Tuvan throat singer, percussionist and shaman Gendos Chamzyryn died from a heart attack on 18 June, aged 49. He is best known to western audiences for his work in K-Space, a group he formed with the improvising musicians Ken Hyder and Tim Hodgkinson.
Chamzyryn came from the rural region of Shui, West Tuva. His work as a folk (and, latterly, experimental) musician was always entwined with his deep involvement in shamanic practices. When he moved to the Tuvan capital Kyzyl in the 1980s he encountered the local rock scene, joining and becoming a key member of the avant garde shamanic group Biosintes in 1990. As well as a singer, he was a multi-instrumentalist, folk musician and improvisor. Like Sainkho Namtchylak (with whom he has recorded), he developed a distinctive way of working across traditional and experimental genres. He met Hyder and Hodgkinson in 1992, and in 1996 the three of them formed K-Space, a remarkable shamanic improvising trio.
Chamzryn had a flourishing solo career, as well as playing with numerous ensembles, including rock group Gen-DOS, Darky Medvedev, Alexej Saaia (formerly of Yat-Kha) and Igor Karalaev, and UGAAN, a folk-electronic collaboration with Polish musician Darek Makaruk.
"Gendos was instantly a brother to Tim Hodgkinson and me when we began playing together in K-Space,” commented Hyder. “We learned from each other. We were not identical characters. What bound us together was the spiritual aspect of all we did.
"We built on that accumulated shamanic approach and understanding, reaching a point on our last album Black Sky [recorded live in Sicily] where we might play individually in different tempi, say, then come together in the pocket, before moving on to something else. It was all improvised and seamless."
By Will Montgomery
Bristol space rock outfit Flying Saucer Attack are set to release their first album in 15 years via Domino Records. The album, entitled Instrumentals, is a collection of solo pieces recorded by guitarist David Pearce and follows 2000’s Mirror.
Founded in 1992, Flying Saucer Attack pioneered a feedback drenched form of “rural psychedelia” (a slogan printed on the sleeve of their 1993 self-titled debut album) influenced by Syd Barrett, The Jesus And Mary Chain and Popol Vuh, and became known for their avowedly lo-fi recording aesthetic. Like the rest of their output, Instrumentals was home recorded on basic equipment.
Pearce’s most recent release (aside from an FSA track on a 2008 compilation themed around the works of James Joyce) was a collaboration with US musician Jessica Bailiff released under the name Clear Horizon via Kranky in 2003. Instrumentals is released on 17 July.
The London based improv and folk series Muckle Mouth has announced its plans for July and August.
Founded in 2014, Muckle Mouth’s aim is to bring together folk music and experimental artistic practice through live music, performance and film.
Taking place at the recently opened DIY events space The Laughing Bell in South London, the programme is launched on 2 July with performances from The Dan Haywood Band, Nick Jonah David and Ewan Wotherspoon. It continues with Ashley Paul (9), C Joynes & Dead Rat Orchestra (22), Ben Pritchard (29), Daniel Voigt and Isnaj Dui (23 August) and more. A full list of dates and artists can be found here.
Cinema Soloriens, aka Sun Ra Arkestra leader Marshall Allen and James Harrar, are raising funds to release an LP featuring the late Daevid Allen of Gong and 808 State’s Graham Massey, plus Paddy Steer, David Birchall and Richard Harrison.
Recorded in Manchester, the set is now available as a download for $9.99. They eventually intend to bring it out as an LP called Cult Of St Margaret. Ordering details here.
In other Marshall Allen news, the saxophonist has recorded new versions of The Heliocentric Worlds Of Sun Ra Volumes 1 & 2 with Arkestra member Danny Thompson. The new sessions were recorded with Allen playing the same instruments but not the same music as the original pieces to “assemble the sonic palette of the original recordings”. The rest of the original instrumentation was painstakingly recreated by a cast of New York musicians. The original Heliocentric Worlds LPs were released on ESP-Disk’. Coincidentally, these new versions were recorded on the same day that ESP founder Bernard Stollman died.
Marshall Allen's Heliocentric Worlds will be released in November. More details here.
Sunn O))) have uploaded almost 70 live recordings to a new Bandcamp account. The audio is unmixed and unmastered, and it’s sourced from audience recordings dating back to 2002.
Sunn O))) are inviting fans with complete recordings to submit them to the archive with any images taken at the show. They’ll be added to the archive, which will stay separate from the main Sunn O))) downloads page. Each show is available to download for $5. More info here.
Lightning Bolt bassist Brian Gibson has designed a “rhythm violence” computer game called Thumper. In the game, players control a space beetle which is careening towards a giant floating monster head, controlled via a thumbstick and single button on the control pad.
The game is being released by Gibson's computer game design company, Drool, which he runs with Marc Flury. The pair previously worked at Harmonix, the company behind the Guitar Hero series of games. Thumper will be available on Playstation 4 and Steam in 2016. Watch a trailer below, and read more about Drool here.
Newcastle upon Tyne’s Tusk festival has found a new venue. Now in its fifth edition, the three day series of music events, talks and films will be housed in Gateshead Old Town Hall. Tusk’s previous home, Newcastle’s volunteer-run Star And Shadow cinema, has been asked to vacate its property.
The first wave of acts just announced includes Magic Science Quartet featuring Henry Grimes and Marshall Allen, Maurice Louca, Sax Ruins, Demdike Stare, Sleeparchive and Aaron Dilloway.
Tusk takes place between 9–11 October. More information can be found here.
For the listening room, the magazine’s editor Chris Bohn will compile a playlist of new music from the Japanese underground, which visitors to the shop will be able to access online and listen to in situ. Meanwhile, the room’s shelving will be stocked with a selection of vinyl, CDs and small press music publications for visitors to listen to and browse. Beverages will be served by Postcard Teas.
Vitsoe, which is known for making the furniture designed by the pioneering German industrial designer Dieter Rams, is based at 3–5 Duke Street, London W1. The listening room will be open between 19–27 September, Mon to Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 11am-4pm.
Composer, French horn player and writer Gunther Schuller died in Boston in June. His death was caused by complications of leukemia. Born in New York in 1925, Schuller worked across jazz and classical music. But he started out as a classical musician, becoming principal French horn of The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra at the age of 17.
In the late 1950s he defined what he called “Third Stream”, which referred to a style of music inbetween jazz and classical music. His notion of Third Stream put a positive spin on the often negative response many critics took to such a musical fusion. Rather than treating it as something which was not jazz music played by classical musicians, nor the reverse, Third Stream was an attempt to bridge the gap and develop appreciation between musicians working in different genres.
Schuller collaborated with many musicians, composers and singers, including Maria Callas, Frank Sinatra, Charles Mingus, Ran Blake, Bill Evans, Stravinsky and Toscanini. He also played horn on Miles Davis’s Porgy And Bess and the final Birth Of The Cool session. As a writer, his published works included two histories of jazz (Early Jazz and The Swing Era), as well as a sizeable autobiography (A Life In Pursuit Of Music And Beauty). He won many awards, including the Pulitzer Prize in 1994 for his composition Of Reminiscences And Reflections, and he was made a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 1991.
Wire writer, Cocaine Blunts founder and hip hop journalist Andrew Nosnitsky and rap tape collector 12 Man Rambo have opened a record shop in Oakland, California. As might be expected from such a team up, Park Blvd Records & Tapes looks to have a sizeable stock of rap tapes, as well as vinyl and CDs.