Bill Bruford's Earthworks — Random Acts of Happiness
(Summerfold SFVP001CD, 2004, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2005-09-01
It has been said that jazz is all about Swing. I’ll go along with that — as long as I get to define Swing my own way. Swing is more than just a particular rhythmic feel; Swing, to me, is an attitude toward the music, an attitude that says everything is open to interpretation, even the beat. Swing is about improvisation, and while rock and other genres may feature improvisation, the beat is not subject to interpretation. In rock (for the most part), the beat is master to the music, and if you forget that, you’re not rocking! Paradoxically, this fact leads to jazz having a Groove. Other genres can Groove, but they arrive at it from a different direction. Anyway, all this gets around to my amazement at Bill Bruford’s drumming. Long ago he earned his place as one of the great rock drummers of all time, and his precision is legendary. We learned some time ago that his heart was more inclined toward jazz, and through the various Earthworks incarnations, he has proved that he also ranks as one of the great jazz drummers. He’s also the kind of leader who surrounds himself with supremely talented cohorts and gives them room to shine. Another amazing thing about Bruford (as if there wasn’t already enough) is his skill as a composer. From the (perhaps) overly complicated tunes of his early solo days, he has grown to master the balance between complexity and Groove, producing truly outstanding music that satisfies from all angles.
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more