Disc one:
  1/  Untitled 3.11.2011 -                                                     6.50
  2/  Untitled (feat. John Tchicai) 3.11.2011 -                                25.55
        Chicago Tentet
  3/  Untitled  4.11.2011 -                                                    16.37
        Michiyo Yagi, Okkyung Lee and Xu Fengxia
  4/  Untitled 4.11.2011 -                                                     20.51
        Peter Brotzmann, Masahiko Satoh and Takeo Moriyama

 Disc two:
  1/  Untitled 4.11.2011 -                                                     22.36
        Joe McPhee, Maleem Mokhtar Gania, Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang
  2/  Untitled 4.11.2011 -                                                     28.29
        Peter Brotzmann, Michiyo Yagi and Tamaya Honda
  3/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     14.00
        Peter Brotzmann, Jason Adasiewicz and Sabu Toyozumi
  4/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     12.45
        Dieb13, Mats Gustafsson and Martin Siewert

 Disc three:
  1/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     21.47
        Keiji Haino
  2/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     51.38
        Peter Brotzmann, Bill Laswell, Hamid Drake and Malleem Mokhtar Ghania

 Disc four:
  1/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     19.36
        Jeb Bishop, Joe McPhee, Mars Williams, Jason Adasiewica, Kent Kessler and Tamaya Honda
  2/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     21.22
        Hairy Bones
  3/  Untitled 5.11.2011 -                                                     10.59
        Masahiko Satoh
  4/  Concert For Fukushima (feat. Michiyo Yagi) 6.11.2011 -                   27.14
        Chicago Tentet with 

 Disc five:
  1/  Untitled 6.11.2011 -                                                     36.59
        Joe McPhee, Maleem Mokhtar Gania, Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang
  2/  Untitled (feat. M.Gustafsson, M. Pupillo and P. Nilssen-Love)6.11.2011 - 11.11
        DVK Trio
  3/  Untitled 6.11.2011 -                                                     7.42
        Full Blast
  4/  Untitled 6.11.2011 -                                                     15.20
        Caspar Brotzmann Massaker

          Recorded at Music Unlimited Festival
          Recording engineer: Manuel Mitterhuber
          Selected and edited by Peter Brotzmann and Peter Neuhauser
          Mixed at Goon Studio, Linz by Manuel Mitterhuber
          Compilation Producer: Konstantin Drobil
          Mastered by Martin Siewert
(disc three, track 2) Peter Brotzmann: reeds; Bill Laswell: bass; Malleem Mokhtar Ghania: guimbri; Hamid Drake: drums.

          2012 - Trost (Germany), TR 112 (5CD)


Whether you have no experience with the Godfather of free jazz or you measure your Peter Brötzmann CD and LP collection in linear feet, this 5CD box curated by the German saxophonist is either a great introduction to or an affirmation of his music and influence.

Organized on the occasion of his 70th birthday, these four days of performances in November 2011, also marked the 25th anniversary of the Unlimited Festival in Wels, Austria. Brötzmann did not assemble a retrospective of his ouevre, as there were no recreations of the fabled Machine Gun (FMP, 1968) sessions, Globe Unity Orchestra, or Last Exit band (having said farewell to Sonny Sharrock in 1994), nor did he play duos with Han Bennink. He did, however, display his current tastes in music which over the last twenty years have embraced musicians not only from Europe but also from Chicago and Japan.

Brötzmann's Chicago Tentet performed twice at the festival and two lengthy pieces are presented here. The first is an eerie 26-minute performance with Danish saxophonist John Tchicai, who passed away within a year of this recording. He can be heard chanting "Everything can happen from one second to the next." The second was the Tentet's "Concert For Fukushima" performance with guests Otomo Yoshihide, Akira Sakata, Michiyo Yagi and Toshinori Konda. This release only captures Yagi's koto performance, about a quarter of the two hour performance. Will there be more of this music to follow?

While Brötzmann is featured prominently here, he leads only ten out of the eighteen groups. He also choses to present his current listening pleasures. The highlights of the non-Brötzmann groups heard are several. Joe McPhee's saxophone and trumpet accompanies Morroccian Gnawa musican Maâllem Mokhtar Gania, Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang for some African trance music. Saxophonist Mats Gustafsson, perhaps the heir to Brötzmann's sound, dabbles in bits and bites of improvisation and electronics with Dieb13 and Martin Siewert. Masahiko Satoh delivers a rollicking and cogent solo piano piece that swaps Cecil Taylor runs with stride tones and fragments of classical delivery. Brötzmann's influence can also be heard in the koto, cello and guzheng (a Chinese plucked zither) trio of Michiyo Yagi, Okkyung Lee and Xu Fengxia, as the three blast off into a freeform ethereal sound. The highlight of the non-Brötzmann ensembles might be the DKV Trio of Hamid Drake, Kent Kessler and Ken Vandermark augmented by Mats Gustafsson, Massimo Pupillo and Paal Nilssen-Love. The trio-cum-sextet sketch a restrained improvisation that is more listening than playing, before their rocked-out climax of sound.

The festival goers and connoisseurs of the great man's work are treated to various permutations and combinations of his music. His three-saxophone improvising band, Sonore, with Ken Vandermark and Mats Gustafson, marks its tenth anniversary working together here, as does the relatively new saxophone/piano/drums trio of Brotzmann, Masahiko Satoh and Takeo Moriyama. His acclaimed duo with Chicago vibraphonist Jason Adasiewicz is augmented here by drummer Sabu Toyozumi. The percussionist adds locomotion to the duo, plus he spikes the intensity.

