February may be a short month but it is chock full of Henry Kaiser goodness. February 3rd sees the release of an amazing record Kaiser put together with British Avant-guitar pioneer Ray Russell. Along with drummers Weasel Walter and William Winant, bassists Michael Manring (electric) and Damon Smith (acoustic), and saxophonists Steve Adams, Joshua Allen, Phillip Greenlief, and Aram Shelton, Kaiser and Russell entered Berkeley, California’s Fantasy Studios for a daylong session that resulted in The Celestial Squid.
From the 3rd to the 8th, Kaiser will play a residency gig at The Stone in NYC (full schedule and participants below) that is not to be missed. He will also be releasing three other records that week. Kaiser was kind enough to give Guitar Moderne the low down on The Celestial Squid.
It is hard to reconcile the young Harvey Valdes who grew up loving Napalm Death, and Sepultura with the man who plays sensitive standards like “April in Paris” on solo guitar. You might find the child more visible in the man who rocks his Trombetta FeederBone in duo with drummer Damion Reid.
In both contexts Valdes brings a personal approach that is tasteful even when it is being aggressive and a deep appreciation of tone as the starting point of music.
I admit to a previous prejudice against solo bass efforts. My feeling had been: if you want to solo, play a solo instrument—something I had trouble considering the bass to truly be. A few bassists have begun to change my mind: Victor Wooten’s soulful and musical live performances; Steve Lawson’s awesome looping work, and now Sicilian six-string bassist Daniele Camarda’s unique approach.
Camarda employs the astounding technique and great tone that allowed him to hang with jazz luminaries like Avishai Cohen, Chris Cheek, and Daniel Zamir, in the service of a modern style that includes echoes of world music, classical guitar, minimalism, electronica, and jazz. It is all there on his new solo outing Sound Act. I have included samples of two tunes from that record, as well as live videos. Camarda fears the live performances represent places from which he has moved on, whereas I felt strongly they would still be of great interest to Guitar Moderne readers. I am proud to present Daniele Camarda as Guitar Moderne’s first bass player spotlight.
Hybrid descriptions of music are often a lazy way to avoid digging deep into a band’s musical qualities and, as often, inaccurate. But to call the music of Tera Melos Punk/Prog/Math/Metal/Ambient/Noise is necessary to cover all the ingredients of the band’s cut and paste style. What makes this ADD pastiche work where others fail is the depth of Nick Reinhart’s technique. His seemingly limitless command over both his guitar and the array of pedals at his feet, combined with the bloodletting energy he brings to the stage, make every musical digression compelling. I first met the man described as “Nels Cline’s younger punk rock brother” at the Earthquaker booth at NAMM, improvising up a storm, and finally got him to talk to Guitar Moderne.