Music

CD Shorts: Jon Hassell

Comments ()
Wednesday, August 06, 2014

City: Works of Fiction

(All Saints)

More than a simple reissue, this three-disc expansion of trumpeter Jon Hassell’s City: Works of Fiction serves as a recontexualization of his otherworldly music. Hassell is best known for his Fourth World concept, which combines global influences and modern technology. 1990’s City transitions from his sublimely ethereal early work into an aggressive polyglot music with hip-hop-inspired rhythms. Many songs are underpinned by distorted beats, showcasing Hassell’s smeared and processed trumpet snaking through roiling soundscapes. The slapped funk bass occasionally sounds dated, but most of these tracks retain their hallucinatory eclecticism.

The set’s other two discs prove equally vital. “The Living City” captures Hassell’s band playing live inside an audio installation created by Brian Eno. It’s a disorienting, gorgeous, and quietly intense performance that allows the group to stretch out and improvise. “Psychogeography” offers 18 tracks of fascinating outtakes, rehearsal sketches, and remixes, ranging from lush ballads to stuttering cut-up collages.

Smartly designed and packaged, the set includes evocative texts by Simon Reynolds, Glenn O’Brien, Eno and Hassell himself that illuminate his future-primitive approach. As Hassell writes of his inspiration: “Spirit, not only in the forest but in the carwash, too.”

Find it Here:
keyword:
search type:
search in:

« Previous   |   Next »
Print Email RSS feed

Nightcrawler: Hallowed Ground
Creek, DPR, Alchemystics and Bramhall II serve up sonic sweets; permission to speak Frehley.
Sister Africa
CD Shorts: Grace & Tony
CD Shorts: U2
Nightcrawler: Giving Them the Slip
Slipknot and Slip-not hit New England; Harris helps Two Streams Zen celebrate an anniversary.
A Blessed Event
New Englander Blessing Offor happy to land a spot on Team Pharrell in The Voice; masters of mock rock the Hippodrome.
CD Shorts: Sid Selvidge
Nightcrawler: One Life to Livio
Livio Gravini looks to crowdfunding to make his project a reality; blues, brews and barbecue in Greenfield.