Schroeder, Campello, Godoy: Barely Cool (PFMCD090)

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[playlist ids="761"]

Barely Cool
Schroeder / Campello / Godoy

1 Estranho – 2:06
2 Soundweaving – 6:02
3 Rubber Tongue – 9:05
4 Barely Cool – 7:24
5 The Assertive Fog – 6:30
6 Throws – 5:58
7 Chinelas Ferventes – 8:47
8 Whistle and Hustle – 11:57
9 Under a Red Moon – 7:38
10 Barely Cooler – 4:00

Schroeder: Franziska is a saxophonist enthusiastic about new sounds and new approaches to the instrument. Since training in contemporary music in Australia in the late 90s, she has been following a path of improvisation and now mainly plays free improvised musics. Franziska lectures at the Sonic Arts Research Centre in Belfast.

Franziska é uma saxofonista entusiasta de novos sons e possibilidades do instrumento. Desde seu treinamento em música contemporânea na Austrália no final dos anos 90, tem seguido o caminho da improvisação e atualmente foca na improvisação livre. Franziska leciona no Sonic Arts Centre em Belfast.

Campello: Marcos plays (way) out of tune guitar like there’s no tomorrow.

Marcos toca guitarra (absurdamente) desafinada como se não houvesse amanhã.

Godoy: Renato grew up playing among rock bands in Rio de Janeiro. Since early 00’s, he began to incorporate improvisation into his projects, which include Bossal, Muwei and Chinese Cookie Poets.

Renato cresceu tocando em bandas de rock do Rio de Janeiro. Desde o começo dos anos 2000 começou a incorporar a improvisação em seus projetos, dentre os quais destacam-se Bossal, Muwei e Chinese Cookie Poets.

About:

During an ethnographic research project on free improvisation in Brazil, saxophonist Franziska Schroeder met guitarist Marcos Campello and drummer Renato Godoy. The trio joined musical forces in May 2014 at Rio de Janeiro’s Audiorebel recording studio to play and record. “Barely Cool” is the result of a day long musical encounter of the three improvisors.

Durante sua pesquisa etnográfica sobre improvisação livre no Brasil, a saxofonista Franziska Schroeder conheceu o guitarrista Marcos Campello e o baterista Renato Godoy. Em maio de 2014 o trio se juntou no estúdio AudioRebel, no Rio de Janeiro, para uma sessão de improvisação. “Barely Cool” é o resultado desse encontro.

Dates: 19 May 2014
Recorded at Audiorebel, Rio de Janeiro
Engineer:  Pedro Azevedo
Mixed and Mastered by: Marcos Campello
Artwork by: Arthur Lacerda
All Music © Schroeder/Campello/Godoy

“Special thanks to the Higher Education Academy UK (HEA), who enabled Franziska Schroeder’s ethnographic work in Brazil as part of an international fellowship, and to the Sonic Arts Research Centre at Queen’s University Belfast”

pfMENTUM CD090

PFMCD090

Barely Cool, new trio recording from pfMENTUM

Dedicated to creative music—and the musicians that make it. Barely Cool: Schroeder, Campello, Godoy An exciting recording session, with an equally exciting story behind it! From the liner notes: “During an ethnographic research project on free improvisation in Brazil, saxophonist Franziska Schroeder met guitarist Marcos Campello and drummer Renato Godoy. The trio joined musical forces in May 2014 at Rio de …

Barely Cooler

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“Barely Cooler” from Barely Cool by Schroeder/Campello/Godoy. Released: 2015. Track 10 of 10.

Bubbeleh (PFMCD082)

Louis Lopez 1 Comment

[playlist ids="549"]
Andrew Conrad: Clarinet, Tenor Sax
Greg Zilboorg: Trumpet
Lauren Baba: Violin, Viola
Max Kutner: Guitar
Philip Rankin: Wurlitzer, Synthesizer, Melodica, Pump Organ, Tack Piano, Clave, Guiro
Rusty Kennedy: Bass
Colin Woodford: Drums, Congas, Shakers, Rattles, and Ankle Bells

1. Dybbuk Square Dance 3:29
2. Fear of Heights 5:07
3. Schmutzy Glasses 5:26
4. Woulda…Coulda…MESHUGGAH!!! 3:44
5. (An Honest) Living 2:19
6. Choots-Pah 3:55
7. Grepse 4:17
8. Simcha Boytchik Hintele (Puppy Party) 3:35
9. Mosesque 6:56
10. Bubberella 4:30
11. Czytzfachykz 4:54

