If LTJ Bukem’s recent double album, Journey Inwards, left you wanting — if his hybrid of drum’n’bass and cool jazz was, perhaps, a little too sleek — seek out the new 12″ series from Kosma, called New Aspects in Third Stream Music and available from the German label Infracom. The first of five scheduled releases is titled “Odessa,” a fine, free-floating example of jazzy drum’n’bass (the B-side is a Peter Kruder remix of the same track). Like Bukem’s model, the underlying percussion here is drum’n’bass perpetrated by highly life-like instrumentation, an apparent drum kit tracing patterns we’ve come to associate with computers. The rhythm is spare and circular, with the odd beat dropped out for drama’s sake. Thick piano chords accentuate key moments. Laid on top is a host of lounge-oriented material, from operatic exotica vocals to John Barry-style strings. Computerized tones float by occasionally, but the overall effect is very “real.” The series’ title, of course, comes from Gunther Schuller’s formulation for a classically motivated form of jazz music: “third stream” was meant to describe the overlap of chamber composition and meditative jazz improvisation, anything from Stan Kenton’s conceptual big-band charts to George Russell’s theoretically informed small-band stuff. Kosma may simply be having fun with the term (and the period album graphics) but he makes a point, nonetheless, about the friction between computerized composition and its reliance on sampled material that was, once upon a time, not only live but spontaneous. Kruder’s remix is fairly non-intrusive. He has some fun with a wah-wah-ish sound, and drops bits of percussion and other elements off to the side of the stereo spectrum.
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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: • 0247 / Waltz, Maybe / Interpret as a graphic score an illustration drawn upon waking by Lark Pien. • 0246 / Double, Quadruple, Sextuple / Compose a piece of music that increases speed in stages as it proceeds. • 0245 / Practical Music / Write a piece of music for getting things done, suitable for playing on repeat. • 0244 / Euro Mixin / The Assignment: Combine tracks from three different European netlabels (Portugal, Spain, Switzerland) into one sonic union. • 0243 / Synth Trial / The Assignment: Share the best track from your audition tape for Blade Runner 2.
... And there is a complete list of projects at disquiet.com/junto.
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