Tiner / Phillips / Schoenbeck Trio: Breathe In, Feed Out (PFMCD014)


“So the voices that seem to originate from objects in a room hurry here,
the way things hurry toward a background made only of motion.”
— Dennis Phillips, Sand

Kris Tiner: trumpet, flugelhorn, piccolo trumpet, reeds
Noah Phillips: electric guitar, electronics
Sara Schoenbeck: bassoon
1. Skujellifeddy (McGranehan) [6:31]
2. A Wind Shift [4:54]
3. Clocks and Maps [6:52]
4. Like Red Flowers [9:38]
5. Winddrone, Water Drying [2:35]
6. Road from Kumasi [9:25]
7. In This Dull City [2:42]
8. They Mistook Time for Line [3:04]
9. Metal Skin [2:36]
10. Force A Smooth Thing [6:48]
Total Playing Time: [55:10]
Tracks 1, 4, and 6 are compositions by Kris Tiner; all other compositions and arrangements by Tiner/Phillips/Schoenbeck
© 2004 Kris Tiner Music, ASCAP

Recorded by Mark Wheaton at Catasonic Studios in Echo Park, CA 11.18.02
Mixed and mastered by Jeff Kaiser
Design and layout by Jeff Kaiser and Kris Tiner
Photos taken in Kumasi, Ghana by Kris Tiner



SKU: PFMCD014 Category:

1 review for Tiner / Phillips / Schoenbeck Trio: Breathe In, Feed Out (PFMCD014)

  1. 0 out of 5

    “Why somebody chose to send this record to SKRATCH is beyond me, as I can’t imagine very many readers would be hip enough to even give this a try.”

    -Chip Midnight

    “Breathe In, Feed Out s’ouvre sur une conversation posée entre trompette et guitare électrique, dans une ambiance qui évoque clairement l’improvisation libre. Puis entre en scène un instrument peu rencontré dans ce genre de contexte, le basson, et qui renvoie à un univers différent, celui d’une musique de chambre contemporaine. En fait, cette première plage du disque signé par le Tiner-Phillips-Schoenbeck trio est bien une composition, écrite par le leader Kris Tiner. Très mélodique en comparaison de nombreux projets de free improv, sa musique se développe souvent par des phases d’interaction contemplative entre les deux instruments à vent, qui rappellent les ambiances du Norvégien Trygve Seim, chez ECM, mais au sein d’un groupe restreint. Les sons de guitares déformés par les traitements électroniques permettent au guitariste Noah Phillips d’assumer différents rôles au sein du trio, par exemple en proposant des sons très graves ou en samplant des bribes de transmissions radios.
    Sur “Like Red Flowers”, une autre de ses compositions, le phrasé de Tiner évoque le jazz, et mène un dialogue fructueux avec les nappes ambient de la guitare.
    Toutefois, sur les plages créditées aux trois instrumentistes, le son d’ensemble paraît parfois se contenir dans un refus de l’envolée, comme par crainte de l’énèrvement, même si cette impression est contredite deux plages plus loin par un passage plus énergique. En général, les membres du trio semblent plus préoccupés par les notes que par une recherche sur les matières sonores.
    Sur “Clocks And Maps”, un morceau plus nerveux, on atteint un équilibre avec des échanges entre les deux souffleurs, posés sur un tapis de sons électroniques issus de la guitare.
    Mais, à l’image de la jolie pochette où l’on voit une photo prise par Tiner lui-même dans une localité africaine appelée Kumasi, le projet musical global laisse une impression de flou: s’agit-il d’improviser, d’expérimenter des formes de composition contemporaine voire de remonter à certaines racines du free jazz? Ou les trois à la fois? Malgré les meilleurs moments du disque, on ne trouve pas toujours sa cohérence.
    Breathe In, Feed Out est le premier album du trio, et le groupe est sans doute jeune, sans qu’on sache si ses membres le sont aussi. Multi-instrumentiste californien, Kris Tiner a étudié le jazz et l’improvisation, qu’il enseigne actuellement, et il a joué avec des musiciens comme Gerry Hemingway ou Leo Smith.
    Si le disque peut constituer une passerelle pour entrer en douceur dans l’esthétique de l’improvisation libre et découvrir les vastes territoires qu’elle offre, ceux qui recherchent quelque chose de plus contrasté peuvent être déçus par l’apparente timidité de certains choix musicaux. (08/09/2004) (Thibaut Lemoine), http://www.butterfly-zine.com/

