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REVIEW: Hiromi’s Sonicbloom @ Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley (Seattle, WA – 6/16/09)

17th Jun 09 (Wed) Leave a comment

FYI… PHOTOS of the SHOW at the BOTTOM

Well, I’d never been to Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley.  It’s an amazing little room (maybe 200 seats) with dinner served if you show up early.  Plus, in downtown Seattle, it offers free parking.  Yeah, you read that correctly – free parking. :)  Anyway, I showed up shortly after 6pm after fighting with traffic heading through Tacoma and into Seattle.  I got seated right up front, which was also the benefit of showing up early for the dinner & show deal.  Fantastic food, and wonderful staff!  The venue earns an A+!!  I hope they bring in some more choice acts… it was worth the trip.

Hiromi Uehara and Sonicbloom took the stage around 7:40.  The band was Hiromi on piano (a Steinway & Sons, if I recall correctly) & keyboards (3 different keyboards/syths), Tony Grey on 6-string electric bass, Dave Fiuczynski on double-neck guitar (12 string on top, 7 string on bottom), and Mauricio Zottarelli on drums.  Both Tony & Dave played on Hiromi’s two Sonicbloom records.  Actually, Tony played with Hiromi on her last four records (not just the recent Sonicbloom moniker).

As a band, they were pretty tight.  I liked Tony a lot on bass.  He had a nice groove, and his “mouthing” of the solos was fun, too.  Maurice was also great, but he was shielded from me for most of the night from an older “bigger hair” couple; so I didn’t catch many glimpses of him.  Dave was good, too… but sometime he got too “noodley” versus what the band was doing.  His solos weren’t great in my opinion, but when he was playing lead, his playing worked well.  Maybe guitar in a jazz quartet wasn’t my thing this time around.

As far as setlist, no luck.  Hiromi only announced one song from the stage: “Time Travel” from Time Control (the 2007 Sonicbloom record).  I’m pretty sure that they didn’t play “XYZ” (or the variation “XYG”).  That was a bummer, but not too much of a bummer – as the show was amazing all around.

They played a few standards, one that the name is on the tip of my tongue, but I can’t for the life of me remember it.  I can hear it still in my head (doo doo doo, doop doop doodle doop).  Damn, there are too many songs in my head and barely any names.  Hiromi also played a solo classical piece that was very familiar, but again, I’m drawing a blank.  Regardless of song names, Hiromi’s handwork is amazing.  I swear, I don’t know how she can pull off playing two different melodies at the same time with different hands.  Anyway, the whole group was an amazing bunch of musicians.  Most of the show was pretty jammy, but had elements of straight ahead jazz, and again some classical.

They’re playing again at the Jazz Alley as I type this… if anyone went tonight (June 17th), let me know how it went.

For the uninitiated to Hiromi, check out the video electronic press kit for Beyond Standard featuring “XYG“:

Or check out the video for “Time Difference“…

The Appropriate Linkage:

~Dan – np: Anakronic Electro-OrchestraThe Yiddish Part -EP-

HIROMI’s SONICBLOOM PHOTOS
all pictures (cc) 2009 Daniel Temmesfeld,
you may use freely under a creative commons attribution

(click for larger)

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ha’fway

30th Jun 08 (Mon) 3 comments

(Sub)consciously prompted by this music blog, here are my favs of the first half of 2008… it’s all bound to switch around by year’s end:

Artist Album (label)

