Rerelease: Problematica

‘Eris 136199: Problematica’ by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky (artwork copyright 2018, Han-earl Park)
Artwork © 2018 Han-earl Park.

Continuing Eris 136199’s decennial, we’ve just rereleased Eris 136199: Problematica.

[Download now (Bandcamp)…]

This digital-only album was originally made available exclusively to our Kickstarter-backers in 2018. We’re now making this available for a short time for everyone who missed out the first time.

Download: €5.00 minimum (‘name your price’).

Album available to stream via the free Bandcamp app, and to download in multiple formats including lossless.

And please remeber that 𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial is still available, and that you have only a couple of more weeks to download Cryptogenic Animals before that goes back to where all the good limited editions go.

Celebrate 10 years of Eris 136199

𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial artwork (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Let 𝑿 (7:56), Problematica I.ii (remastered) (8:34). Total duration: 16:30.

© + ℗ 2022 Han-earl Park.

Also by Eris 136199

cover art (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

Peculiar Velocities (BAF002) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Ballad of Tensegrity I (≥ 5:12), Ballad of Tensegrity II (2:28), Peculiar Velocities I (3:46), Peculiar Velocities II (3:36), Sleeping Dragon (5:22), D-Loop I (≥ 6:16), D-Loop II (5:13), Polytely I (≥ 5:01), Polytely II: Breakdown (5:33), Anagnorisis I (2:09), Anagnorisis II (2:19). Total duration ≥ 46:54.

© + ℗ 2020 Han-earl Park.

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

Eris 136199 (BAF001) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Therianthropy I (≥ 3:43), Therianthropy II (8:56), Therianthropy III (3:55), Therianthropy IV (6:30), Adaptive Radiation I (6:44), Adaptive Radiation II (8:48), Adaptive Radiation III (5:54), Universal Greebly (10:58), Hypnagogia I (8:03), Hypnagogia II (4:45). Total duration ≥ 68:25.

© + ℗ 2018 Han-earl Park.

CD cover of ‘Anomic Aphasia’ (SLAMCD 559) with Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora, Nick Didkovsky and Josh Sinton (artwork copyright 2015, Han-earl Park)

Anomic Aphasia (SLAMCD 559) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (tenor and soprano saxophones), Nick Didkovsky (guitar; tracks 1 and 5), and Josh Sinton (baritone saxophone and bass clarinet; tracks 2–4).

Track listing: Monopod (27:19), Pleonasm (Metis 9) (17:08), Flying Rods (Metis 9) (7:41), Hydraphon (7:34), StopCock (10:54). Total duration: 70:33.

© 2015 Han-earl Park. ℗ 2015 SLAM Productions.

Balancing act between your body and physics

Jazz North East has just released The Sound of Science documentary by Euan Preston from The Palace of Science / Objectiv Pictures.

There’s this balancing act between your body and the mechanics of elastic collisions, and Newtonian physics, and all those things, and you’re creating music from balancing these things out…. [Watch to the rest…]

Sound of Science took place at Gosforth Civic Theatre in March 2022. If you missed my talk and performance as part of the festival, you can watch the archived livestream.

The word I use sometimes is ‘interface.’ So if you start thinking about creativity as this thing that happens between surfaces, that’s interesting in a way that the idea of the single auteur is much less interesting…. And as an artist you can do interesting things by kind of shifting you position within that boundary. [Watch to the rest…]

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

Rerelease the Cryptogenic Animals!

Update: download no longer available. Thank you so much for your support, and thanks so much for listening!

Rereleased, and available for a limited time: Eris 136199’s Cryptogenic Animals originally released in 2018!

[Download now (Bandcamp)…]

Folk (including many new listeners who’d missed out on the crowdfunders) have, over the last few years, been asking about the availability of Eris 136199’s limited-edition recordings. For the trio’s decennial we’ll be rolling a few of these out again. The digital-only albums Problematica (recorded at Out Front, Derby), and Parabiosis (The Vortex Jazz Club, London) will be rereleased in the following months, but available from today is Cryptogenic Animals recorded at Xposed Club, Cheltenham, November 2017.

