Monday, January 31, 2011

Phil Manzanera reissues

Phil Manzanera  is interviewed in Daily Express, and two albums are mentioned, that are reissued today. We are talking about Manzanera´s firs solo album "Diamond Head", with Robert Wyatt singing on "Frontera", and Quiet Sun´s (Manzanera, Dave Jarrett, Charles Hayward and Bill McCormick, plus Eno and Ian McCormick) "Mainstream", both recorded during the same period, and released in 1975.

These albums are recommended for most Wyatt and Canterbury fans , and if you have access to Spotify, you may check them out there. The reissue of  "Diamond Head" seems to have two extra tracks,  "Charumba" and "Corazon Y Alma", while the   Quiet Sun album has five extra tracks and a pretty thick booklet.

Read about  "Diamond head" and "Mainstream" over at Phil Manzanera´s site, and order signed copies if you like.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Thing at The Vortex

Oh, it´s good to see that some people upload great videos on YouTube!
Helen Petts filmed Paal Nilssen-Love (drums), Ingebrigt Haaker-Flaten (bass) and Mats Gustafsson (baryton sax) during a concert with The Thing at The Vortex in London (November 2010).

I´m also waiting for the  "The Thing with Jim O´Rourke. Shinjuku Growl" album. Out already, or out soon?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Kevin Ayers live 2003

wacksworks uploaded a video of  Kevin Ayers from 2003, backed by Starvin Marvin Band from Belgium. They do "Lady Rachel" from "Joy of a Toy" (1969). Pretty nice, if you ask my opinion.

Friday, January 28, 2011

No Pussyfooting and Evening Star

I seem to have forgotten all about my Classics series, but look here, two classic albums in one post!
Brian Eno from Roxy Music and Robert Fripp from King Crimson met, and recorded two duo albums in the 70s. It´s early ambient, early Frippertronics, with guitar solos by Fripp treated by Eno with (as it is written) "2 Modified Revox A77 Tape Recorders" on "No Pussyfooting" and "Loops and Synthesizer" on "Evening Star".

"No pussyfooting" was released in 1973, with one track on each side. "The heavenly music corporation" is named after a brand of  marijuana cigarettes ("Heavenly Music"), mentioned in Philip K. Dicks novel "The man in the high castle" (and I am reading that now, what a coincidence!), and "Swastika girls" is inspired by a picture from a porn magazine Eno "happened to find in the studio". Good to know, isn´t it? (I found the info in David Sheppard´s book "On some faraway beach").

From the quality of my vinyl, it seems like I have been playing "Evening Star" (1975)  more often than "No Pussyfooting", the reason I believe, is that I loved the tracks "Evening Star" and "Evensong". They are still extremely beautiful.
We get a total of five tracks on this album,  and "Wind on Wind" is an excerpt from "Discreet Music", and "An index of metals" fills all of side two.

And the reason I started playing these albums now, is that I somehow found some info on  what seems to be a great recording of a concert, Fripp & Eno did in Paris in 1975. So far you may buy files, but a CD release is planned this year.

Is this a bootleg, or is it an official release? I´m not sure.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Chris Cutler

Roulette TV: CHRIS CUTLER from Roulette Intermedium on Vimeo.

A friendly drummer from Bergen pointed me towards this video of Chris Cutler, made by  Roulette TV in 2001. We get a drum solo (a weak description in this case) and an interview.
You all know that Chris Cutler played in Henry Cow and Art Bears, and has cooperated with lots of musicians, several of them mentioned in this blog for various reasons. Cutler is also the man behind Recommended Records (now ReR Mecacorp).

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tripping in Bergen

BOREALIS 2011: Festival theme from Borealis Festival on Vimeo.

The Borealis festival in Bergen will happen 22nd - 26th of March, and the festival theme is tripping! Of course! Festival director Alwynne Pritchard explains it all on the video.

Borealis is dedicated to contemporary music, noise and sound art (and more), and the psychedelic program will be dropped in the end of February.
Expect cynical drug jokes whenever the festival is mentioned.

My pictures from previous Borealis festivals here, from  2010, 2009 and 2008.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Tricatel celebrates 15 years

Reading newsletters in French is not an easy task for me, but my guess is that  Tricatel is 15 years old, and might celebrate with a bunch of reissues.
So far please note the digital version of  Bertrand Burgalat´s "Chéri BB" (2007).
Robert Wyatt sings on the great "This summer night",  and on the new version of the album you also get a "Solenzara mix" of the song, previously only available (?) on a limited 7".
Check this old blog post on Wyatt and Burgalat, and head over here for  track list for "Chéri BB".

