Evil Clown ​

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/st-quantum-chromodynamics.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://stringtheory6.bandcamp.com/releases
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqJIivu5INM

 


The final new release of 2015 and for this newsletter is the Leap of Faith Orchestra with core LOF + String Theory.  Tony Leva on bass is the newcomer…

This disc begins with Steve Swell playing solo trombone, generally a rarity although Mr. Swell did release his first solo CD last month. Mr. Swell begins slowly, bending those fluttering notes with breath-like sounds. Swell carefully manipulates each sound, each note is used to great effect. The set evolves organically. The set features the main quartet version of Leap of Faith with Dave PEK on reeds, Gkynis Lomon on cello, Steve Norton on reeds and Yuri Zbitnov on drums with Mr. Swell on trombone.

You can tell that this group has been playing for many years since they have their own distinctive sound. Alien yet familiar, bizarre yet completely fascinating. Expanding, contracting, erupting, settling down, always as one force. Mr. Zbitnov is in fine form here on drums, the center of the storm directing the energy of flow as it soars and then comes back down to the earth. There is an incredible section here that is over-the-top yet knows when to let up before it evolves into some crazed screams. The audience for this set was perhaps 10 to 15 folks. We all knew something special, transcendent was happening. This disc captures that set just right. Lucky us. Out of their dozens of discs, this is one of the best! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-factorizations.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/factorizations
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=os61eiUPIV4
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYPnk7XI80o
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brBl1kDqhlQ

The full LOFO will be an expanded Leap of Faith with the core ensemble of PEK, Glynis Lomon, Steve Norton and Yuri Zbitnov together with an expanded percussion section, an expanded string section and an expanded wind section plus Sydney Smart (drums) and Eric Zinman (piano) from Glynis’ other band New Language Collaborative.  The percussion section is Metal Chaos Ensemble, the horn section is Turbulence, and the string section is String Theory. 

Starting in June, we’ll do our full first full orchestra performance.   For the full orchestra, I will create a score utilizing frame notation to control who is playing at any given point in the performance with time code displayed to the ensemble.  There will also be some written directions in the score defining pre-planned sonorities and perhaps even some notated lines or harmony.  I used these techniques in Expansions, performed at Mobius in 1994, although that composition included far more notated material that I am likely to use for LOFO.  As of this writing, I have completed a draft of the first of these scores entitled The Expanding Universe.

You can check out the new score here:

The first round of preliminary preparation performances are complete.  Leap of Faith has done duel concerts with New Language Collaborative, Metal Chaos Ensemble, Turbulence and String Theory.  The results of those performances have been documented on the Evil Clown Webpage and on CD / download file issued via Bandcamp.  There will be one more round of these preparation sets before the full orchestra shows in the summer.  

Here’s where to find progress to date…

Abstract Structures - Leap of Faith with New Language Collaborative
     Evil Clown Webpage:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-abstract-structures-1.html
     Bandcamp:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/abstract-structures-volume-1-implementations
                      https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/abstract-structures-volume-2-instantiations

 
Hyperbolic Spirals - Leap of Faith with Metal Chaos Ensemble
     Evil Clown Webpage:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-hyperbolic-spirals.html
     Bandcamp:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/hyperbolic-spirals-volume-1
                      https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/hyperbolic-spirals-volume-2

Flow Regimes - Leap of Faith with Turbulence
     Evil Clown Webpage:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-flow-regimes.html
                    There are a whole bunch of great photos on the web page from Rob Miller.  Thanks Rob!
     Bandcamp:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-1
                      https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-2


And new since the last newsletter:
Supersymmetries – Leap of Faith with String Theory
Evil Clown Webpage:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-supersymmetries.html
Bandcamp:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/supersymmetries-volume-1
                      https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/supersymmetries-volume-2

Turbulence
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds
   Steve Norton - clarinets, saxes
   Charlie Kohlhase - alto and baritone saxes
   Keith Hedger – trumpet
   Bob Moores - trumpet
   Bill Lowe - trombone, tuba
   David Harris - trombone, tuba

String Theory
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds, aquasonic
   Mimi Rabson - violin
   Clara Kebabian - violin, viola
   Glynis Lomon - cello, aquasonic, voice
   Jane Wang - cello
   Kit Demos - bass
   Anthony Leva – bass

Evil Clown 9088
Leap of Faith / String Theory / Leap of Faith Orchestra ‐ Supersymmetries

