ALFRED 23 HARTH / CARL STONE / SAMM BENNETT / KAZUHISA UCHIHASHI, “The Expats “
KSE # 233, cdr album, $8 postpaid in the US/ $11 postpaid elsewhere
payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com
Rec. live at Superdeluxe, Tokyo, 2010.
Alfred 23 Harth – reeds, kaoss pad, dojirak, samples & voice
Carl Stone – computer, Max/MSP, voice, samples
Kazuhisa Uchihashi – electric guitar, daxophone
Samm Bennett – diddley bow, mouth bow, voice, gadgets
Last year KSE issued the ALFRED 23 HARTH / CARL STONE duo album GIFT FIG, which featured telepathic shape-shifting live improvisations between multi-instrumentalist and free-jazz/free-improv music legend Harth and electronic-composition and sampling pioneer Carl Stone. Now in 2013, we’re bringing back Mr. Harth and Mr. Stone as part of an all-star international quartet adding American-residing-in-Japan SAMM BENNETT and Japanese-residing-in-Europe KAZUHISA UCHIHASHI, recorded live at Tokyo’s legendary forward-thinking music venue Superdeluxe in 2010. HARTH—-STONE—BENNETT—UCHIHASHI—-ladies and gentlemen, THE EXPATS!!!
These four gentleman are great listeners, and the way they communicate organically among themselves reminds me of an improvised-music version of an eco-system, where there is an organic link between the different life forms inhabiting a specific area. Guitar/reeds/electronics/treated vocals/diddley-bow/daxophone and a huge number of unclassifiable sounds are spiralling through these four pieces, yet it’s not a loud album…it pulls the listener into its textures and places us in the middle of a scene, almost as if a Dali desert-scape is heard as music and we listeners have been painted into the scene, melting and stretching and bleached by the sun, but waves of guitar and lyrical saxophone passages pass by languorously as if we are watching them underwater. I’ve mixed enough metaphors here…just believe me when I say that this is a stunning performance, four pieces recorded live, spontaneous composition from masters of contemporary improvised music. With each listen we feel the connections, ride the waves of imagination with the musicians. I’m sure this will sound just as fresh in 10 or 20 years, but then, that’s true of Harth’s and Stone’s and Bennett’s and Uchihashi’s work in general, so just imagine a communal sound experience involving the four of them.
Alfred Harth has been at the forefront of free-music/free-jazz since the late 1960’s and continues to travel the world and collaborate with all kinds of artists as a kind of 21-st century avant-garde troubadour. I could not begin to discuss what he’s achieved. I have followed his work for almost 40 years and I keep learning about earlier works he’s been involved with that somehow passed me by in the pre-Internet age. This is Mr. Harth’s 4th cdr for Kendra Steiner Editions, and in the Summer of 2013 we’ll be issuing his 5th release, MICRO-SAXO-PHONE: IV. His most recent album, GESTALT ET DEATH with Dead Country, recorded in Turkey and issued on the Lebanese “Al Maslakh” label was chosen as one of KSE’s “Best of 2012” and will thrill those who enjoyed Harth’s early 80’s work with Cassiber. You can purchase that cd at http://www.almaslakh.org/. Mr. Harth’s website can be visited at http://alfredharth.blogspot.com/
Carl Stone is a respected electronic music composer and visionary in the use of sampling/use of found source material, but he’s also an exciting performer of LIVE electronic music, spontaneous composition. Just listen to his previous album with Harth, GIFT FIG, for evidence of that. Mr. Stone has collaborated with artists in many different disciplines and media, has taught and lectured around the world, and has inspired a generation of young composers and improvisers through his work and his example. A CV of some of his accomplishments can be found here: http://www.sukothai.com/v.2/CSBio2.html . This is Mr. Stone’s second release for KSE, and we hope it will not be his last. He has many releases available, but to choose one at random which can be gotten easily (even at Amazon), his mesmerizing 1983 classic WOO LAE OAK has been recently reissued. Why not buy one right AFTER you send your paypal order for THE EXPATS.
Bennett and Uchihashi are not as well-known as they should be in North America.
Hailing from Birmingham, Alabama, SAMM BENNETT began as a percussionist and as a teen worked all kinds of kitchen items and “junk” into his percussion set-up, which set the stage for his later investigation of rootsy but not-so-common instruments as the diddly bow, which you can hear on this album, and Vietnamese jaw harp. From music for silent films to a trio with Mike Watt and Kramer (!!!) to the trio Semantics with Ned Rothenberg and Elliott Sharp to his live work as an improvisational singer-songwriter in Japan, which I would LOVE to someday experience. It’s an honor to feature his work on our label.