1, 2, 5, 9, 10 composed by Max Kutner, © 2014 Maladept Music, ASCAP

4, 6, 7, 8 composed by Philip Rankin, © 2014 Jewish Shark Attack, ASCAP

3 composed by Greg Zilboorg, © 2014 Shouting Dog, ASCAP

11 composed by Rusty Kennedy, © 2014 Jewish Shark Attack, ASCAP

Recorded by Samur Khouja at Seahorse Sound Studios, Los Angeles, August 20-22, 2013
Assistant Engineer: Alex DeGroot
Mixed by Brian Saia, October-December 2013
Mastered by John Baffa at TVTray Studios, Simi Valley, CA, December 2013
Produced by Maxwell Ryan דוד Kutner and Philip Jason שַׂמֵחַ Rankin
Executive Producer: William Ross Gibson
Associate Producer: Debra Fredericks, Tamasaurus Rex
Logo by Dawn Chan * Layout and design by J. Carver

Max and Phil would like to thank the band: Greg, Rusty, Lauren, Andrew and Colin. Everyone who helped record this album: Samur, John and especially Brian. KT Pierce for photography and building our website. Phil would like to thank his Mother, Jill; his Father, David; his sister Michele; and his dog, Max. Max would like to thank his family: Leslie, Samantha, Stephanie, Art and Michael for their tireless, inexhaustible support and encouragement. Most importantly we would like to thank everybody who donated to our Indiegogo Campaign. This album would not have been made possible without your generous donations.

pfMENTUM CD082

PFMCD082

Saturn’s Rival (PFMCD079)

Louis Lopez 2 Comments

[playlist ids="543"]
Saturn’s Rival
Maxwell Gualtieri: Guitar
Susan Allen: Harp
Richard Valitutto: Piano
Ryan Parrish: Winds
Anjilla Piazza: Percussion

Part I 7:28
Part II 21:58
Part III 8:42
Part IV 5:48

All music on this recording was improvised.
Recorded and mixed by Peter Gonzales, May 2011
Mastered by Jeff Kaiser, October 2013
Album art by Sean Tully
Layout by Andrew Rowan

Copyright 2014
Maxwell Gualtieri (ASCAP)
Susan Allen (ASCAP)
Richard Valitutto (ASCAP)
Ryan Parrish (ASCAP)
Anjilla Piazza

pfMENTUM CD079

PFMCD079

Phil Skaller and Danny Holt Duo: Music of Mark Dresser (PFMCD062)

Louis Lopez 1 Comment

[playlist ids="510"]
Phil Skaller and Danny Holt Duo: Music of Mark Dresser

1 Flac (5:12)
2 Flocus (13:09)
3 Para Waltz (10:48)
4 Digestivo (9:37)
5 Aperitivo (12:33)

Philip Skaller and Danny Holt: pianos, celeste, toy piano, melodica, percussion
All compositions by Mark Dresser (Del Dresser Music/ASCAP)
Arrangements by Philip Skaller and Danny Holt
Recorded October and November 2008 and June 2009 at Roy O. Disney Music Hall, California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, CA
Piano Technician: Alan Eder
Engineered by Steve Rusch
Edited and Mixed by Edmund P. Monsef at The Hacienda, Los Angeles, CA
Mastered by Jeff Kaiser
Artwork by Iva Gueorguieva
Graphic Design by Ted Killian
Executive Producer: Danny Holt
This recording was made possible in part by a Subito grant from the Los Angeles chapter of the American Composers Forum.
© 2010 Philip Skaller and Danny Holt

I was quite surprised when Phil Skaller approached me about recording a whole CD of my compositions in duo with Danny Holt. Though I had composed this music between 1994 and 2008 for my own groups, and arranged it for various formations, I had never imagined it for two pianos.

I’ve known Phil since 2002 when he was my teaching assistant at Hampshire College in an improvisation class. I introduced some of my tunes to the students and Phil, especially, devoured the music and its improvisational concepts. I had been hearing the praises of Danny Holt for years from Phil, but it was not until 2008 that I first heard this duo perform a suite of my compositions at UC San Diego. I was quite impressed and flattered by the wit, musical virtuosity, and pure improvisational fantasy that these two gifted young musicians brought to my music.