Download: €5.00 minimum (‘name your price’).

Album available to stream via the free Bandcamp app, and to download in multiple formats including lossless.

Description

Repurposing melodic atoms? Dueling amplifiers? By turns riding and submerging into reverberant spaces? Here’s how I described the recording on its release in 2018:

While the Copenhagen and Newcastle performances are documented in an upcoming album by the trio Eris 136199, Cryptogenic Animals, recorded in Cheltenham between those dates, offers a unique opportunity to track the evolution of this improvising trio during the 2017 European tour.

Take for example the synchronized, collective jump-cuts and smash-cuts that populates the Copenhagen improvisations. These are all but absent by the time the trio perform three night later in Newcastle where, in their place, you find the group breathing together; moving and transitioning in larger scales. On Cryptogenic Animals, recorded the night after Copenhagen, and two before Newcastle, you can hear both these improvisative tactics operating in fascinating, contrasting ways.

You can also hear saxophonist Catherine Sikora revisit and rework some of the melodic atoms played in Copenhagen; trying them against the contrasting acoustic environments. And, adapting to the disparate amplification available in Cheltenham (a diminutive solid-state amp against a 112 Fender), Nick Didkovsky and Han-earl Park reexamine the freedoms and restraints of the two-guitar context; an experience that would inform into their approach in Newcastle in significant ways.

With the rich acoustics of the Francis Close Hall Chapel, the Cheltenham performance is, in contrast to the frenetic and biting Copenhagen and Newcastle performances, unhurried and lush. Cryptogenic Animals documents a fascinating transitional point in the group’s behavior, showcasing the trio’s adaptability to context, and creativity born from the contingent.

[Read the rest…]

Celebrate 10 years of Eris 136199

𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial artwork (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Let 𝑿 (7:56), Problematica I.ii (remastered) (8:34). Total duration: 16:30.

© + ℗ 2022 Han-earl Park.

Also by Eris 136199

cover art (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

Peculiar Velocities (BAF002) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Ballad of Tensegrity I (≥ 5:12), Ballad of Tensegrity II (2:28), Peculiar Velocities I (3:46), Peculiar Velocities II (3:36), Sleeping Dragon (5:22), D-Loop I (≥ 6:16), D-Loop II (5:13), Polytely I (≥ 5:01), Polytely II: Breakdown (5:33), Anagnorisis I (2:09), Anagnorisis II (2:19). Total duration ≥ 46:54.

© + ℗ 2020 Han-earl Park.

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

Eris 136199 (BAF001) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Therianthropy I (≥ 3:43), Therianthropy II (8:56), Therianthropy III (3:55), Therianthropy IV (6:30), Adaptive Radiation I (6:44), Adaptive Radiation II (8:48), Adaptive Radiation III (5:54), Universal Greebly (10:58), Hypnagogia I (8:03), Hypnagogia II (4:45). Total duration ≥ 68:25.

© + ℗ 2018 Han-earl Park.

CD cover of ‘Anomic Aphasia’ (SLAMCD 559) with Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora, Nick Didkovsky and Josh Sinton (artwork copyright 2015, Han-earl Park)

Anomic Aphasia (SLAMCD 559) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (tenor and soprano saxophones), Nick Didkovsky (guitar; tracks 1 and 5), and Josh Sinton (baritone saxophone and bass clarinet; tracks 2–4).

Track listing: Monopod (27:19), Pleonasm (Metis 9) (17:08), Flying Rods (Metis 9) (7:41), Hydraphon (7:34), StopCock (10:54). Total duration: 70:33.

© 2015 Han-earl Park. ℗ 2015 SLAM Productions.

updates

09-14-22: no longer available.