  1. The Secret Chiefs 3 play Masada Book Two: Book of Angels, Vol. 9: Xaphan (Tzadik)
  2. The Bar Kokhba Sextet play Masada Book Two: Book of Angels, Vol. 10: Lucifer (Tzadik)
  3. My Brightest Diamond A Thousand Shark’s Teeth (Asthmatic Kitty)
  4. Opeth Watershed (RoadRunner)
  5. Earth The Bees Make Honey in the Lion’s Skull (Southern Lord)
  6. Dave Douglas & Keystone Live at Jazz Standard, 4/10/2008 to 4/13/2008 (2 sets each night = 8 CDs worth, each set downloadable within 24 hours of the performance… cool stuff…) (Green Leaf)
  7. Sigur Rós Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust (XL)
  8. Reptet Chicken or Beef? (Monktail Creative Music Concern)
  9. John Zorn’s The Dreamers (Tzadik)
  10. King’s X XV (Inside Out)
  11. Glen Phillips (of Toad the Wet Sprocket) Secrets of the New Explorers -EP- (Umami)
  12. Ashes Divide (Bill Howerdel of A Perfect Circle) Keep Telling Myself It’s Alright (Island)
  13. Mike Patton A Perfect Place (Ipecac)
  14. Puscifer V is for Viagra – The Remixes (Puscifer)
  15. Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey Lil’ Tae Rides Again (Hyena)
  16. Bill Frisell History, Mystery (Nonesuch)
  17. Steven Bernstein (of Sex Mob) Diaspora Suite (Tzadik)
  18. Hiromi Beyond Standard (Telarc)
  19. Stebmo Stebmo (Stebmo)
  20. Bobby Previte & New Bump New Bump: Set the Alarm for Monday (Palmetto)
  21. Swami Late Plate (Previte & Saft) Doom Jazz (Veal)
  22. Porcupine Tree We Lost the Skyline -EP- (Transmission)
  23. Raquy and the Cavemen Mischief (Meef)
  24. Aimee Mann @#%&*! Smilers (Super Ego)
  25. Kaki King Dreaming of Revenge (Velour)

The 2nd half of 2008 promises to bring some potential great ones, too… Medeski Martin & Wood play John Zorn’s Masada Book Two, 3 other Medeski Martin & Wood albums (later in the year), Secret Chiefs 3 Book of Souls (maybe), God of Shamisen debut, Extreme Saudades de Rock, Mike Patton‘s Mondo Cane, Mike Patton & Dan the Automator’s Crudo, a new Sufjan Stevens (just speculating, since it’s been a while), Ben Folds is working on one, Ani DiFranco always has something coming out, Jude‘s Cuba, Jon Madof‘s CircuitBreaker debut (and maybe another Rashanim?), The Tango Saloon‘s Transylvania, new Tristeza, Over the Rhine Live from Nowhere III, David Bazan full-length, George Hrab (maybe?), SFJazz 2008 with Dave Douglas & Joe Lovano and others, Frank Zappa‘s One Shot Deal, another installment of the John Zorn avant-metal trio of Mike Patton/Trevor Dunn/Joey Baron… and I’m sure another dozen or more that I’ll dig from Tzadik.

~Dan – np: ReptetChicken or Beef?

<prelim.oh.seven.fav.list>

5th Jan 08 (Sat) Leave a comment

Well, my 17-day vacation/ holiday break/ hustle-and-rent-the-house-2,600-miles-away trip went well… alas, my oft “too time consuming” year-end list of all that is fantastic to my ears is not done/barely started.

Now that I’ll be back to school, I’ll have some time to re-listen to my 2007 music. Expect something in mid-to-late January (perhaps). In the meantime, for those that care (all 2 of you)… here are some preliminary choice tunes from last year (in no particular order, except for likely the 1st two):

1. SilverchairYoung Modern
2. RadioheadIn Rainbows

WussyLeft for Dead
Ken Andrews (from Failure/On/Year of the Rabbit) – Secrets of the Lost Satellite
Puscifer (Maynard from Tool) – V is For Vagina
Elliott SmithNew Moon
AntibalasSecurity
Explosions in the SkyAll of a Sudden I Miss Everyone
HiromiTime Control
Holy FuckHoly Fuck LP2
Marc RibotMasada Book Two: Book of Angels, Vol. 7 (Asmodeus)
John ZornSix Litanies for Heliogabalus
Dave Douglas & KeystoneMoonshine
The Lithuanian EmpireThe Lithuanian Empire

The full “Top ??” list will be jam-packed with more info, pictures, and links than you cared to know about said artists… as I would have it no. other. way.

~Dan – np: Gaston Zirko‘s experimental music on myspace

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