KILLED in CARS

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KILLED in CARS is a 'thank you' to the musicians who enrich my life, and a way to reach people curious about expression through sound.

This site has thrived as a destination for discussion and listening thanks to its disregard for the canon and its dedication to making esoteric genres accessible. I appreciate your readership, and I hope that you choose to participate!

PROMOS: I only accept physical promos, not downloads. If you believe your music fits my site, please send your tapes/CDs/vinyl to:

KILLED in CARS
c/o Paul Banks
2644 N 192nd Terrace Ct
Apt #3A
Elkhorn, NE 68136

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True Detective Themes from killedincars on 8tracks Radio.
Here is a mix I made based loosely on moods I felt from True Detective. There are a few tracks in here to help define the mix, but otherwise this is a mix of some favorites that I think work as a replacement to some of the (excellent) scoring in the show. Check the tags for the artists, and enjoy!
Zoom Info

True Detective Themes from killedincars on 8tracks Radio.
Here is a mix I made based loosely on moods I felt from True Detective. There are a few tracks in here to help define the mix, but otherwise this is a mix of some favorites that I think work as a replacement to some of the (excellent) scoring in the show. Check the tags for the artists, and enjoy!
Zoom Info

True Detective Themes from killedincars on 8tracks Radio.


Here is a mix I made based loosely on moods I felt from True Detective. There are a few tracks in here to help define the mix, but otherwise this is a mix of some favorites that I think work as a replacement to some of the (excellent) scoring in the show. Check the tags for the artists, and enjoy!

Matthew Dotson - Sublimation

I suspect that most music reviewers are aficionados of other good reviewers, and a big part of my musical news comes through some of my favorite creative music advocates/writers like “Strauss” at Tiny Mix Tapes/Cerberus. A little less than a year ago, I read his review of Matthew Dotson’s “Excavation,” and was intrigued enough to order the tape, which indeed lives up to its glowing review. Since then, Dotson has released a pair of cassettes through Chicago’s Already Dead Tapes, including the recent “Sublimation.”

Over the course of three tapes, Matthew Dotson’s music has moved increasingly toward the “vaporwave” movement, using fragments of muzak-y pop culture aural effluvium as sound sources, but the way he handles musical materials feels wholly different than most folks associated with vaporwave. At least in my cultural circles, I’ve heard vaporwave dismissed as a product of hastily-prolific hipster fine arts nonsense, and I’ve heard it lauded as a critique of corporate culture constructed from its own remnants. What these seemingly opposite camps have in common is a tendency to dissect the genre through literary, visual art, or sociopolitical lenses—it’s rarely discussed in musical terms. And frankly, a lot of vaporwave strikes my ears as vague, musically lackadaisical, or downright boring on strictly musical merits.

I find Dotson’s approach far more musically interesting than most vaporwavers, and I wasn’t surprised to find that he’s studied composition at the doctoral level. While this music can certainly abide discussion in terms of conceptual transformation or post-capitalist material repurposing, it also works as proficiently-composed music, balanced and varied and dynamic in all of the right places for a pure listening experience that doesn’t require extramusical apologetics.

And Dotson is really good at selecting names for his recordings: “Sublimation” in the Freudian sense is a perfect one-word description of the potential higher-order musical implications of vaporwave, taking vintage musical idioms mostly regarded as untoward or “lame” and re-using their raw materials toward a more transcendent whole. In contrast, the earlier “Excavation” tape really does feel like an excavation, unearthing deep cuts and exotic sources and bringing them into a musical light, and the first recording for Already Dead Tapes, “Revolution/Circumvention,” starts to flirt with the musical materials one associates with vaporwave without going all the way.

"Sublimation" is presented as 2 sides of audio, but the A-side feels like a 2-movement idea to me, while the B-side contains 6 shorter ideas that aren’t necessarily closely related. On the A-side, the first "movement" keeps percussion sounds going throughout, staying in a fairly narrow range of mid-tempo samples. While this kind of production has dance music/mixtape qualities, there’s a formal structure at work here that balances the piece: For example, the first fully-orchestrated set of materials that arise from some clean-sounding 80s guitar at the beginning of the side return around the 10:00 mark to constitute a sort of thematic restatement at its end. In between, my ears were drawn to how voice and guitar samples get recontextualized with a variety of very musical contrasts. There is a very simple guitar part, for example, one simple note that’s picked and followed by a downslide, that first appears atop a "chopped and screwed" (dramatically slowed down) rhythm bed, and it reappears later over a more real-time passage alongside a melodically moving synth line, turning the guitar into more of a harmonic pedal point mechanism than the kind of rhythmic accent role it had earlier. In terms of vocal fragments, Dotson seems to be drawing attention to the kinds of melodic shapes and exaggerated vibrato one finds at climactic moments in upbeat pop tunes while avoiding their original word content.

