Kaze — Uminari
(Libra Circum-Libra 213, 2015, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2015-05-15
Uminari is the Japanese word for a low frequency roar that comes up from the sea, perhaps signaling a coming storm or tsunami, and so it is for this international jazz quartet featuring pianist Satoko Fujii, trumpeters Natsuki Tamura and Christian Pruvost, and drummer Peter Orins, as this dual horn configuration presents a storm of ideas in and of itself, composition vs improvisation, while the piano and drums ride it out, pushing the quartet in new directions. The five pieces here (one composed by each member, save Fujii who is responsible for two) cover plenty of ground, and were composed and developed during the group’s latest 12-day tour of Japan. Two things are certain in each of these cuts, regardless of who composed the piece: it will get pretty crazy and chaotic at certain points, and it will also find quiet and calm at other times, with composed elements fitting in between the poles, often serving as a springboard for the next burst of improvisational energy. Orins, as a one-man rhythm section has a formidable job trying to tie the pieces together, but he handles the task well, and still gives the rest of the crew enough space for their sorties of pure invention, especially all the bizarre sounds that two trumpeters can create together. Fujii is like the painter, adding beautiful colors and splashes of texture to the proceedings. Most of the pieces here break the ten-minute mark, and Tamura’s “Inspiration” – a piece that develops slowly over its course, showcasing the trumpeter’s affinity for humor, toy instruments, and odd percussion, clocks in at over twenty. There’s plenty of open space here for all the players to develop ideas individually and together, all taken, a step forward from their previous release Tornado, but like that one, this also requires some attention and plenty of listens before it all makes sense, but the persistence pays off.
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
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more