Monday, February 05, 2007

Odds and ends

Just before another excursion to New York, I'm drowning in new music. CKUT was selling off extra copies of discs to raise money at an open house, and at the rate of four CDs for $5 I procured:

- Larry Goldings Trio: Sweet Science
- Steve Swallow/Chris Potter/Adam Nussbaum: Damaged in Transit
- Mario Pavone: Boom
- George Schuller: JigSaw

I haven't listened to the last two yet. It's been hard to pull that Swallow disc out of the player - it's a suite of pieces created as an exercise to write for two voices. It's rare that there are chord changes on the provided lead sheets, and even with Swallow's rather plastic and thin sound, the trio is surprisingly full. For a piano player it's quite the learning experience to listen to pared-down records, and following music in horizontal (linear) terms as opposed to vertical (harmonic/chordal) terms. Addressing Mwanji's recent criticism of Chris Potter, there are a few instances where he adds empty ornaments, but for the most part his virtuosity is focused.
The Goldings disc is impressive - I've dug Larry's playing for a while and I admire how he elegantly sidesteps B-3 clichés while still acknowledging the tradition.

I've also got a stack of CDs I'm reviewing for a relatively new Montreal-based experimental music site, Panpot, including the 3rd and 4th installments of Vandermark 5's Free Jazz Classics series, about which Peter Breslin already blogged. While I'm familiar with Vandermark's playing - and it took me a long while to warm to it - I haven't listened to this record yet; I'm eager to engage Breslin's incisive questions on the music.

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A couple of new names will appear on the blogroll. Craig "Suave" Sauvé is everyone's favourite raging NDP metalhead bartender. He's also the guitarist in Kids Eat Crayons, and a great mimic of accents. Daniel Melnick is a friend living in Chicago, and an astute commentator on all things musical, in addition to being a killing guitarist as well.

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Thanks to everyone who came out to the Kids Eat Crayons show at Barfly on Friday. If anyone can verify the rumour that a speaker was sparking at some point during our set, please let me know. The Kids wreak havoc in the studio once again this week, and I continue to marvel at the brilliance of Dennis' compositions and how different this music is from anything I've ever participated in before.

A reminder that Groove Night featuring Yanick Coderre, Olivier René de Cotret, myself, Jim Bennett and Kevin Warren is this Saturday.

5 comments:

peter breslin said...

hi- I look forward to reading what you think of Free Jazz Classics, especially the Rollins set. thanks for linking to what I wrote back in November; it kind of reads like a rant now, at least me.

PB

Mwanji Ezana said...

I got "Damaged In Transit" last summer, but have yet to listen to it. I'd kind of forgotten about it, thanks for reminding me. Maybe I'll revisit the issue.

Nice site redesign, btw. I tend to find black backgrounds a little aggressive.

Dan said...

I'll also look forward to hearing what you think of the Vandermark recordings. Despite my best efforts, and being located in Chicago, I still haven't been drawn in by his music or recorded work. Even a performance featuring one of my favorites, Fred Anderson, last summer didn't do it for me.t

Craig Sauvé said...

Hey docta! Great gig last friday! Your solo on Day Parade was mental, I hope someone recorded it...

Craig Sauvé said...

Hey Docta, great gig last Friday! Your solo on Day Parade was mental -I hope someone recorded that sweetness...