The shorter piece at the end of the A-side starts with a kind of ominous cinematic flourish and settles into an adagio pulse of synths and vocals for a couple of minutes, and then it becomes an uptempo rhythmic workout racing to the end, with almost industrial textures in the rhythms (though classic early techno synth-handclaps are there to remind you of previous origins). Finally, it settles into some very quieter chopped/screwed 80s balladry, followed by even softer recapitulation of some segments of the earlier cinematic-ish samples at the opening of the “movement.” This piece has an especially wide dynamic range that follows a classic dramatic arc.

I find myself musically more into the variety of ideas that make up the B-side. The first segment is a relatively short passage, taking some wind sounds and sustained synth-bell tones into a wickedly dense fog of distortion for a couple of haunting minutes. That’s followed by an almost 60s-ish section peeking through some phase and distortion effects, eventually settling into a kind of portatone percussion-meets-Art Bell-commercial-break-bassline, where a clavichord eventually steals the bass ostinato line away for itself. Skipping ahead, the last two sections are my favorite, with some reversed sounds, short percussion samples with tight delays, and a gentle synth/string figure that eventually dissolves into solo piano lines that are EQ’ed into a hushed oblivion at the end of the piece.

Already Dead makes very small editions of some tapes (50 in the case of “Sublimation”), so if you want to track this down, hit them up here or here as soon as you can. And be sure to check out Dotson’s Bandcamp page, too, as he still has copies of his self-released “Excavation” cassette available, a much-loved tape at Words on Sounds.

—Scott Scholz
Zoom Info
Matthew Dotson - Sublimation

I suspect that most music reviewers are aficionados of other good reviewers, and a big part of my musical news comes through some of my favorite creative music advocates/writers like “Strauss” at Tiny Mix Tapes/Cerberus. A little less than a year ago, I read his review of Matthew Dotson’s “Excavation,” and was intrigued enough to order the tape, which indeed lives up to its glowing review. Since then, Dotson has released a pair of cassettes through Chicago’s Already Dead Tapes, including the recent “Sublimation.”

Over the course of three tapes, Matthew Dotson’s music has moved increasingly toward the “vaporwave” movement, using fragments of muzak-y pop culture aural effluvium as sound sources, but the way he handles musical materials feels wholly different than most folks associated with vaporwave. At least in my cultural circles, I’ve heard vaporwave dismissed as a product of hastily-prolific hipster fine arts nonsense, and I’ve heard it lauded as a critique of corporate culture constructed from its own remnants. What these seemingly opposite camps have in common is a tendency to dissect the genre through literary, visual art, or sociopolitical lenses—it’s rarely discussed in musical terms. And frankly, a lot of vaporwave strikes my ears as vague, musically lackadaisical, or downright boring on strictly musical merits.

I find Dotson’s approach far more musically interesting than most vaporwavers, and I wasn’t surprised to find that he’s studied composition at the doctoral level. While this music can certainly abide discussion in terms of conceptual transformation or post-capitalist material repurposing, it also works as proficiently-composed music, balanced and varied and dynamic in all of the right places for a pure listening experience that doesn’t require extramusical apologetics.

And Dotson is really good at selecting names for his recordings: “Sublimation” in the Freudian sense is a perfect one-word description of the potential higher-order musical implications of vaporwave, taking vintage musical idioms mostly regarded as untoward or “lame” and re-using their raw materials toward a more transcendent whole. In contrast, the earlier “Excavation” tape really does feel like an excavation, unearthing deep cuts and exotic sources and bringing them into a musical light, and the first recording for Already Dead Tapes, “Revolution/Circumvention,” starts to flirt with the musical materials one associates with vaporwave without going all the way.

"Sublimation" is presented as 2 sides of audio, but the A-side feels like a 2-movement idea to me, while the B-side contains 6 shorter ideas that aren’t necessarily closely related. On the A-side, the first "movement" keeps percussion sounds going throughout, staying in a fairly narrow range of mid-tempo samples. While this kind of production has dance music/mixtape qualities, there’s a formal structure at work here that balances the piece: For example, the first fully-orchestrated set of materials that arise from some clean-sounding 80s guitar at the beginning of the side return around the 10:00 mark to constitute a sort of thematic restatement at its end. In between, my ears were drawn to how voice and guitar samples get recontextualized with a variety of very musical contrasts. There is a very simple guitar part, for example, one simple note that’s picked and followed by a downslide, that first appears atop a "chopped and screwed" (dramatically slowed down) rhythm bed, and it reappears later over a more real-time passage alongside a melodically moving synth line, turning the guitar into more of a harmonic pedal point mechanism than the kind of rhythmic accent role it had earlier. In terms of vocal fragments, Dotson seems to be drawing attention to the kinds of melodic shapes and exaggerated vibrato one finds at climactic moments in upbeat pop tunes while avoiding their original word content.

