6 de novembro de 2005

Hands down

"FJ: Do you find that the more you are learning, the more that knowledge sparks your curiosity?

KEN VANDERMARK: Yeah, definitely, definitely. You think you know something (laughing) and then you find out that you really don’t know that much and you have to go back. A perfect example is the tour with Brotzmann and Brotzmann’s Tentet in the United States with adding William Parker and Roy Campbell to his group. Just to take Peter for example. Every single night that we played, and I think there was nine gigs in two weeks, plus two days in the studio, I got to hear Peter Brotzmann play every single night. And every single night, he kicked my ass so hard musically and there was a piece that he wrote that we worked on called 'Stone/Water' and in that piece, towards the end of it, there is a section where Jeb Bishop plays an improvisational section and then I’ve got to play an improvisational section and then Peter plays after me and I had to do that nine concerts plus the studio recording of it. And everyday, I knew that he was going to take this solo after me and everyday, I would do everything that I could possibly think of to do something that would not make me look pale in comparison. And everyday, he came in and he just destroyed me. It wasn’t a competitive thing, but it was like an understanding that he is playing on such a level with so much energy and creativity, it was just like he was knocking me all over the block. That pushed my playing through the roof. I came off that trip with all this other stuff that I didn’t have before. Playing with people like that forces you to find things. It forces me to ask questions like, 'What am I going to do tonight to not look like a fool?' It pushes your curiosity through the roof more."

" (...) A familiar figure appeared during the set break: local hero Ken Vandermark, setting his bass clarinet and baritone sax on stands. Hooray! Vandermark never got a chance to play his bass clarinet, but no one seemed upset: the second set was one long improvisation where Vandermark (on baritone) and Brötzmann (on gloriously contrasting alto) played with violent muscle and intensity, Brötzmann more than keeping up with the younger man. Again, this hour-long piece went through a variety of 'movements', but it's the individual moments that stick in the memory: Kessler's mad, unaccompanied bowed solo, all knuckles and flailing arms; Brötzmann's long, somber lines over a repeated, circular-breath motif from Vandermark, the two producing a sense of ominous, sweet fragility; Drake's two alternating drum parts near the end that, once understood by the other three, produced a platform for all to unite to utterly devastating effect--this was some set. When the piece came to a close, Vandermark, Drake and Kessler turned to the leader to see if he was, indeed, exhausted. He was, and so was the audience.

Outside, the thunder continued; inside the club, it had exhausted itself."

Um disco absolutamente genial. Mais uma vez, Brötzmann deixa a platéia em estado de ebulição. Infelizmente, já está esgotado (Okkadisk, 1999).

3 de novembro de 2005