Beauty into dread-inducing dreamscapes and the detritus of a creative life

A new galaxy in Park’s universe? David Lynch vs. Andrei Tarkovsky? And what’s hidden that will be unearthed? Lee Rice Epstein reviews Of Life, Recombinant (NEWJAiM9) in Free Jazz:

Of Life, Recombinant tells multiple stories at once, opening up a wide aperture and displaying stunningly drawn vistas. The four-song suite makes for a fantastic headphone album, as small details invite your attention ever more deeply throughout…. The fugue-like state is but one-layer of Park’s suite. As they progress, ‘Game: Mutation,’ ‘Naught Opportune,’ ‘Are Variant,’ and the 30-minute ‘Of Life, Recombinant’ continually pitch one direction, pivot on multiple axes, and branch out in new directions. That’s true as much for the sonics—with pre-recorded material mixed and matched over itself—as it is for the emotional throughlines, in some cases leading listeners down long corridors of chilly anticipation, in others playing up the subtle intimacy of quiet tones…. And unmistakably, Park’s guitar is itself a treasure chest of delights—long, thrilling sections of beauty fold into chilly, dread-inducing dreamscapes, each of which will enchant and delight in equal measure. [Read the rest…]

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

Creative Dead Ends in Music

Elsewhere, J. Vognsen, writing in Perfect Sound Forever, asked composers and performers (including myself) for our thoughts on failure in the context of creative work: “Why does some music end up not in the ears of listeners but in the dustbin, or perhaps never leaving the mind of the creator in the first place?”

Every piece I do leaves behind detritus of a creative life: abandoned exercises, studies, mockups, etcetera. A lot of my time and energy as a performer, specifically as an improviser, is spent in preparation; off-stage, in practice and in study. Testing things out, sometimes speculatively, sometimes with a particular goal in mind, sometimes creating studies to more clearly define a problem or problematic; these exercises and studies can help me hone in on a particular technique or strategy, they can help me discover better ways of getting from A-to-B….

But sometimes the creative detritus can be unplanned and have a greater impact—a greater impact on energy expended, on time and effort. [Read the rest…]

The piece is very much worth reading. In particular, I enjoyed reading, and really related to, Carla Kihlstedt’s take (“my creative failures… fall into three basic categories: The Hollow, The Half-baked and The Missed Marks”), and Nick Didkovsky’s telling of The CHORD Origin Story is a total blast.

If you enjoyed that piece, please also check out some of my recent written work including ‘Broken Families: Collectivism, Violence, Imagined Utopias and Improvisation,’ and my reflections on working through times of uncertainty, anxiety, and of doubt.

X: Eris 136199 Decennial

𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial artwork
Artwork by Han-earl Park with Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky. © 2022 Han-earl Park.

Celebrate 10 years of Eris 136199 with the trio’s new EP, 𝑿: Eris 136199 Decennial!

On May 27, 2012 at ABC No Rio, NYC, Catherine Sikora, Nick Didkovsky and I took the stage for the first time as a trio. Ten years later, in celebration of this ensemble, Catherine, Nick and I have created a long-distance improvisative collage.

[Download now (Bandcamp)…]

Download: €3.00 minimum (‘name your price’).

EP available to stream via the free Bandcamp app, and to download in multiple formats including lossless.

description

I recall the exact moment I knew this group was something special, when, fifteen minutes into the 40 minute improvisation, the broken-machinery-rattle-buzzes-and-bumps of the guitars were joined by the melismatic lines of the soprano saxophone. And the trio refused to collapse that juxtaposition—letting that idiomatic dissonance remain standing—creating its own logic by force-of-will.

— Han-earl Park

Ten years ago, May 27, 2012, at ABC No Rio in the Lower East Side, Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky took the stage for the first time as a trio. Before the events of 2020, the plan had been for the trio, after the release of a new album, to go on tour. But, as the rogue piece of genetic material danced its dance with humanity, the trio had to rethink that plan.

