Saturday, December 17, 2011

The BSC: Manual

http://bhobrainey.bandcamp.com/album/manual

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Note: There are 100 hardcovers available at the paperback price ($20 for book and music). A good chunk of these are already claimed with pre-orders. Once they're gone, they're gone.

Music by the BSC (with Pauline Oliveros) 
Book edited by Bhob Rainey with contributions from Damon Krukowski, Aaron P. Tate, Ben Hall, and Mike Bullock 
3 tracks, 65’30″ 
Hardcover and Paperback with Lossless Download (CD-r available on request): 5.8125″ x 8.25″, 112 pages 
Published by NO Books 

Manual is a combination full-length album and book focusing on the music and improvisational practice of the BSC, an eight-member electroacoustic ensemble formed by saxophonist and composer Bhob Rainey in 2000. More than just music with copious liner notes, Manual examines the process of improvisation from both within and outside the BSC, encountering topics ranging from genealogy to architecture, the boundaries of sense to the benefits of failure, flows of energy to bouts of guilt. The intersection and unfolding of ideas is often complex, but the writing in Manual is earthy and comprehensible, keeping jargon to a minimum without sacrificing the depth of the subject matter. Manual is not a monument to the BSC but rather an appreciation of improvisation from the perspective of an especially prolific community. 

The music portion of Manual consists of three extended improvisations covering a six-year period in the BSC’s history. The most recent piece, a vividly captured concert highlighting some of the more elegant aspects of the BSC’s unique musical lexicon, was recorded in 2009 and includes renowned composer Pauline Oliveros on accordion. The earliest piece was recorded in November 2003 at the end of The BSC’s only extended tour and contains some of the noisiest, most unhinged work the ensemble has ever released. 2007′s “23% Bicycle and/or Ribbons of the Natural Order”, recorded in Somerville, MA, provides a balance between the other two tracks, illustrating the BSC’s strong formal control amidst chaotic conflagrations of feedback, tape degeneration, and general instrumental instability. Stage plots and recording notes are included for each track. 

The book portion of Manual contains contributions from five writers. Bhob Rainey (director and founder of the BSC) provides an introduction in which he engages with the book’s other contributors while reflecting on failure, adaptable dispositions, and the upside to being oblique. Damon Krukowski (musician, poet, half of Damon & Naomi, one-third of Galaxie 500, and one-fourth of Magic Hour) contributes a series of prose poems aimed at evoking certain effects the BSC’s music has on him. Aaron P. Tate (classicist at Cornell University whose areas include ancient and contemporary improvisation), through extensive research and interviews, pieces together and examines the BSC’s early history and rehearsal practices. Tate uses this information, along with recorded documentation, to approach the music with great insight from a dynamic, open-ended perspective. Ben Hall (percussionist, gospel archivist, and restaurateur) unravels ideas about genealogy, community, politics, and authority as they present themselves in the tradition from which the BSC emerges. And Mike Bullock (audio/visual artist and bassist for the BSC) develops two metaphors for evaluating music like that of the BSC, applying these metaphors to an analysis of the 2009 performance with Pauline Oliveros featured in this release.

Bhob Rainey: soprano saxophone, director 
Mike Bullock: contrabass, amplification 
James Coleman: theremin 
Chris Cooper: guitar and electronics 
Greg Kelley: trumpet 
Vic Rawlings: amplified / prepared cello, open circuit electronics 
Howard Stelzer: tapes 
Liz Tonne: voice 

Pauline Oliveros plays accordion on Track 1.




Saturday, December 10, 2011

Greg Kelley/Olivia Block: Resolution CD (Erstwhile)



Greg Kelley: trumpet
Olivia Block: electronics, piano

Pinholed and perpetual light, part 1 (11:08)
Looking through bone (9:28)
How much radiance can you stand? (8:06)
Some old slapstick routine (8:24)
Pinholed and perpetual light, part 2 (9:05)

This CD is out now on Erstwhile Records and available via all your favorite distributors of recorded music, including Mimaroglu Music Sales who had these kind words to say about it and from whom I stole the above scans (thanks!):

november 2011 release ; ... long in the works (i remember dropping greg off at olivia’s place in chicagoaround the time of the first neon marshmallow fest way back whencollaborative work between musique concrète composer olivia block & trumpeter / composer / connoisseur greg kelley ...

... largely involving olivia’s prepared piano crackle & greg’s metal tube-resonance air-movement this relates to similarly-aligned through-composed sub-aquatic piano renderings (such as g*park’s “one hour as bernel & hofmann”) while keeping a leg in the purely improvised-music sphere ... the results are incredibly richdense,multi-layered, and as complex & rewarding as you can possibly imagine ...

one of my favorite discs of the year thusfar & a perfect complement to the style / sound / conceptualframework of lambkin & lescalleet’s discs for the label highly recommended !!!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

CHICAGO

I will be in Chicago tomorrow night, Friday December 2, 2011, and Saturday December 3, 2011.

On Friday, Olivia Block and I will be recording at WNUR. This will be broadcast on Saturday at 4pm. http://airplay.wnur.org/?p=1799

On Saturday, I will be performing a new piece, Soft Delete/Purgative Dryness for amplified trumpet and pre-recorded electronics as part of the Lampo series at the Graham Foundationhttp://gregkelley.eventbrite.com/ 

The solo show will be streaming live (8pm CST) via http://numbers.fm/