The shorter piece at the end of the A-side starts with a kind of ominous cinematic flourish and settles into an adagio pulse of synths and vocals for a couple of minutes, and then it becomes an uptempo rhythmic workout racing to the end, with almost industrial textures in the rhythms (though classic early techno synth-handclaps are there to remind you of previous origins). Finally, it settles into some very quieter chopped/screwed 80s balladry, followed by even softer recapitulation of some segments of the earlier cinematic-ish samples at the opening of the “movement.” This piece has an especially wide dynamic range that follows a classic dramatic arc.

I find myself musically more into the variety of ideas that make up the B-side. The first segment is a relatively short passage, taking some wind sounds and sustained synth-bell tones into a wickedly dense fog of distortion for a couple of haunting minutes. That’s followed by an almost 60s-ish section peeking through some phase and distortion effects, eventually settling into a kind of portatone percussion-meets-Art Bell-commercial-break-bassline, where a clavichord eventually steals the bass ostinato line away for itself. Skipping ahead, the last two sections are my favorite, with some reversed sounds, short percussion samples with tight delays, and a gentle synth/string figure that eventually dissolves into solo piano lines that are EQ’ed into a hushed oblivion at the end of the piece.

Already Dead makes very small editions of some tapes (50 in the case of “Sublimation”), so if you want to track this down, hit them up here or here as soon as you can. And be sure to check out Dotson’s Bandcamp page, too, as he still has copies of his self-released “Excavation” cassette available, a much-loved tape at Words on Sounds.

—Scott Scholz
Zoom Info

Matthew Dotson - Sublimation

I suspect that most music reviewers are aficionados of other good reviewers, and a big part of my musical news comes through some of my favorite creative music advocates/writers like “Strauss” at Tiny Mix Tapes/Cerberus. A little less than a year ago, I read his review of Matthew Dotson’s “Excavation,” and was intrigued enough to order the tape, which indeed lives up to its glowing review. Since then, Dotson has released a pair of cassettes through Chicago’s Already Dead Tapes, including the recent “Sublimation.”

Over the course of three tapes, Matthew Dotson’s music has moved increasingly toward the “vaporwave” movement, using fragments of muzak-y pop culture aural effluvium as sound sources, but the way he handles musical materials feels wholly different than most folks associated with vaporwave. At least in my cultural circles, I’ve heard vaporwave dismissed as a product of hastily-prolific hipster fine arts nonsense, and I’ve heard it lauded as a critique of corporate culture constructed from its own remnants. What these seemingly opposite camps have in common is a tendency to dissect the genre through literary, visual art, or sociopolitical lenses—it’s rarely discussed in musical terms. And frankly, a lot of vaporwave strikes my ears as vague, musically lackadaisical, or downright boring on strictly musical merits.

I find Dotson’s approach far more musically interesting than most vaporwavers, and I wasn’t surprised to find that he’s studied composition at the doctoral level. While this music can certainly abide discussion in terms of conceptual transformation or post-capitalist material repurposing, it also works as proficiently-composed music, balanced and varied and dynamic in all of the right places for a pure listening experience that doesn’t require extramusical apologetics.

And Dotson is really good at selecting names for his recordings: “Sublimation” in the Freudian sense is a perfect one-word description of the potential higher-order musical implications of vaporwave, taking vintage musical idioms mostly regarded as untoward or “lame” and re-using their raw materials toward a more transcendent whole. In contrast, the earlier “Excavation” tape really does feel like an excavation, unearthing deep cuts and exotic sources and bringing them into a musical light, and the first recording for Already Dead Tapes, “Revolution/Circumvention,” starts to flirt with the musical materials one associates with vaporwave without going all the way.

"Sublimation" is presented as 2 sides of audio, but the A-side feels like a 2-movement idea to me, while the B-side contains 6 shorter ideas that aren’t necessarily closely related. On the A-side, the first "movement" keeps percussion sounds going throughout, staying in a fairly narrow range of mid-tempo samples. While this kind of production has dance music/mixtape qualities, there’s a formal structure at work here that balances the piece: For example, the first fully-orchestrated set of materials that arise from some clean-sounding 80s guitar at the beginning of the side return around the 10:00 mark to constitute a sort of thematic restatement at its end. In between, my ears were drawn to how voice and guitar samples get recontextualized with a variety of very musical contrasts. There is a very simple guitar part, for example, one simple note that’s picked and followed by a downslide, that first appears atop a "chopped and screwed" (dramatically slowed down) rhythm bed, and it reappears later over a more real-time passage alongside a melodically moving synth line, turning the guitar into more of a harmonic pedal point mechanism than the kind of rhythmic accent role it had earlier. In terms of vocal fragments, Dotson seems to be drawing attention to the kinds of melodic shapes and exaggerated vibrato one finds at climactic moments in upbeat pop tunes while avoiding their original word content.

