Erik Wøllo & Byron Metcalf — Earth Luminous
(Projekt 328, 2016, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2016-09-07
Erik Wøllo is has had a long career that started out as a jazz guitarist and over time has come to favor electronics, using effected guitar, guitar synthesizer and keyboard synths and sequencers. He is now the masterful commander of ambient textural sounds that shimmer with light, shadows and tonal colors, evoking powerful images and a variety of emotions in slow evolving forms. Byron Metcalf is quite the opposite, a master percussionist using various hand drums, shakers, and shamanic percussion, a totally non-electronic musician and composer, and well known for his many collaborations with Steve Roach, Mark Seelig, and numerous others, and a fair number of solo releases. This is the first ever collaboration between Wøllo and Metcalf, and the chemistry between them is positively magical. Both performed separate sets at Roach’s SoundQuestFest in Tucson in 2010, and each was taken by the others’ performance, and discussed the possibility of a collaboration at that time, though it took five years to find an opportunity to make it happen. The eight long tracks here present beautiful electronic textures and dronescapes, unfolding slowly as parcels of tonal beauty, cyclical, expansive, and other-worldly, underscored by fluid, animated lines of earthbound percussion propelling the sound forward. Sometimes it’s the floating and colorful ethereal textures and melodies that jump out and embrace the listener, other times it’s the driving percussive grooves, but a perfect balance between heaven and earth is always to be found.
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more