Thursday, November 29, 2007

Rocketman


I found this nice stencil by SNURRE in Bergen today! Fireworks on the moon?

Bergen in the springtime?

The Bergen International Festival 2008 is arranged 21 May - 4 June. Classical music is not my cup of tea really, but the concert with among others John Hassel and Jon Balke looks interesting. We'll come back when more is known about the parallell festivals "Oi Oi" and "Nattjazz".

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

William Blake



I will not pretend to be a big fan of William Blake, but on his birthday number 250, let's celebrate by pointing towards some Norwegian music (again, damn it!). Finn Coren made two albums with Blake's poems, called "The Blake Project" (1997 and 1998), and he uses one poem by the same author on "Lovecloud" (1999). Coren is still not "big in Norway", but you may give him a listen on Myspace. There you will see that one of his heroes is named Robert Wyatt (I promise, I didn't know this!).

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Wise man Wyatt


In a review in the Danish newspaper Politiken (25 November 2007) "comicopera" is hailed again. The reviewer (Kim Skotte) is so poetic, that I wish I could do him justice by translating his piece. We will forgive him for saying that R.W. was a member of Henry Cow! Here is my try on a couple of statements: "With a voice full of paradoxes, just as thin as it is full, and just as deep as it is high-", and later almost like a fairytale: "Robert Wyatt cannot walk one step, but he still is a kind of a pathfinder, finding his own way wearing the seven-league boots of the soul". The Danes!

Ungdomskulen



The Bergen trio Ungdomskulen released "Ordinary Son" (Ever Records, 2007) as a nice 7" picture disc. This band is so cool, they couldn't care less about finding a cool name (ungdomskulen= secondary modern school, or something like that).

Monday, November 26, 2007

All Ears

The festival season 2008 seems to be on it's way. In Norway your first chance is All Ears in Oslo. This festival is arranged by Norwegian impro-musicians like Maja Ratkje, Kjetil Møster, Paal Nilssen-Love and Lasse Marhaug.

Hear Hear

Kevin Ayers: Joy of a Toy (1969)
Robert Wyatt: Rock Bottom (1975)
Brian Eno: Another Green World (1975)
John Cale: Paris 1919 (1973)
Richard and Linda Thompson: I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight (1974)
Scorch Trio: Luggumt (2004)
Thank God, I found all these records in The Guardians list of "1000 albums to hear before you die". I only did a quick search through the lists, and found a lot of good stuff (of course!), even if I miss some favourites and feel the selected albums of some artists are quite different from my choices (see Frank Zappa!). I'm glad to find June Tabor, Holger Czukay and Captain Beefheart , but there are no Slapp Happy, Henry Cow, Ivor Cutler or Peter Blegvad. Well it's soon christmas and end of the year, and there will be more lists!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Billy Bragg + Wyatt

Messsage from NME concerning the new Billy Bragg album , scheduled for march 2008: "Cult English psychedelic musician Robert Wyatt provides guest vocals on album opener 'I Keep Faith'.
The tracklisting is:
'I Keep Faith'
'I Almost Killed You'
'M For Me'
'The Beach is Free'
'Sing Their Souls Back Home'
'You Make Me Brave'
'Something Happened'
'Mr Love & Justice'
'If You Ever Leave'
'O Freedom'
'The Johnny Carcinogenic Show'
'Farm Boy'"
We have hardly mentioned Bragg on this blog earlier, strange enough, but when the two radicals have met, we just have to come back to him.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Love will tear us apart

It has been a lot of talk about Ian Curtis and Joy Division, after Anton Corbijn's film "Closer" premeired. "Love will tear us apart" is a beautiful, desperate and sad song with Joy Division. With Susanna and The Magical Orchestra, it becomes magic.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Gilad Atzmon and some more


Robert Wyatt is allways a nice guy (let's at least pretend so), and is happy to credit his collaborators and helpers, like he did in the Purcell Room interview, where he hands it to Paul Weller (also for being a sharp dresser!), Eno, David Gilmour, Karen Mantler, Monica Vasconcelos and particularly the saxman Gilad Atzmon. I only own his "Re-arranging the 20th century" (Enja 2004) (and like it), but I guess I have to check out more from this guy?
In the interview Wyatt also mentions a musician not credited on the sleeve of comicopera. So the stupid completists have to get the next version too, where his name will be on the cover? No?
Instead of spending good money on crazy collecting habits, I might end up buying Food´s "Molecular gastronomy" (Rune Records) and Jupiter featuring Jonas Kulhammar: "III2" (Bolage) instead (and not the new Zeppelin collection).
And soon it is time to make lists again. This years best albums, anybody?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Imaginary media


