Chaos Echœs with Mats Gustafsson – Sustain

The Music

The Words

Mats Gustafsson is a giant in the world of free and avant-jazz. One of his latest works, on Fire! Orchestra’s Ritual, is just purely mind-blowing, as is the album in its entirety. Seeing his name alongside Chaos Echœs, one of the best contemporary forward-thinking black metal bands — their album Mouvement made it onto our February recommendations —, is just as much as a surprise as it is cause for excitement.

The collaboration, titled Sustain, is made of two parts of equal length that achieve a deranging, dense atmosphere that’s as far from … Read more

Turbamulta – Turbamulta

The Words

The minimalistic contemporary classical quintet Turbamulta released their self-titled album via Clean Feed Records on 16 March. The near-fifty-minute album is made of three main tracks, two of which are divided into smaller pieces, and a shorter interlude. The composition-improvisation process of the chamber ensemble seems quite unique and somewhat convoluted. From what I can gather, it seems like they reiterate upon previous improvised sessions, in a sort of musical feedback loop. I’d like to know more about it, but the words of the label itself seem shrouded in lyrical musings.

Nevertheless, the end product is pure joy … Read more

Théo Ceccaldi’s Freaks – Amanda Dakota

The Music

The Words

Théo Ceccaldi is now a renowned jazz violinist, and he is now at the heads of Freaks, an experimental jazz sextet that bridges jazz-rock with avant-garde pop and Rock in Opposition. Indeed, it sometimes sound like a jazz version of French band PoiL, which is a major plus!

What can you expect from their debut, Amanda Dakota? First of all, a lot of odd themes and harmonies are sown all around the album, and the rhythm section tries to clumsily follow in odd times and bizarre subdivisions. This is something that I like a … Read more

P.O.N. – P.O.N. (1995)

The Words

P.O.N. was a Japanese jazz fusion band active in the ’90s, and whose only release is this obscure self-titled album. I wanted to talk about it, however, because it is still relevant in today’s world due to its high production value and contemporary sound. P.O.N. features forty-five minutes of blazing saxophone, guitar, and vibraphone on top of a Zappaesque backing band.

How so? Well, if the regular rhythmic modulations — frequently shifting from straight eighths to many different n-tuplets — didn’t tip you off, you might as well be deaf. However, it is, in my opinion, much more … Read more

Omar – *3

The Music

The Words

I’ve been anticipating a new release from French avant-garde jazz crew Omar for quite some time, since their previous album, *2 was released in January of 2015, and now, without so much a warning, the tourangeau quartet releases *3. After a quick album cover change – the original featuring another take on the “lobster phone” of their first, self-titled release – and a new bandcamp page – password forgotten, I presume? – Omar the Third is there for the world to see. Now, does it live up to the impossible expectations that countless listens of … Read more