The Cliff of Time
Akira Sakata / Fred Lonberg-Holm / Ketil Gutvik / Paal Nilssen-Love
"The music here is a rollercoaster of emotions, played by excellent musicians who seem to have great fun. And the sound is transparent and crispy too. -Martin Schray, Free Jazz Blog"
The Complete Syllables Music
"This is an artist dedicated to questioning boundaries, pushing limits, and flirting with failure in all its forms. These things take a toll. But the next shore is already in sight - the last essay in The Complete Syllables Music box outlines a proposal for adapting the system for chamber ensemble. -Eric McDowell, Free Jazz Blog"
Ken Vandermark & Tim Daisy
"It is free and it funks. It is jazz in it's purest form: two artists enjoying the fun of lyricism interacting with rhythm, conjuring up emotions of happiness, but also of sadness. The subtly is not only in the finesse of the emotional or sonic shadings that you get with lots of new music today, but also in the straightforward improvisation, with the subtlety being fully present in both musicians' maximal use of their skills, with ear-candy to boot."
The Dream Book
Joe McPhee, Dominic Duval
"A fascinating duo collaboration inspired by the work of Ornette Coleman and by many of those -Dewey Redman, Don Cherry, Scott LaFaro- who have played in the great saxophonist’s groups...The music is stately, sometimes grave; there is no attempt to pastiche Ornette; and there is a rigorous equality between the two voices. -Richard Cook & Brian Morton, The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings"
The Education Of Lars Jerry
"Swedish horn blower Mats Gustafsson's forte is his unique ability to accommodate large, bellowing horn gusts and devilishly intricate microhorn chatter within the space of a single phrase. This technique, which allows a tsunami of sound to be answered by a volley of rapid-fire chirps, squeaks, and clucks, gives this solo LP the illusion of dialogue--as if there were two mad horn players in the room rather than one. And in Gustafsson's hands, the give and take of his internal conversation is both convincing and intriguing. The Education of Lars Jerry, however, is not simply a showcase for Gustafsson's use, abuse, and misuse of wind instruments. He is capable of sketching a wildly diverse landscape of mood and emotion--from scalding, angry blasts to jolting surprises to hilarious slapstick. With all these tools at his disposal, Gustafsson's stories are as interesting as the language he uses to describe them. --S. Duda"
The Fat Is Gone
Peter Brötzmann / Mats Gustafsson / Paal Nilssen-Love
"Brötzmann's playing is as dense and as hard as ever, shadowed by a slightly deferential Mats Gustafsson, who strains the upper limits of his baritone and the assaultive, relentless drumming of Paal Nilssen-Love. The players occasionally break the momentum for a series of pops, squeals and general skittering, but the moments of rest only add to the pressurized environment, as you anticipate the next onslaught. -Jeff Stockton, All About Jazz"
The Fire Each Time
DKV Trio + Joe McPhee
"Not Two Records presents, "The Fire Each Time," a 6 CD boxset of recordings from the DKV Trio with Joe McPhee as a guest, and dedicated to James Baldwin. The music was recorded during the quartet's tour in Europe which took place in November of 2017, and at shows in Chicago and Milwaukee from December of that year. These performances are historic in many respects: the DKV Trio (with Hamid Drake [drums], Kent Kessler [bass], and Ken Vandermark [reeds]) has only recorded with other musicians on three occasions in its two decade career (with Joe Morris on "Deep Telling" [Okka Disk, 1999; with Mats Gustafsson, Paal Nilssen-Love and Massimo Pupillo on "Schl8hof" [Trost, 2013], and with The Thing ["Collider," Not Two, 2016]); also, this is the first time all four musicians have worked together as a band; and the material documented over the six concerts included in the collection features performances of Joe McPhee's compositions (like "Nation Time") as well as completely improvised music generated by the participants. "
The Industry of Entropy
"A fantastically understated piece that rewards close listening as the engagement and interplay between the performers is as good as it gets. - Nicholas Metzger"
The Laughing Owl
Terrie Ex & Han Bennink
"The energy level remains quite high on much of this disc; one has the feeling the recording is meant to be played very LOUD. Even the most bird-like scrabbling between these musicians has a sharp, dissonant edge. The Laughing Owl may be about as "out" as today's free improvisation gets, but it retains enough of a conversational aspect that it bears interest upon repeated listenings. -Nils Jacobson, June 2001"
The Lions Have Eaten One of the Guards
Ken Vandermark & Paal Nilssen-Love
"They’ve tapped into a sound that is eminently listenable and addictive, and it’s exciting to hear them hone their interplay more and more as time passes. I would highly recommend this album to fans of Ken Vandermark’s and Paal Nilssen-Love’s previous duo work, and to any fan of powerful, melodic, but still adventurous music (Derek Stone, The Free Jazz Collective)"
The Midwest School
"Like a prize fighter, the ensemble moves with all the nimble dexterity of a small group when needed, bobbing and weaving until an opening presents itself, delivering precise jabs or opening out to rain down a concentrated torrent of blows. Hailing from a city which has had a hand in producing some top class large ensembles in recent years, Audio One is instantly a contender to the throne (Matthew Grigg, The Free Jazz Collective)"
The New Favorite Thing Called Breathing
Ben Hall's Racehorse Names
"After listening to the album I was interested to find out that the improvised pieces were actually open compositions, with each piece seemingly providing a sonic structure or context for the players to explore, whilst apparently providing enough ‘instructions’ (however the ‘composed’ element was written) to keep the group sound wedded to a particular idea. -Chris Haines, Free Jazz Blog"
Paul Lytton / Nate Wooley + Ikue Mori & Ken Vandermark
"Quantity is seldom a per se value, but we have here one hundred and nine minutes of pure, passionate, involving high quality music."