Collisions with concrete, of thousands of years of musical history, and keeping it “in their pants” (reviews: Eris 136199 and Sirene 1009)

A descent into the concrete? rafting over a boiling river? a collisions of thousands of years of musical history? music to communicate cyclists’ collisions? and who are the “bass/drum/guitar boys”, and do they “keep it in their pants”? Fascinating first set of reviews for the newly released Eris 136199 (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky, and a review from earlier this year of Sirene 1009 (BAF000) by Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh.

Eris 136199

Writing in Jazz Right Now, Gabriel Jermaine Vanlandingham-Dunn discusses the music in the context of his recent accident:

At times guitarist Han-earl Park reminds me of what my bones and muscles would sound like if this speeding vehicle had in fact crushed or torn any of them (I do not have any broken bones, but I am still awaiting test results on my foot muscles). The sometimes slow, sometimes fast plucking and riffing literally makes me cringe today while writing this. My screaming at this speeding driver a split second before their vehicle crashed into the back of my bicycle might recall the blare of Catherine Sikora’s tenor sax throughout the album. I think of my repeating “WOAH, WOAH, WOAH” slowed down and amplified for full effect; loud enough that people heard the crash and my descent into the concrete of Nick Didkovsky’s improvised patterns. [Read the rest…]

An intense and honest review, Vanlandingham-Dunn concludes that, despite being “no place near a pretty listen”, the album has value in its ability to help personal experiences and histories: “‘Yo man, you ever been hit by a car?’ ‘Yeah, but maybe we should listen to this album I just picked up before I tell you about it.’”

In a more poetic, if no less personal, review, Massimo Ricci of Touching Extremes finds music that explores “avenues of acrid timbral contiguity. It’s still unconventional music, mostly with a strong skeleton”:

It’s a persistent burbling of memories and conjectures revealing decades of accumulated experiences and data, not fully untangled, with a definite explosive potential. At times a need arises to recapitulate a bit; the interplay becomes less loaded, the fingers caressing and cherry picking rather than snapping and ripping. Sikora is practically flawless in oscillating between the roles of moderator and source of linear alternatives. Her jargon is fluid, quasi-effortless, deprived of angst in spite of the occasional labyrinthine reiterations and squiggling restlessness. [Read the rest…]

Meanwhile, in the JazzTokyo review, Takeshi Goda imagines a project “based on the history of music on the earth for thousands of years”; a music of all-encompassing knowledge, and a music of deviations:

襤褸を纏った侍従に付き添われた茨の冠の王女のような三人の図は、中世の教会のステンドグラスにふさわしい。無名の小惑星の名前を持つトリオの演奏は、地球に存在しない未知の物質だけでできている訳ではなく、地球上の数千年の音楽史を源に持つ。名状不明な音響のスキマに、グレゴリオ聖歌、吟遊詩人の竪琴、ニューオリンズの葬送マーチ、バルトークの弦楽四重奏、大都会のストリート・ミュージシャンなど、あらゆる人類の演奏行為の断片を聴きとることが出来る。逸脱を極めれば極めるほど、古典や伝統への親和性が高くなる。それはまるで「光速に近づくと、時間の流れが遅くなる」という特殊相対性理論(Special Relativity Theory)のようだ。彼らが目指す先は、まだ誰も提唱していない「特殊逸脱性理論(Special Deviation Theory)」の確立なのかもしれない。[Read the rest…]

[About this album…] [Get the CD/download (Bandcamp)…] [All reviews…]

CD: €11 minimum (‘name your price’) plus shipping.*†
Download: €8 minimum (‘name your price’).†

CD photo: ‘Eris 136199’ (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork and photo copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)CD photo: ‘Eris 136199’ (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork and photo copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)CD photo: ‘Eris 136199’ (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork and photo copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)CD photo: ‘Eris 136199’ (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork and photo copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)CD photo: ‘Eris 136199’ (BAF001) by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork and photo copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)

Sirene 1009

And finally, Stuart Marshall at The Sound Projector finds in Sirene 1009 a music free from “vocal histrionics” and “virtuoso runs/cacophonous jams” that lack “musical structure,” stating that “this awesome foursome, who know when to let rip and when to keep it in their pants”:

For further proof of the UK improv scene’s vitality look no further than Sirene 1009. Though not everyone is a household name (nor British), at least two of this four-piece are scene mainstays, and the whole squad sounds as at-home with each other as they are with the promiscuous goings in English jazz dens. The much frequented Cafe OTO is our virtual venue for most of this set, where visceral freeform unscrunches itself into being, sparked by Caroline Pugh’s tempestuous, syllable-timed glossolalia and billowed by flurries from the bass/drum/guitar boys, with lashings of warm vibrato throughout. [Read the rest…]

[About this album…] [Get the CD/download (Bandcamp)…] [All reviews…]

CD: €11 minimum (‘name your price’) plus shipping.*
Download: €8 minimum (‘name your price’).‡

‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)‘Sirene 1009’ (BAF000) with Han-earl Park, Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh (artwork copyright 2017, Han-earl Park)

Notes

* Limited edition glass-mastered CD. CD includes additional material (liner notes, artwork, etc.) not included in the download version of the album.

*† Both digital and physical purchases give you streaming via the free Bandcamp app, and option to download the recording in multiple formats including lossless.

Culture Ireland logo

Sirene 1009’s London performance presented with funding from Culture Ireland, and support from SLAM Productions.

video discography

I’ve created a video discography—a YouTube playlist of video ‘trailers’ for selected albums. (This now joins the video playlist of selected performances and 13 hours or so of ‘recent’ performances.)

