Thursday, 24 July, 2008

New Bharat Brass Band - Inde: Fanfarre de Mariage

Indian brass bands as they are know today appeared about one century ago and soon became a must in marriage functions among upper, middle and noveaux riche classes, the wealth and prestige of the bride’s father being produced by the size and notoriety of the contracted band. Brass bands are heavily dominated by the figure of the “proprietor” who manages and allocates his musicians according to his wishes and market demand. Unlike their classical-trained colleagues, these musicians, mostly of humble origins, are regarded with sheer indifference, and are paid accordingly by the “proprietor”.

The New Bharat Brass Band of Bangalore is owned by Rama Swami, a former virtuoso of the clarinet. He conducts the Band while his brother arranges and harmonizes Bollywood hit songs for the wedding season. Most of the musicians are outsiders who used to play in smaller bands, although a few of them have hereditary associations with Swami’s orchestra. Half of them have other sources of income.

The selection is a mix of old and fresh themes. A Brass Band will usually play some 15 songs, with a few breaks, most probably repeating some tunes here and there, for a total of two hours. Brass Bands have been using synths, drums and loudspeakers for a few decades in order to overcome all other noise sources like car horns, constant firecrackers and varied sound systems.
The New Bharat Brass Band plays songs from films in several different Indian languages, and sometimes includes some Western tunes, like waltzes and South-American tunes. The Brass Band toured in Europe in 1992. Some say it was a huge success.

1. Hurdaya Jatula
2. Kitenedhino Ke Bad
3. Vasa Prema Dalli
4. Akash Belali Mele
5. Raja Ti Unnay Kanna MeNanji
6. Ennay Yarendre Nee Pakira
7. O Pryia Pryia
8. Chamil
9. Chumma Chumma
10. Kali Teri Choti
11. Manna Dole

Clarinets: S. Ramesh, S. Kumar, S. Murti
Trumpets: A. Antony, M. Channabasavanna, H. Hanumanthappa, V. Ramachandra, I. Sudharkar
Euphoniums: A. Arogoyam, R. Kumar, C. M. Sahib,
Alto Sax: M. Babulal
Tavil: K. Ramdas
Bass Drum: E. Venkatappa
Tap Dhol: A. Jaganath
Side Drum: R. Mustaq

Recorded in Malakoff, France, in July 1992


Friday, 18 July, 2008

Phill Niblock - Music By (1993)

Phill Niblock's music has always been characterized by a single-mindedness in approach, form and content, and for many years was inextricably linked with its means of production, i.e. dense collations of sound amassed using multi-track tape technology.
So it was with great interest that I have looked forward to see what changes, if any, would be manifest as Niblock has adopted contemporary technologies of computer-based music. In his new series of computer compositions, the aesthetic point of view remains the same, yet the ranges of expression are indisputably extended, both with respect to dynamics and pitch extremes.
While one might have feared that Niblock's turn to computer-based music might have undermined one of the most attractive features of his work heretofore, i.e. the wonderful interplay of nuances of pitch, attack and volume in the materials he juxtaposes, in fact these subtleties are even more in evidence now. In a music otherwise without overt drama, there has always been one grand gesture in all of Niblock's pieces, for as each piece concludes the listener is left with the deafening silence of the absence of a sound that lived, breathed and dominated the listening space. Carl Stone

1. Five More String Quartets
Performed by The Soldier String Quartet

2. Early Winter
Susan Steger: flute
The Soldier String Quartet
Eberhard Blum: bass flute
38 sampled and synthesizer voices, computer controlled.

Originally commissioned by Thomas Buckner in 1991.
Released by Experimental Intermedia Foundation in 1993.


Wednesday, 16 July, 2008

Felt - Let the Snakes Crinkle their Heads to Death (1986)

Short & catchy instrumental pop compositions from the vaults of the Ewings' mnemonic machinery.
Released by Creation Records in 1986.

1. Song for William S. Harvey
2. Ancient City Where I Lived
3. Seventeenth Century
4. Palace
5. Indian Scriptures
6. The Nazca Plain
7. Jewel Sky
8. Viking Dress
9. Voyage to Illumination
10. Sapphire Mansions

Lawrence Hayward- guitar
Martin Duffy - hammond organ, electric piano
Marco Thomas - bass
Gary Ainge - drums, bongos


V/A - Nexsound Ringtones

An useless Nexsound collection of 57 ringtones for your mobile surveillance machine, courtesy of the following artists:

Günter Müller
Francisco Lopez
Andrey Kiritchenko
Frank Bretschneider
Kim Cascone
Roel Meelkop
Arturas Bumsteinas
Thomas Korber
Nole Plastique


