Friday, January 9th, 2009
... 2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. ...
KZSU, 90.1 FM
(Return to playlists.)
ARTIST -- "TRACK TITLE" -- ALBUM TITLE (LABEL, YEAR)
Horizontal lines denote microphone breaks.
Anthony Braxton -- "Composition No. 286" -- Six Compositions (GTM) 2001 (Rastascan, 2002)
Finding myself with an extra hour to kill, I tossed on this little gem.
Composition No. 286 +147, 20 69D, 256, 173, 6J, 162, 23A,
following a Braxtonian methodology for inserting chunks of compositions
into other compositions.
The piece is 90 minutes long. It doesn't fit on one CD, which is partly
why Six Compositions is a 4-CD set! I definitely wanted to play out
the full first hour, and by then I'd really gotten into it, so I let it
chug along for its final 30 minutes too.
GTM stands for "Ghost Trance Music," Braxton's Native American-influenced
set of works. The influence comes partly in the rhythm, which follows
a monochrome tribal beat -- sort of. It's not the calm thunder of
Native American drums, but rather a repeated spike/slash from the
players: BLEAT. BLAT. BLAM. BLEAT. BLIK-HONK. BLAT. BAM. And so on.
Along the way, though, the patterns change subtly, and different players
are given space for soloing. It's more varied and colorful than, say,
a Phillip Glassian shimmering.
This CD set features local players alongside Braxton himself and some of
his regulars like Taylor Ho Bynum.
Yeah, the pieces are long, but it's a worthy journey.
Soooo... this took up the show until about 3:30. We pick up the thread
* James Zitro -- "Happy Pretty" -- Zitro (ESP-Disk, 2008; orig. released 1967)
Roscoe Mitchell -- "A Messenger in Traffic" -- Sound Songs (Delmark, 1997)
-- 4:00 p.m. --
Air -- "The Traveller" -- 80 Degrees Below '82 (Antilles, 1982)
* Plays Monk --
"Eronel" -- Plays Monk (Long Song, 2007)
The classic trio of Steve McCall (drums), Fred Hopkins (bass), and
(sax). Air is a hole in my education (that feels like it ought to be a pun,
but it isn't); I'll have to tune into more of their coolly off-kilter
* Brinsk --
"The Gun I Used To Use" -- A Hamster Speaks (Nowt, 2008)
John Lindberg -- "Resurrection of a Dormant Soul" -- Resurrection of a Dormant Soul (Black Saint, 1996)
Lindberg is apparently in town next week with his
hip-hop project. We didn't have a sample of that handy to play, so I
picked a track that seemed to show off Lindberg's free playing as well
as composed ensemble work.
* Francois Houle, Joelle Leandre, Raymond Strid -- "Moment Tendu" -- 9 Moments
(Red Toucan, 2008)
*! Shugo Tokumaru -- "Green Rain" -- Exit (Star Time, 2008)
? Bill Bruford's Earthworks -- "Pigalle" -- All Heaven Broke Loose (E.G., 1991)
Played this one solely because its rapid-patter 5/8 rhythm reminds
me of the 7/8 in "Green Rain," above. This was Earthworks' third
album, and while Bruford had embraced synths -- regular and drumpad-activated
varieties -- from the beginning, they were really starting to get
sappy on this album. The original lineup that included
broke up after this album, IIRC, and I haven't bothered picking up
the new Earthworks thread with the more recent lineup.
Pigalle -- "Sens Comme Le Temps Il Est Lourd" -- V/A: Francophone Singles: June 2008 (Francophone Diffusion, 2008)
There's still some edgy stuff on this album, like the free-form track
"Nerve." And the pleasant "Pigalle," which includes some sharp soloing,
has held up pretty well over time.
Selected, yes, solely because of the name "Pigalle" to follow up
the track "Pigalle," this turned out to be an amusing little gem.
It's like European jazz with a bluegrass bent and a nice driving
"Francophone Singles" isn't a real album; it's a KZSU-made compilation of
various songs received from the Francophone Diffusion network.
Our world music director, Decca, compiles these every so often, and
they're usually chock full of good stuff.
* Thomas Dutronc -- "Un Temps Pour Tout" -- V/A: Francophone Singles: December 2008 (Francophone Diffusion, 2008)
See above. Here's a pop tune with gypsy-jazz overtones.
* Michael Bates -- "Fellini" -- Clockwise (Greenleaf, 2008)
Previously noted here.
A Euro-sidewalk-cafe sound to complement the Dutronc piece.
Robert Musso -- "One Mind" -- Innermedium (DIW, 1999)
Musso on guitar and ebow guitar, with Bill Laswell (bass) and Charles Burnham (violin)... and, on some tracks, Byard Lancaster, Dave Liebman, Karl Berger. Straight, synth-happy jazz, the type that was popular in the '90s. Not quite smooth jazz but still a commercial sound; this one was kind of a risk, and I'm not sure I'd play it again. Burnham's violin does add a soaring and creative component to an album that was otherwise surprisingly disappointing.
* Joel Futterman, Alvin Fielder, Ike Levin Trio -- "Ascendance" -- Traveling Through Now (Charles Lester Music, 2008)
John Lindberg -- "Flam a Dam" -- Quartet Afternoon (Black Saint, 1995)
Another dose of Lindberg, used as concert calendar backdrop.
Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble -- "Quiet Emporer" -- Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble (De Stijl, 2008)
Hmmm... -- "Boxpeople" -- I Only Want Love (Is Productions, 2005)
Previously noted here.
Herb Heinz and Mark Briggs
have started up a new thing, a monthly improv performance they're calling
This Here Show. Like dud,
it combines music, improvised songwriting (Briggs' singing and lyrics),
video, dancers, and sound manipulation to form ... well, I guess I need to
show up and find out. Sounds pretty cool.
* The Lost Trio -- "Derelict" -- Plays the Solid Gold Hits! (Evander, 2008)
* = Item in KZSU rotation
! = Pop anomaly
? = Item not in KZSU library
-- Go back to Memory Select playlists.
-- Bay Area free/improv music calendar: http://www.bayimproviser.com.