Many Axes: 2 Many Axes (2004)

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How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Many Axes: 2 Many Axes
Many Axes is the brainchild of Susan Rawcliffe, who makes ceramic flutes based on centuries-old instruments. After learning the instruments she creates, Rawcliffe jams with wind player Scott Wilkinson and percussionist Brad Dutz, who make up the rest of the trio.

This music is an adventure, if nothing else. The players create a variety of sounds from these clay instruments, adding just what they want, when they want it. Though the music is based in a free environment, it does not fall completely within the confines of jazz. Rather, the trio works from a world music perspective, making sounds that work from a very primitive base at times or more complex styles, such as East Indian forms, at others. This certainly makes for an interesting record, but it lacks the depth and complex ideologies that make up jazz.

That aside, 2 Many Axes is a bit of a monotonous disc that really may require only a single listen. The trio certainly develops a novel idea, creating sounds that you are not going to hear anyplace else. As with other similar projects, the lack of form just does not carry the ideas provided all that far. It's worth a listen, but this material is probably conveyed better live.

Track Listing: March of the Whales; Circuspace; Pillbug's Nightmare; Drama Diary; Entropy; Roll Over Johann; Mastodon Stew; Unheard Melodies; Buried There; Dali Comma; Puddle; Popping Beetles; Anti Carlos.

Personnel: Susan Rawcliffe: ocarina, voice, polyglobular trumpet, harmonic whistle, tube flute, tuba flute, ball flute, waterflute, claydoo, hooded pipe, triple pipe, wind wands, howler; Scott Wilkinson: ocarina, euphonium, bass recorder, suling, shakuhachi, cedar flute, tuba flute, waterflute, Tibetan horns, Tibetan bowls, Tibetan singing bowls, quartz bowl; Brad Dutz: tabla, waterphone, clay xylophone, concertina, slit drums, spring drum, bass drum, gongs, pods, shells, superball on drums, bougaraboo, daff, makta, tarine, batajon, Tibetan singing bowls, brass bowls, clay bowls, claydoo, pin chimes, cup chimes, obsidian wind chimes, key chimes, bowed bell chimes, Indian bells, boat whistle, tuba flute, wind wands, bird squeakers, metal junk.

Record Label: pfMentum

Style: Beyond Jazz


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