||Bischoff / Golia / Livingston / Smith / Sperry|
Earth Music: Ten Years of Meridian Music - Composers in Performance CD (2010)
Pauline Oliveros classical music CD Since 1998, the Meridian Gallery in San Francisco, CA has run a stimulating series of gallery concerts under the umbrella title of Meridian Music: Composers in Performance. Innova's Earth Music is a compilation of 14 cuts taken from live recordings from within this series, several being improvisations from star instrumentalist/composers -- Vinny Golia, Frank Gratkowski, Matthew Sperry, and koto virtuoso Shoko Hikage, to name a few -- and others being excerpts from loosely, or more strictly composed, pieces by Pauline Oliveros, Damon Smith, a voice/cello song by Theresa Wong, and even a simultaneous realization of two Anthony Braxton pieces performed by the series' first curator, Philip Gelb, and pipa player Jie Ma. It's a well-chosen selection, emphasizing some of those magical moments that seem only to emerge from improvising, usually off in the air and gone by the time anyone thinks to hit "record." Thankfully, the curators of the series thought ahead and had the tape rolling before the music got underway. As one might expect, there is a little inconsistency in the sound quality throughout the program, with older tapings sounding a bit more distant and hissy than later ones, suggesting a change in the recording rostrum along the way, or at least ...