""Moments Form" does not need time to warm up, it just starts -- a solid stream of invention and drive. Could one expect anything less from free jazz stalwarts, Mars Williams, Tim Daisy and Ingebrigt Haker Flaten? All are experienced and hard hitting improvisors and this consistently engaging album certainly, at the very least, solidifies this perception."
Momentum 1: Stone
"Each disc on this collection has its own distinct feel, presenting six individual journeys within the whole. All of the musicians are acutely aware of their surroundings, and the inspiration that they drew from one another was palpable (Tim Niland, Music and More)"
Momentum 2 & 3 : Brüllt and Monster Roster
"Both discs of this installment of Momentum offer exciting developments in Vandermark’s discography. Incorporating electronics, composed themes, and free form sections, the arrangements are edgy and captivating throughout. The double disc set contains extensive liner notes by the musician and offers an excellent documentation of his continuing musical evolution." -Paul Acquaro "Free Jazz Blog"
Momentum 4: Consequent Duos 2015>2019
"A collection of duo recordings featuring Ken Vandermark in collaboration with internationally renowned, and critically acclaimed, musicians: Kris Davis, Hamid Drake, Paul Lytton, Ikue Mori, and William Parker. The material is documented on 5 CDs and was recorded during performances at Vandermark’s second Stone residency in New York City during January of 2018, and at Experimental Sound Studio in Chicago. "
"At this juncture The Thing and its members need little by way of introduction. Individually their output plots a course through much of the territories mapped by contemporary improvised music, shines a light on its more outré reaches, and stretches the wallets of even the most committed listener. Moreover, seeing any of their names affiliated with a project has become a seal of quality, much as the FMP logo did a generation prior."
More Fun Please
Extra Large Unit
"When writing music, I search for extremes, pushing boundaries: physical, dynamic, instrumental limitations, if any, how fast and how slow can one play, how loud and how quiet. I search for unusual ways of thinking. I want to give the musicians trust and have them take initiative and to feel the responsibility of what it is to be an individual player in a group context. -Paal Nilssen-Love"
The Young Mothers
"“Then Young Mothers roared out of the gate with fierce, jarring visceral power. Theirs is a dense, multi-layered sound where Ivesian contrapuntal lines often divide the ensemble into competing units -- How fortunate 30 or so of us were that they docked in Deep Ellum last night. I'll be anxiously awaiting their return.” -Ken Shimamoto "
Claudio F Baroni
""Motum" means motion, and this is a central theme in the 3 pieces by composer Claudio F Baroni on this album. The concept is central to Baroni's work, and is explored musically and formally in his layered, dynamic, sophisticated style. The breathtaking pieces are taking the listener on a meandering path, starting from the origin of sound. Motum is Baroni's second collaboration with Unsounds. With liner notes by Samuel Vriezen."
"The Ex is still growing, maturing, learning and blowing most other bands off the stage. They have a devastating sense of rhythm and a far-reaching lyrical intelligence." "Their most urgent, powerful and exciting release to date. Staggeringly beautiful." "This time they pull up their wall of sound out of pieces of rock, folk and jazz... The Ex got the blues."
Music For Lying Still
"Music For Lying Still is Chicago based composer and percussionist Tim Daisy's latest solo release. Further developing methods and ideas explored by his two previous solo efforts: 'Relucent: music for marimba, radios and turntables' (relay 012), and 'Red Nation 1' (relay 018), MFLS is the first to utilize a multi-track, multi-layered recording process to develop and shape the composition. All the sound making devices were recorded separately and then assembled and edited into one continuous, twenty-five-minute composition. Music for Lying Still is the first in a set of three releases using the studio as an integral component of the music making process. -multi-layered, mystic metaphoric, ambient, experimental low-fi gamelan drone music for people who like to lie still. "
Mutations / Multicellulars Mutations
"Certainly you can tell when Vandermark is playing but you can feel the equality in the contributions. They all have a great instinct to let the silences ring and yet never let a moment get wasted. One of my favorite listens so far this year."
MVP LSD: The Graphic Scores of Lowell Skinner Davidson
Joe Morris, John Voigt, Tom Plsek
"As with most engaging music, so much informs every moment of MVP LSD that any overarching description is futile. Each performer has a large timbral pallet, but more conventional modes of expression are also plentiful. Sample Morris's beautifully pantonal musings on "Separate Blue X" or Plsek's pointilistic punctuations on "Index Card no. 1." There is dialogue a-plenty, but the larger picture is of a trio, the three musicians often seeming to breathe as one as they explore these rich and multivalent compositional landscapes. -Mark Medwin "Dusted" 2009"
Magda Mayas & Chrstine Abdelnour
"Both have styles that are idiosyncratic and distinctive, their sounds eloquently conveying the physicality of what they do – listening to their music conjures up images of them playing it. The pair interact to create complex yet coherent soundscapes, within which it is usually possible to disentangle individual contributions, as in a multifaceted conversation. Both musicians have a wide enough palette of sounds to keep things from becoming repetitive; on the contrary the pieces unfold and keep the listener engaged completely."
