johnson and Dennis Bovell and Beacon of Hope was born. Fizzé also met Lee Scratch Perry who voiced one of Fizzé's tunes, rapping about Liecht (light) & Stein (Liechtenstein was just over the border).
Peeni Waali the album was starting to take shape and it was released on his label in 1990, along with the Linton Kwesi Johnson album Tings An Times.

1. Beacon Of Hope
Narrator, Lyrics  • Linton Kwesi Johnson
Accordion • Johnny "Alig" Human
Bass, Percussion • Dennis Bovell
Guitar • Lorenz Viennet
Drums, Percussion • Dizzi
Percussion, Keyboards • Fizzè
Hammond B3 Solo • Jerome Van Jones
Percussion • Scully
Milkpots • Pascal Cuche
Rico • Trombone
Ukulele • Cédric Vuille

2. Skarab
Bass • Robbie Shakespeare
Anne Lehmann, Catherine Broillet, Christine Freudiger
Françoise Borioli, Jacqueline Gander

Percussion • Dizzi
Percussion • Scully
Percussion • Pascal Cuche
Rico • Trombone
Percussion, Keyboards • Fizzè

3. Ricochet
Bass, Keyboards • Fizzè
Drums • Dizzi 
Trombone • Rico

4. Licht & Stein
Vocals • Lee "Scratch" Perry
Bass, Guitar, Percussion • Dennis Bovell
Drums • Bazz Smith
Balaphones • Christian Addor
Balaphones • Olivier Meury
Keyboards • Peter Weber
Balaphones, Timbales • Dizzi
Keyboards • Fizzè
Trombone • Gerhard Lampert
Trumpet • Hans Kaemmerle

5. Peeni Waali (Version)
Bass, Accordion, Kalimba, Percussion, Saxophone • Fizzè
Clarinet • Cédric Vuille
Balafon, Mbira, Percussion • Dizzi
Trombone • Rico

6. Paper Mensch
Vocals • Rams
 Bass • Dennis Bovell
Drums, Percussion • Dizzi
Guitar • Cédric Cédric Vuille
Guitar • Momo Rossel
Keyboards, Bottles, Zither, Percussion • Fizzè
Trombone • Rico

7. A No Nottn
Acoustic Guitar, Ukulele • Cédric Vuille
Alto Saxophone • Dean Frazer
Bass • Robbie Shakespeare
Cabasa, Wood Block • Scully
Electric Guitar • Lorenz Viennet
Hihat • Phil Santschi
Snare • Dizzi
Trumpet • Felix "Deadly Headley" Bennett
Trombone • Rico
Keyboards • Fizzè

8. Irish Irie
Accordion • Johnny "Alig" Human
Cabasa • Scully
Drums, Spoons • Dizzi
Harp • Asita Hamidi
Keyboards, Flute, Bass • Fizzè
Soprano Saxophone • Felix "Deadly Headley" Bennett
Trombone, Funda • Rico
Ukulele • Cédric Vuille
Violin • Christoph Habegger

9. Rockaman Soul
Bass, Keyboards, Flute • Fizzè
Drums • Phil Santschi
Guitar • Martin Millar
Vocals, Trombone, Percussion • Rico

10. Satin Doll
Bass, Guitar, Percussion • Dennis Bovell
Drums • Bazz Smith
Organ • Jerome Van Jones
Trombone • Rico

11. Mini Mali
Bass, Guitar • Dennis Bovell
Drums • Dizzi
Keyboards • Fizzè
Bass, Guitar • Dennis Bovell

12. Version Of Hope
Accordion • Johnny "Alig" Human
Bass, Percussion • Dennis Bovell
Drums, Percussion • Dizzi
Keyboards • Jerome Van Jones
Percussion • Scully
Percussion, Keyboards • Fizzè
Milkpots • Pascal Cuche
 Trombone • Rico
Ukulele • Cédric Vuille

13. Rockaman Dub #1
Bass, Keyboards, Flute • Fizzè
Drums • Phil Santschi
Guitar • Martin Millar

14. A No Nottn Dub
Keyboards • Peter Weber
Bass, Guitar • Dennis Bovell
Drums • Dizzi
Keyboards • Fizzè

15. Peeni Waali
Bass, Accordion, Kalimba, Percussion, Saxophone, Keyboards • Fizzè
Clarinet • Cédric Vuille
Balafon, Percussion, Mbira • Dizzi
Trombone • Rico
Speaking • A.C. "Bruce" Harris

Produced, arranged, recorded at Studio Mensch by

Buy Here

Label: Blue Moon Productions ‎– BM 151
Format: 320
Country: France
Released: 1991
Genre: Jazz, Reggae
Style: Dub, Roots Reggae, Pop