Volume 1
String Theory
    1) Bosons - 36:57
Leap of Faith
   2) Fermions - 37:57

Volume 2
Leap of Faith Orchestra (Leap of Faith + String Theory)
1) Superpartners

Lily Pad, Cambridge MA
12/15/2015

PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds, sheng, gaunzi, whistles, game calls, shenai, aquasonic, metal, voice (all)
Glynis Lomon - cello, aquasonic, voice (all)
Steve Norton - clarinets, saxes, metal (V1:2, V2)
Yuri Zbitnov - drums, metal, voice (V1:2, V2)
Mimi Rabson - violin, electronics (V1:1, V2)
Clara Kebabian - violin, electronics (V1:1, V2)
Jane Wang - cello (V1:1, V2)
Tony Leva - bass (V1:1, V2)

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-supersymmetries.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/supersymmetries-volume-1
                                https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/supersymmetries-volume-2
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48P2n0ZrXIY
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIu6VlxceCQ
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwDQXrrQJCc

Evil Clown 9083
Leap of Faith / Turbulence ‐ Flow Regimes

Volume 1
Turbulence
    1) Low Momentum Diffusion- 35:25
Leap of Faith
   2) High Momentum Convection- 35:26

Volume 2
Leap of Faith Orchestra (Leap of Faith + Turbulence)
   1) Non-Zero Vorticity - 50:53

Lily Pad, Cambridge MA
10/27/2015

PEK ‐ saxophones, clarinets, double reeds, tromboon, tarogato, aquasonic,
           game calls, metal, voice (all)
Glynis Lomon ‐ cello, aquasonic, voice (V1:2, V2)
Steve Norton ‐ clarinets, saxophones (all)
Yuri Zbitnov ‐ drums, metal, voice (V1:2, V2)
Andria Nicodemou - vibes, metal (V1:2, V2)
Bob Moores - trumpet (V1:1, V2)
​Charlie Kohlhase - saxophones (V1:1, V2)
Dave Harris - tuba, trombone (V1:1, V2)

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-flow-regimes.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-1
                                https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-2
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovKjd_3CZ5I
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PL4vb8pJYC8
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjwmJ8zcyk0





The next set, Metal Chaos Ensemble – Torque, was supposed to have a full ensemble, but it was the night before Thanksgiving and only Yuri and I were on it at the end of the day...  Debut of the new 40 inch Atlantis gong, the new Taiko drum, and the Sheng.  I left a lot delay and signal processing in the mix.  A nice return at the end of the year after a whole bunch of new instruments and development to the duet roots of MCE...  I tacked on the very short MCE trio set with me, Yuri and Kevin from Sonic Osmosis in November to round out the disk.

If your reading this from the webpage and you would like to receive this newsletter via email - send email to me at Sparkles@GiantEvilClown,com


Things have continued to be very busy recently at Evil Clown Headquarters… 

Main links to web content:
     Evil Clown webpage http://www.giantevilclown.com/
     PEK YouTube channel 1 https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCprJy4kMIRs51FIFQF12dw/videos

     PEK YouTube channel 2 https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClfRlTeeHnSxRsJTkFakiJw/videos
     Kevin Reilly YouTube Channel https://www.youtube.com/user/Kjreilly/videos
     Bandcamp, for Streaming, Downloads and CD Orders https://evilclown.bandcamp.com/

 In this newsletter…

1) Upcoming Performances
2) Leap of Faith Orchestra long term plans / Successful fourth performance – Supersymmetries released
3) New Reviews

4) New Releases
5) 3 New Raqib Hassan releases from the Deep Evil Clown Catalog
6) New YouTube videos uploaded

Plus, I wrote a detailed review of the Evil Clown activity during 2015…  Wow, what a year, charging full speed out the gate!  During 2015, Evil Clown produced 33 newly recorded CD length releases, 1 EP and one CD single.   Check out the 2015 review newsletter here: 

