Friday, October 25, 2013

Ivo Perelman A Violent Dose Of Anything

Late next month I will publish a retrospective of Ivo Perelman's work over the last year. For now this is some information on the soundtrack for A Violent Dose Of Anything. This particular recording is one of the year end best for 2013 here at If you would like to bid on an autographed Ivo Perelman disc used to raise funds for my medical expenses you can contact me at  opening bid is 75 dollars.

This album comprises the first of two recording sessions used in the soundtrack for A Violent Dose Of Anything, a 2013 film from Brazilian director Gustavo Galvao. When Galvao approached Perelman about creating music for the film - which follows some young Brazilians "on the road," going from town to town in a quest for self-discovery - the saxophonist at first demurred. Perelman's preferred method of creating music is to walk into the studio with no preconceptions (not even a written theme) and improvise, from scratch for an hour or so. Nothing could stray further from the usual movie-soundtrack process, by which a composer painstakingly fits and shapes music to fit the split-second edits of the finished film.
"I told him how I would work, with nothing written, and music not tied to each scene," says Perelman. "And I would just go into the studio and make the music, like I always do, and he could pick and choose what he wanted, and to my surprise, he said yes. But I knew that in the soundtrack many moods would come up, like they always do" - more than enough to suit the cinematic needs of the director. Perelman also knew that he wanted to feature a string instrument with his saxophone and Shipp's piano, and to that end he enlisted leading new-music violist Mat Maneri. "I wanted someone who would understand how to work with a saxophone," he points out, and chose Maneri based on his recordings with his father, the iconoclastic saxophonist Joe Maneri.
Finally, before the month ended, Perelman found himself in the studio to record Enigma. "I was starting to hear in my head a denser sound, so I wanted to experiment with that - by doubling the personnel," he says. To do so, he invited the drummers who have worked most often with Shipp and himself over the last several years: Gerald Cleaver, the drummer in Perelman's quartet, and Whit Dickey, the drummer in Shipp's own trio. "It was just time to put them together," Perelman explains. "But it was very risky, because both Gerald and Whit are very individual, very particular voices on the drums. So you might possibly dilute their strength; or it could double to unbearable heights."
But as proved by the album, neither of those extreme outcomes occurred. Instead, as Neil Tesser writes in the liner notes, "Enigma has a transparency - a clarity of melodic logic, a clarion lyricism, a lightness of context - that actively opposes the sonic complexity that might well come from two drummers banging away at each other." The surprise of Enigma, and much of its joy, comes from the thoughtful and even delicate ways in which the percussionists interact - as well as in Perelman's reaction to their dual presence. "It was very organic," he says. "At times they merged intentionally, and became one big drum set; and sometimes the very next bar they would go their own way. When you have two drummers, they can be two, or one, at will."
About Ivo Perelman:
Born in 1961 in São Paulo, Brazil, Perelman excelled at classical guitar before finally gravitating to the tenor saxophone. His initial influences - cool jazz saxophonists Stan Getz and Paul Desmond - could hardly have presaged the volcanic improvisations that have become Perelman's stock-in-trade. But those early influences helped shape the romantic warrior at the heart of his most heated musical adventures.
In 1981 he entered Berklee College of Music in Boston, where he focused on the mainstream masters of the tenor sax to the exclusion of such pioneering avant-gardists as Albert Ayler, Peter Brötzmann, and John Coltrane - all of whom would later be cited as precedents for Perelman's own work. He left Berklee in 1983 and moved to Los Angeles, where he soon discovered his penchant for post-structure improvisation; emboldened by this approach, he began to research the free-jazz saxophonists who had come before him. In the early 90s he moved to the more inviting artistic milieu of New York, where he now lives and works - not only on his music, but also on the drawings and paintings that have attracted admirers worldwide to his skill as a visual artist.
Critics have lauded Perelman's no-holds-barred saxophone style, on the one hand calling him "tremendously lyrical" (Gary Giddins) and, on the other, "the most intense, disturbing, tormenting sax player alive" (Françoise Couture in Desire Actuel). The blog called attention to his "piercing, burning, meaningfully warm, lyrically expressive, dream-awakening sounds that explode with an unrivalled urgency." This latest series of recordings is sure to elicit even more - and perhaps even more extravagant - accolades for his remarkable innovations.