Steve Adams / Vinny Golia Duo: The Philosophy of Air (PFMCD129)

Jeff Kaiser

[playlist ids="3706"]

1. seconds of words…………………………12:19
2. Romeo, do you like anchovies?………………7:52
3. a mysterious abundance of quinces………….27:16
4. neon meat dream of a Beefheart machine……..10:23

Steve Adams – sopranino, alto and tenor saxophones, bass flute, electronics
Vinny Golia – bass and contra-alto clarinets, baritone and G soprano saxophones

All compositions by Steve Adams © Metalanguage Music 2018
1-3 recorded by Bruce Kaphan on March 22, 2015 at Niagara Falls Studio, Niles, CA
4 recorded by Myles Boisen on May 9, 2018 at Guerrilla Euphonics, Oakland, CA
Mixed by Myles Boisen on May 18 and 29, 2015 and May 9, 2018
Mastered by Myles Boisen on May 15, 2018 at the Headless Buddha Mixing Lab, Oakland, CA

Cover photo by Myles Boisen inside photo by Charles Smith
Layout and Design by Ted Killian

The Philosophy of Air

seconds of words, like most of these pieces, has randomized electronics, so the general character is determined (but the details are unpredictable) to create an environment for the improviser that encourages creativity. For this piece, the pitch material of the electronics is taken from the melody, while moving through several textural zones. Interestingly, the electronics have performances where they seem to be locked into to the improvisation, and ones where they’re not. This piece is dedicated to Bennie Maupin.

Most of these pieces were recorded to present a representation of how they sound live, with a small amount of editing. Romeo, do you like anchovies?, in contrast, was constructed out of two takes, a free improvisation and a re-generated electronics track, and is more of a collage than a captured performance. This was my first experience working this way, and led to my project with Tim Perkis, A Few Eccentricities, where every cut is a reconstruction. It is dedicated to collage genius Max Ernst.

I had the original idea for a mysterious abundance of quinces decades ago, but it took lots of background thinking and technological advances to make it possible. It’s very different from the original sketches, though it is still a long piece for bass flute and contra-alto clarinet with a background of drones and small, repetitive sounds. It reflects my studies of North Indian classical music, and roughly adheres to the outline of raga form. Because of the length and complexity of the piece, the electronics are fixed. It is dedicated, with love and gratitude, to my wife, Lauren.
neon meat dream of a Beefheart machine is the second piece I’ve written that is dedicated to Captain Beefheart, along with the violin/marimba duo Owed t’Don, recorded by Marimolin on their CD Phantasmata. It’s based on a Reaktor ensemble created by Rick Scott that he graciously adapted for me. Here, I am triggering the changes in the electronics to fit the music, though each new pattern is a randomly generated surprise.
Special thanks to Ann and Jack Eastman, stewards and curators of the Maybeck Studio for the Performing Arts, where these pieces were premiered, and to Vinny, my musical brother.
—Steve Adams

pfMENTUM
PFMCD129
www.pfmentum.com

Steve Adams / Scott Walton: Cookies for Cyrano (PFMCD103)

Jeff Kaiser

[playlist ids="935"]

1. Force Field of Oblivion 6:04
2. one of countless sporadic manifestations of the alternate universe in which Olivier Messiaen is a fervent agnostic 7:15
3. Membrillo 6:14
4. Operatic 13:37
5. The Enumeration (for Glenn Spearman) 6:13
6. Ogonix 8:58
7. Black Notebook #8 13:37

Steve Adams – alto and baritone saxes, bass flute, electronics
Scott Walton – acoustic bass

All compositions by Steve Adams, © 2016 Metalanguage Music (BMI)

Recorded Feb. 25, 2015 at Fantasy Studio B by Jesse Nichols.
mixed July 8 and December 29, 2015 at Fantasy Studios by Jesse Nichols.
mastered May 5, 2016 by Myles Boisen at the Headless Buddha Mastering Lab.