Monday, 14 July, 2008

Bernd Konrad - Hans Koller Unit (w/ Didier Lockwood) - Phonolith

Drawing on two studio sessions from 1980 and 1994, this fine recording was somehow not released until the year 2000. The liners refer to this as "German Jazz without the wince," although it might be better described as adventurous jazz performed by (mostly) German musicians. The several conglomerations perform pieces by Bernd Koller, with one track featuring Koller performing a satisfying solo rendition of Billy Strayhorn's "Lushlife." The highlights of the disc are the five sextet pieces (including a version of "Phonolith 1," in which violinist Didier Lockwood plays a prominent role), and the compelling nonet rendition of "Phonolith 2". There are wonderful solos from Konrad (on both soprano and baritone saxophones), Koller (on tenor saxophone and sopranino), and Lockwood, and the compositions, at their best, rise to highly creative levels. Konrad's writing is especially impressive for the horns, as a sensitive melodiousness mixes with restrained saxophone solos that dig into the chordal implications of the tunes. The duo of trumpeters Kenny Wheeler and Herbert Joos helps charge the nonet. Steven Loewy, All Music Guide

The meaning of the word "phonolith" is sound-stone, and though I've never to my knowledge tried the sound of a phonolith, it seems an apt word to describe the structure of this composition. Konrad's composition creates a masterful balance of composed and improvised parts. This is not about the loneliness of the soloist (they are not left alone in their a capella parts, and in the second version there are duos anyway), it is about the constant change of texture, about construction and decay, about what we used to call deconstruction. The soundness of this stone, if you pardon the pun, is incredible. Stephan Richter

1. Phonolith 1
2. Traumtänzer
3. Nordlicht
4. Aufwärtsregen
5. Jeannerette
6. Lush Life
7. Sleepwalk
8. Phonolith 2

Bernd Konrad - soprano & bariton sax
Hans Koller - tenor & sopranino sax
Didier Lockwood - violin
Christoph Spendel - piano
Thomas Stabenow - doublebass
Martin Bues - drums

Hans Koller - tenor sax
Bernd Konrad - bariton sax
Hans Koller - sopranino

Bernd Konrad - bariton sax
Hans Koller - tenor sax
Ekkehart Rossle - tenor sax
Kenny Wheeler - trumpet
Herbert Joos - trumpet
Paul Schwarz - piano
Thomas Heidenpriem - double bass
Pierre Favre - drums
Michael Kersting - drums

#1-5 recorded in Stuttgart March 12 1980
#6-8 recorded in Ludwigsburg 1994
All compositions by Konrad except #5 (by Koller) and #6 (by Billy Strayhorn)
Released by Hat Hut in a limited edition of 3000 cds in 2000


Friday, 11 July, 2008

Johann Pachelbel - Hexachordum Apollinis

Johann Pachelbel is the dominating personality of the organ and keyboard in Central Germany during the late 17th century, whereas his contemporary Buxtehude took over the leadership in Northern Germany. Both masters are the main sources of Bach's intrumental art, which reconciles their stylistic and formal features on a higher plane.

Pachelbel asserted himself above all as the master of "severe" forms, such as the figured Chorale, the chorale Variation, and the Suite and the Variation. He was born at Nuremberg on September 1st, 1653, in a family from Eger, Bohemia. Little is known about his youth and training.

Although he wrote Cantatas and Motets, as well as chamber music, his main creative activity concerned keyboard music (for Organ and Harpsichord). Only three collections were published in print during his lifetime. Hexachordum Apollinis, his only collection of secular music, was published in 1699.

These are six sets of Variations for harpsichord on six Arias in various keys (mostly minor). These Arias are brief and simple song-like melodies in binary form. With the possible exception of #6 (Aria Sebaldina), which may have been related to the tradition of the St. Sebaldus Church, they seem to be of Pachelbel's free invention. Thus, alonside with Pasquini, he seems to have been one of the first composers to vary original instead of preexistant tunes. The beauty of the melodic invention, the variety of rhythmic metamorphoses, the noble elegiac mood of this piece add up to one of the most exquisite masterpieces of the kind.

Hexachordum Apollinis
The Six Strings of Apollo (1699)

Marga Scheurich - Cembalo

1. Aria 1 d-minor
2. Aria 2 e-minor
3. Aria 3 F-major
4. Aria 4 g-minor
5. Aria 5 a-minor
6. Aria 6 f-minor "Aria Sebaldina"
7. Chaconne f-minor


Tuesday, 8 July, 2008

Ali / Belogenis / Morris - Live at Tonic (2002)

The first track (“Invocation: Trane Is In The House”) of this January 2001 live date just about describes it all. This trio formed from the embers of the creative luminescence that was John Coltrane sears through a New York winter evening. Drummer Rashied Ali is familiar with this territory, having held the drum chair from 1965 through 1967, the year of Coltrane’s death. Together Trane and Ali explored the outer reaches of free jazz, recording Meditations, and Interstellar Space. Ali’s drumming abandoned the pulse and timekeeping beats of Elvin Jones for the same freedom John Coltrane was pursuing.