http://www.giantevilclown.com/nl-2015-12-26-1.html

The first 20 minutes is all texture and a diffused soundscape. However a culmination of chimes around the 10 minute mark seems to signal a new movement: the mood lightens, the clouds lift, and the pulse quickens. It takes a while for a somewhat anticipated buildup of the wind instruments to occur, but when it does, it's huge. Mixing with the chimes and splashes of sound from the metal, it's really quite moving when it reaches its zenith.  The orchestra is the concept of PEK, saxophonist, percussionist, and visionary of the uncompromisingly free Leap of Faith quartet from Boston.  The core band, is Glynis Lomon on cello, Yuri Zbitnov of drums, and Steve Norton on saxophone, along with PEK. The larger orchestra is the inclusion of another group of PEK's called Metal Chaos Ensemble, which includes Andria Nicodemou, Matt Somalis, and Kevin Dacey on an incredible array of percussion instruments. How LOF works is that there is typically three sets to a show: a guest artist, LoF and then a combined set. This is the combination of PEK's two groups and was recorded live at a church in Somerville, MA in September 2015. - Paul Acquaro CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-hyperbolic-spirals.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/hyperbolic-spirals-volume-2
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sHb_Ez0FvZE

METAL CHAOS ENSEMBLE - Forgings (Evil Clown 9070; USA) Featuring PEK on saxes, clarinets, oboes theremin & synth, Bob Moores on guitar, trumpet & electronics, Matt Samolis on flute & bowed metal, Kevin Dacey drums, percussion & synth and Yuri Zbitnov on drums & percussion. The Metal Chaos Ensemble is Dave PEK's (founder of Leap of Faith) other working unit.​

LEAP OF FAITH - Riemann Surfaces (Evil Clown 9077; USA) Featuring PEK on clarinets, saxes, double reeds, metal & voice Glynis Lomon on cello, aqua sonic & voice, Steve Norton on clarinets, saxes & metal and Yuri Zbitnov on drums, metal & voice. This disc consists of two sets, both recorded in August of 2015, one at New Revolution Arts in Bushwick, Brooklyn, the other at the Lily Pad in Cambridge, MA. ​

4) New Releases 

1) Upcoming Performances

Looking at the last newsletter from early November, I see that I forgot to mention the Flow Regimes show from the Lilypad on 27 October.  This is the third concert preparing for the Leap of Faith Orchestra and features Leap of Faith plus Turbulence (the extended horn section) in the usual two bands play three sets program.  This is the first modern Evil Clown appearance by sax player Charlie Kohlhase and the first appearance by Andria Nicodemou with core Leap of Faith.  Volume two from this show was reviewed (twice) by Bruce above…​

Turbulence
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds
   Steve Norton - clarinets, saxes
   Charlie Kohlhase - alto and baritone saxes
   Bob Moores - trumpet

   Forbes Graham - trumpet

   Sara Honeywell - trombone
   Bill Lowe - trombone, tuba
   David Harris - trombone, tuba

String Theory
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds, aquasonic
   Mimi Rabson - violin
   Clara Kebabian - violin, viola
   Glynis Lomon - cello, aquasonic, voice
   Jane Wang - cello
   Kit Demos - bass
   Anthony Leva – bass

   Kirsten Lamb - bass

Ensembles have been fleshed out for each of the extended sections…

New Language Collaborative
   Glynis Lomon – cello, aquasonic, voice
   Eric Zinman – piano
   Yedidyah Syd Smart - drums

Metal Chaos Ensemble
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds, metal, voice
   Yuri Zbitnov - drums, metal, voice
   Andria Nicodemou - vibes
   Matt Samolis - bowed cymbals, flute, metal
   Kevin Dacey – metal

Leap of Faith, the current quartet version, came out of a long retirement and have been playing gigs again over the past year, mostly in the Boston area as well as a couple in NYC in August. For this two volume set, Leap of Faith played with some kindred spirits named Turbulence, who include Charlie Kohlhase and Ms. Andria Nicodemou. You should recognize the name Charlie Kohlhase who is a longtime member of the Either Orchestra as well working with John Tchicai, Dennis Gonzalez and his own quintet. New young vibist, Andria Nicodemou, is another name to look out for as she has been getting recognition from the Kevin Reilly crew.

