Reviews that mention Alex Cline

August 3, 2021

Thollem’s Astral Travelling Sessions

With Alex Cline and Susan Alcorn
Astral Spirits AS 153-08

Putting the pizzazz into peripatetic, keyboardist Thollem McDonas spent 2019 touring the US, recording with fellow improvisers along the way to eventually put out 25 albums. One of the first, this double duo disc, is illuminating as it shows McDonas’ reaction to contrasting situations using different instruments. Recorded in Santa Monica, the almost 38½-minute set with drummer Alex Cline is intense Free Jazz highlighting his kinetic piano undulations. The five tracks with Baltimore pedal steel guitarist Susan Alcorn in contrast are free-flowing and almost relaxed. Yet the dimensions of his synthesizer tones produce a texture that floats midway between prairie outskirts and outer space. MORE

May 13, 2021

Julius Hemphill The Boyé Mukti-national Crusade for Harmony

Archive Recordings 1997-2007
NewWorld Records 80825-2:

Various Artists

Not Two …but Twenty Festival

NotTwo MW 1000-2

Something in the Air: Sophisticatedly Curated Box Sets Collate and Disseminate Important Music

By Ken Waxman

Assembled since the first significant 78s were collected in one package, the boxed set has traditionally been used to celebrate important anniversaries or extensive projects. CD collections are the same with these improvised music sets aurally illuminating various programs. MORE

October 2, 2019

Patrick Shiroishi/Vinny Golia/Dylan Fujioka /Alex Cline

Borasisi
Astral Spirits MF 205/AS 101S

Miller Wrenn Escapist

Alternates

pfMentum PFM CD 121

Both of these CDs were recorded in the Los Ange3les area and both feature multi-reedist Vinny Golia. Other than that they’re as different as night and day; or maybe “Night and Day” interpreted by either John Cage or Albert Ayler.

Alternates is a debut session by LA bassist Miller Wrenn, who works both in the improv and notated music field with the likes of Mark Menzies Joe LaBarbera and Golia, here playing bass clarinet, with the group filled out by Ethan Marks on trumpet and piccolo trumpet, guitarist Caleb Veazey and percussionist Clint Dodson, Mostly moderato and solemn the arrangement of tonal colors is more concerned with precision than uncontrolled improvisation. Just the opposite Borasisi is two long tracks of turbulent, freeform blowing. Besides Golia, who plays a couple of saxophones, and his long-time foil, percussionist Alex Cline, the other improvisers are drummer Dylan Fujioka and saxophonist Patrick Shiroishi, who often perform as the duo In the Womb, with Shiroishi also involved in a clutch of other LA-based solo and group projects. MORE

April 4, 2009

Larry Ochs/Miya Masoka/Peggy Lee

Spiller Alley
RogueArt ROG-0016

Tony Wilson/Peggy Lee/Jon Bentley

Escondido Dreams

Drip Audio DA00206

Alex Cline

Continuation

Cryptogramophone CG 140

Peggy Lee

New Code

Drip Audio DA 00318

Extended Play: The “Other” Peggy Lee

By Ken Waxman

Established in Vancouver for nearly 20 years following extensive musical study in her native Toronto, Peggy Lee has become one of the most in-demand cellists in both improvised and New music. Occasionally working with her husband, drummer Dylan van der Schyff, but more frequently on her own, Lee’s string prestidigitation is prominent in meetings with Canadian, American and European musicians. MORE

April 4, 2009

Peggy Lee

New Code
Drip Audio DA 00318

Larry Ochs/Miya Masoka/Peggy Lee

Spiller Alley

RogueArt ROG-0016

Tony Wilson/Peggy Lee/Jon Bentley

Escondido Dreams

Drip Audio DA00206

Alex Cline

Continuation

Cryptogramophone CG 140

Extended Play: The “Other” Peggy Lee

By Ken Waxman

Established in Vancouver for nearly 20 years following extensive musical study in her native Toronto, Peggy Lee has become one of the most in-demand cellists in both improvised and New music. Occasionally working with her husband, drummer Dylan van der Schyff, but more frequently on her own, Lee’s string prestidigitation is prominent in meetings with Canadian, American and European musicians. MORE

April 4, 2009

Tony Wilson/Peggy Lee/Jon Bentley

Escondido Dreams
Drip Audio DA00206

Larry Ochs/Miya Masoka/Peggy Lee

Spiller Alley

RogueArt ROG-0016

Alex Cline

Continuation

Cryptogramophone CG 140

Peggy Lee

New Code

Drip Audio DA 00318

Extended Play: The “Other” Peggy Lee

By Ken Waxman

Established in Vancouver for nearly 20 years following extensive musical study in her native Toronto, Peggy Lee has become one of the most in-demand cellists in both improvised and New music. Occasionally working with her husband, drummer Dylan van der Schyff, but more frequently on her own, Lee’s string prestidigitation is prominent in meetings with Canadian, American and European musicians. MORE