The shorter piece at the end of the A-side starts with a kind of ominous cinematic flourish and settles into an adagio pulse of synths and vocals for a couple of minutes, and then it becomes an uptempo rhythmic workout racing to the end, with almost industrial textures in the rhythms (though classic early techno synth-handclaps are there to remind you of previous origins). Finally, it settles into some very quieter chopped/screwed 80s balladry, followed by even softer recapitulation of some segments of the earlier cinematic-ish samples at the opening of the “movement.” This piece has an especially wide dynamic range that follows a classic dramatic arc.

I find myself musically more into the variety of ideas that make up the B-side. The first segment is a relatively short passage, taking some wind sounds and sustained synth-bell tones into a wickedly dense fog of distortion for a couple of haunting minutes. That’s followed by an almost 60s-ish section peeking through some phase and distortion effects, eventually settling into a kind of portatone percussion-meets-Art Bell-commercial-break-bassline, where a clavichord eventually steals the bass ostinato line away for itself. Skipping ahead, the last two sections are my favorite, with some reversed sounds, short percussion samples with tight delays, and a gentle synth/string figure that eventually dissolves into solo piano lines that are EQ’ed into a hushed oblivion at the end of the piece.

Already Dead makes very small editions of some tapes (50 in the case of “Sublimation”), so if you want to track this down, hit them up here or here as soon as you can. And be sure to check out Dotson’s Bandcamp page, too, as he still has copies of his self-released “Excavation” cassette available, a much-loved tape at Words on Sounds.

—Scott Scholz

xku asked:

hello, i really enjoy your music reccomendations but i also like your mixes on 8tracks a lot. i discovered KiC (and all kind of music genres/artists i had never heard of, too!! I'M SO THANKFUL!!) through the supernatural fanmix you made. i was wondering if you were going to make more mixes with themes (of any kind) someday... thanks for your great work anyway...

I answered:

I’m actually working on an alternate mix for True Detective.

Chuck Bettis - ‘Community of Commotion’ (North East Indie) (2005) The ‘lone improviser-plus-array-of-friends’ album format is frequently a winner, representing a shortcut to both variety and cohesion – Rafael Toral’s Space Elements Vol II, Fred Lonberg-Holm’s ‘Site Specific’ and numerous showcases from the Emanem label come to mind. In ‘Community of Commotion’, laptop/vocal improviser/composer Chuck Bettis made full use of the concept and added a fair dollop of post-production to produce a bewilderingly varied but coherent offering.The musical community referred to in the title is that of downtown New York, Bettis having previously graduated from the Baltimore new music scene before making the big move; he has since worked with Fred Frith, Jamie Saft and John Zorn among other key downtown figures, several of whom appear on this record. It’s a sign of his knack for the sometimes tricky art of genuine collaboration - as well as his obvious facility and sensitivity as a laptop player - that all the guests on ‘Community of Commotion’ are given space to do their thing, with Bettis often assuming a supportive role on an instrument that can so easily dominate. Not to suggest that he’s a shrinking violet though – this is an album with its maker’s mark all over it.Although the NY downtown scene’s genre-mashing ethos can be heard everywhere here – it’s difficult to imagine that this record could have been made anywhere else - Bettis’ approach to genre had less to do with Zorn’s cut-and-paste juxtaposition and more to do with co-habitation: Colleen Kinsella’s beautifully naïve vocals - alternating simple, free-floating melodies with spoken word - and Melissa Ip’s incongruously matter-of-fact poetry reading – check the subject matter – are layered with sympathetic laptop textures (‘Playful Moaner’ and ‘Bleeding Orphan’); a quasi-military drum n’ bass beat reminiscent of Plug-era Luke Vibert underpins Mick Barr’s high-neck guitar shred and Bettis’ guttural vocals (‘Atheist Revolt’); a Bhangra-ish beat is fused with Jerry Lim’s squidgy analogue synths, straight out of Detroit techno (‘Deathmetal Dancehall’); Gregorian-esque singing sits alongside Audrey Chen’s frantic bowed cello (‘Angry Rainbow’). There are moments of improv purity too: on ‘Mood Orifice’ Bettis goes toe-to-toe with undisputed laptop queen Ikue Mori with surprisingly delicate results, and ‘Sleep Terets’ is a raw and roomy duet with veteran downtown drummer Tim Barnes.If all this sounds fairly dark and dystopian, it is: only the half-demented, childlike vocals on opener ‘Playful Moaner’, and the dance-y, 50 second intro to closing track ‘Motion Narcolepsy’, which wouldn’t be out of place on a Ninja Tune record, could be described as upbeat. Even the djembe-fuelled world music mashup of ‘Doumbek Chanter’ sounds urbanised and forbidding.That’s not a gripe though: Chuck Bettis made an extraordinary record in which all the genre-bending, the cast of distinctive and distinguished collaborators and the yinyang of overarching vision and communal collaboration add up to something special.