Last week I got this strange book from Amazon: "Book of imaginary Media. Excavating the dream of the ultimate communication medium" (Eric Kluitenberg ed., debalie NAI Publishers, 2006). It is a product of a festival ("An archeology of imaginary media") arranged in Amsterdam in 2004. This is pretty far out (even for me). You get among other stuff 80 pages on "The pleasures of the peephole" by Erkki Huhtamo! One of my favourite chapters so far is by Sci-Fi author Bruce Sterling, on "Media Paleontology". The real reason I bought the book, is that you also get a DVD with a play staged by Peter Blegvad at the festival (35 min), called "On Imaginary Media: Son et lumiere".

Monday, November 19, 2007

90 minutes with Robert Wyatt

Robert Wyatt - Q & A, Purcell Room, London 15th Oct 2007! Thanks to Domino Records!

New Wyatt covers!



While looking for Robert Wyatt pictures on Flickr, I found some nice new covers to "Sea Song". I really hoped there were more records to buy, but it seems like it's a school or educational project of some kind!EldadAbel made the pills-cover and avigailba is inspired by Hokusai. Hey, I like these projects. Let's have more!

Waytt blog interview

Check out Beta Blog for an interview with Robert Wyatt. What some bloggers manage!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Italian promo

When somebody uploads an Italian promo for a Soft Machine tour, we are happy to help spreading the "news". The band here is Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers, Mike Ratledge and Daevid Allen, so I guess it is produced in 1966-1967.
I read through some Soft Machine tour lists (quite fast reading it was), and as far as I can see, they didn't tour Italy until 1972. If you want to check some archives see Calyx, Hugh Hopper´s website and the book "Soft Machine. Out Bloody Rageous" by Graham Bennett.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Soft Machine, Oslo, 1971

A recording of a Soft Machine concert held in Oslo 28 February 1971 may be found at YEESHKUL. I don't know anything about this site, so this is just for your information. If anyone reading this was attending the concert, please comment!

Band:
Elton Dean - alto sax, saxello & electric piano
Mike Ratledge - Hohner pianet, organ & electric piano
Hugh Hopper - bass
Robert Wyatt - drums & vocals

The concert:
Part 1 (37:02)
Facelift
Virtually
Slightly All The Time
Fletcher's Blemish

Part 2 (42:52)
Neo-Caliban Grides
Out-Bloody-Rageous
Eamonn Andrews
All White
Kings And Queens
Teeth
Pigling Bland (fades out)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Jason


Penguin's series Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition looks quite cool. The cover of Jack Kerouac's "Dharma Bums" is made by Norwegian cartoon artist Jason. Nice!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Too much music, not enough time!

Sometimes I get the feeling that there are waves of music that should be listened too, but time is short and the bank account just there to be kept quiet about. Here are some new stuff I just have to wait a bit with:
Hild Sofie Tafjord: Kama (Picadisc)
Piston Ltd: Domestic engine (Hecca/Division) (boat motors and pedal steel guitar!)
The Thing with Ken Vandermark: "Immediate Sound" (Smalltown)
Scorch Trio: "Live" (coming soon?)
And how about this concert in Oslo 23 November: All Ears All Stars with Lasse Marhaug, Maja Ratkje, Kjetil Møster and Paal Nilssen-Love. We might even hear it in Bergen, when these people get going.

Since we're talking about money, I get the impressiion that record stores are scared to death about keeping records in storage. Today I saw these artists latest records in the bin at 59 NOK (10 USD) at Platekompaniet: Jim White, Animal Collective, Supersilent and (shock and horror!) Robert Wyatt!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Penguin Cafe Orchestra


I 1976 I bought a strange album called "Music from The Penguin Cafe" by Penguin Cafe Orchestra (and later I bought some more, oh yes). I'm quite sure I tried it out because it was on Brian Eno's Obscure label. If this band is not charming, well I don't know. It is 10 years since the founder Simon Jeffes died, and now the band seem to have got together again, performing in London December 11-13.
The trombone player in the video is Annie Whitehead, who fronted the band performing "Soupsongs Live. The music of Robert Wyatt" (JAZZPRINT 2000).