Park selected an excerpt from the recording of the trio’s Derby, 2017 performance to serve as the foundation for a new piece by the trio. He created custom music-minus-one mixes starting with a mix without the saxophone part. Sikora then recorded a new saxophone part. Park then created a mix with this new saxophone part, but without Didkovsky’s 2017 guitar. Didkovsky then recorded a new guitar part, and finally Park recorded a new guitar part to replace his 2017 performance.

So fascinating—it is clearly, undeniably Eris, but also not Eris—the components are all there but the interactions/atmosphere is totally different.

— Catherine Sikora

It’s like peering into a parallel universe and listening to what Eris in that world sounds like.

— Nick Didkovsky

And for the ‘B-side,’ the EP includes a remastered edition of the original source recording made in Derby five years ago.

Eris 136199 (Jazz em Agosto, Lisbon, 08-11-19)
Photo © Jazz em Agosto / Petra Cvelbar
Eris 136199

Eris 136199 plays on the crossroads of noise, melody, rhythm, space, density, contrast, synchronicity, asymmetry, serendipity and contradiction. Eris 136199 is the corporeal, cyborg virtuosity of constructor and guitarist Han-earl Park; the noisy, unruly complexity of composer, computer artist and guitarist Nick Didkovsky; and the no-nonsense melodic logic of composer and saxophonist Catherine Sikora.

Han-earl Park is the instigator and mastermind behind Eris 136199, as well as groups including Sirene 1009 with Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and rit., and co-conspirator in projects with Richard Barrett and others. Park is the constructor of the machine improviser io 0.0.1 beta++, and of Metis 9, a playbook of improvisative tactics. He has performed with Wadada Leo Smith, Paul Dunmall, Evan Parker, Lol Coxhill, Josh Sinton, Louise Dam Eckardt Jensen, Ingrid Laubrock, Gino Robair, Tim Perkis, Andrew Drury, Pat Thomas and Franziska Schroeder. His ensembles have performed at festivals including Freedom of the City (London), Brilliant Corners (Belfast), ISIM (New York), CEAIT (Los Angeles) and Sonic Acts (Amsterdam).

Saxophonist, improviser and composer Catherine Sikora, known for her big sound and lyrical melodic work, works as a solo performer and with Eric Mingus, Enrique Haneine, Brian Chase, Han-earl Park, Ethan Winogrand, Christopher Culpo and Ross Hammond. In recent years Sikora has toured in Canada, the United States, Europe and Australia. She was a featured soloist in Eric Mingus’ radical reimagining of Tommy by the Who (Adelaide Festival 2015), and was artist in residence at the Centre Culturel Irlandais in Paris in 2014 and in 2020.

Guitarist, composer, and computer music programmer Nick Didkovsky has composed music for Kathleen Supové, ETHEL, Bang on a Can All-Stars, Meridian Arts Ensemble, New Century Players, ARTE Quartett, as part of the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, and his own bands Doctor Nerve, Vomit Fist, Häßliche Luftmasken, and others. His compositions and guitar performances appear on more than 50 records. For over 30 years, his avant-metal big band Doctor Nerve has fueled Didkovsky’s intricate compositions with the energy of rock, punching holes through the walls between heavy metal, contemporary music, and improvisation, and performing at festivals including Moers, FIMAV, and the Whitney Museum’s ‘Whitney Live.’ With computer music pioneer Phil Burk, Didkovsky developed the computer music language Java Music Specification Language (JMSL).

personnel

Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone), and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

track listing

Let 𝑿 (7:56), Problematica I.ii (remastered) (8:34). Total duration: 16:30.

recording details

Music by Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky.

Track 1 recorded March and April 2022, New York and Berlin.
Track 2 recorded live November 4, 2017, The Bless, Derby.
Recorded by Eris 136199 (track 1), and by Chris Trent (track 2).

Mixed by Han-earl Park.
Mastered by Chris Sharkey.

Artwork by Han-earl Park with Catherine Sikora and Nick Didkovsky.