The Steve Adams/Scott Walton Duo has been performing since 2013. Steve is best known as a member of the Rova Sax Quartet, with whom he has played for over twenty five years, toured internationally and released more than twenty five recordings. His compositions have been performed at the Bang on a Can and Meet the Composer Festivals. Scott Walton is a bassist and pianist whose music negotiates the terrain between jazz, free improvisation, and the classical avant-garde.  He has performed throughout North America and Europe with groups he co-leads, and in a host of collaborative contexts.

pfMENTUM CD103
PFMCD103

We have *four* exciting new releases for you

1) KaiBorg! Plus gigs in NYC and MO! Jeff Kaiser and David Borgo exploring new territory 2) Vinny Golia! With Steve Adams, Ken Filiano, and Tina Raymond 3) Trumpets & Basses featuring pfMENTUM veterans Danny Gouker, Adam Hopkins, and more! 4) Joshua Gerowitz’s exciting new release on CD, with vinyl coming soon! All available at pfMENTUM.com KaiBorg: Excerpts from Vibrant …

Vinny Golia: Syncquistic Linear Expositions  and their Geopolitical Outcomes (…we are all still here…) (PFMCD109)

Jeff Kaiser

Vinny Golia

Syncquistic Linear Expositions 
and their Geopolitical Outcomes
(…we are all still here…)

1. The Trouble With Mr. Snappy 9:42
2. Paro 11:12
3. Some Kind Of Guru 11:51
4. Bank Book Lama 9:39
5. All The Things I’m Not (version 1) 8:29
6. Onion Of Mystery 7:08
7. Final Authority 9:55

Vinny Golia: Sopranino, Bb and G Soprano, Baritone Saxophones, Bass Clarinet, Kwala, Gongs, and Kayzee
Steve Adams: Alto Saxophone 
Ken Filiano: Acoustic Bass and Pedals 
Tina Raymond: Drums

Recorded 11 March 2017 at Kingsize Sound Labs in Eagle Rock, California
Recorded and mastered by John Baffa Mixed by John Baffa and Vinny Golia

Photos by Vinny Golia
Layout and Design by Ted Killian

All compositions and arrangements by Vinny Golia
℗ and © 2017 Ninewinds, BMI

A joint release of pfMENTUM and Ninewinds
PFMCD109/NWCD342
www.pfmentum.com

David Borgo / Paul Pellegrin: Kronomorphic (PFMCD059)

Jeff Kaiser

[playlist ids="499"]
David Borgo and Paul Pellegrin
Kronomorfic
Micro Temporal Infundibula

David Borgo: tenor, soprano and sopranino saxophones
Bill Barrett: chromatic harmonica
Paul “Junior” Garrison: electric guitar
Nathan Hubbard: vibraphone and marimba
Danny Weller: double bass
Paul Pellegrin: drum set and hand percussion

1. Deprong Mori 6:38
2. Tehuantepec 4:27
3. Perambulate 8:26
4. Dendochrone Currents 8:01
5. Gnomon 8:03
6. Repolarization 6:22
7. Jeannot’s Knife 6:11
8. Autopoiesis 5:56
9. Ossuary 6:30

Special guests:Jeff Kaiser – trumpet and live electronics on Jeannot’s Knife
Evan Adams – oboe on Gnomon
Perambulate composed by David Borgo© 2010 by David Borgo Music, ASCAP
All other songs composed by Paul Pellegrin© 2010 by Paul Pellegrin Music, ASCAP
All songs arranged by David BorgoProduced by David Borgo and Paul Pellegrin
Recorded by Joe Kucera at UC San Diego, Studio A
Mixed by Joe Kucera and David Borgo
Mastered by Jeff Kaiser
Special thanks to Mike Saul and Shawn Fleming
Dedicated to Veronica, Elian and Lola Pellegrinand to Sylvia, Diego and Joaquin Borgo
www.kronomorfic.com

Liner Notes:

“Any detailed description of this phenomenon would baffle the layman, but any comprehensible explanation would insult an expert.” —Kurt Vonnegut

We live our lives in time, but we experience our life across time, as a dynamic and complex overlay of temporal narratives that shape meaning. Folklore, history and culture all saturate space with time, and our personal evolving time-place nexus helps us to make sense of the multiple contexts we embody and experience.
One of music’s most laudable qualities may be its ability to bring us fully into the present, but it does this via its own complex layering of sound, space and time. “Infundibula” comes from the Latin word for funnel, and it is used to describe, among other things, a variety of funnel-like structures in the lungs, heart, kidneys, ovaries and brain. Kurt Vonnegut adopted the term in his novel The Sirens of Titan to describe a kind of wormhole through time and space “where all the different kinds of truths fit together.”

