The Blue Series Continuum — The Sorcerer Sessions: Featuring the Music of Matthew Shipp
(Thirsty Ear THI 57141.2, 2003, CD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2004-04-01Collisions between jazz and semi-classical music structure is the format for this new collective set of twelve pieces. Each new project is based on lessons learned and best-known methods applied to an experimental set with a new players and external influences. The opening piece, “Pulsar,” indicates a dramatic shift way from other ensemble works and towards free jazz and ambient efforts. Pianist Shipp has reinvigorated his approach to sensitive piano, which has earned him much respect in the downtown jazz revival in NYC. Next up is “Keystroke,” that captures a free form trio between Shipp, clarinetist Evan Ziporyn, and FLAM’s computer keyboard clicks that establishes an unusual rhythmic context. Ziporyn is also a Bang on a Can member and here he makes a first appearance adding a noticeable counterpoint and a unique voice to the mix. FLAM is clearly the X factor on the album since he occupies a Brian Eno stylized role (as with Roxy Music and U2) where his programming of street dialogues and atmospheric synthesizer swells are a part of the overall arrangement. The rhythm section of William Parker and Gerald Cleaver demonstrate a the grooving riff on “Urban Shadows” while violinist newcomer Daniel Bernard Roumain wails above in the rafters. This album can be viewed as the other bookend of the same story composed with David S. Ware’s latest release on the label. Overall Shipp’s work in this configuration allows for further outgrowth into international recognition.
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more