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CUNEIFORM BLOG @CUNEIFORMRECORD

JANUARY 2014 RELEASES

eCsTaSy
RAOUL BJÖRKENHEIM / eCsTaSy

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eCsTaSy is Raoul Björkenheim's new electric, ecstatic jazz band, which features some of the younger talents on the Finnish jazz scene. The group consists of Raoul, Pauli Lyytinen (saxophones), Jori Huhtala (contrabass) and Markku Ounaskari (drums) in a repertory of original compositions painting swirling polyrhythms with a free-tonal palette. With influences ranging from Korean and African music to contemporary chamber music, new jazz and free rock, eCsTaSy's mission is to elevate its audiences with their high energy and dedication to adventurous sound.

Static Motion
SONAR

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Sonar is a progressive, post-minimal band from Switzerland. Their name stands for SONic ARchitecture, a name which alludes to their intention of creating polymetric and highly structured avant-rock. Static Motion is Sonar fusing a rigorous minimal esthetic with the power of a rock band, every note and rhythm is precisely composed and performed, all of which are designed to move you from one rhythmic and / or harmonic tension to the next. Sonar is the last word in a rock band that works by building their music out of blocks consisting of slowly rising and unfolding musical tension and relief.

Thumbscrew
THUMBSCREW (MICHAEL FORMANEK, THOMAS FUJIWARA, AND MARY HALVORSON)

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While Michael Formanek (double bass), Tomas Fujiwara (drums) and Mary Halvorson (guitar) are all known for their prodigious capabilities as leaders/improvisers on the new jazz/new music scene, Thumbscrew is more of a composer’s vehicle. With each musician contributing tunes, Thumbscrew encompasses an array of textures and strategies, while maintaining a consistently open and transparent sound. Generating tremendous intensity without necessarily increasingly volume or density, Thumbscrew buzzes and crackles, burns and croons. As DownBeat says: "...the bonds are already strong."

Oh No! Not Jazz!!
ED PALERMO BIG BAND

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Oh No! Not Jazz!! consists of two albums of musical performances. The first further explores Ed's distinctive, big band interpretations of the music of Frank Zappa and for the most part, he concentrates here on Frank's initial burst of creative works from original Mothers Of Invention era of 1966-1970. In addition, two notable pieces from later are performed here. One of Frank's most loved works, "Inca Roads," with a vocal by guest Napoleon Murphy Brock contrasts with one of his most 'notoriously difficult' works, "The Black Page #2." All of the performances and arrangements of these great pieces are fun, musically witty and masterful. The second album features Ed's own colorful compositions, which are here featured on a recording for the 1st time in over 25 years!

Triskaidekaphobie
PRESENT

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After co-founding Univers Zero in 1974 and co-leading that group through their first two albums, guitarist and composer Roger Trigaux left Univers Zero in May, 1979, right after the completion of Heresie. His new ensemble, Present, was a more electric and a more compact ensemble. The band began rehearsals in 1979 and recorded their first album, Triskaidekaphobie (The Fear Of The Number 13) in January, 1980. The band began performing in the fall of 1980. Since Present only had about 35' of music written for the group, in their earliest days, the band also performed two 'covers' from Univers Zero's repertoire; "Dense" and "Vous Les Saurez En Temps Voulu". Recordings of these two covers, from a performance from 2/28/81 are included here as bonus tracks.

Le Poison Qui Rend Fou
PRESENT

Originally recorded in 1983, Present's Le Poison Qui Rend Fou (The Poison That Makes You Insane), the band's second and final album until their rebirth in the mid 90s, is a classic of complex, Rock In Opposition-style electric chamber rock.

This reissue of Le Poison Qui Rend Fou includes the original album, newly transferred and remastered by the group's long-time engineer, Udi Koomran, and a 16 page booklet telling the story of the band and this album, with many never-before seen photos. Additionally, there is 25' of QuickTime movies of the group's final concert featuring bassist Christian Genet, from Livry-Gargan, France, 1/23/82, as well as a second disc that features the entire 80' concert from 1/23/82!

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