How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Kitty Brazelton wears many masks acquired from her music repertoire. Her diverse career as a composer, curator, performer, bandleader, and teacher, makes her a keen version of a modern music renaissance woman. Her commissioned pieces have included works for ensemble, orchestra, and opera. She is the founder of the group "DADADAH": a “nonet”(a nine piece group) that fuses free-jazz, art-rock and other music forms.
Her latest effort, Chamber Music for the Inner Ear contains music with a variety of backdrops. There's the 24-minute opening composition "Come Spring" featuring the "Manhattan Brass Quintet" with attention-grabbing horn phrasings and solos. The surrealist composition "R" mixes voice, string, and percussion with familiar but psychedelic results. "Called out of Texas" is a strange and yet appealing "Comprov" (composition and improvisation) duo between alto sax and cello, with odd and twisting lines. Going in so many musical directions at once, it’s difficult at best to get a sense of a particular theme; but maybe that’s the artistic goal.
The best may have been left for last with "Sonato for Inner Ear", a three-movement sonata that highlights Brazelton’s compositional and artistic skills in a truly modern work. “Brazelton describes the work, scored for flute, bass clarinet, violin, cello, marimba, expanded drum set and two keyboardists performing on piano, electric organ and sampler, as a triptych offering a trilateral view of a large oceanic instrumental group as it makes its way through the musical plankton or micro-nutrients of two musical motives.”
With that quote in mind ...
Food for musical thought = Chamber Music for the Inner Ear.
Track Listing: Come Spring!
1. i. dogwood petals & hormones
2. ii. miles through the upstairs window
3. iii. harmonic fable
4. iv. first second seder at the knitting factory
6. Sonar Como Una Tromba Larga
7. Called Out Ol
Personnel: Kitty Brazelton (composer,voice)
Dan Barrett (cello);
Kevin Cobb (trumpet, Manhattan Brass Quintet);
Erica Duke (cello, California EAR Unit);
Greg Evans (french horn, MBQ);
Mathew Fieldes (double bass);
Stephen Foreman (tuba, MBQ);
Lyris Hung (electric 5-string violin);
Jay Kauffman (classical guitar);
Amy Knoles (drums, CEARU);
Robin Lorentz (violin, CEARU);
John Magnussen (marimba, CEARU);
Vicki Ray (many many keyboards, CEARU);
Michael Seltzer (trombone, MBQ) ;
Dorothy Stone (flute, CEARU);
Danny Tunick (bongos);
Marty Walker (bass clarinet, CEARU);
Chris Washburne (trombone);
Danny Weiss (alto saxophone)