Cécile Cappozzo Trio – Sub rosa
I’ve mentioned it before, but jazz labels need to become modern and stop being so hostile to their customers. In a practice that harms everyone involved—the customer, the label, and the musicians—it’s impossible to listen to the entirety of Sub rosa, in order to make an informed decision before buying it. That being said, Cécile Cappozzo‘s Trio crafted an astonishing album, here. Comprised of the thirty-seven-minute, four-part monster “Chaos” and the relatively short title track, Sub rosa is an incredible free jazz record. Seldom has a title been so descriptive. Dive in the chaos, and enjoy!
Piah Mater – The Wandering Daughter
It seems like Opeth was really popular in South America, in the late nineties and early aughts. I’ve recently mentioned similarities to their sound with Voragine of Autumn‘s newest album, but Brazil’s Piah Mater also shares some. These comparisons are not meant to be pejorative or to diminish the value of the band’s original material; it is only a descriptive shortcut. While Voragine of Autumn’s sound seemed rooted more in albums like Still Life and Blackwater Park, Piah Mater’s sounds more influenced by Deliverance and Damnation, perhaps up to Ghost Reveries. Obviously, other influences play a role in the band’s output, but none so strikingly as Opeth. The end result is of high quality and thoroughly enjoyable, so I recommend you take a listen for yourselves!
Josh Sinton’s Predicate Trio – Making Bones, Taking Draughts, Bearing Unstable Millstones Pridefully, Idiotically, Prosaically
It should suffice to say that this album is on Iluso Records to prove its worth, but this would be like cheating. Accompanied by cello and drums, the saxophonist-clarinetist provides a wide range of fascinating compositions and performances on his long-titled album as a trio. Josh has already been mentioned indirectly on the blog, by taking part in projects like Darcy James Argue’s Secret Society. Predicate Trio‘s album is a fun and somewhat challenging album to listen to! It comes out on November 9!
Benjamin Schaefer – Hive Mind
On Hive Mind, Benjamin Schaefer grows his ambitions into big band territory, and I would say the bet has paid off! The album is vast, lush, and it feels absolutely immense and terrifying when all pieces play together at once. At other times, it alternatively is ethereal and dreamy, or rhythmic and percussive, or simply emotional. It’s a fascinating record! You can listen to Hive Mind in its entirety on Bandcamp; the physical version is out on November 30.
Thoren – Gwarth I
Thoren were already great, when Brennenburg came out… I can only say that things are getting even better on the first side of Gwarth, with the other side being released at some point in the future. The compositions are still as hectic rhythmically and harmonically, perhaps even more so, than before, which is to the benefit of all, obviously. The album’s great, monstrous.
Bak – Viyoga
The Finnish group Bak plays a type of modern jazz that is very atmospheric and which shows ties—intended or not—to progressive rock in some aspects. In over fifty minutes, the band’s sound is thoroughly explored and exposes its multiple facets. Just like its cover art, the music is beautiful and somewhat ethereal. It’s slow and melancholic, for the most part, but it’s an engrossing experience that doesn’t fail to grab you by the soul.
Noise Trail Immersion – Symbology of Shelter
Italian band Noise Trail Immersion already made waves with their impressive Womb debut, but there’s such a gap between this and Symbology of Shelter that it’s fair to ask if it’s the same band. “Symbology of Shelter” is a single composition, divided in five parts, two of which are subdivided again for a total of seven tracks covering forty-four minutes of what can most succinctly be labeled “blackened mathcore”. Most of the time, it’s a gem of dissonant black metal, but, at some key points, the stochastic nature of mathcore barges in and create a surprising turn of events. This is a wonderful release.
Frank Macchia & Brock Avery – Rhythm Kaleidoscope
The Pitts/Minnemann Project has done it, Glenn Snelwar’s At War with Self too, and, I’m sure, many others, but, perhaps, the latest attempt comes from Frank Macchia & Brock Avery. What is it? Writing and performing music over a drums solo. While the two former aforementioned projects used tracks from Marco Minnemann’s Normalizer endeavour, here the music is written on top of Brock Avery’s soli. What’s more, Frank Macchia’s compositions perfectly embody the big band feeling, the jazz orchestra’s tumult and presence, despite them being only two. It helps that both musicians are talented multi-instrumentalists, which reminds me of Finnish one-man project Utopianisti in that regard. Rhythm Kaleidoscope shouldn’t be overlooked by anyone.
Sunless Dawn – Timeweaver
Rarely has progressive death metal been so rewarding a listen, thanks to the compositions of Christoffer Valentin Hildebrandt for Sunless Dawn. With just the right amount of quirkiness to the age-old prog-death formula, Sunless Dawn is able to pull its head above a sea of generic peers. Whether it be the sixteen-minute triptych “Biomorph”, or the fifteen-minute slab of “Sovereign”, or any of the other, shorter, tracks, Timeweaver is an impressive album on many fronts. It’s some of the best-constructed progressive death I’ve heard recently. Be sure to mark its release, on November 16.