The Simplest Possible Setup:
Ettie Street Project

Ettie Street Project fuses the worlds of rock, jazz, and electronica into a sound that is expansive and multilayered. Guitar, vocals, bass, drums, horns, and synths make up the raw live elements, while live looping creates atmospheric textures and melodies over a deep groove.

The 2013 album release "The Simplest Possible Setup" features a long list of musicians and collaborators. A significant portion of the album is written and produced for the powerful and soaring vocals of the singers Audio Angel, Artemis, and Emily Rich. Horns, thick percussion, and electronic elements round out the sound while intricately composed parts and virtuosic moments shine throughout the tracks.

Release date:
Oct. 14, 2013

Lola's Purr #1:
Lola the Wonder Cat

There are a few sounds in nature more soothing and sleep inducing than the sound of a contented and healthy cat.

I present 25 minutes of LOLA the Wonder Cat's happy and healthy purr. This recording was edited down from a marathon Purr Session on October 1, 2013. Extra noises (rustling, truck going by, busses) were removed and crossfades placed at every edit point. This should sound natural and continuous.

Somehow when cats create those frequencies, around 21-23 hz, as alternating tones, I noticed that the felines almost go immediately into some kind of a Alpha or Meditative State, and it is known that this sound also can induce sleepiness in humans..

released 10 October 2013
Recorded by sqb and assisted by Maurice the Brute

It's Only A Rock And Roll Show:
Mike Finnigan and Jerry Wood

Finnigan & Wood was a really terrific band with great vocals, great players, a lot of versatility, and tremendous energy. We were a very powerful live band, one of the best anywhere during our short time together.

These recordings represent where we were relatively early in that period. A few of these tunes later appeared on our Blue Thumb album, "Crazed Hipsters," but these renditions represent different performances, at a different time (usually in the early morning hours), in a different place, when it was just the band in the studio and Steve Barncard in the booth.

Michael Finnigan, 2011

The Foghorns of the Golden Gate Bridge:
San Francisco Bay, California

This is a high-fidelity recording of foghorns recorded near the Golden Gate Bridge. To aid in the safe travel of vessels as they pass under the Golden Gate Bridge, foghorns have been mounted on the Golden Gate Bridge since its opening in 1937.

The United States Coast Guard, Waterways Management Branch sets the tones and timing pattern of the foghorns. Each foghorn has a different pitch and marine navigational charts give ships the frequency, or signature, of each foghorn.

Countdown To Meltdown:
The Mitch Marcus Quintet


Caution: The music on Countdown 2 Meltdown is not for wimps or the squeamish. With his third quintet release, saxophonist Mitch Marcus and his exciting quintet continue to dish out bold and serious-minded progressive jazz amid a mark of distinction compared to many others of this ilk. After consummating a highly-praised ten-year residency in San Francisco, Marcus returned to his native New York City in 2009. Here, the quintet pulls out the proverbial stops, blasting into the cosmos via blazing improvisational etudes with a precision-oriented, group-centric focus.
With numerous dips, spikes, twists and turns, the band generates a cavalcade of super tight unison choruses, simmering sax parts and fluid evolvements. Couple these attributes with Mike Abraham's sizzling, psycho jazz-rock guitar lines and a rhythm section that cruises, pummels and swings, it all equates to an exhilarating listen.

The band jumps right out with a big sound, underscored by Marcus and Sylvain Carton's popping and sizzling dual sax attack, to complement knotty diversions, fiery swing breakouts and climactic opuses. On "A's Lament," drummer Tomas Fujiwara lays down a rolling toms pattern to set the pace for the soloists deterministic and slightly ominous intentions. They communicate a powerful demeanor, spiked with intricate sax parts and use depth and space as a vantage point. And in various regions of sound and scope, the quintet's torrid interplay is offset by odd-metered cadences, engaging in perpetual motion from start to finish.

"Tron McCain," is a striking study in precisely executed old-school bop, rendered with a maddening groove as the band seamlessly fuses the old with the new as Abraham goes on a tear with his rippling chord progressions and stinging wah-wah lines.
Marcus and associates rise to the occasion yet again. Countdown 2 Meltdown will most assuredly stimulate the neural network in concert with a thrills-per-minute musical panorama.

Personnel: Mitch Marcus: tenor saxophone; Sylvain Carton: alto saxophone; Mike Abraham: guitar; George Ban-Weiss: bass; Tomas Fujiwara: drums, gongs.

A studio recording produced, mixed and mastered by Stephen Barncard.

The Special
The Mitch Marcus Quintet


Some fresh Bay Area jazz from Mitch Marcus and company provides a sense of rebirth of the collective improvisation ideal. It isn't quite free jazz, but there are aspects of Albert Ayler or Sun Ra in there, in the way that Marcus and alto sax player Sylvain Carton drop casual cascades of notes here and there regardless of the backdrop. It isn't quite fusion, but one can hear a trace of John McLaughlin in guitarist Michael Abraham's work for the opening track.

This is free-form jazz, with an outline of an idea put into the score and a general theme for the players to follow, à la Ornette Coleman. There's some strong virtuosity displayed, but primarily in the sensibilities of the players to the strength of the rhythm and course of the flow. They can diverge on separate paths to explore, but come back for a bumpy, bouncy hook at a moment's notice.

This is jazz at its thick, heavy best. The album may take some thinking and attention to appreciate it properly, but it holds up to the inspection. This is something worthy of a larger label and distribution (perhaps the avant-garde end of Origin Records, OA2) and more listeners than it's likely to get currently.

Personnel: Mitch Marcus: tenor saxophone; Sylvain Carton: alto saxophone; Mike Abraham: guitar; George Ban-Weiss: bass; Ches Smith: drums, percussion.

A studio recording produced, mixed and mastered by Stephen Barncard.

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