Special thanks to Corey Mwamba and Chris Trent. Derby performance presented by Corey Mwamba/OUT FRONT!, and with the awesome support of our Kickstarter backers. Track 2 includes material previously released on the limited edition album Problematica (2018).

© + ℗ 2022 Han-earl Park.

Also by Eris 136199

cover art (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

Peculiar Velocities (BAF002) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Ballad of Tensegrity I (≥ 5:12), Ballad of Tensegrity II (2:28), Peculiar Velocities I (3:46), Peculiar Velocities II (3:36), Sleeping Dragon (5:22), D-Loop I (≥ 6:16), D-Loop II (5:13), Polytely I (≥ 5:01), Polytely II: Breakdown (5:33), Anagnorisis I (2:09), Anagnorisis II (2:19). Total duration ≥ 46:54.

© + ℗ 2020 Han-earl Park.

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

Eris 136199 (BAF001) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Therianthropy I (≥ 3:43), Therianthropy II (8:56), Therianthropy III (3:55), Therianthropy IV (6:30), Adaptive Radiation I (6:44), Adaptive Radiation II (8:48), Adaptive Radiation III (5:54), Universal Greebly (10:58), Hypnagogia I (8:03), Hypnagogia II (4:45). Total duration ≥ 68:25.

© + ℗ 2018 Han-earl Park.

CD cover of ‘Anomic Aphasia’ (SLAMCD 559) with Han-earl Park, Catherine Sikora, Nick Didkovsky and Josh Sinton (artwork copyright 2015, Han-earl Park)

Anomic Aphasia (SLAMCD 559) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (tenor and soprano saxophones), Nick Didkovsky (guitar; tracks 1 and 5), and Josh Sinton (baritone saxophone and bass clarinet; tracks 2–4).

Track listing: Monopod (27:19), Pleonasm (Metis 9) (17:08), Flying Rods (Metis 9) (7:41), Hydraphon (7:34), StopCock (10:54). Total duration: 70:33.

© 2015 Han-earl Park. ℗ 2015 SLAM Productions.

Poetic, messy, terrifying and mesmerizing (article in Jazz Right Now)

As part of the ‘New Work’ series, Jazz Right Now has published my piece on work(ing) during these pandemic times; times of “uncertainty, anxiety, and of doubt.” In the article, I reflect on the perverse desire for artistic ‘productivity’; the breaches between public and private spaces; the artistic commemoration this time, this condition; and the need for creative work that frustrates:

The rogue strand of RNA danced its dance with humanity. It’s beautiful in its own way. Poetic—messy, terrifying, mesmerizing—in its own way.

R-nought.

New words and expressions entered the vernacular. Old words came to denote less—more specific things—but encapsulate and carry more meaning: of fear, uncertainty, yes, but also fascination. We’re being transformed, across porous borders, through language. Soon, those of us who lived through this, might share these as shorthands. ‘Variant’ means something. It has a texture and resonance and feel and vibe that can’t be captured by a Merriam-Webster.

I reflect on how pre-pandemic cultures (and culture-industrial complexes), with its obsession with authority and coherence and narrative, ill prepared us for the complexity and discord and messiness of the present. That maybe if we had held closer these prickly, uncomfortable, inconvenient, noisy heterophonies we, as societies, may have been more capable of facing the chaos, or dancing the dance of humanity v. RNA. [Read the rest…]

Thanks to Cisco Bradley for inviting me to contribute to this series, and thanks so much to Cristina Marx for the photography.

Watch the rest of the #lockdownminiature series on Twitter and Facebook.

Out now on NEWJAiM Recordings

cover art (copyright 2021 NEWJAiM)

Of Life, Recombinant (NEWJAiM9) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar) with Anne Wellmer (voice on track 4).

Track listing: Game: Mutation (5:38); Naught Opportune (≥ 10:42); Are Variant (≥ 8:06); Of Life, Recombinant (≥ 29:22). Total duration ≥ 53:48.

