The Cluttertones with Lee Pui Ming – “Leeways” (SnailBongBong Records, 2018)

“Leeways” is a new release of “SnailBongBong Records”. Album was recorded by “The Cluttertones”. The ensemble plays innovative and engaging avant-garde jazz – Lina Allemano (trumpet), Rob Clutton (bass, compositions), Ryan Driver (analogue synthesizer, human voice) and Tim Posgate (banjo, guitar) here play together with special guest Lee Pui Ming (piano, voice). Five great jazz masters create original, bright and passionate avant-garde jazz, who is mixed with other music styles. The basics of avant-garde jazz, sound experiments, free improvisations, wild and thrilling solos, spontaneous musical decisions always keep the base of musical pattern. It’s mixed together with aggressive and sharp bebop, expressive hard bop, cool and some other styles of contemporary and modern jazz. The repetitive playing technique, simple chords, primitive and ordinary instrumentation, quadratic form or modern, vivacious, evocative and fresh ideas, musical decisions or expressions – all these elements brought relation with contemporary academical music, academic avant-garde and other styles of modern academical music. The musicians are individual players, who have colorful and expressive playing manner, unique sound and impressive musical language.

“Leeways” is filled with bright, intense and dynamic sound. Here avant-garde, experimental and modern jazz styles are mixed together with contemporary academical, academic avant-garde, minimalism, electronic and experimental music. The music is balancing between academical, strict and evocative sound, innovative instrumentation and wild free, impressive and dizzy improvisations. The music also connects together the basics of Western Europe and Asian music. Soft intonations of China ethnic music are gently and subtly mixed with Western Europe harmony, expressions and other typical elements. Album is evocative, engaging and full of surprises – musicians are passing through different moods, styles, manners and colors. They manage to create dynamic, variable and passionate sound with rich musical language, spontaneous changes and sudden turns. From silent, peaceful and subtle pieces music goes straight to dramatic culminations, roaring blow outs, charming and bright passages, vivid melodies, sparkling and fascinating sound experiments or aggressive and turbulent collective improvisations. The music is filled with changes and colors – that really makes a strong effort to whole musical pattern and its compounds. Sometimes it’s eclectic, ascetic, ordinary and simple, illustrated with synthetic tunes of electronics or synthesizer. Musical pattern has many different layers, who are individual, but still connected together. Each of them has independent form, unique sound and own musical language and mood. There’s a huge range of playing techniques, factures, forms and expressions – polyphony meets with diatonic homophony, warm acoustics go straight with synthetic electronics. Eclectic and exotic instrumental combinations are the key to innovative and engaging searches of weird timbres and unusual sounds. Musicians are inventing new and extraordinary ways of playing, experimental and specific playing techniques, bordering dynamics and variable rhythms. The harmony also is very rich – soft consonances are used together with expressive and sharp disonances, the harmonic intonations of Asian music, strange chords or weird intervals, who are not usually used at musical language. The voice elements and banjo bring the elements, who are mostly related to ethnic music of South Europe, especially Spain or Italy. The stylistic range is so wide, that it’s impossible to predict one exact music style, to who this music is related. Roaring and charming piano solos gently fit together with passionate, light and loud trumpet, impressive passages, dizzy solos, remarkable melodies, intense guitar’s riffs, heavy hard core, soft, getle and light banjo or specific voice elements. Acoustics gently fit together with electronics – all the instrumentation of compositions is innovative and touching. From roaring blow outs, passionate and gentle pizzicatto, strict staccato, soft arpeggio, colorful and fantastic glissando and dozens of other typical playing techniques of acoustics are mixed with alterated tunes, modified timbres, vibrant and electric solos, subtle and ascetic ambient, sounds machine, sonic system’s experiments, sounds of computer and electronic devices, and a little bit of intonations similar to drone and glitch. That’s just a part of electronics playing techniques, who are used here – it’s splendidly fit together with acoustics. Two different instruments groups subtly and genuinely mixes at common and natural musical pattern. The music of this album has touching, bright, passionate, expressive and vivacious sound.

One thought on “The Cluttertones with Lee Pui Ming – “Leeways” (SnailBongBong Records, 2018)”

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