    While they have their overt moments (the sprung rhythms of ‘Winddrone, Water Drying,’ the bumptious clatter of ‘Metal Skin’ and ‘Force a Smooth Thing’), these ten tracks form a set of carefully considered studies, one that imposes a welcome, reflective mood upon the listener. ‘They Mistook Time for Line,’ one of the track titles, could almost be a group manifesto. Tiner’s trumpet and flugelhorn work is both conversational and eliptical, much like Bill Dixon’s in its unhurried examination of space. The guitarist and bassoonist work similar paths, reacting to each other with a slight narrative push here, a noisy squiggle there; ‘Force a Smooth Thing’ is a tour-de-force of guitar/electronics helter play, while Schoenbeck’s command of her difficult, ghetto-ized instrument is admirably full and entertaining… Well-executed ferocity aside, it’s the quietly entrancing moments of tracks like ‘A Wind Shift,’ ‘Road From Kumasi,’ and ‘Like Red Flowers’ that draw the listener in to this trio’s fascinating sound world. Hope there’s more to come.”

    -Larry Nai (Cadence Magazine), August 2004

    This excellent CD is all about atmospheric experimentation. The members of the trio play their instruments to compliment one another, so this is not a slugfest of blaring trumpet and lead guitar solos. As a matter of fact, the bassoon, played by Sara Schoenbeck, is an instrument I wish more jazz musicians would incorporate into their music. Essentially, the bassoon becomes a replacement for the traditional bass parts and possesses a very different textural feel which allows for greater flexibility. Another avenue of exploration that the experimental jazz genre needs to take a hold of is electronic media. Guitarist Noah Phillips uses everything from controlled feedback and various electronic sound effects including, I think, a bowed guitar. These effects modernize the sound, without trashing the jazz roots of the compositions. Kris Tiner’s subdued trumpet and flugelhorn tends to carry most of the melodies throughout. “Force A Smooth Thing” is a fine example of the potential for experimental electronic music within the jazz medium. As far as I am concerned, this is experimental contemporary jazz at its best. I hope to hear more of this type of music in the near future.

    -Michael Casano, http://www.jazzreview.com/

    “Very groovy improv (or is it?) w/ a nice variety of moods and structures.”

    -Erik Amlee (Weirdsville! WebRadio, Northampton MA)

    “Breathe In, Feed Out fuses the extended imaginations of three of LA’s fine free creators: Kris Tiner, trumpet, Noah Phillips, guitar & electronics, and Sara Schoenbeck, bassoon. Together they fashion moody thoughtful music that delivers unexpected warmth and familiarity. Phillips stretchy metal dominates Tiner’s “Skujellifeddy.” Tiner and Schoenbeck play long unisons while Phillips buzzes and shreds. After the active opening, Tiner and Phillips play counterpoint with Schoenbeck, going out pensive. Tiner uses soulful phrasing on “A Wind Shift,” engaging Schoenbeck in conversation, with Phillips dropping distortions and sneaky notes. Beginning with a three-way pyrotechnic display, the edgier “Clocks and Maps” slows with Phillips’ sonic sketches, and Tiner and Schoenbeck swap tales to the otherworldly electric effects. Sly, slippery sounds from Phillips open “Like Red Flowers,” a luscious, sultry ballad. Tiner plays it blue and lonesome, shading and phrasing. Schoenbeck blows her warm woody tone through some stormy passages before Tiner drops his supportive mute to cry like a gifted baby Spontaneous instrument sounds and noises open ”Winddrone, Water Drying,” which shifts into high gear like a truck coming apart. Then the trio strikes gold on Tiner’s “Road from Kumasi.” Phillips repeats a simple hopeful figure and Tiner laces it with expressive, melodically strong variations. Schoenbeck follows, like her fellows, exploiting her instrument’’s richest range, shaping, bending, rounding notes. After the fanfare intro, “In This Dull City” retreats and revives with trills and dramatic voicings. The intriguing “They Mistook Time For Line” features an oozing solo from Phillips, soon joined by Tiner’s tart mute. All three explore unusual voicings on “Metal Skin,” from Phillips’ buzz and drones to Tiner and Schoenbeck’s multiphonics and toneless blowing. All three explore raw ragged tones to start “Force a Smooth Thing.” Phillips employs a number of effects boxes to achieve effects unintended by their designers. As Phllips samples radio Tokyo, Tiner and Schoenbeck come looming back, then Phillips sprays distortion. With their first release, Tiner, Phillips, and Schoenbeck establish themselves as sound scientists of the heart.”

