Birdsongs of the Mesozoic — The Iridium Controversy
(Cuneiform Rune 179, 2003, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2003-12-01This new offering from my favorite prehistoric animal noise group certainly lives up to the high standards of their previous releases, and over the long term may turn out to be one of my favorites. As on previous outings, Erik Lindgren is responsible for composing about half the album, though all members’ contributions are of high quality and remarkably consistent stylistically, with angular ostinati (usually on piano) that remind me of Bartok, unpredictable melodies (usually on sax), highly rhythmic passages (percussion and who knows what else), and interjections of noise (usually on guitar) to keep it from getting too pretty. On many of their previous albums, they’ve included a humorous cover tune (“Peter Gunn”, “Rocky and Bullwinkle”), and while those are fun, ultimately they detract from the mood created by the excellent original compositions from all of the band members. One aspect of their past that they’ve chosen not to leave behind is founding member Roger Miller, who appears on piano for new recordings of two Birdsongs from the group’s early days, including his own composition “The Beat of the Mesozoic, Part 1.” It says something about the band’s consistency of vision even through personnel changes that the old pieces remain close to their original versions and still sound perfectly at home with the new tracks. This seems appropriate to me, as the band’s very name says the music is most important, not the players – these are the sounds of a distant era brought to life in our own.
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington, Oregon, and British Columbia. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more
Adelbert von Deyen RIP – Word reaches us that German electronic musician Adelbert von Deyen has died. His recorded legacy reaches back to 1978, when Sky Records released Sternzeit. Von Deyen, who was born October 25, 1953 in Süderbrarup, was also known as a painter and graphic artist. » Read more
Didier Lockwood RIP – Word reaches us today of the death of one of France's great jazz musicians, violinist Didier Lockwood. His playing bridged many worlds, from traditional jazz to fusion to progressive rock, and his talent can be heard on recordings by Magma, Clearlight, Pierre Moerlen's Gong, and many more. Lockwood was 62. » Read more
10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more