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Audun Kleive • Ωagoddabl

Ohmagoddabl is Generator X's third outing. Audun Kleive's occasional group is made up of some of the cream of Norway's electric jazz players, namely Jan Bang (samples), Christian Wallumrod and Stale Storlokken (keys), and Arve Henriksen (trumpet). Ohmagoddabl's predecessor (simply entitled Generator X) was an intriguing, though occasionally patchy work; its spare moments were perhaps a little too spare, though they were balanced by some marvellous future jazz experiments, so this latest release is met with some anticipation.
That Generator X's sound is so highly percussive is perhaps unsurprising given that Kleive is a drummer, but this motive power clearly harks back to Miles Davis's 1970s explorations as well as connecting to the rhythmic monomania of the electronic dance music revolution of the last 15 years.
The first moments of "Genreactor" might be mistaken for a Carl Craig techno track except that bass stabs simultaneously signal a potential junglist anthem. Then clattering drums liable to cause clubland consternation start up, sounding like they're trying to lock into a pattern. Arve's trumpet discharges haunted moans and plangent appeals over some fine, phat bass while Audun continues to pursue the beat, but instead of repetitive groove, he delivers a kaleidoscopic matrix of rhythmic possibilities. Around the five minute mark things turn heavy and monstrous, murderous even. A minute later and it's all over, all too suddenly.
"Exploded Cod" is thrash jungle complete with rubber keyboard bass. Ghost winds float over the melee like a dread fog. "Stumblin' At The Savoy" sounds like musical bricolage, as if anything that was within reach of the musicians had been grabbed and put into the service of rhythm. There's a precarious sense of parts travelling separately but towards a roughly similar destination. It's the musical equivalent of watching a Jean Tinguely sculpture negotiating its short lifespan towards an assured destruction.
The pressure gradually increases to explosive levels until the ten minute mark when events turn into something like a junkyard symphony centred upon Kleive, who seems to excel at producing a grooveless groove. He's joined by all manner of squelches, squeals and electronic squwaking over which Storlokken's high pitched synths ­recognisable from Supersilent - soar like sci-fi comets.
When compared to the previous year, Norway's musical output was relatively quiet in 2003. Perhaps its musicians were drawing their breath for the next onslaught of creative, cutting-edge hybridisation. Hopefully Ohmagoddabl is the harbinger of that riptide, but even if nothing follows on its heels, it's a vital and remarkable set of music. Any fan of 1970s Miles Davis who also enjoys swimming in the oceans of electronic music that have formed in the last couple of decades should listen to this. by Colin Buttimer

1. Genreactor
2. Exploded Cod
3. Stumblin' at Savoy
4. Sessaphêre
5. Ofcourseable

Audun Kleive • drums, keyboards, vocals, computer, loops
Christian Wallumrød • keyboards
Ståle Storløkken • keyboards
Arve Henriksen • trumpet
Jan Bang • sampler, loops

Mixed By • Audun Kleive & Robert Musso
Produced by Audun Kleive

Label: Jazzland Records
Format: 320
Country: Norway
Released: 2004
Genre: Electronic, Jazz
Style: Jazz
tronica, Experimental

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Audun Kleive | GENERATOR X • Live

I seldom get pleasure of listening to live shows neglecting to return to most after a cursory listen, which I know is probably my loss. I probably got this from dime whilst looking for something else.
I had the pleasure of seeing this band live, I think, earlier than this recording at the Jazz Cafe in London. A great live experience.

"GENERATOR X" - tour
Audun Kleive's Generator X ripping up the rule book.
FM recording July 1th, 2002 Musikcafeen Aarhus, Denmark

1. trak 1
2. trak 2

Arve Henriksen • trumpet
Jan Bang • live sampling
Christian Wallumrød • keyboards
Ståle Storløkken • keyboards
Audun Kleive • drums

Label: Download
Format: 320
Country: Denmark
Released: 2002
Genre: Electronic, Jazz
Style: Jazz
tronica, Experimental 

Friday, 24 May 2013

Audun Kleive • Generator X

Generator X is an excellent album and could rank as one of the key statements in Norwegian nu jazz. It's very interesting in its range of influences and how it combines these to create such a cohesive whole. The most arresting track is "Obelisk" which apart from its very modern rhythmic elements could almost have been a lost track from Miles Davis's Get Up With It sessions. Trumpeter Arve Henriksen opens with his trademark flute-like tone but soon moves to a more hard-edged timbre for some gritty soloing over the dense, misty backdrop painted by Kleive's rhythms and the shifting keyboard textures created by Christian Wallumrød and Ståle Storløkken, both of whom give more than a hint of Herbie Hancock in their use of harmony and the timbres conjoured from their very retro '70s array of keyboards (Rhodes, Prophet and Moog). One thing that is striking about the music is how it retains a sense of form throughout and yet remains extremely spontaneous and inspired.
The album is full of interesting textures. "Never Thought I Would" one of two live tracks adding Jan Bang to the lineup, opens with a thudding house-like bass drum beat over which Kleive's vocals and the keyboards create a range of textures very different from those on "Obelisk" On "Framework" the keyboards show Weather Report influences, but transplanted to an edgy modern environment characterised by Kleive's live drumming, very effectively fractured through editing, and other electronic textures. The more contemplative "Mainstay" also shows Weather Report influences, especially in the very Zawinalesque Moog and Rhodes parts.
Generator X can in many ways be seen as an extension of the timbres and sense of musical experimentation found in mid-'70s Miles Davis or early Weather Report, whilst combining this with many thoroughly modern elements to create a sound world not really found anywhere else.

Jon Opstad

1. Framework
2. Never Thought I Would / Bitt Decomposition
3. Mainstay
4. Obelisk
5. Generator X /  Decomposition

Arve Henriksen • Trumpet
Christian Wallumrød • Rhodes, Prophet VS
Ståle Storløkken • Minimoog, Prophet T8, Emulator III
Jan Bang • Live Sampling (2, 5)
Audun Kleive • Drums, Keysboards, Vocals

Produced by Audun Kleive

Label: Jazzland Records – 542 900-2
Country: Norway
Released: 2000
Genre: Electronic, Jazz
Style: Jazztronica