Considering that there are some eight musicians involved in the set, there is some spiritual glue that keeps things focused and not completely chaotic. After a somewhat calm intro, the turbulence starts to get more dense when Ms. Lomon's voice kicks things into the next level. The tuba plays a low drone at the bottom as the other horns and percussion play connected layers above. The music is well-balanced and often sounds directed, organically evolving from section to section. I found this set to pretty mesmerizing, never to dense or disturbing. About 51 minutes long and consistently fascinating. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-flow-regimes.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-2
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjwmJ8zcyk0

5) New Raqib Hassan Release from the Deep Evil Clown Catalog

3) New reviews

LEAP OF FAITH - If and Only If... Necessary and Sufficient Conditions – Volume 1 (Evil Clown 9067; USA) Featuring the regular quartet: Dave PEK on reeds, metal & game calls, Glynis Lomon on cello & voice, Steve Norton on clarinets & saxes, Yuri Zbitnov on drums plus Dave Harris on trombone & tuba and Syd Smart on drums & metal. This disc was recorded at the Lily Pad in Cambridge in June of 2015. Besides the regular members of the Leap of Faith quartet, the other name here you might remember of drummer Syd Smart who has been around a long while and has worked with Frank Wright, Raphe Malik and Ted Daniel. ​

Dave PEK, founding member of Leap of Faith, organized the Metal Chaos Ensemble during the past year or so and now have some ten discs out on the Evil Clown label. Each performance they do, whether live or PEK's studio is recorded and soon released. This set is from just three months ago and it is extraordinary. It is well recorded with some expensive gear and balanced just right. The music here has a ritualistic vibe which is often mesmerizing. The blend of several layers of percussion, metals bowed & banged, synth, vibes is like a dream unfolding. The Metal Chaos Ensemble may be one of the best unrecognized units to emerge in a while, they are certainly in top notch form here. The set here by Leap of Faith features the regular quartet: PEK on reeds & metals, Glynis Lomon on cello, Steve Norton on clarinets & saxes and Yuri Zbitnov on drums. Their set on this night starts out quietly, slowly and builds in intensity as it evolves. The quartet version of Leap of Faith came out of retirement over the past year and have been playing more and more both in the Boston area as well as a short trip to New York during the past August (2015). The rare but occasional vocal outbursts come when we least expect and often signal an eruption and a change in direction or increased intensity. A bit scary at times! This is yet another colossal set so don't miss it! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-hyperbolic-spirals.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/hyperbolic-spirals-volume-1
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1TufPh8XTs
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yk7Ggw63I-w

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/mce-torque.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://metalchaosensemble.bandcamp.com/album/torque
YouTube:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCYHAripo90
                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs0Ty4KlPAs    




The next new release is the debut of String Theory, Quantum Chromodynamics, recorded at Evil Clown Headquarters on 9 December…  Glynis and I welcome Evil Clown Newcomers Mimi Rabson and Clara Kebabian.   I very much enjoyed this first set with the strings...   Linear Combinations and Transformations, recorded at Killian Hall MIT in 1997, included a large string section for one piece which I had loved at the time, so my expectations were high and well met by this stellar group.​

STEVE SWELL / LEAP OF FAITH - Factorizations (Evil Clown 9075; USA) Featuring Steve Swell on trombone, Dave PEK on clarinets, saxes, double reeds, taragato, metal & voice, Glynis Lomon cello & voice, Steve Norton on clarinets & saxes and Yuri Zbitnov on drums & metal. In August of this year (2015), the Boston-area based group Leap of Faith came to New York for a weekend to play two gigs. On Saturday, they played at the New Revolution Arts series in Brooklyn and on Sunday at DMG. Both nights followed the same format of Leap of Faith proper, a guest playing solo and then the guest & Leap of faith playing together. This disc features a solo set from Steve Swell and another set with Leap of Faith and Mr. Swell together. The opening set by Leap of Faith alone is found on another recently released CD.​

This disc features one 51-minute set. The spooky sound of bari & other low-end saxes kicks things off in a robust, Sun Ra Arkestra-like way.  Considering that there are some eight musicians involved, the sound is not often very chaotic and has sections of restraint with bent horns and strong textural percussion. On rare occasion a mutant voice might pop out, alerting us to a change in direction. It sounds as if things are moving in slow motion at times, giving things a most hypnotic vibe. All members get a chance to stretch out so we get to hear some inspired playing from the trombone, vibes, cello, assorted reeds and percussion. Things rarely get too dense or difficult yet the free-flowing vibe remains a mostly mesmerizing and tasty stew. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-flow-regimes.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/flow-regimes-volume-2
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjwmJ8zcyk0

Ensembles have been fleshed out for each of the extended sections…

New Language Collaborative
   Glynis Lomon – cello, aquasonic, voice
   Eric Zinman – piano
   Yedidyah Syd Smart - drums

