Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Spasm: Works for Bass Clarinet
Listen to Samples
Calling all clarinetistas! This is for you.
greg taylor | Portland, Oregon United States | 02/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First, I gots to say thanks to Brendan Greenstreet for his Listmania list below. I was perusing Don Byron CDs, found his list and ended up buying this CD which was the most intelligent thing I did that week.
This is the first of what are now three solo bass clarinet plus CDs put out by Lowenstern. I say plus because Lowenstern uses electrocis, voices and body percussion. I haven't heard the others (yet) but this one is a beaut.
The pieces on this CD are a very diverse set of contemporary classical and electronic compositions with the one Gershwin piece. Everything is sandwiched in between two compositions by Lowenstern himself which are arguably the most engaging pieces.
The title piece uses a tape of altered bass clarinet sounds over which Lowenstern slaps out single notes then short phrases then long angular phrases all of which comes to a sudden satisfying conclusion. Eric Dolphy would have loved this stuff.
The last piece "But Would She Remember You?" is an oddly effective and evocative piece about the relationships men have with women. Lowenstern and four other musician types speak lines that succinctly demarcate the various stages in relationships ("When I hung up the phone, I knew it was over.") Over and around these statements, Lowenstern and his tapes are laying down some emotive and atmospheric music. Normally I find stuff like this less effective everytime I hear it after the initial hearing. But this piece continues to grow on me.
I also have to especially mention the wonderful improvisation on the Gershwin (making impressive use of multiphonics and multiple improvised contrapuntal lines)and the Kitzke piece.
Lowenstern is a masterful player on a horn that can be witty, sexy, spiritual or just plain rocking. He does it all in a set that will impress Dolphy, Maupin, Byron, and Erhlich freaks as much as it will fans of contemporary classical. For anyone with adventurous tastes this is a player who is very much worth trying out."