And now (the day after) I see that the same bonus track is on the album "Inédits" too. "Inédits" (2007) is a collection of rare and previously unreleased Burgalat tracks.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Fred Frith and Art Directors

conradsound uploaded a great video of  Fred Frith and Art Directors, recorded in Oslo in August 2010. Art Directors is Guro Skumsnes Moe, Jacob Willersrud and Håvard Skaset.

I already posted a video from the the same festival (Høyt og Lavt), where Frith played with Hild Sofie Tafjord and Paal Nilssen-Love.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Optical Substance

Saturday I finally got to hear Optical Substance at a student´s club in Bergen (yes, they even allow old guys in there).
Optical Substance is Kjetil Husebø´s (electronics, keyboards) project, and this time he was joined by Alexander Grieg (bass), Steinar Værnes (trumpet, electronics) and Jonas Johnsen (drums, electronics). What they offered was a fine mix of electronica and jazz, quite relaxed and cool.

They might not live in the same neighborhood, but if you have visited the  soundscapes of  Arve Henriksen and Nils Petter Molvær you should check out  Optical Substance too, and start with the fine album  "Adaptation" from 2010. Only Steinar Værnes from this gang is playing with Husebø on that album, but you may find the rest of them over at  Gubemusic, where you even may buy "Adaptation" in a format even sound gourmets will accept.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Robert Wyatt´s favorites

Robert Wyatt spoke to Dusted about his favorites in music. It´s mostly classical and jazz for Wyatt, and if he should be forced to pick one, it would be Charlie Mingus.
The first pick on his Dusted dusted list is Danny Kaye´s Tubby the Tuba!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Peter Brötzmann og Masahiko Satoh

Peter Brötzmann and Masahiko Satoh, live at the Henie Onstad Art Center in Oslo, during the All Ears festival 2011.
Visit the art center´s  YouTube channel to see Joe McPhee perform at the same festival.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Off The Page

Friday 11 to Sunday 13 February a literary festival  called "Off The Page", on music criticism, is held in Whitstable, England.
Robert Wyatt is one of the guests, and he will talk about his favorite music (11 February). A couple of jazz drummers will be mentioned (my guess).

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Wadada Leo Smith and Ed Blackwell

I have recommended a Wadada Leo Smith duo album with drummer earlier in the blog, his "America" with Jack DeJohnette. I see I doubted if it could be done any better, but let´s not discuss details, because last year Wadada Leo Smith and Ed Blackwell´s "The Blue Mountain´s Sun Drummer" (Kabell 2010) was released.  This live recording from 1986 is nothing less than fantastic, a trumpet and duo album full of melodies and beauty. I got my download from  eMusic.

I know Ed Blackwell (1929-1992) mostly from his work with Don Cherry and the band Old and New Dreams, and I was lucky to hear this band at the Molde International Jazz Festival in 1979. Unfortunately I have never heard Wadada Leo Smith live, but like his work with Henry Kaiser in Yo, Miles! a lot!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Matching Mole on French TV (Rockenstock)

Wow! A masked Robert Wyatt and the rest of Matching Mole (Phil Miller, Bill McCormick and Dave MacRae) live on  Rockenstock in 1972.
They perform "Gloria Gloom" and "Part of The Dance".

Sunday, January 16, 2011

When the fire grows cold

Hey, what´s this? A new record with Robert Wyatt singing: Last Man Standing: "The fire grows cold".
It sounds great, but this is all I know. Anyone better informed?
Check out Last Man Standing on MySpace.

Added 17 January: I stole this info from their Facebook profile:
"LMS have come to the conclusion of a 3-4 year-long recording project. We are mixed, mastered and armed with 18 fantastic new tracks with special guests Robert Wyatt and Daevid Allen. Seeking a record label and a tour agent".

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Scritti Politti sampler

It seems like we may be able to buy a new Scritti Politti sampler on the 28th of February.  "The Sweetest girl", with Robert Wyatt on piano, is one of the tracks (of course). "The Sweetest Girl" was released by Rough Trade in 1981, and was on the album "Asylums in Jerusalem", released in 1982.

Read more over at I Like Music and bibbly-o-tek.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Keith Richards: Life

I read so few books these days, that we have a serious lack of literature postings in the blog. Let´s hear it then for a rock biography today, because after 550 pages of Keith Richards "Life" (Weidenfeld & Nicolson 2010), I´m ready to recommend it!
It may not be great literature in the classic sense (but who cares?), and it wouldn´t hurt if it was 450 pages, but it is some story he has to tell, and quite incredible that he remembers anything at all!
And yes, we have even read some of it already, but don´t worry about it, we get growing up in England, early blues and rock & roll influences, Rolling Stones from beginning to the end (?), loads of drugs, a rough life on the road (meeting people like Gram Parsons), and finally what seems like a happy family life! Lovely!
We get pretty close to Mick Jagger and what looks like a love and hate relationship, and Richards has got some nice words for a bunch of other musicians (including Rolling Stones members), but I wonder a bit about Bill Wyman! After reading the book, I only seem to remember that he made lousy tea and bragged about the number of women on his list!