© 2021 NEWJAiM Recordings.
℗ 2021 Han-earl Park.

Thanks: Derry, Dublin, Letterkenny, Leeds, London and Newcastle, March 2022

Photo collage: Han-earl Park, Una Lee, rit., Lara Jones and Pat Thomas.
Photos © 2022 Pete Woodman (Han-earl Park), © 2022 Mickey Rooney (Una Lee and rit.), © 2022 Cath Roberts (Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas), and © 2022 Han-earl Park (backgrounds).

Apologies for the delay in posting these acknowledgements (but no pandemic-era tour would be complete without at least a little drama), but I would like to quickly post a note of thanks to everyone who made my return, after two+ years, to touring.

A warm, heartfelt thanks to everyone who joined me on my travels, to those who worked behind-the-scenes to make the performances happen, to my hosts, to my fellow performers, and to those who came to listen. Thanks to everyone at Gosforth Civic Theatre, Hyde Park Book Club, Unit 44/Kirkos Ensemble, Regional Cultural Centre Letterkenny, and Cultúrlann Uí Chanáin. Special thanks to Fielding, Shaun and Conal at Cafe OTO, and to Laura, Pete, Oli and Chris at Fusebox. Shoutouts to Johnny Hunter and his Pale Blue Dot ensemble, to Crawler’s Kyra, and to Corey and Graeme, and I’m grateful to have shared the stage with Lara and Pat, and with rit. and Una.

And finally I would like to thank Wesley Stephenson at Jazz North East, and Peter O’Doherty of Northern Lights Project for their enthusiasm, hard work, genuine love of the music, and care for the artists who make it. In Wesley and Peter, I know two of the greatest supporters of creative musicians and adventurous listeners. Thank you so very much.

I am truly grateful to everyone’s support. Despite the difficulties of traveling and performing in the present-day condition, it has been a pleasure to bring my music to you.

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

Out now on NEWJAiM Recordings

cover art (copyright 2021 NEWJAiM)

Of Life, Recombinant (NEWJAiM9) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar) with Anne Wellmer (voice on track 4).

Track listing: Game: Mutation (5:38); Naught Opportune (≥ 10:42); Are Variant (≥ 8:06); Of Life, Recombinant (≥ 29:22). Total duration ≥ 53:48.

© 2021 NEWJAiM Recordings.
℗ 2021 Han-earl Park.

Performance diary (Berlin) 040522

upcoming performances
date venue time details
April 8, 2022 Secret Location*
Berlin
Germany * Contact slurgeband[at]protonmail.com for details.
9:00pm (doors: 8:00pm) QLH (Quentin Tolimieri: organ; Luca Marini: drums; and Han-earl Park: guitar). Also performing: Slurge (Carina Khorkhordina: trumpet; Eric Bauer: guitar; Burkhard Beins: bass guitar; and Wolfgang Seidel: drums). [Beins calendar…]

Continue reading “Performance diary (Berlin) 040522”

Threads of metallic (in)coherence (reviews: Of Life, Recombinant)

Fractions of stillness close to being shattered? warped halos of reverberating pitches? a very seducing utopia? Massimo Ricci of Touching Extremes describes the experience of listening to Of Life, Recombinant (NEWJAiM9):

We listen, we wait. Breathing deeply, relaxed enough yet ready to be sucked in by some vortex of illusion. We absorb the blows of sudden mutations connected by threads of metallic (in)coherence. Twisted harmonics, miscellanies of tones whose fluidity belongs more to states of exhausted drowsiness than labyrinths of analytical overspill. Superimposed images gradually losing the distinctness we had laboriously achieved in our mind. Bursts of paroxysm that, in the long run, disclose unexpectedly appeasing qualities. Each spin adds further layers of interpretation, not to mention the sheer aural thrill. As per Park’s words, “I’d like to think that listeners might find their way into their own space, and find their world refracted through it.” There will be no problem with that, if that audience is awake and profoundly receptive. [Read the rest…]

I really appreciate that Massimo Ricci embraced the subjective and poetic. It’s the kind of approach that I’d hoped that reviewers would take when writing about this work.

