Exposé Online banner

Tom Heasley & Toss Panos — Passages
(Full Bleed Music FBM 001, 2007, CD)

by K. Leimer, Published 2008-10-01

Passages Cover artFor those who admire purely timbral musics, Tom Heasley and Toss Panos have put together more than an hour of inventive, often original work based wholly on the tuba and percussion. Original because you will not hear the now familiar distended and looped manipulations of a Jon Hassell, or the extra-musical sonics of a Fred Frith. The remarkable attribute of this collection of five not so easy pieces – which range in duration from less than ten minutes to just longer than 24 – is simply how intensely musical it all remains. The combination of tuba and percussion might seem counter-intuitive: the percussion disturbing what might be imagined as lush strands of clustered drones from the tuba; the tuba in turn being perhaps unable to match the pace of more typical drumming. But most of Panos' time seems to be spent providing markers, giving off short phrases and sounds in expert contrast and shading to the Heasley's tuba. The settings here travel from the often elegiac to a disturbed serenity. Both musicians do an excellent job of welding some long, legato and sustenuto exhalations of the tuba to the clipped and briefer envelopes of percussion. To their credit, the composers / performers never yield to the more obvious temptation of laying down some rhythm patterns and dressing them up with a thousand islands of squawks and drones. Instead, the listener is invited to share an infinitely more thoughtful and nuanced approach to what proves to be a tour de force of concentration and restraint.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2007 releases

Related artist(s): Tom Heasley, Toss Panos

Latest news

2017-07-27
Yestival Dates Beef up the Beat – Word reaches us that Dylan Howe (son of guitarist Steve Howe) will be joining Yes on their "Yestival" tour, drumming alongside longtime band member Alan White. » Read more

2017-05-19
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

2017-05-05
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

2017-05-02
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

2017-04-16
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


Previously in Exposé...

Aegis Integer - Sand Timer – This California trio seems to have sprung fully formed from the brow of some musical god. The music is undeniably "progressive" in a number of ways, but rarely reminds me more than very...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues