Femmes fatales, shady alleyways, betrayal and murder. A documentary about the classic, black and white detective movies produced in Hollywood in the 1940s and 50s, and which belong to the filmgenre of film noir. Who else would be better suited to talk about the underbelly of the city than James Ellroy. As Los Angeles inspired most of the film noir it is through this city that the story of the genre will be told. Alain Silver, author of LA Noir, and Eddie Muller, author and President of the Film Noir Foundation in LA will also contribute their findings. Clips of the most important film noir titles will round off a re-appraisal of the popular genre.
Now well into its gliding Brazilian-tinged mode, the Pat Metheny Group hits the road, as this two-CD set catches the band live in Dallas, Philadelphia, Hartford, Sacramento, and Nacogdoches, TX. Percussionist Naná Vasconcelos is still listed as a "special guest," but ever since Wichita Falls, he had not only been a part of the group, he was the transforming element in the Metheny "sound," adding his various shakers, effects and ethereal vocals. Sidekick Lyle Mays gets deeper into floating, glistening synthesizer textures, but he is still able to take formidable and touching solos on acoustic grand piano. Still experimenting with new hardware, Metheny's work on a detuned guitar synthesizer gives the live "As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls" an exotic Balinese-like sound.
Alan Pasqua's My New Old Friend is mostly a set of sensitive and relaxed trio improvisations. Pasqua, bassist Darek Oles and drummer Peter Erskine, three of the top jazz musicians based in Los Angeles, perform subtle reshapings of five standards which alternate with six of Pasqua's generally introspective originals. One is reminded of Bill Evans (particularly on the standards) in Pasqua's sophisticated chord voicings and the close interplay of the musicians, but that is only a point of reference rather than a direct copy. However fans of Evans' treatments of ballads will certainly enjoy this accessible and thoughtful effort.
A tribute to Philip Glass for his 80° birthday: a collection of 11 piano works recorded using an avant-garde contemporary instrument thus creating a completely new sounds. The full album released on December 15th 2017.
Set 2: "Waiting for the Corduroy Purpose" - Henry Lewit Arena in Wichita, KS March 26, 1974. Another batch of cleaned-up bootlegs chronicles some of Emerson, Lake & Palmer's finest shows. This eight-CD box set includes four complete concerts, each taking up two discs. In all, the two-volume Original Bootleg Series is comprised of eight shows covering 15 discs. Listeners should expect a lo-fi experience. The set is priced accordingly, about 45 dollars per volume. To be fair, the sound quality is for the most part decent to good. The first show in this collection was recorded at Hammersmith Odean in London on November 26, 1972. Subtitled "A Right Cordial Shocker," it runs 100 minutes. ELP had returned triumphantly to their home turf after touring the world behind Trilogy.
This CD presents several piano works by Philip Glass, played with grace and enthusiasm by Aleck Karis. Wichita Vortex Sutra (1988) was inspired by the poem of the same title by Allen Ginsburg from 1966, which alternates between images of a road across the U.S. and a protest against the war in Vietnam. The basis of the music is a simple Protestant-like hymn tune with chromatic passing tones. This is treated to rhythmic syncopation and, at other times, is surrounded by quickly arpeggiated patterns. The Metamorphosis (1988), with the title from Kafka's famous work, is in five movements. Each movement has simple melodies and a simple set of chords, usually four in number, with chromatic changes between them. These "changes" happen through the addition of a chord or other simple alteration.