Sándor Szabó / Kevin Kastning — Parabola
(Greydisc GDR-3505, 2009, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2010-07-01
Like the previous Szabó/Kastning duets, Parabola consists of improvisations utilizing different kinds of acoustic guitar other than the standard variety – 6- and 12- string baritones and altos in this case. The tunings and stringings are also non-standard, leaving little in common with typical guitar music aside from the lovely tone of well-made instruments; similarly the music sits outside of standard genres, not really jazz, folk, rock or academic. While it seems apparent that some planning went into it – perhaps even unintentionally, as musicians will instinctively remember things they've played that worked – the overall impression is of flowing spontaneity, wandering among imaginary realms of sound. Sometimes a tonal center or shared pulse will coalesce out of the interplay, but that doesn't seem to be a deliberate intention. These two players, by some chance of genetics or cosmic fate, are on wavelengths so close to each other that you can't tell where one ends and the other begins. I'm sure that when they listen to these recordings, they can recognize what was theirs and what was not, but an outsider has no way to distinguish. I'm reminded a little of the duets Larry Coryell and Philip Catherine did so long ago, but these are a lot freer, lacking established tunes as a baseline. Atonal music is often abrasive and inaccessible, but in the hands of these two masters, there seems little distinction between tonality and atonality. Even listeners unaccustomed to free improvisation might well find this quite enjoyable.
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more
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