Rashied Ali’s resurgence has paralleled the Downtown scene’s rediscovery of all things free. Together with saxophonist Louie Belogenis, Ali recorded three discs under the name Prima Materia in the mid-nineties and a duet Rings of Saturn for the Knitting Factory label. This live date adds bassist Wilbur Morris (Billy Bang, Charles Gayle, and David Murray) to produce a stout free jazz unit. The opener churns from the get-go as Belogenis screams out lines against the pin-wheeling Ali and walking Morris.

The triad of musicians can barely contain the burn; pausing briefly for a bass solo, Belogenis lays out and Ali rattles the snare. Then they are back at it conjuring the outer reaches of Coltrane’s vision.The beauty of this session is the equal balance between these three. They vary the mood on the introspective “Red Shifting” and the driving “Norfolk Street Run Down.” “Heavenly Star,” dedicated to Albert Ayler, nicely captures the spirit of Ayler’s speech. The final Coltrane Classic, “Spiritual,” acts as a processional lament, reminding one that free jazz is certainly rooted in the blues. Mark Corroto

1. Invocation: Trane is in the House
2. Elixir
3. Red Shifting
4. Norfolk Street Run Down
5. Heavenly Star (for Albert Ayler)
6. Brazilia
7. Spiritual.

Rashied Ali - Drums
Louie Belogenis - Tenor & Soprano Saxophone
Wilber Morris - Bass

#2, 3, 4 written by Ali, Belogenis & Morris
#1, 5 written by Belogenis
#6, 7 written by Coltrane
Recorded live at Tonic, 6/01/2001
Released by DIW in 2002


Thursday, 3 July, 2008

Vitriol - Randonée 0.06 (2001)

"Vitriol is the collaborative project of Paulo Raposo and Carlos Santos, and is the debut release on SIRR.ecords. Randonée 0.06 documents their contributions to the internet event "Le Placard: Headphone Room", organised by the BURO association in Paris. The event was born out of a desire to experiment with "finding new ways to diffuse and listen to electronic music by bringing out a relationship between time/work/diffusion".

With a run time of just 20 minutes, Vitriol's work here is a surprising electronic soundscape with many shifts and nuances. Rich digital tones, sparse sounds, clicks and crackles mix with various found sounds, creating an atmosphere of digital detachment and distance. The arrangements are never predictable but are full of details and subtle movements, which makes the listening experience more rewarding each time I've put this disc in my player. Sounds great; let's keep our eyes and ears peeled". Richard di Santo,

1. Qurb
2. Ropica Pnefma
3. Durriyyatun
4. Untitled #29
5. Randonée 0.06

Performed and remixed by Paulo Raposo & Carlos Santos
Additional data by João Castro Pinto & Ulrich Mitzlaff
Released by Sirr Records in 2001.


Wednesday, 2 July, 2008

Afrique - Soul Makossa (1973)

The first articles on "disco music" appeared in 1972, and the invention is credited to a Cameroon-born and Paris-based jazz saxophonist, Manu Dibango, who in that year released Soul Makossa (1972), an exciting mixture of funk-jazz saxophone lines and hypnotic African beats.

After it was issued, David Mancuso found a copy in a Brooklyn West Indian record store and often played it at his Loft parties. The response was so positive that the few copies of "Soul Makossa" in New York City were quickly bought up. The song was subsequently played heavily by Frankie Crocker, who DJed at WBLS, then New York's most popular Black radio station.Since the Dibango failed to register the copyright, 23 or more groups quickly released cover versions to capitalize on the demand for the record.

This album witnesses a band of studio musicians hell bent on creating not only a club and jukebox 45 hit of the Dibango original, but an entire set of groove-driven instrumentals that could be issued as 45s for the juke market. There is plenty of wah-wah excess, saxist angst, and drunken careening rhythm to propel a soul train from one end of the continent to the other.

1:: Soul Makossa
2:: Kissing My Love
3:: Sleepwalk
4:: Let Me Do My Thing
5:: Slow Motion
6:: Hot Mud
7:: House Of Rising Funk
8:: Dueling Guitars
9:: Hot Doggin’
10:: Get It

Bass - Chuck Rainey
Drums - Ray Pounds
Guitar - Arthur Wright , David T. Walker
Organ - Charles Kynard
Percussion - Charles Taggart , Chino Valdes , King Errisson , Paul Humphrey , Wallace Snow
Saxophone [Baritone] - Steve Kravitz
Saxophone [Tenor] - Joe Kelso , Paul Jeffrey

vinyl rip