Evelyn Davis pipe organ | Fred Frith electric guitar | Phillip Greenlief alto and tenor saxophones
Wonderful news coming from the Bay Area, even considering that the participants in this ad hoc trio originated from elsewhere—one from Detroit, another from Heathfield / England and the third from Los Angeles. The recording of Lantskap Logic took place at Mills College in Oakland—where Fred Frith directed the Improvisation program until he retired this year—and specifically at the Mills Chapel, both for reasons of sound and for the chapel’s pipe organ, the favored instrument of in-and out-side pianist, improviser, composer, vocalist, synthesist and teacher, Evelyn Davis. Like Frith, Davis works on multiple fronts, from alternative rock to avant jazz and experimental music, in groups like Frankenixon, Cheer Accident and Chiromancer. Frith was one of the founders, at the end of the Sixties, of the “rock in opposition” band Henry Cow, and established a reputation as one of the great revolutionaries of the grammar and the lexicon of both the electric and the acoustic guitars. They have a like-minded companion in Phillip Greenlief, a prolific composer and saxophonist whose biography includes solo performances and collaborations with figures as diverse as Wadada Leo Smith, Meredith Monk and They Might Be Giants, as well as fronting electro-acoustic ensembles and inter-disciplinary orchestras. What emerges from this partnership couldn’t be more Californian: the intensity of listening in response to space and sonority, the reconciliation of elegance with free expression, the ecstatic eclecticism. Yes, profane improvised music can be as beautiful as a sacred hymn.
© 2018 Davis/Frith/Greenlief
Recorded at the Mills College Chapel /February 25, 2013 by Karen Stackpole | Mixed at Guerilla Recordings, Oakland / March 9, 2017 / Mastered at Headless Buddha | Mastering Lab, Oakland, October 10th, 2018 by Myles Boisen
Produced by Davis/Frith/Greenlief | Executive production by Pedro Costa for Trem Azul | Design by Travassos | Cover photo: Heike Liss