- Mark
Zoom Info
Chuck Bettis - ‘Community of Commotion’ (North East Indie) (2005) The ‘lone improviser-plus-array-of-friends’ album format is frequently a winner, representing a shortcut to both variety and cohesion – Rafael Toral’s Space Elements Vol II, Fred Lonberg-Holm’s ‘Site Specific’ and numerous showcases from the Emanem label come to mind. In ‘Community of Commotion’, laptop/vocal improviser/composer Chuck Bettis made full use of the concept and added a fair dollop of post-production to produce a bewilderingly varied but coherent offering.The musical community referred to in the title is that of downtown New York, Bettis having previously graduated from the Baltimore new music scene before making the big move; he has since worked with Fred Frith, Jamie Saft and John Zorn among other key downtown figures, several of whom appear on this record. It’s a sign of his knack for the sometimes tricky art of genuine collaboration - as well as his obvious facility and sensitivity as a laptop player - that all the guests on ‘Community of Commotion’ are given space to do their thing, with Bettis often assuming a supportive role on an instrument that can so easily dominate. Not to suggest that he’s a shrinking violet though – this is an album with its maker’s mark all over it.Although the NY downtown scene’s genre-mashing ethos can be heard everywhere here – it’s difficult to imagine that this record could have been made anywhere else - Bettis’ approach to genre had less to do with Zorn’s cut-and-paste juxtaposition and more to do with co-habitation: Colleen Kinsella’s beautifully naïve vocals - alternating simple, free-floating melodies with spoken word - and Melissa Ip’s incongruously matter-of-fact poetry reading – check the subject matter – are layered with sympathetic laptop textures (‘Playful Moaner’ and ‘Bleeding Orphan’); a quasi-military drum n’ bass beat reminiscent of Plug-era Luke Vibert underpins Mick Barr’s high-neck guitar shred and Bettis’ guttural vocals (‘Atheist Revolt’); a Bhangra-ish beat is fused with Jerry Lim’s squidgy analogue synths, straight out of Detroit techno (‘Deathmetal Dancehall’); Gregorian-esque singing sits alongside Audrey Chen’s frantic bowed cello (‘Angry Rainbow’). There are moments of improv purity too: on ‘Mood Orifice’ Bettis goes toe-to-toe with undisputed laptop queen Ikue Mori with surprisingly delicate results, and ‘Sleep Terets’ is a raw and roomy duet with veteran downtown drummer Tim Barnes.If all this sounds fairly dark and dystopian, it is: only the half-demented, childlike vocals on opener ‘Playful Moaner’, and the dance-y, 50 second intro to closing track ‘Motion Narcolepsy’, which wouldn’t be out of place on a Ninja Tune record, could be described as upbeat. Even the djembe-fuelled world music mashup of ‘Doumbek Chanter’ sounds urbanised and forbidding.That’s not a gripe though: Chuck Bettis made an extraordinary record in which all the genre-bending, the cast of distinctive and distinguished collaborators and the yinyang of overarching vision and communal collaboration add up to something special.

- Mark
Zoom Info

Chuck Bettis - ‘Community of Commotion’ (North East Indie) (2005) 

The ‘lone improviser-plus-array-of-friends’ album format is frequently a winner, representing a shortcut to both variety and cohesion – Rafael Toral’s Space Elements Vol II, Fred Lonberg-Holm’s ‘Site Specific’ and numerous showcases from the Emanem label come to mind. In ‘Community of Commotion’, laptop/vocal improviser/composer Chuck Bettis made full use of the concept and added a fair dollop of post-production to produce a bewilderingly varied but coherent offering.

The musical community referred to in the title is that of downtown New York, Bettis having previously graduated from the Baltimore new music scene before making the big move; he has since worked with Fred Frith, Jamie Saft and John Zorn among other key downtown figures, several of whom appear on this record. It’s a sign of his knack for the sometimes tricky art of genuine collaboration - as well as his obvious facility and sensitivity as a laptop player - that all the guests on ‘Community of Commotion’ are given space to do their thing, with Bettis often assuming a supportive role on an instrument that can so easily dominate. Not to suggest that he’s a shrinking violet though – this is an album with its maker’s mark all over it.

Although the NY downtown scene’s genre-mashing ethos can be heard everywhere here – it’s difficult to imagine that this record could have been made anywhere else - Bettis’ approach to genre had less to do with Zorn’s cut-and-paste juxtaposition and more to do with co-habitation: Colleen Kinsella’s beautifully naïve vocals - alternating simple, free-floating melodies with spoken word - and Melissa Ip’s incongruously matter-of-fact poetry reading – check the subject matter – are layered with sympathetic laptop textures (‘Playful Moaner’ and ‘Bleeding Orphan’); a quasi-military drum n’ bass beat reminiscent of Plug-era Luke Vibert underpins Mick Barr’s high-neck guitar shred and Bettis’ guttural vocals (‘Atheist Revolt’); a Bhangra-ish beat is fused with Jerry Lim’s squidgy analogue synths, straight out of Detroit techno (‘Deathmetal Dancehall’); Gregorian-esque singing sits alongside Audrey Chen’s frantic bowed cello (‘Angry Rainbow’). There are moments of improv purity too: on ‘Mood Orifice’ Bettis goes toe-to-toe with undisputed laptop queen Ikue Mori with surprisingly delicate results, and ‘Sleep Terets’ is a raw and roomy duet with veteran downtown drummer Tim Barnes.

