free jazz and free-form improvisation (or whatever pleases our ears for that matter)
First created in 2011 at l’Atelier du Plateau in Paris, the concert/performance “Printemps” offered audiences a hybrid between theater, music, sound poetry and political manifesto – for it was focused on the “Arab Spring” in Egypt, among other things –, where the intertwined words and voices of Julien Boudart, Xavier Papais and Egyptian blogger Aalam Wassef created a reflection on the magic of (new) beginnings.
At the heart of this “soundtrack”, recreated here in the studio (disc 1), we can hear the quartet composed of Hugues Mayot (saxophones) Sylvain Lemêtre (percussion), Antonin Rayon (piano, keyboards) and Sylvaine Hélary (flutes, composition).
In “Spring Roll” (disc 2), entirely instrumental and somehow a musical mirror and an extension (through a brand new repertoire) to “Printemps”, the quartet delivers a highly sensory music, multiplying articulation strategies between composition and improvisation, and shifting from large areas of pulsed minimalist grooves to tightly written sequences.
In both cases, a wandering and bright hymn to freedom, as much of invention and creativity as of speech.
“Presence is the original political fact.
Magic is the reconquest of presence.
Music is the simplest form of magic.”
With his previous outing on Ayler Records (the 2012 solo SelfCooking – actually a highly overdubbed multitrack offering), Matthieu Metzger had given us a preview of his peculiar mindset when it comes to musical ideas. Now taking advantage of the versatile trio format, he’s back with a vengeance with Killing Spree!
With the help of bassist Sylvain Daniel’s science of sound and pyrotechnic drummer Gregoire Galichet’s virtuosity, he once again puts his saxophones and machines on the front line to offer us a highly energetic effort they describe as an alloy of contemporary writing, jazz, improv and metal. Molten, as it should be.
Alexandra Grimal goes in her own way, elegant but robust, through the territories of jazz and improvised music over recent years. It was only natural she would meet and regularly play in duet settings with Giovanni di Domenico, as versatile an adventurer as Alexandra is, both in his musical choices and collaborations. Three years after their first recording together (2011's Ghibli on the Sans Bruit label), Chergui was recorded over two nights at the Théâtre du Châtelet (Paris, France) and showcases solos and duets, either based on Giovanni's compositions or improvised on the spot to catch the emotion of the moment.
The 12-piece-band live recordings of the complete Tower 'repertoire', from two concerts during the 2012 tour, gathering all musicians from the 4 volumes of the Tower cycle (see vol. 1, vol.2, vol.3 and vol.4 for the whole story) on one stage. Complete with 2 booklets and access to exclusive video content: Tower in the Mist, a film by Sylvain Lemaire.
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Founded in 2000 in Sweden by Jan Ström and Åke Bjurhamn, Ayler Records has gained recognition among free jazz fans over the years by releasing both archive and contemporary recordings from artists as diverse as Jimmy Lyons, Noah Howard, Peter Brötzmann, William Parker or Charles Gayle, as well as documenting the Scandinavian free jazz scene.
In 2009, Ayler Records moved to France where it is now operated by Stéphane Berland who had joined the label in 2005, bringing with him the will to open the catalogue to forms of improvised music in less direct relationship with the free jazz history, while remaining faithful to the original spirit.