Reviews that mention Glen Hall

July 13, 2010

Geordie McDonald

Time/After Time: A Jazz Suite
Sonavista Records NO #

Audaciously taking on nothing less than a history of our sad planet, from the big bang to its potential post-apocalypse, veteran local drummer Geordie McDonald has put together a multi-faceted two-CD set that melds futuristic, multi-ethnic and contemporary improvisations.

“Time/After Time” is an instrumental parable that begins with a brief electronically propelled explosion and ends with more than 12½ minutes of McDonald’s inventive polyrhythms on drums and ancillary percussion including a bell tree, claves, oversized cymbals, woodblocks and rain sheets. The suite encompasses the skills of 18 [!] of Toronto’s top improvisers plus New York-based trombonist Roswell Rudd, whose inventive brays and slurs perfectly fit the primitive-modern CD the drummer organized. MORE

March 3, 2010

Glen Hall + Glen Charles Halls

Northern Dialogues
Quiet Design Records CD Alas 009

Philippe Lauzier & Pierre-Yves Martel

Sainct Laurens

&records 06

Ignaz Schick/Martin Tétreault

Live 33 45 78

Ambiances Magnétiques AM 191 CD

Michael Blake/Kresten Osgood

Control This

Clean Feed CF 136 CD

Extended Play: POMO Duos

By Ken Waxman

Duo playing is probably the most difficult kind of improvising. Not only must each player depend on only one other to modify or accompany his ideas, but unbridled creativity has to be muted to fit the other musician’s comfort zone. As these CDs demonstrate, skilled improvisers aren’t fazed by the challenge; but the instruments they choose are sometimes usual. MORE

April 8, 2009

Geordie McDonald

Revibing Giusseppi Logan
Booklet notes for Sonnavista Editions No #

“I have only improvised in my career,” avers Toronto percussionist Geordie McDonald when asked about this unique recording. “But I don’t play totally improvised music from scratch. I like to have a head that establishes the character and space in which to play.”

That’s why Montreal-born McDonald, who over a 40-year career has been involved in sonic situations as different as creating electro-acoustic music with other young experimenters; drumming in one of Neil Young’s early rock bands; and improvising advanced jazz with pianist Paul Bley; decided to record these six originals, composed and first recorded by legendary New Thing saxophonist Giuseppi Logan. “Logan was the Erik Satie of Jazz, his heads are so minimal,” explains McDonald. MORE

July 27, 2006


Oasis of Whispers
Alien8 Alien CD59

Don’t get this CD to discover how Sonic Youth guitarist Lee Ranaldo operates in a jazz/improv context. Unlike bumptious rock star tourists who venture into Free Music with the subtlety of a linebacker performing ballet, Ranaldo cedes most of the space to the reeds of Toronto’s Glen Hall and the multi-faceted drumming of New Yorker William Hooker. Sticking to low-key, near microtonal guitar fills, plus pre-recorded interjections, the guitarist makes Oasis of Whispers fundamentally a group effort – and the disc is better for it. MORE

January 10, 2006

Glen Hall/trio_muo

Tarsier Records ACD-0501

Veteran improv warrior Glen Hall’s past collaborators have included arranger Gil Evans and Sonic Youth guitarist Lee Renaldo. But trio_muo, a working unit since 2002, is the Ontario-based saxophonist and flutist’s own chamber ensemble.

As cohesive as it is flexible, the band is filled out by longtime associate, bassist Michael Morse, who shadows the reedist’s every move like a P.I. on a stake-out; and decades younger percussionist Joe Sorbara. Reveling in ambiguity, most composition titles relate to concepts of geometry, so as to focus the listener on the music itself, with its shifting tonal centres, free time and elastic intervals. MORE