Hiromi's Sonicbloom — Time Control
(Telarc CD-83655, 2007, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2008-01-01Japanese jazz pianist Hiromi Uehara's previous releases have all borne the name "Hiromi" and basically consisted of her standing trio with bassist Tony Grey and drummer Martin Valihora. Guitarist David Fiuczynski was a guest on her first album, and he's here now as a full member, hence the new name. While I love her previous albums, this one really grabs me, from the quick tinkling intro of "Time Difference" to the dizzying stylistic shifts of "Real Clock vs. Body Clock = Jet Lag" to the last moody melodies of "Note from the Past." That pitter-patter raindrop intro is followed by a killer riff in alternating 7/4 and 6/4 with some superb unison melodies on piano and guitar. The first solo spotlight has Hiromi tossing off one of her eccentric synth flights, and Fiuczynski joins in with some of his own eccentricity. This is fusion at its best, folks, with all cylinders firing in perfect sync, loaded with energy and imagination. It's refreshingly free of clichés, and while the technical level is stunning, it never seems like mere exercise. With the second track, an electric piano joins Hiromi's palette (though the acoustic piano still dominates), and there's a funky soulful vibe; the guitar gets a wah-wah treatment, and much fun is had by all. Things slow down a bit for "Deep into the Night," though it's a far cry from smooth jazz; the guitar reminds me of Phil Miller. I could go on and on — it's terrific all the way through.
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more