You can keep up on Samm Bennett’s many activities at http://www.polarityrecords.com
Multi-instrumentalist KAZUHISA UCHIHASHI is, as Samm Bennett, a man with a rich history and body of work in the international experimental music community. With his group Altered States, with acclaimed work with pioneers such as Fred Frith and Mani Neumeier, with his work as the musical director for Osaka-based theater group Ishinha. Although he is well-known for his incredible guitar work (much in evidence on this album—he is a very sensitive player, and whatever sounds he’s generating from his guitar, there’s always a warmth and a tactile presence) he’s also been a pioneer in the use of the daxophone, an instrument created by the late Hans Reichel, which is pictured here:
He owns a daxophone made for him by Reichel, and he plays the daxophone extensively on The Expats. It’s described by the website Oddmusic.com as “a musical instrument of the friction idiophone category. It consists of a thin wooden blade fixed in a wooden block, which holds one or more contact microphones, and is usually mounted on a tripod. Most often, it is played by bowing the free end, but it can also be struck or plucked, which propagates sound in the same way a ruler halfway off a table does. These vibrations then continue to the wooden-block bass, which are then amplified by the contact mics. A wide range of voice-like timbres can be produced, depending on the shape of the instrument, the type of wood, where it is bowed, and where along its length it is stopped with a separate block of wood called the “Dax”. One side of the Dax is fretted to produce fixed pitches, while the other side is a smooth curve, to play more fluid pitch changes. Mr. Uchihashi is an exciting live performer (just google his name or check on you tube for some performance clips) and has a huge body of work, covering 20+ years.
A discography of Kazuhisa Uchihashi’s many and fascinating releases can be found at http://japanimprov.com/kuchihashi/disco.html Again, we are honored to feature his work on our small Texas label.
just imagine the sonic alchemy that such a supergroup could conjur, and then multiply by twenty-three
KSE’s previous HARTH/STONE album GIFT FIG is still available, but we’re running low, get yours NOW…
still available: KSE #207 (CDR), ALFRED 23 HARTH & CARL STONE, “Gift Fig”
$8 US postpaid, $11 outside US postpaid
payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com
and other available albums of experimental music on cdr:
KSE #243 (CDR), VENISON WHIRLED (aka Lisa Cameron), “The Many Moods of Venison Whirled”
KSE #254 (cdr), DJIN AQUARIAN (of Ya Ho Wha 13)/SIR PLASTIC CRIMEWAVE & THE EVERAFTER, Live in San Francisco 10/20/2011
KSE #239 (CDR), FOSSILS, “Bells and Gulls,”
KSE #251 (CDR), FORBES GRAHAM, “Return: The Journey”
KSE #235 (CDR), BOOK OF SHADOWS, “Chimaera”
KSE #206 (CDR), ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE, “Emilio “
KSE #222 (CDR), MASSIMO MAGEE, “Sopranino Solo, “ cover art by MP Landis.
KSE #220 (CDR), MATT KREFTING, “Sweet Days of Discipline”
KSE #247 (CDR), MARCUS RUBIO & BILL SHUTE, “Only The Imprint Of An Echo Remains” (poetry and electronic music album, recorded in San Antonio, TX)
KSE #237 (CDR), MICHAEL BARRETT & MIKE GRIFFIN, ““Birtual Seme-Alabak” (aka Belltonesuicide and Parashi)
KSE #228 (CDR), UNMOOR, “Night Driver”
KSE # 210 (CDR), HEATHER LEIGH, “Empire”
KSE #226 (CDR), DEREK ROGERS, “Born Into Systems”
KSE #208 (CDR), ANTHONY GUERRA & BILL SHUTE, “subtraction” (limited USA re-press of CD originally issued on Black Petal Records, Australia)
KSE #214 (CDR), SABRINA SIEGEL,”Bottlecaps”
KSE #238 (CDR), DANIEL HIPOLITO/EVA KELLY/BILL SHUTE, “Fascination”
ALL LIMITED HAND-ASSEMBLED, HAND-NUMBERED HOMEMADE DIY EDITIONS WITH VARYING COVER STOCKS AND INKS, MADE IN TEXAS
note: CANADIAN CUP OF COFFEE is the first Harth album I owned, circa 1974, as a high-school student…