Sunday, December 31, 2017

Charles Lloyd/Billy Higgins ‎– Which Way Is East 2XCD



Great experimental collaboration by Charles Lloyd and Billy Higgins just before the latter died. This ranges from free jazz and avant-garde classical to mournful introspective piano/ sax pieces and instrumentals focusing on African and Middle-Eastern music. A great musical adventure by two legends who didn't settle for playing the same old classics. 2004 2 x CD on ECM.

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Saturday, December 30, 2017

Charles Lloyd ‎– All My Relations CD



Charles Lloyd commanding a super quarter joined by Bobo Stenson on piano, Anders Jormin on double bass and Billy Hart on drums. Far more energetic than most of his albums which are more inwards, we got here a relaxed dancey feel in the greatly titled "Thelonious Theonlyous" where someone (Jormin?) makes Keith-Jarrett-like moans, and superb flute by Lloyd on the Coltrane-esque "Little Peace" 1995 cd on ECM.

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Friday, December 29, 2017

Ascension - Five Titles cd



After Stefan Jaworzyn quit Skullflower in the early 90s, he says he abandoned his guitar for a few years, before being convinced to take it up again by drummer Tony Irving. So the two of them started the groups Ascension and Descension which are essentially free jazz but improvised and played on exclusively rock instruments, namely electric guitar and drums, similar to Skullflower's innovative rock approach to noise music. Despite the improvised nature, there is a unique connection between the two guys, and this is topped by the last track which is a 27-minute dual guitar noise and feedback assault from another planet. Yeah baby this is great. 1996 cd on Shock.

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Thralldom

Thralldom is a NYC-based black metal band with a lot of noise and ambient elements and occult thematology. What sets them apart from run-of-the-mill BM is their very noisy approach which has influences from Swans, Godflesh and paranoid riffs which avoid the typical Norwegian-style tremolo riffing. Responsible for this are Jaldagar on drums and Killusion (Ryan Lipynsky) on guitar and vocals, who is the frontman of dark sludge band Unearthly Trance, whose debut Season of Seance, Science of Silence is one of my all-time favorite doom/sludge albums. Below is part of their discography, minus their EPs and their reunion cd Time Will Bend Into Horror which I didn't really like.
  
2002 - A Murderous Magus Of The Morphogenetic Grid 7" (Regimental Records)



Lo-fi black/doom metal with cool Darkthrone/punk riffs.

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2003 - Beast Eye Opened To The Sky LP (Parasitic Records)



 Demented, radioactive noisy evil with great off-kilter guitar work and vocals.

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2005 - The Seven Heads of The Lion Serpent 7" (Deathstrike Records)



 Yo, isn't that Celtic Frost's heptagram? The Celtic Frost references doesn't stop there as the first track is a very groovy and danceable Celtic Frost-meets-Motorhead-meets Darkthrone anthem. The two other tracks are equally great.

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 2005 - Black Sun Resistance LP (Profound Lore Records)

 

More occult metal awesomeness, with more 80's metal influences like Bathory, Hellhammer and Sarcofago, but with great atmospheric guitar work similar to Godflesh and motorik rhythms.

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2006 - A Shaman Steering The Vessel of Vastness cd (Profound Lore Records)



The last Thralldom before their break-up was their most experimental but also their heavier. Thick death/black riffs mix with chaotic drums/guitar improvisations and battle with misanthropic noise and ambient moments of unnerving calm. Majestic. 2006 cd on Profound Lore Records.