February 20, 2010

Playlist Week of 2-20-10

* Biber/Muffat: Der Türken Anmarsch (Holloway/Mortensen/Assenbaum) (ECM CD)
* Geminiani: Cello Sonatas, Op.5 (ter Linden/Mortensen) (Brilliant Classics CD)
* Vivaldi: Cello Sonatas (ter Linden/Mortensen) (Brilliant Classics 2CD)
* J.S. Bach: Cello Suites (ter Linden) (Harmonia Mundi 2CD)
* Webern: Complete Works (London Symphony, et al./Boulez) (selections) (Sony 3CD)
* Lennie Tristano & Warne Marsh: Intuition (Capitol/Blue Note CD)
* Sun Ra: Rehearsal, Oakland, CA circa. October, 1971 (CDR)
* Sun Ra: Dramaten, Stockholm, Sweden 10-12-71 (FM CDR)
* Sun Ra: The Soul Vibrations of Man (Saturn LP>CDR)
* Sun Ra: Sub-Underground (Saturn LP>MP3>CDR)
* Andrew Hill Quartet: Amsterdam 8-10-89 (FM CDR)
* Anthony Braxton Trio: St. Paul’s Church, Toronto 12-8-74 (FM 2CDR)
* Anthony Braxton 12+1tet: Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver 1-29-10 (AUD CDR)
* Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble: Memory/Vision (ECM CD)
* Miles Davis: The Cellar Door Sessions (d.5) (Columbia 6CD)
* John McLaughlin & Shakti: Hippodrome, London 5-12-77 (FM CDR)
* Herbie Hancock Trio: Vienna 1987 (FM>CDR)
* Herbie Hancock: Future Shock (Columbia/Legacy CD)
* Third Rail: South Delta Space Age (Antilles CD)
* DJ Shadow: Endtroducing… (Mowax CD)
* Tortoise: Headliner’s Music Hall, Louisville, KY 2-11-10 (SBD 2CDR)
* The Beatles: A Hard Day’s Night (stereo) (Apple/EMI CD)
* The Beatles: Beatles for Sale (stereo) (Apple/EMI CD)
* Jimi Hendrix: First Rays of the New Rising Sun (Experience Hendrix/MCA CD)
* Grateful Dead: Cal Expo, Sacramento, CA 6-10-84 (SBD 2CDR)
* Grateful Dead: Fox Theatre, Atlanta, GA 10-28-85 (SBD 2CDR)
* Grateful Dead: Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA 11-21-85 (SBD 3CDR)
* Grateful Dead: Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA 11-22-85 (SBD 2CDR)
* New Order: Power, Corruption & Lies (Deluxe Edition) (d.2) (Warner Bros./Rhino 2CD)
* Yo La Tengo: Crossing Border Festival, The Hague 11-20-09 (FM CDR)
* Robert Pollard: We All Got Out of the Army (GBV, Inc. LP)


What a crazy week! On Monday morning we had more snow, ice and bitter cold; today it is sunny and sixty-five degrees. We even opened the windows to let in some fresh air! What a nice respite from what has turned out to be the harshest winter we’ve had since moving to Nashville in 1997. It would be nice to think that spring is right around the corner…


