Off Minor

Musings of a Jazz geek

Service Interruption

Posted August 23, 2007

I suppose I had better come clean and admit that I’m falling behind with the blog postage…

Apart from Ingrid Laubrock/Tom Rainey at the Vortex last week (which was pretty fine!), I haven’t really been to see very much lately. A (slightly more) regular blogging service will hopefully resume sometime in September (once I’ve got over my holiday, some money in my back pocket, and I can get a hold of my work commitments!).

Until then, cheers for reading…

Agustí Fernández, Derek Bailey — Barcelona

Posted August 3, 2007


Barcelona, Hopscotch Records Hop 10 » Agustí Fernández (piano), Derek Bailey (guitar) «

Yes, another Derek Bailey record, and not any of the ones recommended to me by Nate Dorward (see here, and here).

The fifteen-minute opener Senyor Parellada is exploratory, Fernández playing a heavily prepared piano, Bailey sitting in the corner and plucking away, but with what would seem something of a determined expression. It seems like it’s music that has been tamed: they’re playing comfortably, but perhaps while keeping one eye over their shoulder. The second, half as long Botafumeiro is beautifully chilled, the plucking and bit-ting coming equally from both sides.

After a brief power-up Esterri comes the central 23 minute Casa Leopoldo, which is great, everywhere, and the highlight of the set. Starting off contemplative, it moves out into some really textural sounds, moments of some sort of intricate soundscape, with Fernández getting the uttermost out of his effect-laden piano. A musical sound with great depth. Seemingly bolstered by this production, the final two tracks are the most up of the record; 7 Portes is quite dark, whereas Medulio, more excited. I dunno… it’s a bit annoying that the pieces don’t really seem to fit together very well, one after another—it feels like just some random set of recordings that happened to turn out alright—but individually the music is great; accomplished and essentially straight-forward, but with a slight edge of tension to put it out that extra mile.