Tony Levin / David Torn / Alan White — Levin Torn White
(Lazy Bones Recordings B005H492PI, 2011, CD)
by Paul Hightower, Published 2013-04-01Tony Levin and David Torn are no strangers to improvisational instrumental music, but the name that caught everyone's attention in this outing is drummer Alan White. It's been many moons since Alan knocked the socks off of listeners with his fusion-y playing on Yes' Relayer album (1974), and since the 80s it seems like he's been content to be a steady — yet uninspiring — time keeper. This album lays to rest the charge that White is past his expiration date and makes me wonder why he's failed to bring this level of creativity and intensity to Yes. But beyond White's delightful work, this album is also a showcase for two of progressive rock's most talented and engaging musicians. Torn brings his usual array of oblique and noisy electric guitar textures and sounds to the recordings, playing the role of soloist as well as backdrop painter. Besides his usual wizardry on bass and Stick, Levin is actually the mastermind behind the project. He coordinated the individual sessions (which were recorded remotely) and then sat down with mix engineer Scott Schorr to assemble the final tracks from the hours of raw recordings. Each song feels much more structured and planned out than they should, thanks to Levin's efforts. Fans of ensembles like Bozzio Levin Stevens, Black Light Syndrome, or Polytown should find much to enjoy here, and I'd urge fans of modern instrumental music of all stripes to give this one a listen. Chances are you'll be as pleasantly surprised as I was.
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more
Bernie Worrell - Stranger: Bernie Worrell on Earth – Keyboardist Bernie Worrell is no stranger to making friends while making music. Since his initial ground breaking work as keyboardist and synthesizer innovator for Parliament / Funkadelic, the artist... (2008) » Read more