Elsewhere, Ken Waxman of JazzWord describes a bullet-train journey of ‘sound mutations’ between moments of ‘guitar-ness’ and the guitar as ‘sourced textures’:

Sometimes bell-ringing strums, power crunches or mechanized drones are emphasized to the extent that expected guitar sounds are at a premium and arise unexpectedly…. The concept is evolved at its greatest length during the almost 29½-minute title track. With whispered sibilant vocalized noises sometimes snarling in the ether, muted rumbles inflate to voltage buzzes that include oscillated hisses with silent interludes before hardening into a wavering horizontal line. As over-amplified knob twisting tones and shaking bullet-train-like rumbles become aurally prominent besides the electronic impulses, by midpoint is appears that a psychedelic-era freak-out may be in the offing. Although the narrative echoes from harsh to harsher, yet following an elephantine-like chord variation fragmented parts blend into nearly opaque solid matter and abruptly stop. Like a notable train trip, gratification come from sights glimpsed… not the final destination. [Read the rest…]

And, writing in salt peanuts*, Jan Granlie finds “a kind of meditative music for sophisticated souls”, a music that is “consistently melancholic while simultaneously arch-modern and exciting”:

Og selv om dette er musikk som krever en del av lytteren, skal man gi gitaristen tid. Man skal lytte gjennom hans lydverden flere ganger og etter hvert plukke opp detaljer og, kanskje også, forstå hva den godeste gitaristen vil fortelle oss. For selv om dette ikke er det enkleste historiene, så er det fascinerende å følge med i hva han skaper av lydbilder med gitaren. Og i sistesporet, «Of Life. Recombinant», hvor han har «damer på rommet», og er platas hovedspor som varer i nesten en halv time, skjer det utrolig mange spennende ting man skal følge med på. [Read the rest…]

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

Reminder: Han-earl Park, rit. and Una Lee (Belfast, Derry, Dublin and Letterkenny)

Han-earl Park, rit. and Una Lee
© Jazz em Agosto

This week! performances by Han-earl Park, rit. and Una Lee in Dublin (Thursday, March 24, 2022), Letterkenny (Friday, March 25), Derry (Saturday, March 26) and Belfast (Sunday, March 27). [Get tickets…]

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

Bodies, agency, ‘the material,’ automata, cyborgs and improvisation

“Once I have those parameters, I can reconfigure the body and the instrument so it kind of runs itself….

“The word I use sometimes is ‘interface.’ So if you start thinking about creativity as this thing that happens between surfaces, that’s interesting in a way that the idea of the single auteur is much less interesting…. And as an artist you can do interesting things by kind of shifting you position within that boundary.” [Listen to the rest…]

Tonight

Tuesday, March 22, 2022, at 8:00pm: Han-earl Park performs at Hyde Park Book Club (27–29 Headingley Lane, Leeds LS6 1BL).

Also coming up

Han-earl Park is also performing with rit. and Una Lee, in Dublin (24), Letterkenny (25), Derry (26) and Belfast (27). See the performance diary for details.

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

Tonight: Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas at Cafe OTO, London

tiles and rails (guitar, saxophone and keyboard)
© 2022 Han-earl Park

Tonight (Sunday, March 20, 2022), at 8:00pm: Han-earl Park (guitar), Lara Jones (saxophone) and Pat Thomas (keyboards) perform at Cafe OTO (18–22 Ashwin Street, Dalston, London E8 3DL). [Get tickets…]

Also in March 2022

Han-earl Park is also performing a solo set in Leeds (March 22), and, with rit. and Una Lee, in Dublin (24), Letterkenny (25), Derry (26) and Belfast (27). See the performance diary for details.

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.