The New & Avant-garde Music Store

Review

Isnor B Gordon, Left Hip Magazine, April 1, 2008

A satisfying 45 minutes of free improv fire music from Canada’s Lori Freedman and Scott Thomson. Freedman is one of, to my knowledge, two major Canadian bass clarinetists alongside Halifax’s Jeff O’Reilly. She has shared the stage with major players on the avant and free improv scenes - and beyond - including a noteworthy duet with fellow ‘licorice stick’ abuser François Houle. Thomson I’m not familiar with but he proves himself up to the task of brushing up against Freedman’s impressive talents with a series of squeaks, shrieks, skronks and skree that fall firmly in the category of ‘extended technique’.

Plumb is a very dynamic session with lots of variety. At times meditative and peaceful, deeply out there, noisy, shrill, mellifluous, grating like fingernails on a chalkboard, humourous, beautiful and unapologetically dissonant - they explore all facets of their instruments and sonic possibility.

Though Freedman is a powerful force that can really burn, she also knows when to step back and give other players a chance to shine. She does that on the third piece, Lead, letting Thomson take a solo flight for the whole track. Very nice piece.

Fans of abstract free improv in that gray zone between jazz and contemporary classical will love Plumb. An excellent release from new label Barnyard. Let’s hope they continue to put out albums of this calibre and they’ll make a fine addition to the Canadian musical landscape alongside labels like Jesse Zubot’s Drip Audio.

Plumb is a very dynamic session with lots of variety. At times meditative and peaceful, deeply out there, noisy, shrill, mellifluous…

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