If all this sounds fairly dark and dystopian, it is: only the half-demented, childlike vocals on opener ‘Playful Moaner’, and the dance-y, 50 second intro to closing track ‘Motion Narcolepsy’, which wouldn’t be out of place on a Ninja Tune record, could be described as upbeat. Even the djembe-fuelled world music mashup of ‘Doumbek Chanter’ sounds urbanised and forbidding.

That’s not a gripe though: Chuck Bettis made an extraordinary record in which all the genre-bending, the cast of distinctive and distinguished collaborators and the yinyang of overarching vision and communal collaboration add up to something special.

- Mark

Patio Slang “Surface Politics” (C-60 Factotum Tapes [http://factotumtapes.blogspot.com/])
If you’re at all a follower of the works of Bryan Day, much about “Surface Politics” will be familiar, such as the two-word titles that seem to be randomly chosen from a dictionary, and of course the improvised arhythmic electroacoustic sounds. Day, known as the proprietor of the Public Eyesore label and for his invented contact-miked sound-producing contraptions including an array of segments of metal tape measure and a large trapezoidal wooden frame with some sort of torpedo-shaped weights hanging on wires in it — it’s anyone’s guess how this stuff works — has been on a bit of a roll releasing collaborations this past year or two, and fans of past and present Day projects such as Eloine, Seeded Plain, and Office Park will find plenty to enjoy if they can find these items.Patio Slang is Day on his homemade instruments and radio transceivers and one Toyohiro Okazaki, with whom I’m not familiar but who seems to be involved with a group called Dislocation, on unspecified “electronics.” “Surface Politics” claims to have been recorded in the spring of 2012 in Day’s hometown of Decorah, Iowa and what I assume to be Okazaki’s home, Ichinomiya, Japan. Whether they got together and recorded live or exchanged recordings by mail or internet is unspecified and of little consequence.
On cassette format it’s not always obvious with this kind of music where one track ends and the next begins and Matt Reis didn’t see fit to insert any long pauses to mark the transitions clearly, but the shifts in sonic character are noticeable enough on “Surface Politics” to highlight the variety of colors and textures that set them apart if you’re listening closely, while the tape as a whole also flows together well enough to take in as two long pieces if so inclined.
"Tenement Floe" opens things up with scraping, rustling, rubbing, junk-metal, and possibly something bumping up against a microphone, evoking a mental picture of a busy mechanics’ shop or construction site, until you notice the complete absence of power tools. "Rosewood Fixtures" is similar, but more recognizably electronic noises enter the picture in the form of squirt of a sort of flanged static, and this progression towards more electronic elements seems to continue over the A side. "Regent Primer" has a vintage sci-fi meets musique concrete feel to it, and I don’t know if it’s an intentional part of the instrumentation or an artifact of the nice loud dub to tape but there is a bit of that cool crumbly analog distortion coming from some of the louder bass tones that form a nice counterpoint to the piercing high drone present throughout the track. "Fossil Digest" brings in more metallic-acoustic elements again, I think there might be an old car fender in it.
Side B starts off with some nice resonant metal sounds on “Rotary Fields,” then adds cinematic dark-ambient synths behind them in “Boomtown Slogans.” “Vector Truant” brings back the low-frequency analog distortion in the context of more vintage sci-fi analog electronics, oscillators and ring modulators zipping about in an outer-space reverb. “Color Drain” returns to mostly acoustically-oriented metal-on-concrete sounds, and the reverb is transitioned between the cavernous parking-ramp variety and a more natural live room feel.
Overall, “Surface Politics” is a joyously busy album of excited, changing, playful sounds.—Charles Hoffman
Zoom Info
Patio Slang “Surface Politics” (C-60 Factotum Tapes [http://factotumtapes.blogspot.com/])
If you’re at all a follower of the works of Bryan Day, much about “Surface Politics” will be familiar, such as the two-word titles that seem to be randomly chosen from a dictionary, and of course the improvised arhythmic electroacoustic sounds. Day, known as the proprietor of the Public Eyesore label and for his invented contact-miked sound-producing contraptions including an array of segments of metal tape measure and a large trapezoidal wooden frame with some sort of torpedo-shaped weights hanging on wires in it — it’s anyone’s guess how this stuff works — has been on a bit of a roll releasing collaborations this past year or two, and fans of past and present Day projects such as Eloine, Seeded Plain, and Office Park will find plenty to enjoy if they can find these items.Patio Slang is Day on his homemade instruments and radio transceivers and one Toyohiro Okazaki, with whom I’m not familiar but who seems to be involved with a group called Dislocation, on unspecified “electronics.” “Surface Politics” claims to have been recorded in the spring of 2012 in Day’s hometown of Decorah, Iowa and what I assume to be Okazaki’s home, Ichinomiya, Japan. Whether they got together and recorded live or exchanged recordings by mail or internet is unspecified and of little consequence.
On cassette format it’s not always obvious with this kind of music where one track ends and the next begins and Matt Reis didn’t see fit to insert any long pauses to mark the transitions clearly, but the shifts in sonic character are noticeable enough on “Surface Politics” to highlight the variety of colors and textures that set them apart if you’re listening closely, while the tape as a whole also flows together well enough to take in as two long pieces if so inclined.
"Tenement Floe" opens things up with scraping, rustling, rubbing, junk-metal, and possibly something bumping up against a microphone, evoking a mental picture of a busy mechanics’ shop or construction site, until you notice the complete absence of power tools. "Rosewood Fixtures" is similar, but more recognizably electronic noises enter the picture in the form of squirt of a sort of flanged static, and this progression towards more electronic elements seems to continue over the A side. "Regent Primer" has a vintage sci-fi meets musique concrete feel to it, and I don’t know if it’s an intentional part of the instrumentation or an artifact of the nice loud dub to tape but there is a bit of that cool crumbly analog distortion coming from some of the louder bass tones that form a nice counterpoint to the piercing high drone present throughout the track. "Fossil Digest" brings in more metallic-acoustic elements again, I think there might be an old car fender in it.
Side B starts off with some nice resonant metal sounds on “Rotary Fields,” then adds cinematic dark-ambient synths behind them in “Boomtown Slogans.” “Vector Truant” brings back the low-frequency analog distortion in the context of more vintage sci-fi analog electronics, oscillators and ring modulators zipping about in an outer-space reverb. “Color Drain” returns to mostly acoustically-oriented metal-on-concrete sounds, and the reverb is transitioned between the cavernous parking-ramp variety and a more natural live room feel.
Overall, “Surface Politics” is a joyously busy album of excited, changing, playful sounds.—Charles Hoffman
Zoom Info
Patio Slang “Surface Politics” (C-60 Factotum Tapes [http://factotumtapes.blogspot.com/])

