""What is here, though, is beyond these landmarks of traditional jazz. The world is not flat and neither is jazz, and if you can place some faith in that, you can get into this. FME pays tribute to four innovators of free jazz and improvised music: saxophonist and trumpeter Joe McPhee, percussionist Paul Lytton, guitarist Joe Morris and saxophonist Peter Brötzmann." -All About Jazz"
"The second release on UNSOUNDS by the sound artist Francisco López. It is a two part work based on a radical reconception of the piano. Movement 1 is a composition created for Reinier van Houdt that utilises some extreme preparations, it is a 20 minute tour de force. Movement 2 is a studio sound transformation of the initial piano part, where one hears the exploded and recombined sonorities of the piano taking on an immersive sonic dimension as one has come to expect of López’s work in the last years. The collaboration with Ensemble MAE musician Reinier van Houdt has produced an intriuging and original work of instrumental music, a highlight in López’s oeuvre."
Veer and Haul
Ab Baars + Mariëtte Rouppe van der Voort
"…Rouppe van der Voort performs miracles in dexterity on the piccolo in "E si fussi pisci", turning it into a penny whistle sliding out of control. Stopping on a dime 45 seconds before the end of the piece, she prompts a quiet and fragile coda that is so perfect you'll go back to the booklet to make sure it was not scored. Other highlights include the busy and playful title track, the tender "Duet for John and Bob" and "Bells," where Baars launches into a soulful non-idiomatic tenor sax solo. Veer and Haul is a title that evokes big ships performing clumsy maneuvers, but Baars and Rouppe van der Voort's lines are sketching a fascinating dance". --François Couture, All Music Guide "
""Netherlands reed king Ab Baars has played with everyone from Guus Janssen to Franz Koglmann and led his own wonderfully playful avant quartet. But Verderame marks his first outing unaccompanied and takes an unusual understated tack. Over the course of nine originals -- many of them tributes to friends and inspirations -- and a gorgeous reworking of Billy Strayhorn's "Lotus Blossom," Baars offers a wonderfully personal album of warm reflections, tender microtonal explorations, and quick-witted charm.""
The Chicago Reed Quartet
"Four generations of Chicago saxophonists join forces in this collaborative quartet, each one separated in age by almost exactly ten years. This wasn’t a calculated decision when Rempis and Vandermark first brainstormed the idea of the group in late 2013. The lineup came together based purely on the musical affinity of the personalities involved. (Oddly enough, Mazzarella and Williams had also been discussing the idea of forming a saxophone quartet at that time). However, the complex web of musical collaborations between these four musicians in countless combinations dating back twenty-five years, as well as their differing perspectives on composition, improvisation, and the instruments themselves, combine to reveal a truly cross-sectional perspective on the Chicago improvised music scene. Although an unintended consequence of the lineup that Rempis and Vandermark initiated, this accidental result may be one of the most intriguing perspectives from which to look at the quartet’s music. These eight pieces, two compositions from each of the band members, were workshopped extensively in 2014, with regular rehearsals and concerts in Chicago throughout the winter and spring. This recording was made mostly in one day, all in single takes, on a laid-back, closed-door, summer afternoon session at Chicago’s Hungry Brain. And within these eight pieces, one can hear an ongoing artistic dialogue that stretches back for decades."
What If / They Both / Could Fly
Evan Parker & Joe McPhee
"On a sultry July evening on an intimate stage at Kongsberg Jazz Festival, Norway, two elder statesmen of improvised music – one wearing a grey shirt, the other sporting a T-shirt with the legend ‘Thunder Pussy’ – stepped up to the platform. What followed resembled an in depth conversation between two old friends and sparring partners – one that ranged from the amicable to the argumentative, from hush to harmony. “What/If/They Both Could Fly” is only the second time this titanic pair have appeared as a duo on record. Their paths have crossed sporadically over the years: Evan has guested in Joe’s Survival Unit III group, and they have frequently made up a trio with saxophonist Daunik Lazro. But their only release together has been “Chicago Tenor Duets”, back in 2000, praised in Jazz Times for its mixture of lyricism and complexity. Evan Parker was 68 when this concert was recorded and by now music just seems to beat within him, sure as his own heartbeat. McPhee, at 73, is the elder here, but his zaps of energy on the tiny pocket trumpet, and his thoughtful, exploratory lines and throbbing soprano sax overtones are played as vigorously as a man half his age. Listen to the amazing zigzags of interlocking sound about six minutes into opening track ‘What’. Hear the microtonal mayhem swarming at the start of ‘They Both Could Fly’. The duo never seek to dazzle with virtuosity, but their total mastery of their instruments allows them to dance around each other and match each other’s moves point for point and blow for blow. Play this and you’ll believe two men can fly."