Monday, November 12, 2007

Communism and free jazz

I just love the way Wyatt comments on how it is possible to join a communist party, as cited in Sunday Morning Herald November 10: "People would say, 'How can you join a party that hardly exists and has as much chance of survival as an ice cube in a furnace?' I'd say, 'If you've been a free jazz fan going along to free jazz gigs where the group has regularly outnumbered the audience, even when there are only three people in it, it is very easy to join the Communist Party.' "
Comicopera has achieved rave reviews all over the world. Quite contrary to my feelings, the reviewer in "The Straits Times" (Singapore November 9), states that one instrumental speaks even better than the songs: "Curiously the most telling is a track without words. Just listen to the instrumental On The Town Square, named after a square in Louth where he lives, it's a panglobal arcadia of sounds". I don't quite get it, but it sounds smashing. Our French friend's "Une Discographie De Robert Wyatt", now present (among a lot of other stuff!) an old Soft Machine portrait from Down Beat.

NME-vinyl

Recently we had a post on NME-cassettes. The magazine gave away some vinyl too, among other stuff some EPs taped to the paper. Still it is hard to beat the double Charlie Parker album "Bird Lives. The Complete Dial Masters" from 1988. They produced 3500 copies, and you had to send in a coupon to get it. The fantastic portrait on the cover is by Herman Leonard. If you click on the picture of the back-cover, you'll be able to read the tracklists too. Bird lives!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Some Wyatt-info

It is a piece on Robert Wyatt in #15 of the The Italian magazine UOVO this autumn. They have a CD too, but I don't think Wyatt is on that one.
A new DVD on Burning Shed, shows Wyatt playing some trumpet: "The happy accidents - masters of the balloonafon (dvd-video)". Burning Shed also have a couple of Hugh Hopper records with Wyatt "Jazzloops" og "The Stolen Hour" (Hopper/Howarth).

Shining

Shining won the Norwegian Alarm-prize in the category best jazz album for "Grindstone" (Rune Records 2007). Shining are brutally good, and they taste a bit prog. Check out the recording from Münich (October 2007),
where they play King Crimson's "21st Century's Schizoid Man", with members of metal bands Enslaved and Keep of Kalessin. Uha!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

ROCKnREEL


"UN-HERD vol. 6", the CD with the Nov/Dec issue of ROCKnREEL, has a selecton of tracks from CDs on Voiceprint. The crazy Wyatt collector gets two tracks: Robert Wyatt's "A Short Break" (1992) and Jo Fletcher's "Dare" (1994).

NME cassettes


In the 1980s I used to collect cassettes from New Musical Express. They have issued a whole lot of cassettes I think, but in the 80s they had a numbered series, and my collection is numbers 1-37. I´m not sure if this is all of them, or if I missed some after this. Robert Wyatt is on numbers 1, 4, 11, 33 and 37.

NME 001 C 81 (Rough Trade)(1981)
NME 002 Jiwe wire
NME 003 Hit the road (Stax)
NME 004 Mighty Reel (1982)
NME 005 Pocket jukebox (Charly)
NME 006 Racket Packet (1983)
NME 007 Stompin´at the Savoy
NME 008 Mad Mix II
NME 009 The Ace Case
NME 010 Smile Jamaica
NME 011 Department of enjoyment
NME 012 Checkmate (Chess)(1984)
NME 013 Night people (1984)
NME 014 Raging Spool
NME 015 Little Imp (1984)
NME 016 Neon West
NME 017 Tapeworm (1985)
NME 018 Straight No Chaser (Blue Note)
NME 019 All Africa Radio (1985)
NME 020 Feet Start Dancin´
NME 021 Pogo à Go Go
NME 022 C 86 (1986)
NME 023 Holiday Romance (Verve years) (1986)
NME 024 We have come for your children
NME 025 The Latin Kick (1986)
NME 026 low Light And Trick Mirrors
NME 027 What´s Happenin´Stateside (1986)
NME 028 Hi-voltage
NME 029 I dreamt i was Elvis (Charly/Ace) (1987)
NME 030 Blow-up UK (1987)
NME 031 Bush fire (Greensleves) (1987)
NME 032 Pocket Jukebox 2 (1987)
NME 033 Mixed Peel (Strange Fruit) (1987)
NME 034 The Tape With No Name (1987)
NME 035 The World At One
NME 036 Indie City 1 (1988)
NME 037 Indie City 2 (1988)

According to one comment, you'd rather look here too!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Max, Pascal, Robert and PJ.H.

Here you may listen to Max Gazzè singing "O Caroline", from the tribute album "The Different You. Robert Wyatt e noi". You'll find it somewhere here.