Metal Chaos Ensemble
   PEK - clarinets, saxes, double reeds, metal, voice
   Yuri Zbitnov - drums, metal, voice
   Andria Nicodemou - vibes
   Matt Samolis - bowed cymbals, flute, metal
   Kevin Dacey – metal

LEAP OF FAITH ORCHESTRA - Flow Regimes - Volume 2 (Evil Clown 9084; USA) Featuring Dave PEK on saxes, clarinets, double reeds, taragato, game calls, Glynis Lomon on cello & voice, Steve Norton saxes & clarinets, Charlie Kohlhase on saxes, Bob Moores on trumpet, Dave Harris on tuba & trombone, Andria Nicodemou on vibes & metal and Yuri Zbitnov on drums & metal. This disc was recorded live at the Lily Pad in Cambridge, MA in October of 2015.​

Leap of Faith make each set special by taking their time, listening closely and conversing like friendly spirits. This disc begins with what sounds like distant sirens (a passing ambulance perhaps?) and evolves from there. Ms. Lomon takes the first unaccompanied cello solo, the forces bristling, before the rest of ensemble erupts. Dave Peck's double reeds, Mr. Norton's sax or clarinets, Ms. Lomon's cello, Mr. Harris' trombone and bother/either drummers interact and erupt at times, crazed spirits being set free. There is the occasional weird vocal bits here and there which are brief and always fit just right. Escapees from a loony bin or just musicians who need to be set free..? There are two long sets here clocking in at around 70 minutes total. Can Leap of Faith do it again?!? You bet they can and do! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-if-and-only-if.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/if-and-only-if-neccesary-and-sufficient-conditions-volume-i

 

Leap of Faith will be taking a few months off during January and February but has a full schedule planned for 2016.  Next shows will start in March.  We’ll do some recording with the various groups at Evil Clown Headquarters in the interim.

LOF will be at the Clarendon Church Nave Series on the first Saturday of March, April and May (3/5, 4/2 and 5/7).  Each show will be LOF + one or more of the other sub-units of the Leap of Faith Orchestra (Turbulence, String Theory, Metal Chaos Ensemble and New Language Collaborative) in the usual 2 bands play 3 sets configuration.  In June, July and August, the full orchestra will perform at the church.  I’m still working out the availability of all of the players and will be publishing the ensembles for each date along with posters for the events soon.

We will also do a few shows at the Lilypad at some point to be scheduled.  String Theory will play at Mobius during the late spring / early summer.  I’m trying to schedule another brief tour to NYC for some point in the first half of the year…

Of course, we’ll also have regular recording sessions at Evil Clown Headquarters…  2016 is going to be busy! 

Evil Clown 9087
String Theory - Quantum Chromodynamics

Quantum Chromodynamics - 51:14
Evil Clown Headquarters, Waltham MA
12/9/2015

PEK ‐ clarinet, contrabass clarinet, alto & tenor

     saxophones, contrabassoon, piccolo oboe, gaunzi, sheng,

     goat horn, whistles, game calls, theremin, aquasonic,

     electronics, metal, voice
Glynis Lomon ‐ cello, aquasonic, voice
Mimi Rabson - violin, metal​
Clara Kebabian - viola, metal

6) New YouTube videos uploaded

Evil Clown Newsletter 1/3/2016

More Focused Insanity from the Leap of Faith/Evil Clown Empire:

 LEAP OF FAITH/METAL CHAOS ENSEMBLE - Hyperbolic Spirals Vol. 1 (Evil Clown 9079; USA) This disc consists of two sets from two different ensembles with some shared members, all recorded in one evening (September 12, 2015) in Somerville, MA. The Metal Chaos Ensemble are first and consist of PEK on clarinets, saxes, double reeds, theremin, synth & game calls, Andria Nicodemou on vibes, Matt Samolis, Kevin Dacey & Yuri Zbitnov on drums, metals & percussion. ​

LEAP OF FAITH ORCHESTRA [PEK/ GLYNIS LOMON/STEVE NORTON/ANDRIA NICODEMOU/YURI ZBITNOV/MATT SAMOLIS/KEVIN DACEY] - Hyperbolic Spirals - Volume 2 (Evil Clown 9080; USA) The Leap of Faith Orchestra has cornered the market on the sounds of the subconscious. The orchestra, comprised of woodwinds, cello and a vast array of percussion instruments and beyond, creates a sound that is otherworldly and mesmerizing. Scrapes and clangs of metal, a hybrid cry of rooster and human, fill the opening sequence to Hyperbolic Spirals Vol 2 with a palpable tension.​

