on life, music etc beyond mainstream

2013 9 Apr

Brooklyn 6: Black Coffee

von: Henning Bolte Filed under: Blog | TB | Tags:  Comments off

Last morning in Brooklyn. Coffeeshop Deluxe Coffee has the size of a small living-room. Immediately appealing, friendly young owners and crew behind the desk, delicious coffee and wonderful atmosphere. It’s still cold but the sun is shining brightly. Happy to meet Jim here before returning to Amsterdam (I know him for many years). When he arrives we decide
to sit outside next to the door. Relaxed neighbourhood. He is just back from the Emirate of Sharjah, part of the United Arab Emirates. Sharjah City is situated between Dubai and Ajmân. He gave a solo drum-concert in the streets of Sharja City (lots of Asian migrants watching him, listening to him) as part of the Sharja Arts Biennial. It was (very well) organized by Lebanese-French artist Tarek Atoui (1980), an electronic noise musician and percussionist. He is a creative spirit who projects music into completely new, different areas and spaces. Atoui worked in various interdisciplinary art productions (The New Museum (New-York), La Maison Rouge (Paris), Darat Al Funun (Amman), the Mediacity Biennial (Seoul), Haus Der Kunst (Munich)).

Before returning to Brooklyn, Jim also took a short California-detour. And this very night he would already go on and play at Cornelia Street Café with Michael Formanek’s group Cheating Hart consisting of pianist Jacob Sacks, Tim Berne and, for the first time in concert with the band, Peter Formanek, the seventeen year old son of Michael on alto saxophone (celebrating Peter’s birthday!).
Transitions between various time zones, mental and physical fitness connected to moving rapidly through those zones – Jim succeeded in coping with it for a rather long period now. Before the Middle East trip there was a 14day-tour of Endangered Blood with Michael Formanek on bass. Jim handed me its new album when he arrived at the café. On the album Trevor Dunn is on bass, touring with Mike Patton, his Mr. Bungle lad’s Tomahawk. Endangered Blood, a real neighbourhood group, originally formed to financially support their musical peer Andrew d’Angelo who faught a brain tumour then.
endangeredblood2012-bw mike
We talked about the Motian-Tribute last night and over the memorial Jim organized at The Stone last year. That memorial actually was Endangered Blood with Michael Formanek playing program with key-pieces of Motian. While talking, Blood’s reed-man Chris dropped in – as always feigning distance – and a few moments later the other reedman, Oscar, appeared, fully present and overall kindness apparently also in need of a social and delicious coffee. Neighbourhood, yes.

And a few words about the situation now. The Endangered tour went along Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, Italy, Spain with one detour to Germany, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, home of Richard Strauss. No Eastern (Poland enz.) or Western countries (France, Holland etc.). The same applies to the upcoming Alas No Axis tour: Norway, France, Italy. Nearly nothing in the middle. Interesting combination, the southern crisis-zone backed by two steady and rich Europe-ousiders. New Central European austerity? “We played for real audience from the beginning, we always had our followers, our patronage.”

Auf dem Rückflug höre ich mir Work Your Magic, das neue Album von Endangered Blood mit Chris Speed, Oscar Noriega, Trevor Dunn und Jim Black an. Die Musik ist der Hammer, haut mich um. Nichts Ineinandergeschraubtes, kein Gemenge, kein Derivat, dies ist richtig neue Musik aus einem Guss, ein musikalischer Evolutionsprung! Dringlich, kompakt, verspielt. Schönheit und vor allem immer Feuer! Kein Mix von Blablabla, sondern The Real. Das Lyrische der Klarinetten mit dem genialen Stoβen und Klappern des Schlagwerks, der tief röhrende, holpernde Baβ und die singenden Saxophonschweife … . Nicht nur alles drin, es kommt auch wunderbar heraus. Stark genug, Krisen die Stirn zu bieten. Echten wie herbei- und zerredeten. Kaffibarinn, das Eröffnungsstück, ist nichts Mittelöstliches, sondern ist Isländisch: “a pleasant bar to wait for friends if you’re amiss in Reykjavik.” Hier hat etwas gezündet, was weit über die Kumulation der Einzelstärken hinausgeht! Und was für eine Palette (aus reichen Quellen):

Blues C-Flat Minor – began as a reverence to teddy Wilson’s Blues in C Sharp Minor
Ah-Le-Pa – an exploration of ratios
Argento – the swing version
Manzanita – inspired by the composed chamber works of Leah Paul
Nice Try – for Paul Motian
International Four – a cover by guitarist Hilmar Jensson
LA#5 – at a taco truck with Lester Young

Nice Try, komponiert von Noriega, spielt wunderbar mit der gekrümmten Melodielinie wie wir sie von Motian kennen. Ein Zuruf über die Zeit. Und ein produktives Weitertragen wie man’s gerne hat. Die Flötistin Leah Paul ist ein musikalisches Chamäleon, der ich hier über die Widmung von Herrn Speed zum ersten Mal begegne. Ihr Radius reicht von der eigenen Popgruppe The Bridesmaids (mit reicher Besetzung und reichen Arrangements) über den Dudelsackvirtuosen Matthew Welch und Anthony Braxton bis hin zu Gastrollen bei TV on the Radio und Dirty Projectors. Auf Skirl, dem Label von Chris Speed, auf dem auch Work Your Magic erschienen ist, findet sich ihre Album Bike Lane mit einem Kammermusikensemble. Das Schluβstück LA#5 ist schlicht genial (wie man zu sagen pflegt). Klang im Klang im Klang. Klangklank. Ich hör mal auf, sonst fängt’s noch an!
Sorry for the Only-English-Reading-Visitors. There will be an English review of mine of this wonderful album very soon. It is a great album of a new quality of music, compact, lyrical, seizing, rocking, full of fire.

This entry was posted on Dienstag, 9. April 2013 and is filed under "Blog". You can follow any responses to this entry with RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Manafonistas | Impressum | Kontakt | Datenschutz