If you’re at all a follower of the works of Bryan Day, much about “Surface Politics” will be familiar, such as the two-word titles that seem to be randomly chosen from a dictionary, and of course the improvised arhythmic electroacoustic sounds. Day, known as the proprietor of the Public Eyesore label and for his invented contact-miked sound-producing contraptions including an array of segments of metal tape measure and a large trapezoidal wooden frame with some sort of torpedo-shaped weights hanging on wires in it — it’s anyone’s guess how this stuff works — has been on a bit of a roll releasing collaborations this past year or two, and fans of past and present Day projects such as Eloine, Seeded Plain, and Office Park will find plenty to enjoy if they can find these items.

Patio Slang is Day on his homemade instruments and radio transceivers and one Toyohiro Okazaki, with whom I’m not familiar but who seems to be involved with a group called Dislocation, on unspecified “electronics.” “Surface Politics” claims to have been recorded in the spring of 2012 in Day’s hometown of Decorah, Iowa and what I assume to be Okazaki’s home, Ichinomiya, Japan. Whether they got together and recorded live or exchanged recordings by mail or internet is unspecified and of little consequence.


On cassette format it’s not always obvious with this kind of music where one track ends and the next begins and Matt Reis didn’t see fit to insert any long pauses to mark the transitions clearly, but the shifts in sonic character are noticeable enough on “Surface Politics” to highlight the variety of colors and textures that set them apart if you’re listening closely, while the tape as a whole also flows together well enough to take in as two long pieces if so inclined.

"Tenement Floe" opens things up with scraping, rustling, rubbing, junk-metal, and possibly something bumping up against a microphone, evoking a mental picture of a busy mechanics’ shop or construction site, until you notice the complete absence of power tools. "Rosewood Fixtures" is similar, but more recognizably electronic noises enter the picture in the form of squirt of a sort of flanged static, and this progression towards more electronic elements seems to continue over the A side. "Regent Primer" has a vintage sci-fi meets musique concrete feel to it, and I don’t know if it’s an intentional part of the instrumentation or an artifact of the nice loud dub to tape but there is a bit of that cool crumbly analog distortion coming from some of the louder bass tones that form a nice counterpoint to the piercing high drone present throughout the track. "Fossil Digest" brings in more metallic-acoustic elements again, I think there might be an old car fender in it.