Leap of Faith Orchestra – Flow Regimes
   Turbulence Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovKjd_3CZ5I
   Leap of Faith Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PL4vb8pJYC8
   Leap of Faith Orchestra Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjwmJ8zcyk0

Metal Chaos Ensemble – Torque
   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCYHAripo90
   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rs0Ty4KlPAs

String Theory – Quantum Chromodynamics
   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqJIivu5INM

Leap of Faith Orchestra – Supersymmetries
   String Theory Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48P2n0ZrXIY
   Leap of Faith Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIu6VlxceCQ
   Leap of Faith Orchestra Set:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PwDQXrrQJCc


Sparkles Out...

Bandcamp:  https://raqibhassan.bandcamp.com/album/another-plane-tribute-to-sun-ra-volume-1
                      https://raqibhassan.bandcamp.com/album/another-plane-tribute-to-sun-ra-volume-2
Evil Clown page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/rh-another-plane.html   


RAQIB HASSAN & ENSEMBLE MOGRA - Another Plane (Vol. 1) - A Tribute to Sun Ra (Evil Clown 5009; USA) Featuring Raqib Hassan on tenor sax & mussette, Dave PEK on bari sax, bass clarinet & bassoon, Michael Shea on piano, Tor Snyder on guitar, Khaliq Fulani on violin, Glynis Lomon on cello, Larry Roland on bass, Trevor Daniels on African percussion, Lawrence Cook, Sydney Smart & Yuri Zbitnov on drums. Besides the dozens of disc by Leap of Faith on the Evil Clown label, Dave Peck has also released a number of side-projects like the Metal Chaos Ensemble and now this Ensemble Mogra.  Three members of LoF are here:  PEK, Ms. Lomon & Mr. Zbitnov. I hadn't heard of their leader reedman Raqib Hassan before (aside from a session with Rakalam Moses) or some of the side-folks like Michael Shea, Khaliq Fulani or Trevor Daniels. I do know of Tor Snyder & Larry Roland from various sessions in NYC, as well as the other two Boston-area based drummers Cook and Smart, both of whom have been around a long time. Another new name is pianist Michael Shea who gets the opening solo and sounds great. Right from the beginning, this music has a sublime, spiritual quality often found in the music of John Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders and Sun Ra. This is cosmic sounding free/jazz with layers of spiraling reeds, strings and percussion.

The music flows organically and feels so good to bathe in. The Mogra Ensemble conclude with two standards covered by Trane & Sun Ra: "Afro Blue" and "Over the Rainbow". The modal piano, doubled reeds, strings and multiple drummers sound strong, spirited and focused here although they are on the verge of erupting. This set is much different from anything we've heard from the Leap of Faith folks before. The vibe makes me feel good as it rains down on me or us or whoever chooses to listen. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

RAQIB HASSAN & ENSEMBLE MOGRA - Another Plane - Volume 2 (Evil Clown 5010; USA) This set was recorded at the Western Front in Cambridge in July of 1998 and the personnel is nearly the same as Volume 1: Raqib Hassan on tenor sax & mussette, Dave PEK on bari sax, bass clarinet & bassoon, Michael Shea on piano, Tor Snyder on guitar, Khaliq Fulani on violin, Glynis Lomon on cello, Larry Roland on bass, Trevor Daniels on African percussion, Lawrence Cook, Sydney Smart & Yuri Zbitnov on drums; plus Sam Lobel on tenor sax and Dennis Warren on drums on one piece each. Also like Volume 1, this disc is also a tribute to Sun Ra which begins with a fine cover of Mr. Ra's "Space is the Place". Like a Sun Ra concert, this ensemble starts off with a spirited vocal, hand-clapping version of this infectious Ra gem. It sounds as if the band and audience are feeling the spirit and grooving together, traveling the spaceways. Eventually all of the horns, strings and drummer erupt into a powerful mass, so watch out as the heavens part. I dig the sound of those massed reeds & drums: flutes, saxes, double reeds & several drummers all swirling intensely around one another. Incredible! There are a couple of bonus tracks included here, one of which is from the leader Raqib Hassan with another ensemble called Cosmocentric, which again sounds like similar Sun Ra-like cosmic weirdness, layers of reeds, percussion and other free spirits unleashed. This band and this disc do capture the space-flight ascension of where Sun Ra and his Arkestra left off..! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10er

