Archive for the ‘listening diary’ Category
It’s been all about the Braxton Arista box since I got it, but I’ve squeezed in a couple of other things too.
Album titles link to sample-laden purchase pages at various commercial servers.
Not funny ha ha, more funny oh wow. Here’s a little bit of the song “For a Few Rubles More” by Farmer’s Market. This is from their first record, “Musikk Fra Hybridene,” which contains many hilarious genre trainwrecks, one of the genres always being Bulgarian Wedding Music.
(The other album of theirs that I have, “Speed Balkan Boogie,” is also great but not especially funny)
Olivier Messiaen‘s (wikipedia)(see also) Complete Bird Music for Piano Solo, performed by Carl-Axel Dominique. Probably best if I don’t start, I love Messiaen so much. I’ll just point out that Malcom Ball’s website has a page whereon you can compare the actual birdsongs to OM’s transcriptions, and another page containing midi examples to accompany his manifesto, Technique de mon Langage Musical (see the see also above).
Magick by John Zorn. Since I’m a drooling bass clarinet fetishist I had to have this for “Sortilege,” a bass clarinet duo by which I was not disappointed. The accompanying string quartet is also great. The thing about Zorn is, since he wears his technical limitations as a sax guy on his sleeve, and since he helms alot of high risk endeavors that frequently flop, it’s easy to underestimate both the clarity and potency of his vision, as well as his skill as a composer. Buy a disc from Tzadik, mp3’s from Amazon.
Limbic Rage by the Amoebic Ensemble. How did I miss these guys? Roughly triangulatable between Clubfoot Orchestra’s Ralph stuff (less polished), Degenerate Arts Ensemble (less rock), and klezmer/gypsy/roma accordionny whatever. Posted as wma’s at Mutant Sounds, here are some mp3’s in case you don’t happen to own the Windows Media patent. You can a couple of tunes from this and a couple from their other record at their MySpace page. The main dude now puts out his stuff on Cuneiform. Some of his projects are also sampled at this WFMU Beware of the Blog post about the Providence RI scene, about halfway down.
Xaphan (Masada Book of Angels 9) by Secret Chiefs 3. I went to see SC3 a year or two ago (w/SGM) intending to totally dig it and to buy some tunes off of them. I dug it every bit as much as I expected to, but instead of buying their cd’s I just went home and listened to some Turkish music cd’s and some Peter Thomas (fansite). This is a good record, a little loungey for me at times, but the band and the material are both interesting. Available from Tzadik. [EDIT 20080618, here's a more detailed review from a less slothful blogger]
Killing Joke by Killing Joke. (eMusic just had their more recent stuff) I have an unhealthy nostalgic obsession with music that I would have listened to as a teenager if only I’d had a brain and a spine. Killing Joke are particularly poignant because I remember in the 10th grade a dude saying “Steve, you gotta go see Killing Joke at the Keystone Berkeley,” to which I probably replied “get serious, man, they have short hair.” (I didn’t even have enough sense to enjoy the Subhumans show that I saw) And I love the anecdote that they got heavy into occult shit and convinced themselves that the apocalypse was coming so they moved to Iceland.
Zemir Atick by the Urban Tunélls Klezmer Band. Total blind impulse grab. Good stuff, kinda mellower than my favorite contemporary klezmer, but energetic and unimpeachably executed. Samples at link.
Monk’s Mood by the Dave Liebman Trio (Adam Nussbaum, Eddie Gomez). These guys are great, and I can’t really say that you shouldn’t go get this, but an album of Monk tunes should be…I don’t know…funnier. It’s like they’re afraid to commit silliness to tape. Also, the emphasis is on mid-tempo, infra-mid-tempo, and meta-infra-mid-tempo, which definitely works against what humor they have. Still, these are great players who are under-represented in my collection.