The compositions represented on this CD were conceived as abstractions and deconstructions of known jazz forms and related idiomatic music. What Phil Skaller and Danny Holt have done is to deconstruct my deconstructions. They have taken my music in directions that I doubt that I would have ever conceived and in some ways, made the music more flexible and malleable.

The first track, Flac, recorded on “Aquifer” (Cryptogramophone), was originally designed as a rhythmically gear-shifting Klezmer-like tune that improvisationally develops from the material itself and returns to the theme. Phil and Danny’s version has a rhythmic and sound character reminiscent of both Conlon Nancarrow’s studies for player piano and John Cage’s works for prepared piano. The alternation of fragments of the tune and its improvisational implications comes in waves, yet a thread of the thematic materials is always present.
Flocus was composed for trumpet, voice, bass, piano and drums and recorded on “Force Green” (Soul Note). It was conceived as four independent lines, each in a different meter, which are layered one upon another and developed in collective improvisation. Phil and Danny’s version takes a different direction, introducing a more classical theme and variation approach, while each of the lines independently develops outside of the tempo grid. This interpretation, though referring to themes, transcends the materials and becomes a springboard for episodes of virtuoso invention and dramatic return.

Para Waltz was composed as a vehicle to melodically and harmonically improvise on a metric modulating jazz waltz. Danny and Phil’s interpretation takes a very different direction, initially eschewing the tempo aspect and focusing on a more spacious approach, layering the timbres of glockenspiel, piano, and piano harmonics. The temporal aspect isn’t highlighted until midway, with the introduction of cymbals demarcating the time. The thematic material is finally introduced whole and floats on out.

Similarly Digestivo, recorded on “Aquifer” and “The Marks Brothers” (W.E.R.F), was conceived to create a metric modulating twelve-bar blues in B-flat. My idea was to abstract the idea of ‘substitute changes’ traditionally applied to jazz harmony and apply it to the domain of tempo. Unlike the original, which has a single underlying tempo throughout, Danny and Phil’s version is freer, starting out of time. They eventually introduce the tune and the different tempos, but in the end, leave the form completely, in an expansive and satisfying way.

Aperitivo, composed for piano, bass, and voice, is an even more abstract version of the blues than Digestivo. Recorded on “Time Changes” (Cryptogramophone), this slower metric modulating twenty-four bar form in C minor doesn’t even articulate the ground pulse, creating a feel that is inherently looser and less polyrhythmic than Digestivo. Phil Skaller and Danny Holt’s version is an extremely inventive and expansive finale to the CD, utilizing pianos, toy piano, melodica, and percussion. Improvisationally, they’ve chosen an even more abstract approach, which alternates the gestalt of tempo changes of the head and a freer approach that abstracts motifs, melody, and an almost fugue-like beginning. At about minute nine the tune grinds into a vamp, modulates faster, and phases, juxtaposing shreds of the melody back into the vamp, and returning to the twenty-four bar head.

Hearing Phil Skaller and Danny Holt’s interpretations of my music is both affirming and inspiring. I am impressed with the combination of their virtuoso playing, interpretative skills, and pure musical imagination. I look forward to hearing what they do next.

Mark Dresser
September 2010

pfMENTUM CD062

PFMCD062

The Empty Cage Quartet: Hello the Damage! (PFMCD040)

Louis Lopez 1 Comment

[playlist ids="446"]
Jason Mears: alto saxophone, clarinet, wood flutes
Kris Tiner: trumpet, flugelhorn
Paul Kikuchi: drums, percussion
Ivan Johnson: contrabass

Disc 1: First Set (24:20 / 21:17)
1. Attack of the Eye People (Mears)
Who Are They If We Are Them? (Mears)
The Mactavish Rag (Tiner)
2. And Who Is Not Small (Tiner)
Function-3 (Tiner)

Disc 2: Second Set (42:57)
1. Swan-Neck Deformity (Kikuchi)
The Empty Cage (Mears)
Swim Swim Swim, Eat Eat Eat (Mears)

Recorded live at Café Metropol in Los Angeles, California on Friday, December 30, 2005
Recorded live to two track by Paul Kikuchi
Mastered by David Christensen and Paul Kikuchi
Cover photo and album design: Kio Griffith
Band photos: Allen D. Glass II
Thank you to Kio Griffith, Misato Nagare, Dottie Grossman, David Christensen, Rocco Somazzi, Allen D. Glass II, Jeff Kaiser and Vinny Golia
© 2006 Jason Mears Music, ASCAP and Kris Tiner Music, ASCAP
For more information: www.mtkjquartet.com

Finale
When the camera pulls back
on people you care about
because you have followed
their story all season
and you know
what makes them happy
and what hurts them
and you love them
and want to protect them,
that’s your cue to sit back,
let the music take care of them now.

