Bill Laswell gets it right the second time around. Panthalassa — The Remixes (Columbia) release compiles remixes of Panthalassa, Laswell’s 1998 album-length reconstruction of jazz trumpeter Miles Davis’ early electric-era recordings, such as Bitches Brew and In a Silent Way. (You may want to read that sentence twice.) It is also very much the album many listeners had expected from Laswell’s initial foray into Davis’ most controversial period; it’s a beat-driven affair, rich in club atmosphere, spare to a fault. On the most spare entry, Doc Scott forms an extended homage from a drum track and snippets of “Rated X” — among the highlights are bass-end piano figures, a rapid-fire guitar lick, and a rain-like smattering of applause. King Britt and Philip Charles do up “Shhh,” DJ Cam milks “In a Silent Way,” Jamie Myerson also attempts “Rated X” (which, paired with Scott’s take, makes this collection an excellent intro to the freeform nature of remixing), and Laswell himself revisits “On the Corner.” A bonus examination of “Black Satin/On the Corner” by DJ Krush, who focuses on Davis’ electronically mutated horn, may not be reason enough to add a turntable to your stereo, but if you already have one, then definitely opt for the vinyl: Krush’s entry is not on the CD.
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• October 13, 2016: This day marks the start of the 250th weekly Disquiet Junto project.
• November 16, 2016: I'll be sharing the mic at Adobe Books in San Francisco with my fellow 33 1/3 author Evie Nagy for an evening hosted, from 7pm to 10pm, by Marc Kate (facebook.com).
• December 1, 2016: A likely speaking engagement. Details to come.
• December 13, 2016: This day marks the 20th anniversary of Disquiet.com.
• January 5, 2017: This day marks the 5th anniversary of the Disquiet Junto.
• Ongoing: The Disquiet Junto series of weekly communal music projects explore constraints as a springboard for creativity and productivity. There is a new project each Thursday afternoon (California time), and it is due the following Monday at 11:59pm: disquiet.com/junto.
• My book on Aphex Twin's landmark 1994 album, Selected Ambient Works Vol. II, published as part of the 33 1/3 series, an imprint of Bloomsbury, is now in its second printing. It can be purchased at amazon.com, among other places.
disquiet juntoThe Disquiet Junto is an ongoing weekly collaborative music-making space in which restraints are used as a springboard for creativity. Subscribe to the announcement list at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto. There is an FAQ. ... These are the 5 most recent weekly projects: • 0268 / Walking Music / Take a stroll and describe it in sound, paying tribute to the late manga great Jiro Taniguchi. • 0267 / The Metronomic Society / Create a theme song for a fictional organization. • 0266 / Vocal Cuts / Use segments of your own held vowel to make music. • 0265 / Kitchen Music / Record a piece of music that uses items from just one drawer. • 0264 / Time Travel / Record a piece of music that plays with the perception of time.
... And there is a complete list of projects at disquiet.com/junto.
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