Sunday, February 16, 2020

Heisig / Klare [Umland Records 029]

Released via the Essen / Germany-based imprint Umland Records as the labels 030 is this first ever collaborational album realized by Jan Klare and Wolfgang Heisig, combining their individual favorite instruments - saxophone and phonola - over the course of six tracks and a total of roughly 30 minutes runtime. With the phonola as the more unusual and supposedly widely unknown instrument here - a self-playing machine operating a piano via the use of musical information stored on a paper roll which functions essentially like an old-fashioned punch card in ancient computer technology, transferring information into mechanical action via a roll-to-piano converter - playing an essential role in laying the foundation of the conjunctional and compositional work in terms of providing a basic pre-programmed, sometimes mechanical, sometimes thundering and sometimes well swinging groove like in the "Study For Player Piano #3b" or in the hounded, over the top hectic "Prinzenrolle" to which Jan Klare adds an accompanying layer of oftentimes eruptive, FreeJazz-/ Improv-informed saxophone playing this might be the most conceptual album work released by Umland Records so far, catering to those connaisseur types who like to explore the more extreme edges of the genre whilst those  looking for more comforting and easy to grasp sounds might be gravitating towards other releases out of the labels catalogue.


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