I hesitate to draw attention to the, ahem, shall we say, “unauthorized” recordings that appear on my playlists but I should point out that most (if not all) of these artists allow (or at least tolerate) audience taping and tape trading. Furthermore, these sorts of recordings should be distinguished from “pirated” recordings which are not only plainly illegal but morally abhorrent. (For an excellent historical overview of the subject, check out Clinton Heylin’s brilliant Bootleg: The Secret History of the Other Recording Industry (St. Martin’s, 1995).) Even so, this is an ethically grey area which gives me pause. Undoubtedly, today’s digital technology combined with the distributive power of the internet has been a godsend for the hardcore fan. For example, to be able to hear Anthony Braxton’s 12+1tet concert from Vancouver only days after it occurred is simply astounding. And it is a truly spectacular performance! This group just keeps getting better and better, capable of interweaving Braxton’s most complex scores with such effortless aplomb that it is almost impossible to separate composition from improvisation. I’ve listened to this somewhat boomy audience recording over and over these past weeks and am blown away anew each time. The large ensemble creates sounds and textures I have never heard before in Braxton’s music: dense blocks of harmony with weird electronic noises and odd instrumental combinations such as bassoon and flute or violin and tuba. And then there’s the ingenious electric guitar-playing of the young Mary Halvorson, who brings an almost rocked-out edginess at times -- and the mature virtuosity of the man himself, blowing strong at age sixty-four. If an “official” CD of this concert is ever released, I would snap it up immediately -- and buy several more as gifts for the unconverted. This is a toweringly majestic piece of music and needs to be heard by more than just us hardcore fans.

1 comment:

Sam said...

Overlap! On Saturday, Jo and I settled in with drinks and hors d'oeuvres and put on the stereo "Hard Day's Night." It sounded so damn good we listened to it twice all the way through. What a record! Of course, it's got my all-time favorite Beatle song on it, "You Can't Do That," and several other smashing Lennon tunes--he dominates that record. The only weak spot, really, is "And I Love Her"--am I alone in preferring the "Anthology" version with Ringo playing drums instead of just bongos?

Here's my lists for last week:

Playlist 2010-02-22

*Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers: The Big Beat
*Anthony Braxton: Quartet (Santa Cruz) 1993, disc 1
*Anthony Braxton: Nine Compositions (DVD) 2003, track 1 (Comp. 328)
*Anthony Braxton Diamond Curtain Wall Trio: 2009-10-30 Frankfurt (CDR)
*Anthony Braxton 12tet + 1: 2010-01-29 Vancouver (CDR)
*John Coltrane: Meditations, side 1
*John Coltrane: Live in Japan, disc 1
*Miles Davis: In Person Friday and Saturday Nights at the Blackhawk, Complete, disc 4
*Andrew Hill: The Complete Blue Note Andrew Hill Sessions (1963-66) disc 7
*McKinney's Cotton Pickers: The Complete McKinney's Cotton Pickers Vol. 1/2 1928-29 side 2
*Wayne Shorter: Adam's Apple
*Sun Ra: Horizon (Art Yard)
*Sun Ra: 1971-10-12 Dramaten, Stockholm (CDR)
*Sun Ra: Calling Planet Earth (1971-12)
*Cecil Taylor & Tony Oxley: 2009-10-04 Antwerp, set 1 (CDR)
*Tortoise: TNT
*Tortoise: Standards
*Acid Mothers Temple & the Melting Paraiso U.F.O.: St. Captain Freak Out and the Magic Bamboo Request
*Beatles: Hard Day's Night (2009 stereo remaster) twice in a row!
*Jeff Beck: Shapes of Things
*Broadcast: Broadcast & The Focus Group Investigate Witch Cults of the Radio Age
*Grateful Dead: 1969-08-23 St. Helens, Oregon (CDR)
*Grateful Dead: 1969-08-30 Family Dog at the Great Highway, SF (CDR)
*Grateful Dead: 1969-09-01 Baton Rouge Int. Speedway (CDR)
*Grateful Dead: 1969-10-25 Winterland (CDR)
*Mickey Hart and the Hartbeats: 1969-08-28 Family Dog at the Great Highway, SF (CDR)
*High Llamas: Cold and Bouncy
*Parliament-Funkadelic: 1976? Richmond Coliseum (CDR)
*Rolling Stones: Love You Live, disc 2

Reading log 2010-02-22

*Straub, Peter. A Dark Matter (started/finished)
*The Complete Weird Science (EC) (in progress)
*Larson, Gary. The Complete Far Side (in progress)
*Musil, Robert. Man Without Qualities (in progress)
*A New Literary History of America (ed. Greil Marcus & Werner Sollors) (in progress)
*Wallace, David Foster. Consider the Lobster (in progress)