When I wrote that, I wasn’t thinking about The Empty Cage Quartet, but I see a connection. They share a common view, something about expansiveness or maybe a sense of what I can only call “mission.” These guys actually care about us, and want to make us better through their musical example, God help them. It’s a tall order, admittedly, but saxophonist Jason Mears and trumpeter Kris Tiner talk seriously about the band as a positive model for social change, incorporating and expanding upon what they learned under the tutelage of people like Wadada Leo Smith and Vinny Golia.

Mears, Tiner, Kikuchi and Johnson (“The MTKJ;” now “The Empty Cage Quartet”) came together at The California Institute of the Arts, in Southern California, circa 2002. They began playing music that was admittedly “horrible” (Kris Tiner’s word), at first, but which has evolved to a very telepathic kind of communication that transcends historical models of creative new music and almost doesn’t require language in its usual sense. They’re bent on transcending the clichés of “free jazz,” with its historically associated bias toward self-expression at the expense of everything else. They all contribute tunes and are dedicated to finding ways of getting around traditional improvisation and composition, to create music that is “continuous” and spontaneous. At the same time, in their musical explorations, they incorporate and honor the earlier forms they want to transcend. There is, for example, homage to without imitation of the Anthony Braxton and Ornette Coleman quartets.

So they use a system which in effect means that, in performance, any player can cue a composition at any time. For that to work on a level that approaches art requires the ability to almost literally read each other’s minds. Forget about not paying attention. Forget about playing on chord changes. It’s very akin to linking arms and jumping off the proverbial edge-of-the-cliff. It takes enormous mutual trust, acquired through the time-honored method of playing and touring. It is a truism that there’s no substitute for playing together a lot over a period of time in different settings and circumstances. The bonding that emerges from this kind of intensity has created, for these four, a unity that is probably more rock-solid than that of most “real” families.

And that makes them happy. They like it when audiences are touched and even inspired by the music they make together. Drummer Kikuchi tells about a gig in Olympia, WA, when the audience behaved as if they were at a rock show, yelling and “getting into” the show, letting the music take them to new places.

A word about the title of this CD: “Hello the Damage” was the all-too-literal English translation of part of a French review damning the group’s last CD. Anyone familiar with the often hilarious nonsense masquerading as “translation” on the Babelfish web site will sympathize.

This is a band whose musical growth rate has been amazing. They’re dedicated to doing something new, and the strength of their musicianship and vision are collectively and individually impressive enough to make that happen.

I’m going to leave the last word (well, almost) here to Kris Tiner, who, talking about how much he appreciates the work of Thelonious Monk, Charles Ives and Morton Feldman, says, “You can tell they love music.” Amen.

Dottie Grossman
Los Angeles, CA
April, 2006

[Ed. from a reviewer friend: This expression (in french “bonjour les dégâts…”, “damage” is a plural in french, it makes it more spectacular) became famous after is was used in an advertisement against alcohol when driving : “Un verre ça va, trois verres bonjour les dégâts” “One drink is alright, three drinks, hello the damage” : nobody speaks about 2 drinks, the case becomes a hole where reason gets drowned).]

pfMENTUM CD040

PFMCD040

Jeff Kaiser / Tom McNalley: ZUGZWANG (PFMCD038)

Louis Lopez 1 Comment

[playlist ids="441"]
Jeff Kaiser: quarter tone trumpet, electronics
Tom McNalley: electric guitar, electronics

1. carbon fianchetto 12:44
2. opening demand 7:28
3. systematic imbalance 7:30
4. both varied situations 7:54
5. organic symmetry 4:16
6. abbreviated structure 4:08
7. luft swapping 4:50
8. zwischenzug 1:36
9. aristotelian blockade 11:14
10. liquid compensation 11:00

Total Playing Time: 72:40
All compositions ©2006 Jeff Kaiser Music, ASCAP, and Tom McNalley Music, ASCAP
Recorded live (no overdubs) 7.15.05 and 8.7.05 at pfMENTUM World Headquarters, Ventura, CA
Recorded, mixed, mastered and designed by Jeff Kaiser

pfMENTUM CD038

PFM038