George Lewis & Roscoe Mitchell. Voyage and Homecoming. Roscoe Mitchell and George Lewis, two great standard-bearers for improvisation and experimentation, have enjoyed a long partnership. A 1975 Mitchell quartet recording from Toronto’s A Space introduced Lewis as trombonist and as composer of Music for Trombone and B Flat Soprano;[...] Read more

Recordings Stuart Broomer Issue 133

Ingrid Laubrock. Contemporary Chaos Practices. Born in Germany and based in Brooklyn since 2009, Ingrid Laubrock is widely known as an improvising saxophonist and a composer for and leader of small ensembles. On this CD she expands her creative palette by writing contemporary music for large orchestra.     [...] Read more

Recordings Lawrence Joseph Issue 133

Bill Bissett & Th Mandan Massacre. Awake In Th Red Desert. The first release from Feeding Tube’s Unknown Province reissue series of Canadian cult classics, which is being curated by liner-notes author Alex Moskos, is a time capsule from a true freak scene. Recorded in 1968 by pioneering sound-and-concrete poet Bill Bissett after arriving in[...] Read more

Recordings Jesse Locke Issue 133

Hugh Marsh. Violinvocations. Electric violinist Hugh Marsh’s impressively varied list of collaborations includes projects with Bruce Cockburn, Bauhaus’s Peter Murphy, Mary Margaret O’Hara, Iggy and The Stooges, the film scores of Hans Zimmer and Harry Gregson-Williams, and—most recently—[...] Read more

Recordings Jesse Locke Issue 133

New Hermitage. Obey Convention XI. Chamber jazz is an intriguing subgenre; programmatic chamber jazz even more so. Halifax-based quartet New Hermitage weaves gently undulating textures out of a unique instrumentation consisting of woodwinds (Andrew MacKelvie), harp (Ellen Gibling), guitar (Ross Burns), and cello (India Gailey[...] Read more

Recordings Daniel Glassman Issue 133

Flying Hórses. Reverie. Redolent of icy streams, brittle emotions, and breathtaking, lonely landscapes, Reverie might be the perfect album for a long, cold winter. This is the second full-length release from Montreal pianist Jade Bergeron, and it’s not surprising to hear that she once lived and worked in[...] Read more

Recordings Mary Dickie Issue 133

Bob Bell. Necropolis. Since its release in 1978, Bob Bell’s Necropolis has grown in stature to become one of Canada’s most highly sought after private-press LPs. The glassy-eyed Vancouver longhair gazing out from the album’s cover photo—strikingly shot from an ant’s eye view pointing[...] Read more

Recordings Jesse Locke Issue 133

Terry Rusling. The Machine Is Broken. Despite his collaborations with notable poets (Gwendolyn MacEwan, Bob Cobbing), affiliations with pioneering studios at stalwart institutions (BBC Radiophonic Workshop, the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music, and others), and ties to that legendary beacon of Toronto subculture the[...] Read more

Recordings Nick Storring

Amirtha Kidambi & the Elder Ones. From Untruth. “Eat the rich or die starving.” Repeated mantra-like at the end of the first song on Amirtha Kidambi’s impressive new record with her band the Elder Ones, From Untruth, that sentiment somehow lands less as provocation than as simple statement of fact, a moment of clarity[...] Read more

Recordings Daniel Glassman Issue 133

GGRIL. Façons. Tour de Bras, microcidi014; Phillipe Lauzier, Éric Normand, and John Butcher. How Does This Happen? Tour de Bras / Ambiances Magnetiques, AM247 CD. Through his singular drive, devotion, and inventiveness, Éric Normand has made Rimouski, a small Quebec city over 500 kilometres from Montreal, a thriving centre for free improvisation. He has an improvising orchestra, GGRIL (Grande Groupe Régional d’Improvisation Lib[...] Read more

Recordings Stuart Broomer

Bekah Simms. Impurity Chains. Gilded from the depths of the underworld of the Internet age, Toronto-based Bekah Simms’ corrosive debut album Impurity Chains is an eclectic collection of her chamber works, many of which involve deeply intertwined electronics. Performed by various artists, Simms’ works here are[...] Read more

Recordings Monica Pearce Issue 132

The Oakland Elementary School Arkestra. The Saga of Padani. In the 1990s, a progressive California music teacher named Randy Porter instituted a program with his grades 4, 5, and 6 students that was centred on combining improvisational and composed music. The results would have been interesting on their own, but with the participation of notable[...] Read more

Recordings Rob Caldwell Issue 132