The albums currently represented in the playlist are Numbers (CS 201 cd) with Richard Barrett [more info (get the CD)…]; io 0.0.1 beta++ (SLAMCD 531) with Bruce Coates and Franziska Schroeder [more (CD/download)…]; and Mathilde 253 (SLAMCD 528) with Charles Hayward and Ian Smith plus Lol Coxhill [more (CD/download)…]; with more to come.

CD cover of ‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) with Richard Barrett and Han-earl Park (copyright 2012, Creative Sources Recordings)

Numbers (CS 201 cd) [details…]

Performers: Richard Barrett (electronics) and Han-earl Park (guitar). [About this duo…]

© + ℗ 2012 Creative Sources Recordings.

‘io 0.0.1 beta++ (SLAMCD 531) CD cover (copyright 2011, Han-earl Park)

io 0.0.1 beta++ (SLAMCD 531) [details…]

Performers: io 0.0.1 beta++ (itself), Han-earl Park (guitar), Bruce Coates (alto and sopranino saxophones) and Franziska Schroeder (soprano saxophone). [About this project…]

© 2011 Han-earl Park.
℗ 2011 SLAM Productions.

‘Mathilde 253’ (SLAMCD 528) CD cover (copyright 2010, Han-earl Park)

Mathilde 253 (SLAMCD 528) [details…]

Performers: Charles Hayward (drums, percussion and melodica), Han-earl Park (guitar) and Ian Smith (trumpet and flugelhorn) plus Lol Coxhill (saxophone). [About this ensemble…]

© 2010 Han-earl Park.
℗ 2010 SLAM Productions.

updates

09–22–14: embedded playlist starts with Numbers.

frantically jagged (audio clip: Numbers: Richard Barrett + Han-earl Park)

Numbers: Richard Barrett + Han-earl Park (Scarborough, May 3, 2012)

Bazillions of events… for the joy of individuals who take pleasure in getting their brain zapped and scrambled by the rivalry between transonic beauty and extreme structural atomization. This is in fact a full hour of frantically jagged live improvisation…. [More…]

— Massimo Ricci (Touching Extremes)

I’m enormously proud of ‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd), the duo CD with Richard Barrett released by Creative Sources Recordings, which I feel has some of my best playing on record. Over the coming weeks, I’ll be posting up audio excerpts from the album. The first clip is from the track ‘creens.’ May your brain be “zapped and scrambled” in the best possible way. [About the recording…] [About this duo…]

Audio clip courtesy of Creative Sources Recordings.
Music by Richard Barrett and Han-earl Park.
Audio ℗ 2012 Creative Sources Recordings. Please do not distribute audio file, but instead share the link to this page.

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CD cover of ‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) with Richard Barrett and Han-earl Park (copyright 2012, Creative Sources Recordings)

‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) [details…]

Performers: Richard Barrett (electronics) and Han-earl Park (guitar). [About this duo…]

© + ℗ 2012 Creative Sources Recordings.

CD reviews: Numbers: Richard Barrett + Han-earl Park

CD cover of ‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) with Richard Barrett and Han-earl Park (copyright 2012, Creative Sources Recordings)
‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) © 2012 Creative Sources

How’s your Portuguese? Rui Eduardo Paes reviews Richard Barrett and Han-earl Park’s ‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd):

Quem partir para a audição de “Numbers” com uma ideia feita do que esperar de Richard Barrett e Han-Earl Park ficará, com certeza, surpreendido. Se o Barrett compositor de música contemporânea e o Barrett improvisador de electrónica no duo Furt e no Electro-Acoustic Ensemble de Evan Parker são, já à partida, bastante diferentes (apesar da sua convicção de que improvisar é apenas outra forma de compor), o que deste ouvimos agora distancia-se do “sampling” esquizóide a que nos habituou – os seus “outputs” neste disco identificam-se mais com as sonoridades sintetizadas dos antigos jogos de computador e videojogos. Por sua vez, o Park que aqui está não é o inventor e construtor de robôs e próteses musicais, mas o guitarrista. Percorrer outros caminhos implica neste disco aspectos positivos e negativos, mas verdade seja dita que a energia, o “drive” e o labor de sedimentação do ruído que vão desenvolvendo depressa nos conquistam. [Original article…]

Rui Eduardo Paes

Meanwhile, Massimo Ricci at Touching Extremes suggests the recording might be a way to have your “brain zapped and scrambled by the rivalry between transonic beauty and extreme structural atomization”:

…It is… impractical to verbally interpret the bazillions of events that this CD warrants, for the joy of individuals who take pleasure in getting their brain zapped and scrambled by the rivalry between transonic beauty and extreme structural atomization. This is in fact a full hour of frantically jagged live improvisation that will definitely expose, in a good number of subjects, the inability of receiving and synthesizing a large quantity of data, given the inborn impossibility of switching to multi-channel mode in their neural constitution. These persons will end describing this barely imaginable tit-for-tat as unendurably non-brooding, or just “out of fashion”. Indeed the methods through which the (mostly) clean sounds of the electric guitar get stretched, warped, mangled and thrown back at the source demolish any propensity to rumination. As if a premix of Fred Frith, Hans Reichel and – why not – Christopher Willits had been subjected to a journey inside the circuits of a billboard. Mere seconds before its explosion, that is. [Read the rest…]

— Massimo Ricci (Touching Extremes)

I wonder if Ricci had anyone particular in mind when he wrote of those with an “inability of receiving and synthesizing a large quantity of data, given the inborn impossibility of switching to multi-channel mode in their neural constitution” 😉

‘Numbers’ (CS 201 cd) is available from Creative Sources Recordings. [More info…] [All reviews…] [Get the CD…]