April 4, 2009

Alex Cline

Continuation
Cryptogramophone CG 140

Larry Ochs/Miya Masoka/Peggy Lee

Spiller Alley

RogueArt ROG-0016

Tony Wilson/Peggy Lee/Jon Bentley

Escondido Dreams

Drip Audio DA00206

Peggy Lee

New Code

Drip Audio DA 00318

Extended Play: The “Other” Peggy Lee

By Ken Waxman

Established in Vancouver for nearly 20 years following extensive musical study in her native Toronto, Peggy Lee has become one of the most in-demand cellists in both improvised and New music. Occasionally working with her husband, drummer Dylan van der Schyff, but more frequently on her own, Lee’s string prestidigitation is prominent in meetings with Canadian, American and European musicians. MORE

January 30, 2006

IAN SMITH/SIMON H. FELL/HARRIS EISENSTADT

K3
Bruce’s Fingers BF 58

HARRIS EISENSTADT
Ahimsa Orchestra
Nine Winds NWCD0237

Having established himself with hard work as an in-demand percussionist and band leader in Los Angeles, Toronto-born Harris Eisenstadt is branching out. He’s traveling to the East Coast, Europe and Africa to match wits with his improvising contemporaries and writing more involved compositions for larger ensembles.

K3 is an example of the former, where he hooks up with British-born bassist Simon H. Fell, who now lives in France, and Dublin-born, London-based trumpeter Ian Smith. Conversely the Ahimsa Orchestra is a local project, featuring the percussionist, conductor Omid Zoufonoun and two differently constituted, 12-piece ensembles running through two of Eisenstadt’s compositions, the three-part “Non-Violence” and the four-section “Relief”. Kudos must go to the young drummer for attempting different projects. However, while he fits comfortably with Smith and Fell, his reach seems to have exceeded his grasp with the 67-minute CD by the band named with Mahatma Gandhi’s word for enemy-loving non-violence. MORE

August 22, 2005

ALEX CLINE/KAORU/MIYA MASAOKA /G.E. STINSON

Cloud Plate
Cryptogramophone CG 121

DEREK BAILEY/AMY DENIO/DENNIS PALMER
The Gospel Record
Shaking Ray SRR-CD004

Using the human voice in improvisation can be tricky. Singing words brings with it the fear that metrical qualities will overtake spontaneous interaction; used wordlessly, its proper place among other instruments is suspect and sometimes redundant.

CLOUD PLATE and THE GOSPEL RECORD deal with variations of these snags and neither fully overcomes the obstacles. On the first CD, Kaoru – no last name – so diffuses her vocal timbres through electronics that often you lose track of the human element, especially when she seem to be expressing herself in ethereal tones that are neither Japanese nor English. Conversely, Amy Denio intones the lyrics of the gospel songs on the other session with such bright-eyed conviction, despite the instrumental mayhem behind her, that you’re not sure how much is parody and how much Pentecostal. MORE

January 15, 2005

Vinny Golia Quartet

Sfumato
booklet notes for Clean Feed CF 036CD

Texas-raised trumpeter Bobby Bradford has long been associated with idiosyncratic reed players. Most people know him as the brassman in an important -- but little recorded -- version of Ornette Coleman’s Quartet in the early 1960s; others recall his long partnership with the late clarinetist John Carter with whom he recorded a series of memorable, interrelated LPs in the 1970s and 1980s.

Just as noteworthy however has been his decades-long collaboration with multi-woodwind player Vinny Golia, live and on record, the most recent of which is displayed in glorious fashion on this CD. MORE

July 12, 2004

THE VINNY GOLIA QUINTET

One, Three, Two
Jazz’halo TS018/19

Recorded at three different concerts in Belgium on September 12, 13 and 15, 2001, ONE, THREE, TWO is a creditable quintet session, which, considering the date, not surprisingly lacks some of the go-for-broke energy multi-reedist Vinny Golia brings to many of his other discs.

Still the cohesion of the band is evident on the 11 Golia compositions written expressly for this instrumentation, that are spread over two CDs with almost 2½ hours of music. However, a combination of ennui regarding the situation in the United States, and concert necessities, which seems to necessitate contributions from each musician on nearly every tune, means that some pieces and solos are overly extended. Considering that Golia had been playing with brothers, guitarist Nels Cline and drummer Alex Cline since 1976, expressive trombonist Michael Vlatkovich since 1981 and bassist Scott Walton for at least five years at that point, no sound is less than thoroughgoing professional, though. And many of the pieces are outright exciting. MORE

February 22, 2002

JEFF GAUTHIER GOATETTE

Mask
Cryptogramophone 112

Perhaps this CD could be called Revenge Of The Pros. That’s because all of these California-based musicians have extensive experience working on commercial pop, funk and contemporary jazz dates as well as for film and TV soundtracks. This band however allows them to play their own music.

The problem is, that while the sounds here are heartfelt and obviously technically impeccable, they’re also much “prettier” than you would expect on a jazz date. Not that jazz necessarily has to be “ugly” to be hip, which is itself an outmoded concept, but when the Goatette’s twin touchstones seem to be modal-style impressionism on one hand and showy jazz rock on the other something has to suffer. MORE