Deep Listening Band/Joe McPhee: Unquenchable Fire

Florence Wetzel By

Sign in to view read count
Deep Listening Band/Joe McPhee: Unquenchable Fire For the past 40 years, accordionist and visionary Pauline Oliveros has been creating music utterly her own. Oliveros’ band and label are called Deep Listening, and for Oliveros this is not just a name, but a philosophy and lifestyle; according to Oliveros, “We listen in order to interpret ourselves and our world and to experience meaning.” This deep-seated imperative has led Oliveros to produce a body of work of enormous variety, as well as tremendous depth.

The latest offering from the Deep Listening Label is Unquenchable Fire, which was inspired by Rachel Pollack’s science fiction novel of the same name. The Deep Listening Band—Oliveros (accordion), Stuart Dempster (trombone, didjeridu), and David Gamper (keyboard, flutes, electronics)—meets up with the Joe McPhee Quartet: McPhee (sax, clarinet, Casio digital horn), Joe Giardullo (flutes, clarinet), Monica Wilson (cello), and Karen Jurgens (drums).

Unquenchable Fire is composed of an introduction and four movements; with so many horns and such powerful players, one might expect the adventure of an avant-garde free-for-all. The CD does feature this side of the musicians’ talent, but for the most part the musicians play with space and delicacy. This is the sound of science fiction: haunting, searching, with a reach beyond human intelligence. It’s full of squiggles, interesting pitches and leaps, with the cello adding a rich sense of mystery. The music is also an intriquing combination of acoustic and electronic, a seamless blend exactly suited to Oliveros’ purposes. Rachel Pollack appears as well reading sections of her book, which gives the music greater depth and offers an example of how to integrate such different art forms.

One never knows what Pauline Oliveros will do next, but whatever it is, she is sure to go beyond boundaries and categories. She is sui generis, an artist whose wide open creativity is both inspiring and challenging. On Unquenchable Fire, the musicians have brought the full force of their intelligence and sensitivity to Oliveros’ vision, creating a listening experience both memorable and evocative.

Track Listing: 1. Intro - 4:56 2. 1st Movement - 26:15 3. 2nd Movement - 9:50 4. 3rd Movement - 11:30 5. 4th Movement - 15:10

Personnel: Stuart Dempster - Trombone, Didjeridu; Pauline Oliveros - Accordion; Joe McPhee - Soprano Sax, Alto Clarinet, Digital Horn; Joe Giardullo - Flute, Bass Clarinet; Monica Wilson - Cello; David Gamper - Flute, Keyboards, Electronics; Rachel Pollack - Readings; Karen Jurgens - Drums.

Year Released: 2004 | Style: Modern Jazz


More Articles

Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Goat Man & The House of the Dead CD/LP/Track Review Goat Man & The House of the Dead
by Dave Wayne
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2) CD/LP/Track Review TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2)
by Nicola Negri
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read "As subtle as tomorrow" CD/LP/Track Review As subtle as tomorrow
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 9, 2016
Read "Bridges From The East" CD/LP/Track Review Bridges From The East
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 29, 2016
Read "Sea Changes" CD/LP/Track Review Sea Changes
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: February 29, 2016
Read "Songs From Afar" CD/LP/Track Review Songs From Afar
by Budd Kopman
Published: March 11, 2016
Read "Alive Out There" CD/LP/Track Review Alive Out There
by Mark Corroto
Published: May 2, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!