I was at the set in Brooklyn and I recall it very well since it was one of the most intense music experiences I've attended in a long while! This is the regular Leap of Faith quartet with no guests and they are in wonderful form here! Both sets are long (35+ & 32+ minutes) and wind their way through a variety of sections. Dave Peck brought with him a relatively small number of reeds than his usual mass at home, perhaps a dozen here. Mr. Peck would start with one reed at a time, working his way through them all over the evening. The night also consisted of a solo trombone set from Steve Swell plus Mr. Swell sitting in with LoF on their second set. This was the first set that night and it was a gas! Ms. Lomon played mainly cello (immensely well!), standing up with occasional weird vocals and something known as aquasonic which is like a metal vase which is bowed. Mr. Norton also just played one sax or a couple of clarinets, taking his time on each one. Mr. Zbitnov is one of the best (lesser known) drummers I've caught in a long while and was integral to the group magic/dynamic. Things build here to an intense frenzy which is almost too much at times yet is still transcendent its own weird way. Both of the sets here capture Leap of Faith at their best, focused, spirited and likely to blow your minds inside-out! This is my favorite of the dozen or so discs I've reviewed of their so far! - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10

Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/lof-riemann-surfaces.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://leapoffaith1.bandcamp.com/album/riemann-surfaces
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a1w4fx4CZjo
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_VAdJVRPA3Y

 ​

2) Leap of Faith Orchestra long term plans / 

LEAP OF FAITH ORCHESTRA - Flow Regimes Volume 2 (Evil Clown 9084; USA) The Leap of Faith Orchestra features PEK on multiple reeds & double reeds & game calls, Glynis Lomon on cello & voice, Steve Norton on saxes & clarinets, Andria Nicodemou on vibes, Bob Moores on trumpet, Charlie Kohlhase on saxes, Dave Harris on tuba & trombone and Yuri Zbitnov on drums & metal. This set was recorded at the Lily Pad in Cambridge, MA in October of 2015, not very long ago. Since coming out of retirement, Leap of Faith, have been playing live more often and have done a number of sets with other like-minded guests and ensembles. Here, LoF combine forces with another Boston area based band called Turbulence. The one member of which I am previously familiar is saxist Charlie Kohlhase, who has worked with Either Orchestra, John Tchicai and Dennis Gonzalez.​

During the 90s, Glynis and I played quite a bit with the great saxophonist Raqib Hassan.  I met Yuri while doing shows with Raqib.  Raqib was an amazing composer and his ensembles were much more jazz than most of the work that I have done or that is out on Evil Clown. 

Raqib studied with Bill Thompson, Archie Shepp and Roland Wiggins and performed with Rashied Ali among many others.

Rashied has this to say about Raqib: "I first met Raqib in the Summer of 1979 through bass violinist Hakim Jami, manager of the Ladies Fort, a club, now defunct, originally founded by jazz vocalist Joe Lee Wilson. We performed that year together in Tompkins Square in Greenwich Village with Mr. Jami’s band. At Raqib’s invitation we reunited in 1990 to perform downstairs at the Middle East Restaurant in Cambridge alongside additional locally based musicians. Raqib is a welcome addition to the ever growing pool of composer/musicians on the planet. I commend his commitment to the spiritual and musical development."

Archie has this to say about Raqib: "I have known Mr. Hassan for more than a decade. He studied music performance and theory with me. He is knowledgeable about the styles of all the players from Parker to Albert Ayler. He possesses an approach - a musical philosophy of his own which is both unique and original. I wish him well in his endeavors."

Raqib, who unfortunately passed several years ago, was a mentor to me in developing my mature style after arriving in Boston to study with George Garzone at Berklee. I was honored to perform with Raqib a number of times both in his large band Ensemble Mogra and his smaller group Cosmocentric Trio and to have him play with me for my major work, Expansions, performed in 1994. Raqib was widely respected as a composer and performer in the Boston area, but never received the wide recognition he deserved. Raqib's music is much more to the Jazz end of the improvisation world than the bulk of the Evil Clown catalog. After his passing, I spoke with his brother and got permission to put out to the world recordings that I have of Raqib's music - hopefully this will help to reveal the contributions of this master musician to a larger audience. To date, I have put out 4 discs on Evil Clown, with probably about 8 more to come....

