Boomkat Product Review:
An exceptional selection of Charlemagne Palestine music dating back to 1974, this Alga Marghen edition presents previously unavailable recordings that feature such luminaries of the American avant-garde as Tony Conrad, Rhys Chatham, Terry Jennings and Robert Feldman. "'Short & Sweet' is the title of a breathtaking duo for piano and sax performed on April 24th by Charlemagne Palestine and Terry Jennings. The two composers happened to play together in very private concerts at Cal Arts, but never recorded those sessions, until a special day when Charlemagne happened to have a little tape recorder around. The recording was considered lost for more than 30 years, when finally a copy was found thanks to Tony Conrad. The piano part reminds some of the early pieces by Charlemagne Palestine titled 'Piano Drones' (as the one pre-dating of a couple of years this duo and presented on the Continuous Sound Forms CD issued on Alga Marghen. The liner notes of the same CD mention this duo with Terry Jennings at the time considered lost). Terry Jennings' soprano sax is very elaborated and decorative. Around 1967, Charlemagne was experimenting mainly with voice and electronics. He also occasionally recorded piano and sax improvisations with his friend Bob Feldman. This CD featured a very special duo by Palestine and Feldman playing electronics and flute. The two artists met in 1961 when Bob Feldman worked in a jazz record shop in the Times Square subway station. Palestine didn't know much about jazz and Feldman guided him through the new progressive jazz styles of the times. Later at the Intermedia Center of NYU where they had a Buchla synthesizer, Charlemagne and Bob Feldman experimented between jazz raga and electronics. Very little was recorded. This is one rare duet that dates probably from around 1967. The last track on this CD is the first 30 minutes of a recording from April 22, 1974 by The Fundamental D Flat Group performing in Db. During one trip back to NYC from Cal Arts, Charlemagne Palestine was invited by Tony Conrad (together with Rhys Chatham) to Albright College in New Jersey for a Sunday afternoon concert. That was the first and last time The Fundamental D Flat Group played in public (Tony Conrad: violin, horn, string drone; Rhys Chatham: flute, organ, string drone; Charlemagne Palestine: voice, pipes, snifter). Although the piece lasted all afternoon, the first 30 minutes were the only portion recorded during the performance. The Fundamental D Flat Group invite you to listen and meditate in the mode of Db. To hear this is to enter the deepest realm of knowledge of the sound current. The ear, the understanding, and the core of the spirit resonate to the mode of the single tone and its harmonic family."