Glenn Brown & Intergalactic Spiral
is an all improvised cosmic jazz ensemble that eschews charts and changes for spur-of-the-moment musical explorations inwards (imagination
) and outwards (interstellar space
The brainchild of studio owner / producer / acoustician / musician Glenn Brown, the concept is simple: Gather some of the most accomplished musicians from the potent local scene (including all three members of Big O Records artist organissimo
!), throw various combinations of those musicians into the studio, and press record
Over the course of four years, Glenn organized four recording sessions, each producing several hours of music. This debut CD features tracks from each of the four sessions. Each song was completely improvised on the spot, with no preconceived notions. The only direction came in the form of small slips of paper, randomly pulled from a vase by each member before each song, containing a unique 'modifier', that would influence the musician's behavior during the take. Modifiers included phrases like "The Sun" or "leave space" or "play uncomfortably". The most famous modifier, pulled by guitarist Robert Tye, said simply "play in the bathroom". You can hear the "bathroom guitar" (literally Robert playing guitar in the studio's restroom) on the song Grandma's Attic, from the second session.
The opening piece, Intergalactic Suite, is a three part small group performance captured during Session 3 and was indeed the first piece the musicians played that day, all improvised. The swirling, 50's sci-fi sound of the mighty Buchla CM100 modular synthesizer opens the suite, setting the tone for an intergalactic journey from our own solar system, into the inner chambers of the Milky Way, and finally towards the giant pulsating black hole at the center of our galaxy, represented in Part III (Leo's Revenge!)
Grandma's Attic, from Session 2, slowly opens the creaky access door into a dusty room of forgotten memorabilia & actual memories of a long, storied life.
Clown Bicycle is a conceptual rhythmic exercise suggested by veteran organissimo drummer Randy Marsh during Session 1 that melds seamlessly into an avant-funk groove, ripe with wild & fantastic solos by reedman Mark Kieme.
The closing piece from Session 4, 500 Parsecs From Home, opens with a NASA recording of our Sun, transposed into the audible frequency range. The piece opens slowly, ethereally and ends with a sense of discovery and wonder.
1) Intergalactic Suite, Part I (9:53)
2) Intergalactic Suite, Part II (6:08)
3) Intergalactic Suite, Part III (8:12)
4) Grandma's Attic (6:23)
5) Clown Bicycle (7:12)
6) 500 Parsecs From Home (12:19)
Glenn Brown & Intergalactic Spiral - 001 features:
Glenn Brown - Buchla CM100 modular synthesizer, guitar, percussion, effects, engineering, mixing, mastering
Jim Alfredson - Hammond organ, synthesizers, organ & synth bass (tracks 1, 2, & 3), Wurlitzer & Rhodes electric pianos
Chuck Bartels - bass (tracks 5 & 6)
Joe Gloss - guitar
Mark Kieme - woodwinds
Randy Marsh - drums (track 5)
James Simonson - bass (track 4)
David Taylor - drums (tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, & 6)
Robert Tye - guitar & effects (tracks 4 & 5)
Front image (the POD!) courtesy of Jim Colando
Design and layout by Jim Alfredson with help from Glenn & Susan Brown
Recorded, mixed, & mastered at GBP in East Lansing utilizing the NEVE 8068 mixing console & Prism ADA-8XR Dream Converters
This product was added to our catalog on Friday 01 October, 2010.