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Cars & Variations: High Desert Songs

Artist: Christoph Gallio
Christoph Gallio - Cars & Variations: High Desert Songs CD
Label: Percaso
Regular Price: $15.95
On Sale For: $6.38 
Year: 1994
Format: CD


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This intriguing release feautures reed player Gallio in the company of various groupings of solos, duos and trios for two long suites, each constructed of multiple short sections ranging from 20 seconds to 3 minutes in length. Rushing by like a series of improvisational flash cards, the music encompasses spare duet setting for poems by Surrealists Picabia and Meret Oppenheim (of fur-lined teacup fame) sung by Irene Aebi; fractured, frenetic spars featuring Wittwer or the scratch and scrabble electronics of Ostrowski and cellist Zimmerlin; and flowing duets with pianist Lüscher and trios with Cooper and Ulrich. Comprising most of the CD, the first suite, „cars and variations“, moves through 33 segments punctuated by 4 brief found-sound snippets. The proceedings are roughly paced by moving from harsh electronic pairings to more stately duets with Lüscher and Aebi. Yet, with such rapid swiches and quick pacing, any depth or development in the playing is sacrificed. Hard, rocking struts dissolve into measured, halting, angular phrases; melodious art songs dissipate into jangling trios; short ideas start to be sketched out, only to disappear mid-phrase. This is contrasted with the only piece over 3 minutes, a leisurely trio with Cooper and Ulrich, as Gallio‘s long, gracefully sinuous lines unfurl over the bass and drums. The final suite, „high desert songs“ is a group of 12 short floating verses delivering a tour de force for solo voice by Irene Aebi. This release makes clear that Gallio has no shortage of ideas. Cadence, Michael Rosenstein
Christoph Gallio (soprano sax, alto sax); Irene Aebi (voice, violin); Alfred Zimmerlin (violincello); Matthew Ostrowski (electronics, violin); Stephan Wittwer (electric guitar); Fredi Luscher (piano); Lindsay Cooper (bass); Dieter Ulrich (drums)
See all titles featuring Christoph Gallio

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