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Soundohm

Monoceros - excerpt 1
Monoceros - excerpt 2
Monoceros - excerpt 3

Evan Parker

Monoceros (LP)

Label: Treader

Format: LP

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**Milestone reissue! His monumental LP of solo soprano saxophone improvisations, recorded direct-cut and issued by Incus in 1978. Lovingly reissued by Treader using the original stampers, in a gorgeous hand-assembled sleeve, with glossy front and matt back, flaps out. Unmissable.** Evan Parker's monolithic 1978 solo record Monoceros was originally released on Incus in 1978, and distinguishes itself in several respects: first, because it was recorded by the direct-cut process, whereby the sound pathway went directly from the microphone to a vinyl master. By virtue of eliminating the tape intermediate, the hope was to reduce noise and limit the need for processing and filters. The important functional consequence of this technology was that the musician (and the technicians) had to get it right the first time. In the context of free improvisation, direct-cut served as self-imposed discipline for purists only. In the present day, this process is mostly obsolete.

In the pantheon of saxophone colossi, there is a special place reserved for Evan Parker. Taking late Coltrane as his jumping off point, Parker has expanded the language of the saxophone as much as anyone over the past three decades. A central figure in the European Free Improv scene alonside Derek Bailey, Peter Brotzmann, John Stevens, Alexander von Schlippenbach and many others, Parker has been a significant force for creative music in an astonishing array of settings.

"Eight years after Topography Of The Lungs, and two years after his Saxophone Solos, Monoceros was the most muscular statement of Evan Parker's solo saxophone muse. Superbly recorded, it seemed to place the listener within the chaotic air flows of the saxophone’s own tubing. Philip Clark said: “Parker’s dialogue with the saxophone throws up so much that is unexpected, and indeed unknowable, that the problem he faces is how to keep pace with his own invention.” TheWire Best Albums of 2015

Parker uses rapid tonguing techniques and circular breathing to create a sound all his own, marked by the simultaneous intonation of multiple notes. One hears a note as well as all the residual tones around it; each breath ends up sounding like a battle between the different registers of the horn. At various times, Parker’s saxophone sounds like dolphin speech, electronic tape squeals, or human murmurs; namely, anything but what it actually is. His language on the instrument is essential listening for anyone interested in acoustic experimental music’ (AllMusic).

Details
Cat. number: TRDLP008
Year: 2020
Genre: Jazz