The new release this time is Enlightment…


Evil Clown 5008
Raqib Hassan & Cosmocentric - Enlightenment

1) Enlightenment (trio) - 24:50
2) Space is the Place (Sun Ra) - 18:52
3) Enlightenment (duet) - 17:11
4) Cogito Ergo Sum - 15:39
     Mass College of Art, Boston MA - 11/22/1998

Raqib Hassan - tenor sax, mussette (1-3)
PEK - bass clarinets, baritone saxophone, bassoon (2,4)
Sharrahn - flute, digital delay (1,3)
Yuri Zbitnov - percussion (1,2)


Evil Clown Page:  http://www.giantevilclown.com/rh-cosmocentric---enlgihtenment.html
Bandcamp Page:  https://raqibhassan.bandcamp.com/album/enlightenment
YouTube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHnH4j8mFV8
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGESdAV-N90
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udDgdHikpfE
                   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HV5p-pX6dF0

Now, kind words from Bruce Lee Gallanter about Enlightenment, recorded live in performance at the Mass College of Art, Boston MA on 11/22/1998...

RAQIB HASSAN & COSMOCENTRIC - Enlightenment (Evil Clown 5008; USA) Featuring Raqib Hassan on tenor sax & mussette, PEK on bass clarinets, bari sax & bassoon, Sharrahn on flute & delay and Yuri Zbitnov on percussion. I recently reviewed two discs from Raqib Hassan, a Boston-area based saxist who is highly influenced by Sun Ra, both discs were tributes to the mysterious Mr. Ra. This disc features just a quartet (as opposed to the octet of the other discs) and was recorded at the Mass College of Art in November of 1998. This is the smallest number of musicians for anything that has been released & reviewed on the Evil Clown label. Once Mr. Hassan covers a Sun Ra song, the call sic, "Space is the Place". Unlike Leap of Faith, who do their best to provide nightmarishly intense free/music improvisations, Mr. Hassan's music has a somewhat more calm and spiritual center. The long opening track, "Enlightenment" flows nicely with two saxes, flute and minimal percussion. The music reminds of one of those more laid back Pharaoh Sanders sessions from the late sixties but without any screaming saxes. Longtime Leap of Faith drummer, Yuri Zbitnov, is in fine form here playing some superb, mallet-work, sometimes sublime and rich in nuance. Mr. Hassan's warm toned tenor and flutist Sharran, who uses an echo device and does a great job of adding several layers of lines like bees buzzing around a hive. "Space is the Place", a fave Sun Ra tune of many, starts with fine, sly snake-charming mussette (middle-eastern double reed), before spinning out to space in a frenzy activity and chanting, "The skies are always blue on Jupiter".  Another swell, cosmic classic from the inspired crazies at Evil Clown enterprises. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG CD $10



Bruce also reviewed both volumes of Another Plane which was introduced in the last newsletter ... A two CD set recorded in the late 90s by the great Raqib Hassan and Ensemble Mogra...  I think I have video of this performance which will eventually make it to YouTube.

In November, I sent Bruce Lee Gallanter a big box of 17 titles, 14 recorded in 2015 by current Evil Clown ensembles and 3 from the 90s period from the great Raqib Hassan who I was privileged to play with many times.  The amazing Bruce has been reviewing a few titles for each weekly Downtown Music Gallery newsletter and has reviewed 10 of the titles I sent him already!  2015 titles are reviewed in this section and the Raqib titles below in the Raqib section (5).​

Evil Clown 9086
​Metal Chaos Ensemble - Torque

1) SproKets - 51:15
     Evil Clown Headquarters - 11/25/2015
2) Gears 15:14
     Sonic Osmosis IV
     Out of the Blue Gallery ‐ 11/4/2015

PEK - contra-alto clarinet, contra-bass clarinet, piccolo oboe, tenor sax, alto sax, clarinet, alto clarinet, guanzi, sheng, shenai, korg ms-20, aquasonic, theremin, metal, game calls, whistles, voice, electronics (1,2)
Kevin Dacey - metal, siren (2)
Yuri Zbitnov - metal, drums, Daiko, Indian festival, aquasonic, voice (1,2)

​On Leap of Faith: "Alien yet familiar, bizarre yet completely fascinating. Expanding, contracting, erupting, settling down, always as one force..." - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG