Author Topic: Free jazz / improvisation  (Read 854 times)

Famous Mortimer

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Free jazz / improvisation
« on: June 07, 2021, 06:43:52 PM »
Here's an old thread with a good couple of arguments on it. https://www.cookdandbombd.co.uk/forums/index.php?topic=24699.60

I've been listening to some Derek Bailey, picking a few songs here and there from his many albums. The first one I landed on was his collaboration with Anthony Braxton, which was incredible, but that is perhaps due to Braxton - I played a few of his solo guitar improvisations and...well. Did he catch me on a bad day? Or did he hire a small child to just make random sounds for a few hours on a guitar and release that?

I appreciate much the same could be said about someone like Merzbow, who I'm pretty sure just plugs in a bunch of shit and goes "what sounds can I make with this?" on a decent number of his recordings. But I love him (apart from that trash percussion nonsense).

(I wonder if my ears are changing, because there are certain sorts of sounds that are vaguely irritating to me now, as opposed to my youth when I used to bang this sort of shit all the time. But that's for another thread)

What's good in the worlds of free jazz and improvisation at the moment? Any interesting people we should be aware of?

EDIT: Bailey's stuff with Ruins is also very good (I just got to that).

purlieu

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Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2021, 08:19:26 PM »
I wish I'd discovered free improv when I was younger, before the morass of mental health issues and responsibilities came along that restricted my listening to 'stuff that makes me happy', because it's what I would have loved in my 'up for anything that takes me by surprise' era.

Still, a few of my usual touchstones cross over with it a little. ECM put out a few free improv albums in the label's early years, and I always had a soft spot for The Music Improvisation Company by the aforementioned Derek Bailey with Evan Parker, Hugh Davies and Jamie Muir. Davies plays self-made electronics, which no doubt played into Parker's move towards his Electro-Acoustic ensemble in the '90s, which has a fair amount of weird electronic noise among the skronk.

Nurse With Wound's first two albums, Chance Meeting... and To the Quiet Men from a Tiny Girl are basically free improv albums, by people with no musical training at all (other than Nicky Rogers, who recorded the album for the price of being able to play 'commercial guitar' on a couple of bits). Lots of fun, both.

Not with you on the junk metal Merzbow, though. I find the '70s / '80s duo lineup far more enjoyable than the power noise '90s stuff.

chveik

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Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2021, 08:27:07 PM »
EDIT: Bailey's stuff with Ruins is also very good (I just got to that).

if you like that, maybe you could try other collabs he made on albums like Mirakle (with Tacuma & Weston, regular Prime Time associates) and The Last Wave (with Laswell and Tony Williams under the name Arcana) which are more palatable.

chveik

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Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2021, 08:31:57 PM »
What's good in the worlds of free jazz and improvisation at the moment? Any interesting people we should be aware of?

i found this footwoork/free improv performance pretty interesting

RP BOO & XT - 31.12.18

other than that, fuck knows, when i feel like it i tend to listen to older stuff or already established artists. maybe people like Mary Halvorson and Matana Roberts, but i guess they are already quite famous.

Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2021, 09:44:59 PM »

chveik

  • crazy bit of business
Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2021, 09:51:21 PM »

Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #6 on: June 08, 2021, 12:43:37 PM »
i found this footwoork/free improv performance pretty interesting

RP BOO & XT - 31.12.18



Nice one!

Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2021, 04:14:05 PM »
I've been enjoying the latest album from Bill Orcutt and Chris Corsano: https://billorcutt.bandcamp.com/album/made-out-of-sound

Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2021, 11:35:01 AM »
I find it really, really hard to keep up with newer free/improv stuff just because there's so much damn good stuff from THE PAST.

OP mentioned Braxton, last thing I remember really loving when I went through another free jazz phase was this live duo set with Max Roach, really cool to hear Braxton working with someone more traditional/venerable. And generally I just think improv music works great with two players. But that's 40 years old so I've let you down there.

chveik

  • crazy bit of business
Re: Free jazz / improvisation
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2021, 11:34:12 PM »
this is good, electro acoustic improv with gamelan-like percussions

Mark Fell & Will Guthrie - Infoldings 1
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zY1oxmsbHds

been listening to MIMEO too, exhausting but really incredible

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