Another new-ish Brötzmann saxophone trio, with bassist Eric Revis and drummer Nasheet Waits, is the most conventional approach heard here. Although it is far from conservative, the thirty-seven minute piece might be a nod to American free jazz as opposed to the European approach Brötzmann has championed most of his career.

The emotional and aural high points of this box set are the two pieces, one by Brotzmann's electric band Hairy Bones and the other by the African influenced ensemble that reunites him with bassist Bill Laswell. The latter piece includes Hamid Drake and guembri musican Maâllem Mokhtar Gania. While this piece hypnotizes the ear for nearly fifty-two minutes, the Hairy Bones improvisation clocking in at twenty-one minutes is an exhausting barrage of sound and energy. Toshinori Kondo's electrified trumpet and Masimo Pupillo's electric bass battle Brötzmann and drummer Paal Nilssen-Love for stage preeminence. The music is both exhilarating and exhausting.

If six hours of music could possibly leave you wanting, this collection does.

Mark Corroto (courtesy of All About Jazz website)


The label ROIR started in 1979 as a cassette-only label, specializing in hardcore, punk, reggae, ska, dub and world music. Now, twenty years later the company realizes that the cassettes are becoming 'artifacts' and 'collector's items' and started re-releasing the best of their back catalog on cd, completely digitally remastered - as well as new, never before released albums from cutting-edge artists.

This release features the works of Skiz Fernando Jr. who has assembled his best underground Dub, an evil stew that bubbles up from your gut from the 50 albums he has released internationally in the last 6 years. His label has never been a record label in the traditional sense. A lot of his productions have escaped detection by the general public due to the lack of proper dustribution and promotion. The kind of dub music he produces is a minimalised style of dub and is regarded as some of the boldest and imaginative music ever released. The music found here is more a feeling than a sound, it must be experienced through subwoofers, not dull theocratic prose. A desription of the music would come to something like this : "a neo-industrial carpet of extra-terrestial sounds with tons of effects and distortion". This album is only for those who dare to listen and are willing to enter the world of Wordsound.

4 out of 5

Teacher and Mr. T (courtesy of the Reggae Vibes website)


Laswell the bassist is heard profoundly stomping out two cuts on the deep, dark dub compilation Below The Radar: Best of WordSound Dub from ROIR-USA. ROIR was formed about twenty years ago by Neil Cooper as a cassette-only label and though it has only recently abandoned that charter to release CDs, it has remained true to its purpose of slicing the sometimes painful cutting edge of industrial, punk, psychedelic, hardcore, and dub music. (Landmarks in their genre such as Flipper’s Blow’n Chunks, the Germs’ Germicide: Live At the Whiskey, the New York Dolls’ Lipstick Killers and the Dub Syndicate’s One Way System were first available only as ROIR cassettes.) Below The Radar mixes bone-chilling space-age terror together with ancient Rasta trance mysticism like an electronic yet rootsy salad compilation tossed from the fifty electronic/dub albums produced for the label by Skiz Fernando over the past seven years, plus one previously unreleased track.

You’re not sure exactly what 'dub' is? That’s okay - you’ve probably heard at least one reggae song, right? Cue up that reggae song in the mixing board of your imagination. To make dub, first strip everything off of the top of the mix all the keyboards, all the guitars, all the vocals, everything. Leave only the bass and drum track (keep the percussion, too). Cut the treble all the way back. Crank the bass up loud. Now crank it up louder. Does it seem too loud and bass heavy? Good - turn the bass up even more. Now slow the rhythm down, way down to half speed, then past half speed. Does it seem too slow and trance-like? Good - slow it down even more. And turn up the bass. Randomly divebomb warped vocals and other sound effects - thunder, gongs, moans, looped and echoed chords - into that space where the guitars, keyboards and vocals used to be. Now dunk the whole thing in steamy echo like a donut in hot chocolate. Voila! You’ve made hot, fudgy, sticky, dub!

For most Jazz fans, Below the Radar will be one step beyond if not even farther out. Laswell bootstomps with the aptly named Dubadelic through "Operation Duppy Conquerer 2001" and pays tribute to his twisted musical roots with 'Crooklyn Dub Syndicate', bass- and drum-heavy rocksteady in tandem with drummer Style Scott. 'Dungeon of Dub' (from WordSound I-Powa) and 'Crooklyn Dub Syndicate' sound at least peripherally attached to reggae standards; in other cases, the music doesn’t flow to you in notes or lines or waves so much as it comes crashing down in huge concrete slabs like you’re standing in the middle of an aflame, collapsing building. Such musique concrete includes two tracks by Slotek ('Born God,' a menacing arrhythmic track clouded with static and the groans of an unseen monstrous beast dying, slowly and loudly, in the distance, plus 'One,' which suggests a tent revival baptism held in the midst of a nightmare). Mick Harris’ 'Closed Door' and 'Fall of the Towers of Convention' by Scarab brandish edgy, industrial rhythms and whirlpools of crackling sound.

Below the Radar ends with the previously unreleased track 'Stolen Moments' by The Eye - most assuredly not the nimble John Coltrane classic - in an echoing chamber that resounds with ancient sounding African chants and percussion, heavy and heady bass, and futuristic electronic sounds and shrieks.

Chris M. Slawecki (courtesy of All About Jazz website)