Pascal Comelade has issued a new record called "Metode de Rocanrol", and in this blog you'll find a lot on the composer (in French). You'll also find his versions of "September Song" with Robert Wyatt and "Love too soon" with PJ Harvey.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Clear Frame

It looks like we are going to get another Wyatt-related album this
autumn. I have mentioned this one before, but now it looks like the "Clear Frame" album will be released later in November. Participants: Charles Hayward, Lol Coxhil, Hugh Hopper and Robert Wyatt. I have a feeling that this will not be a singalong album.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Tarkus


Norwegian prog-magazine Tarkus interviewed Charles Hayward at the "Safe As Milk Festival" in Haugesund in July. Part one is printed in this issue. Start upgrading your Norwegian.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Biosphere



The first three albums from technoelectroambient artist Biosphere
(Geir Jensen) have just been reissued, with new covers. I know him best as an album-artist, but I have heard him live a couple of times. The first time I heard him, he was performing the "Arne Nordheim Transformed" material with Deathprod, at a student club in Bergen. It was a bit like watching a couple of office workers doing their job, with nice background music. The second time we were on a bus, with the "Trollofon" during The Bergen International Muisc Festival. Biosphere in the back of the bus, and the rest of us sitting and standing, while the bus was touring Bergen. See a picture from the cool happening in the student paper STUDVEST.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Trying to get a new job?

START MONDAY
Do your legs sweat? Only my left
one. It´s the one I lie on in bed. Any
more questions? No. The job´s
yours. Start Monday at eight
fortyfive.

Ivor Cutler: "South American Bookworms" (ARC, 1999)

Jean-Pierre Gauthier

The Montréal artist Jean-Pierre Gauthier has an exhibition in Bergen (to 18 Nov). You get a lot of moving sculptures made from everyday objects. Good fun! I forgot to concentrate on the sounds, even if the gallery is called "The Sound Gallery" ("Lydgalleriet).

Friday, November 2, 2007

Best of Norwegian jazz, ever?

BALLADE hired a lot of Norwegian journalists, and told them to find the best Norwegian jazz albums ever! Lists are lists, and nothing but fun, so no point in regretting the ones left out. I think all of them, except the last one ( a folk-jazz album) is on CD somewhere (see links for covers, and other info).
1-5
Afric Pepperbird - Jan Garbarek Quartet (1970)
Khmer - Nils Petter Molvær (1997)
Fairytales - Radka Toneff, Steve Dobrogosz (1982)
Masqualero – Masqualero (1983)
Some Other Spring - Karin Krog & Dexter Gordon (1970)
6-10
Plastic Sun - Svein Finnerud Trio (1970)
Witchi-Tai-To - Jan Garbarek Bobo Stenson Quartet (1973)
Winter Poem - Radka Toneff (1977)
How Long Has This Been Going On - Bjarne Nerem (1971)
Jøkleba! - Balke Jørgensen Kleive (1992)
11-15
Chaser - Terje Rypdal (1985)
Feet Music – Atomic (2001)
It Don’t Come Easy - Radka Toneff (1979)
Sagn - Arild Andersen (1990)
Friends - Kapstad-Johansen Quartet (1980)
16-20
Live In Molde - Chick Corea, Trondheim Jazzorkester ( 2000)
Duplex Ride - Sidsel Endresen, Bugge Wesseltoft (1997)
Bikini Tapes – Atomic (2004)
Bleak House - Terje Rypdal (1968)
Østerdalsmusikk - Østerdalsmusikk (1975)

Motorpsycho

Since there is no music, but a story in the vinyl of comicopera, i got out my "Timothy's Monster" album (1994) by the fantastic Norwegian band Motorpsycho. They pressed 2000 numbered copies of this one, as a triple vinyl album, and side 6 has pictures on it, but no music. If I'm not totally mistaken, I think one of the guys in the band is a Wyatt fan too.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Muriel Delepont

The Belgian newspaper "La Meuse" (Liège 31 October) writes about an exhibition of rock portraits taken by Muriel Delepont. The pictures are probably in "Organic vision of sound" (Broche 2006). Anybody out there know this one?

Canterbury at the library

Even my local public library is into Canterbury music these days! They have a cute little exhibition with Gong, Kevin Ayers, Steve Hillage, Soft Machine and Hatfield and The North. Nice one! My personal opinion is that public libraries are one of the best products of human thinking, ever! In my hometown, Bergen, we have a very good music department at the public library!