Pianist Glen Hoiuchi is certainly the type of artist that Music & Arts adores: smart, clever, and aggressive, and very egg-headed in his approach to improvisation. While it's true that his jazz includes many other kinds of music -- country, Delta blues, microtonalism, Japanese timbral effects, etc. -- but all of those musics by virtue of them being jammed together in self-conscious ways, are literally stilted and not allowed to express their own identities apart from Horiuchi's reading of them. Interpretation is one thing, form fitting is another. With bassist Roberto Miranda and drummer Jeanette Wrate on half the set, and an augmented trio with playing shamisen and singing accompanied by tuba god William Roper and violinist Francis Wong (all as Unita) on the other half, there are plenty of opportunities for extraterrestrial exploration. And exploration happens, too, but it is all wired into Horiuchi's musical formalism, and therefore stripped of its anarchic power to both create and destroy. Ultimately, this disc wears on the listener after only four selections; the rest is nearly unbearable with the exception of some of Roper's invention and remarkable soling techniques (microphonics, etc.). This set is proof positive that there are very few musicians who can take the academic approach all the way home into musical expansion.
|Label:||Music & Arts Program|