N.Y N.Y 1971
Joe McPhee Survival Unit II with Clifford Thornton
"Without quesion, Joe McPhee is an American national treasure, and this recording offers proof that the idiosyncratic free jazz icon been one for over thirty years now. This disc documents a radio broadcast from at a time when the US was undergoing political and cultural upheavals, and the music is both reflective of such a time and the product of a proudly singular musical intelligence. The three announcements which were part of the original recording amount to just 1:43 out of a total playing time of almost 79 minutes."
"It's been nearly five decades since Joe McPhee assembled a group of musicians to perform the weekend concerts that would become Nation Time, his second LP. It was December 1970, thirty-one-year-old McPhee was inspired by Amiri Baraka's poem 'It's Nation Time,' and the students at Vassar College didn't know what hit them. 'What time is it?' shouted McPhee. 'Come on, you can do better than that. What time is it?!!' The music on Nation Time came out of a fertile, but little-known creative jazz scene in Poughkeepsie, New York, McPhee's home base. Two bands were deployed, one with a funky free foundation featuring guitar and organ, the other consisting of a more standard jazz formation, with two drummers and the brilliant Mike Kull at the piano. Across the concert and the next afternoon's audience-less recording session, the band was ignited by McPhee's passion and his gorgeous post-Coltrane / post-Pharoah tenor. On 'Shakey Jake,' they hit a James Brown groove filtered through Archie Shepp, while the sidelong title track is as searching and poignant today as it was during its heyday. Originally released in 1971 on CjR, an imprint started expressly to document McPhee's work, Nation Time has a sense of urgency and inspiration. Additional material from those December days would later appear on Black Magic Man, Hat Hut's first release. In fact, the first four records on this seminal Swiss label all featured McPhee. Nation Time was largely unknown a quarter century or so later, when it was first issued on CD through the Unheard Music Series. On Corbett vs. Dempsey, we reissued the album along with all known tapes leading up to and around it as a CD box set, but the standalone LP has remained incredibly rare. In preparing to reissue the CD on its own, a new, previously-unknown tape was discovered with three tracks recorded at the original concert in 1970. These include an intense version of Coltrane's "Naima," all of them feature pianist Kull, and none have been issued before this. Now is the time for a new generation of freaks to lose their shit when settling into the cushy beat of 'Shakey Jake' and answering the call with the only appropriate response: It's NATION TIME! credits "
Paal Nilssen-Love & Frode Gjerstad
"Some of the songs are more searching, contemplative and slow moving. Others more passionate, intense and fast. The duo setting provides a peeled off and intimate feeling throughout the album and I can clearly hear both Frode and Paal being fully focused on the task at hand. On some songs Frode is in the lead, and on others Paal provides texture and a scene on which Frode can move freely in, out and across, and on some songs they both travel together tightly interwoven. No holds barred, full throttle and quick twists and turns. One thing is for certain; Frode Gjerstad and Paal Nilssen-Love are two of the most bright shining stars on the free jazz heaven today."
New Brazilian Funk
"FOR PREORDER NOW: For the Roskilde project (now to become a steady band) he put together a Norwegian/Brazilian combination that proved to be especially potent: Bass-player Felipe Zenicola is a new figure on the scene of improvised music and is mostly known for his work with Chinese Cookie Poets. Guitarist Kiko Dinucci has been active the last years as a leader and songwriter of the group Metá Metá and has received noticeable recognition in Brazil and Europe. Then there’s percussionist Paulinho Bicolor, a rare figure in the Brazilian music scene, who adds a special ingredient to the stew: the Cuíca – which is actually a friction drum, but mastered by Bicolor in a completely idiosyncratic way. Paulinho is also a frequent guest with Nilssen-Love’s 15-piece band, Large Unit. Rounding off the line-up Nilssen-Love included what is his longest musical parter: Norwegian saxophone player Frode Gjerstad, a legend of Norwegian free improvised music who asked Nilssen-Love to play with him at the age of 16, a collaboration that now has lasted 28 years. The pair usually works in duo and trio constellations, so it’s a rare treat to hear such a solid musical pair as the gravitational center of this project. The “New Brazilian Funk” title can almost be read as tongue-in-cheek, as this really is not just free jazz on top of tropical grooves - this is the sound of five dedicated musicians coming together to make a completely new type of music. The Roskilde gig went down so well that not only is it being released on CD, it also became the birth of a regular group. "