Keith Richards seems to be the down to earth rock & roller we know, digging his blues and with no need for glamour. I just had to visit the basement to find some Slim Harpo, Chuck Berry and John Lee Hooker albums to play while I was reading. Jagger wnated to bring in new disco infected stuff, and he wanted top studio equipment. Richards on the other side wonder why he was able to make fantastic music in a naked room in Jamaica, while a high tech studio could ruin it all: "----and now with fifteen microphones I get a drum sound that´s like someone shitting on a tin roof?"

The guy seems to love his food too, cooking at all hours if he is hungry. We even get a recipe for bangers and mash, and I won´t ruin the story for you, but remember this; if you are invited to his home, do not touch the spring onions!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Maja Ratkje & Zeena Parkins

My first concert of the year (no I didn´t play) happened at Bergen´s Landmark, where they had some kind of vorspiel to the  All Ears festival (the same happened in Trondheim the day after). The first ones out this evening were the French musicians Jerome Noetinger and Lionell Marchetti, who made electroacoustic soundscapes with cassettes, discman (anyone who remeber them?) and lots of other stuff. A nice concert, and I enjoyed the blues singer, singing from a tape recorder or something, inside the electronic cloud.

Maja Ratkje is a regular visitor in Wyatt and Stuff, and Zeena Parkins have been mentioned too, just take a look at the post on the great Cosa Brava (with Fred Frith). This was the first time Ratkje and Parkins did a duo concert, but of course (!) it turned out just fine. Electronics, laptops, vocals and harp even turned into some rocking blow outs when Parkins attacked the harp.
You might find a lousy video on YouTube in a while, just to give you an impression (but don´t blame the musicians).
(Sorry, the video is very dark:

Being a hard working man (*cough*) I had to leave just as Kevin Drumm started his concert. To bad for me I guess.

And I left the venue with my first CD and airport pillow package! According to a Zeena Parkins discography it is probably this one:

MONEY $HOT: Zeena Parkins

    2003 - casestudy (USA), no catalog number (CD in plastic pillow)
    2003 - casestudy (USA), no catalog number (CD in felt pouch)
    2003 - casestudy (USA), no catalog number (CD in ceramic pod)

  Note: this self-produced CD is a limited edition (100 only) and is available
  in three different packages:

        - a designer airport pillow, by Nadia Lauro
        - a 12" square felt sheet with hidden red-lined pockets for inserts
          and CD, by Chris Faulkner
        - a ceramic plate-like object, by Chris Faulkner.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Paul Dunmall & Chris Corsano

I have to admit that I had not heard about sax man Paul Dunmall until a couple of days ago, but as soon as my eMusic account was full again, I shopped his and drummer Chris Corsano´s,  "Identical Sunsets" (ESP 2010). Thank God it´s a fine free jazz album, because the reason I bought it, was that I saw that Dunmall played bagpipes too!
Paul Dunmall seems to play Northumbrian pipes (arrest me if I´m wrong, but check this YouTube video), and the title track is one long bagpipe solo (the only track with pipes).
"Identical Sunsets" is recorded live in 2008, and I can´t believe it, but the concert talkers are at it again! In my own home now!
Read a better review over at  hos Tiny Mix Tapes.

Until I got this one, I think my only jazz album with bagpipes on it, was"The Cutting Edge" (1974) by Sonny Rollins, with Rufus Harley playing "Swing Low Sweet Chariot".

Now, do we need more bagpipes in jazz? Discuss!

Monday, January 10, 2011

All Music At Once!

I just realized that Lasse Marhaug released "All Music At Once" on Smalltown in December! This is his third album on that label ( following "Nothing But Sound From Now" and "The Shape of Rock To Come"), and this time he brings along a solid bunch of musicians too! How about Kevin Drumm, Jon Wesseltoft, Maja Ratkje, Stian Westerhus and Hild Sofie Tafjord? My guess is that you didn´t find this one under your Christmas tree, and like me you just have to get it yourselves. If you are in need of some noise, that is.