Side B starts off with some nice resonant metal sounds on “Rotary Fields,” then adds cinematic dark-ambient synths behind them in “Boomtown Slogans.” “Vector Truant” brings back the low-frequency analog distortion in the context of more vintage sci-fi analog electronics, oscillators and ring modulators zipping about in an outer-space reverb. “Color Drain” returns to mostly acoustically-oriented metal-on-concrete sounds, and the reverb is transitioned between the cavernous parking-ramp variety and a more natural live room feel.

Overall, “Surface Politics” is a joyously busy album of excited, changing, playful sounds.


Charles Hoffman

Previous posts (in session order):The Lost Quintet TreeThe Fillmore TreeThe 1975 Tree
Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!
DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)
Zoom Info
Previous posts (in session order):The Lost Quintet TreeThe Fillmore TreeThe 1975 Tree
Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!
DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)
Zoom Info
Previous posts (in session order):The Lost Quintet TreeThe Fillmore TreeThe 1975 Tree
Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!
DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)
Zoom Info
Previous posts (in session order):The Lost Quintet TreeThe Fillmore TreeThe 1975 Tree
Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!
DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)
Zoom Info
Previous posts (in session order):The Lost Quintet TreeThe Fillmore TreeThe 1975 Tree
Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!
DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)
Zoom Info

Previous posts (in session order):

The Lost Quintet Tree
The Fillmore Tree
The 1975 Tree


Previous posts in this loose series have focused on sessions distributed as “trees” on the old Miles Trees site. I’ve focused on Davis’ electric work to this point, building out in my own way from the In a Silent Way/Bitches Brew start and into his funk era. However, there is a big gap between mid-to-late 1968/1969, 1970, and 1975. While Miles missed a good deal of time on the road with various health issues, there are still many more shows between the Fillmore shows and 1975.

1971 didn’t yield many commercial recordings for Davis. Sure, Live-Evil was put out, but that was based on the 1970 Cellar Door sessions that Columbia has since expanded into a box. Jack Johnson, also explored as a box, adds a tiny bit of the material here. However, those sessions, moreso than perhaps any of the other boxes, consist of many takes of similar material, rendering it one of the least satisfying (to me) of the series (and mostly for completists). Jack Johnson, while a quality Davis release, doesn’t portend subsequent records (On the Corner), isn’t the most extreme version of Davis’ live band (those are documented by Columbia and in the bootlegs), etc. As such, 1971 seems relatively uneventful compared to the immediately preceding and subsequent years.

In recent years, Columbia has done a pretty good job of filling in some of the blanks, supplementing the studio records of his fusion era with coveted recordings of the Lost Quintet. They also have done a nice job creating an understanding of Miles’ sessions around his landmark albums, with the On the Corner box fleshing out some of the aborted sitar work and nascent techno/funk Davis was playing with.

Yet for all of the focus on presenting a larger, more complete picture of Davis’ development, 1971, a year where Davis was quite active on the road (at least for a furious stretch between October and November (see here)), has been relegated to the bootleg circuit. The below shows aren’t by any means the totality of Davis’ live shows from 1971, and some of these shows are fairly common amongst tape traders (or in the form of unofficial CD releases in the ’90s). To name one, the Belgrade show was one half of the more commonly known Another Bitches Brew, with the second half (a concert from 1973) sectioned off for this post’s purposes.

Still, these shows are very representative of the strong stretch of 1971 that bridged Davis’ fertile period of 1968-1970, a period that featured a great deal of simultaneous development of his live sets and work in the studio, and the final stretch before his hiatus. Due to health problems, this would change. In a way, this flurry in 1971 would be the last strong bit of concert work until 1973, with 1972 mostly consisting of studio dates.

It should be noted, that, just as the Lost Quintet has risen to prominence in recent years, this group also has a strong jazz base, and it could, too, come to be known for its potential if not for the strong music you’ll find here. Familiar names like Keith Jarrett stand alongside Gary Bartz, Michael Henderson, and the percussionists Davis came to favor in this period. Sure, the instruments and the structure of the ensemble date this to an extent, but with the recent trend in giving critical recognition to darker niche corners of soundtrack work, this bridge between fusion and Miles’ extremely dark funk, a sort of mutant porno soundtrack that tugged between the jazz heads (Jarrett) and the funk players (Henderson), takes the tension of the Cellar Door sessions to a new level.

Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, this snippet of 1971 gives you a look at the still less considered space between Miles’ last remaining strands of jazz DNA and where he came to consider “jazz” to be a dirty word. Check them out, and seek out the rest!


DISC 1 (10/21/71, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi, Milan)
DISC 2 (10/26/71, Palais des Beaux Arts, Brussels)
DISC 3 (11/03/71, Dom Sindikata, Belgrade)
DISC 4 (11/09/71, Chateau Neuf, Oslo)
DISC 5 (11/16/71, Palazzo dello Sport, Turin)

SINGLE ARCHIVE HERE (718 MB)

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