Kronomorfic is a collaborative effort to explore layers of musical time that coexist and interweave in ever more complex interrelationships. The compositions are mostly structured using hybrid rhythmic phrases in polymetric time (e.g., 5/3/4, 6/7/9, 8/12/15). These hybrid phrases provide the clave (or “key”) from which the melodic counterpoint, rhythmic modulation and improvisations emerge. For us, Micro Temporal Infundibula are intermediary time strata within these claves that allow disparate and seemingly conflicting rhythms to communicate with one another.

Deprong Mori was named for a species of bat in Venezuela (the “piercing devil”) believed to be able to penetrate solid objects. Technically the song alternates sections with meters of 10, 9 and 13 beats, but these shifts can be heard as different perceptual facets of a sonic prism formed by a single interlocking ostinato. Tehuantepec, the Isthmus that represents the shortest distance between the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean, may evoke the marimba melodies from that region, but here they take on an entirely new character in a 10-beat meter. The loping drum and bass patterns of Perambulate create a 3-against-4 feel that underlies the tune’s polychordal harmony and outward-bound solos. Dendochrone Currents, an elliptical reference to the science of tree ring dating, starts with a meditative guitar intro and then establishes a polymeter of 12/15/8 (with the marimba, horns, and bass respectively) before launching into solos over a 6-against-9 feel (with an implied stratum of 4). Gnomon, named for the part of the sundial that casts a shadow, starts with a collective free improvisation that leads into alternating sections of 12 and 9 beats. The soloing is over a heated Balkan-inspired feel that alternates 2-3-2-2-2-3-2-3-2-3 with 2-3-2-2-3-3-3.

Repolarization combines a vibes part in 7, a horn melody in 6, and a bass line in 9. The “polarity” of the title refers to the way in which the horns and vibes synchronize only at the beginning of their phrases in the A sections and only at the end of their phrases in the B sections. Jeannot’s Knife, a French parable about a knife whose blade and handle has been replaced 15 times, raises the question of whether an object which has had all its component parts replaced remains fundamentally the same object. The reference here is both to the way in which the composition unfolded—with an initial rhythmic structure generating a melody that, in turn, implied a different rhythmic structure—and to how the horns and vibes create their melodic phrases anew each time by selecting pitches from a pre-given hexachord. Rhythmically, the vibes and horns phrase in 7-against-5 (heard in the hi-hat), while the bowed bass plays a repeating 7-beat phrase across the meter of 5. The hand drumming cycles with two iterationsof the bass line and can be counted 3-3-3-5. The trumpet-with-live-electronics solo by special guest Jeff Kaiser seems to push the paradox of the title even further, as the notion of “component parts” gives way to a feeling of hybridity and distributed agency.

Autopoiesis, or “self-creation,” refers to any system that regenerates itself, acting as both producer and product. It offers an intriguing metaphor for the way in which the rhythms of these complex claves often seem to generate one another. Two claves are used in this tune: 3/4/5/ and 3/5/7. The bass plays in 5 throughout, while the horn melody modulates between3 and 7, and the vibes between 4 and 3. Ossuary was inspired (even haunted) by a visit to the ossuary in Kutna Hora, Czech Republic, a chapel with chandeliers, candelabra, chalices and a coat of arms all made from human bones. The tune starts with a clave of 6/8/5 (in the drums, vibes and bass respectively) that alternates with a 9-against-6 feel when the horns enter, before giving way to a contrasting section in a 9/8/6/ clave (in the bass, horns, and vibes respectively). The improvised solos happen over the “big 9” in the bass, then the melody returns and slowly recedes as the drums, bowed bass, vibes and electric guitar all come to rest.

pfMENTUM CD059

PFMCD095