    -Rex Butters (All About Jazz Los Angeles) 4/04

    “From L.A. or thereabouts, a nice improvising trio that keeps to a gentler sound with the occasional electronic burst…. A bit of a chamber-jazz feel with good stretches of exporatory improvising.”

    -Craig Matsumoto, KZSU (Stanford, CA)

    “A collaboration involving West Coast trumpeter Kris Tiner, Noah Phillips on guitar and Sara Schoenbeck on bassoon, Breathe In, Feed Out begins with some freeform jagged interplay as harsh guitar picking up against extended blasts of mournful brass before sliding into a wayward, jazzy lullaby. An air of… exploration dominates… some interesting interplay between Phillips’s blunt guitar frittering and Tiner’s constipated brass rasping on ‘Metal Skin’…”

    -Tom Ridge, The Wire

    “Wonderful…it’s a minimalist approach that never loses its quiet, stretching atmosphere and stark, naked beauty. Never too chaotic, it is a spacey, moody, somewhat dark and at times noisy minimalism that seeks to bring life to the barren, lonesome, jagged landscapes of its photography.”

    -Jeramy Ponder, Jackal Blaster Webzine

    “Creative and imaginative…The three artists present a purity of sound that is basic, interesting, and honest”

    – Jan. 26,2004 The CRITICAL REVIEW Service, 2523 Montana, El Paso, TX 79903 Eyeear7@Hotmail.com

    Too many listeners, including many jazz fans, find the “free” approach to music to be little more than pointless noodling. Unfortunately, Breathe In, Feed Out will do little to convince them otherwise. That’s not to say that the music here is actually painful — it’s just far too abstract to connect with most people. The trio — Kris Tiner on a variety of brass and reeds, Noah Phillips on electric guitar and electronics, and Sara Schoenbeck on bassoon — doesn’t fit many of the free jazz stereotypes: there are no wailing horns, frenetic rhythms or car-crash crescendos. Instead, the music is almost timid, peeking out at you from around the corner. In this way, it reminds me of watching a small child play: individual movements seem meaningful, but it’s impossible to tell exactly what the little bugger’s up to. Because of this, the music will likely sound a bit too dissonant and meandering for fans of more traditional jazz, but not blustery enough for the hardcore experimentalists. This leaves the trio in an often-overlooked middle ground that, although unlikely to garner a lot of appreciation, gives them freedom to make some interesting, if understated, music. — Ron Davies, splendidezine.com

    “The Tiner Phillips Schoenbeck combine group pieces with three composed by
    Tiner and arranged by the trio, recorded on 18/11/02. They have an
    interesting mix of instruments – brass and reeds; guitar and electronics;
    bassoon (in order) – and the combination offers a uniqueness that gives the
    trio something to differentiate them. The bassoon plays the part of bass and
    drums – a subdued support with occasional solo – and while sometimes you
    expect a real rhythm section to drop in, they are not really missed. Across
    the album there are three main directions. There are a few wild and squeally
    improv moments throughout – the opening (of course) Metal skin, parts of
    Clocks and maps, Windrone – not too many, not too disharmonious and
    balancing overall. There are too few tracks that bring in the second aspect,
    the electronics. Where it is, in Clocks or Force a smooth thing, for
    example, it adds an extra and complementary dimension. Then the third mood –
    longer ambient pieces where the instruments are given space for solos and to
    slowly develop themes and moods. Melodic, restrained, beautiful are words
    that came to mind. The tones and moods that the trio display across the
    album make this one a real pleasure with plenty of listening in.
    As an aside, while listening to Tiner et al I was reminded of King Crimson –
    not exactly through the sound, but more some of the moves and moods: it
    seems that ”

    jeremy, ampersand

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