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CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jon Hassell: Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one)

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At age 81 legendary American trumpeter/composer/conceptualist Jon Hassell could reasonably be kicking back in retirement, relaxing and resting on his considerable laurels. His Fourth World concept, combining world ethnic music with modern electronics, has been hugely influential; it is hard to imagine the sound of Norwegian trumpeter Arve Henriksen without it, not to mention a lot of music in both the ambient and World Music genres. He has collaborated with Brian Eno, Talking Heads, David Sylvian and Peter Gabriel among ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jon Hassell: Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume one)

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By the time even the most revolutionary musicians reach their ninth decade, few are any longer making profoundly adventurous work. Typically, conservatism has kicked in or, if not that, a younger generation has come along and moved the goal posts. But on Listening To Pictures (Pentimento Volume One), Jon Hassell, the creator of fourth-world music in the 1970s and other innovations since, is as venturesome and digging as deeply as ever. Listening To Pictures is Hassell's first new release since ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jon Hassell: Dream Theory In Malaya: Fourth World Volume Two

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Three decades and more after the last vinyl reissue of trumpeter Jon Hassell's landmark album, back in 1987, Britain's Glitterbeat label has released a remastered edition of the LP, which is also available on CD. The new edition includes a previously unreleased three-minute bonus track from the recording sessions. Dream Theory In Malaya, first released in 1981, arguably ranks as the most perfect realisation ever of fourth-world music, the acoustic-electronic blend of minimalism, jazz, drone, ambient and traditional ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jon Hassell: Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics

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Some records can be easily identified and defined by the time and the place of their creation, but Jon Hassell's records appear to have a different and opposite effect. His record Possible Musics doesn't give the impression of coming from a certain place, but rather from many places. And this collage approach where he mixed and melded different elements and sounds, belonging to different continents and traditions, into a pan-ethnic sound, with the technology of the first world was named ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Jon Hassell: City: Works of Fiction (Expanded Edition)

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Originally released in 1990 on Brian Eno's forward-thinking Opal Records and reissued again, two years later, on All Saints Records, Jon Hassell's City: Works of Fiction was the trumpeter/keyboardist/conceptualist's fourth “official" installment in the Fourth World series that began with Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics (EG, 1980), followed by Fourth World Vol. 2: Dream Theory in Malaysia (EG, 1981) and Aka / Darbari / Java--Magic Realism (EG, 1983), though this groundbreaking and ultimately vastly influential concept truly began to ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Jon Hassell: Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street

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One of the most significant American composer/musicians of the late twentieth century, Jon Hassell, has served as a synthesist, catalyst, and eventually a sound painter and innovator. He has, over the course of his career, unleashed a stunning new vocabulary that still resounds today in the playing of artists including Nils Petter Molvaer, Arve Henriksen, Paolo Fresu and Erik Truffaz and a plethora of electronic music adventurers such as Orb, Howie B, and Tricky. By drawing on ...

INTERVIEWS

Jon Hassell: Fourth World and Balancing the North and South of You

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He may well be one of the most insidious influences in modern music. Trumpeter, composer and deep thinker Jon Hassell may not have the same name recognition as, say, Miles Davis, but his unmistakable approach to music--he calls it Fourth World music--has affected musicians around the globe, ranging from now friend/co-conspirator Brian Eno, British post-rock crooner David Sylvian and singer/songwriter Tim Elsenburg (aka Sweet Billy Pilgrim), to jazz-centric artists including trumpeters Arve Henriksen, Nils Petter Molvær and Matthias Eick, as ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Jon Hassell: Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street

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Jon Hassell Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street ECM Records 2009 While he's rarely been out of action, the past couple years have seen a significant increase in the public exposure of trumpeter Jon Hassell, especially in Europe. Hassell may not be as well-known, say, as Miles Davis, but amongst a broadening group of musicians and listeners, it's become clear that his influence may ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Jon Hassell 2009 Tour

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Jon Hassell The Wexner Center for the Arts Columbus, OH February 5, 2009

Jon Hassell and his band Maarifa Street entered the stage of The Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio a few minutes before their scheduled 8pm start. The house lights were still up, and the leader explained they we were witnessing his band warming up. Strange doings, because the band never exited, and there was no segue into the ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Jon Hassell: Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street

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Jon Hassell Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street ECM Records 2009

Coinciding with his first tour of the States in over twenty years, trumpet player and self-described Fourth World musician Jon Hassell returns to ECM for his first release on the label since Power Spot (1985). With Last night the moon came dropping its clothes in the street, a title taken from a 13th century poem, Hassell ...