Read full review of All Music At Once - LASSE MARHAUG on ©

Sunday, January 9, 2011

My first Christmas record this year

I stayed away from Christmas records for most of December, but on Friday I bought my first one for the festive season 2011! While looking for new records in one of my local stores I fell for the cover on a 7" with the folk rock band Trembling Bells, released on  Honest Jon´s (2010). On one side Bonnie Prince Billy sings a very sad New Year´s eve song, the title telling it all, being "New Year´s Eve´s the Loneliest Night of the Year", and on the flip side  Mike Heron of Incredible String Band sings "Feast of Stephen". The latter song described by the record company as "a Boxing Day ghost story".

You get a nice sleeve, and it is probably limited (no artist named or numbers given), but the music is also sold on iTunes.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Robert Wyatt discography review

Listen to needledropdamagedone on the Robert Wyatt discography.
No rant, no bullshit!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Dave Holland documentary

DAVE HOLLAND a short documentary from Ulli Gruber on Vimeo.

Check out "DAVE HOLLAND a short documentary" by Ulli Gruber, recently uploaded on Vimeo.
And don´t forget last year´s fine "Pathways", by Dave Holland Octet (Dare2 2010).

Thursday, January 6, 2011

This Is What Happens

The January/February issue of  Shindig (Issue 20) has got six pages on the early history of Soft Machine, up to Soft Machine "4" (1971) (Robert Wyatt´s Soft Machine period, as you all know) , written by Lindsay Bensley ("This is what happens", p 24 -  p 29).

On the cover we se Robert Wyatt, Kevin Ayers, Mike Ratledge and Andy Summers, a version of  Soft Machine existing between the recordings of the first two albums (1968).

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Domino Doubles

Domino really do sell Robert Wyatt albums, no doubt about it! Original albums, reissues, all the albums in one box and now "Rock Bottom" and "Comicopera" in a double pack "Domino Doubles" through Amazon.

I must admit I had plans not to buy this time, but damn it looked like an old fashioned double album, and that would have been a must of course!
Well, it was two single albums in a plastic holder, but what the heck, "Rock Bottom" and "Comicopera" are two great Robert Wyatt albums with nice cover art by Alfreda Benge, and as long as I keep the plastic it´s a new one. Right?

Don´t Walk On The Glass!

We walk like sick goats in Bergen these days! It has been snowing, the snow melted, it started to rain, it turned cold again and so on. I took this picture of a park lawn on my way home this evening, and I just think I´ll stay inside now, thank you very much.

The same park in the summer here.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Maja Ratkje

The blog  "Musikk fra Norge" (in Norwegian) has collected news on Maja Ratkje today, and the short version for you is that we will have new albums from Poing, Slugfield (live with Pal Nilssen-Love and Lasse Marhaug) and Trondheim Sinfonietta, and even a DVD with SPUNK on Rune Grammofon.

On Maja Ratkje´s new site you will find lots of concert dates, and I hope to see her and Zeena Parkins 11 January in Bergen, even if it seems to be a secret here! Ratkje/Parkins will also play in  Trondheim (12 January), and at the All Ears festival in Oslo 13 January.

In my notebook also put down:  SPUNK in Bergen and Molde, and Maja with  Stian Westerhus and Trondheim Jazz Orchestra in Molde. SPUNK will do concerts with Joëlle Léandre at the  Molde festival, and I hope it will be just as good as  her duo concert with Maja Ratkje at the 2009 festival!

2011 FTW!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Silje Nes

How about some slow walking pop today? I saw this way of describing the music of Norwegian singer Silje Nes in a review, and it fits well I think.  This is home made electronica or pop, that sometimes is so shy that you may forget to listen. Nothing wrong about that!
Silje Nes´ first album  "Ames Room" was released late 2007, and last year  "Opticks" came, both on FatCat.

The mood of the albums is what gets me, but there are catchy tunes in here too. On the new album I may point at "Crystals" and the Thurston Moore cover  "Silver>Blue", and "Symmetry Of Empty Space" could have been used in Twin Peaks.

Both albums and some singles are on Spotify to be checked out.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

And all the questionmarks started to sing

And All the Questionmarks Started to Sing from Verdensteatret on Vimeo.

In October 2010 I saw the Norwegian Verdensteatrets ("The World Theater" - no less!) performance "And all the questionmarks started to sing" in Bergen. It was a fantastic man-machine performance, but i seem to have blogged it only over at Wyatting (in Norwegian). Watch some pictures from the show on Flickr.
Anyway, now you all may watch a 35 minute long documentation Verdensteatret uploaded on Vimeo.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Ghosts Within

temartem made this dream like video collage for the title song of Robert Wyatt, Gilad Atzmon and Ros Stephen´s "For The Ghosts Within". A happy new year to all of you!