Ayaya Moses

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Ayaya Moses
FredFrithGuitarQuartet AyayaMoses.jpg
Studio album by
Released1997 (1997)
RecordedJuly and November 1996
StudioStudio 12, Maison Radio-Canada, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Genre Contemporary classical music
Experimental music
Free improvisation
Length54:29
Label Ambiances Magnétiques (Canada)
Producer Hélène Prévost
Fred Frith Guitar Quartet chronology
Ayaya Moses
(1997)
Upbeat
(1998)

Ayaya Moses is a 1997 studio album by the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, a United States-based contemporary classical and experimental music guitar quartet comprising Fred Frith, René Lussier, Nick Didkovsky and Mark Stewart. It is their debut album and was recorded in Radio-Canada's Studio 12 at Maison Radio-Canada in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, seven years after the ensemble was formed in 1989. It was released by Canadian record label, Ambiances Magnétiques.

Fred Frith Guitar Quartet American contemporary classical and experimental music guitar quartet

The Fred Frith Guitar Quartet was a United States-based contemporary classical and experimental music guitar quartet comprising Fred Frith, René Lussier, Nick Didkovsky and Mark Stewart. The group was formed in 1989 by Frith and they performed extensively across North America and Europe for the next ten years, including at the 14th Festival International de Musique Actuelle de Victoriaville in Victoriaville, Quebec, Canada in May 1997. They recorded their first album, Ayaya Moses in 1996 and released a live album, Upbeat in 1999.

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or simply America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.

Contemporary classical music is classical music relative to the present day. At the beginning of the 21st century, it commonly referred to the post-1945 modern forms of post-tonal music after the death of Anton Webern, and included serial music, electronic music, experimental music, and minimalist music. Newer forms of music include spectral music, and post-minimalism.

Contents

The fourteen-track album comprises three pieces by external composers and arranged by the quartet, a piece composed by each of the four members of the quartet, and seven short pieces improvised by the group. Lussier's piece includes music he composed for La Manière des Blancs, a film by Bernard Hémond. Frith's track "Freedom Is Your Friends II" is taken from Freedom in Fragments , an album composed by Frith and performed by the Rova Saxophone Quartet. Didkovsky's piece "She Closes Her Sister With Heavy Bones" comes from Their Eyes Bulged With Sparkling Pockets, a larger work he composed for chamber orchestra. [1] [2]

<i>Freedom in Fragments</i> 2002 studio album by Fred Frith

Freedom in Fragments is a studio album by English guitarist, composer and improvisor Fred Frith. It was composed by Frith in 1993 as "a suite of 23 pieces for saxophone quartet", and was performed by the Rova Saxophone Quartet between February 1999 and January 2000 in San Francisco. The album was released on Tzadik Records' Composer Series in 2002. Frith does not perform on this album.

Rova Saxophone Quartet is a San Francisco-based saxophone quartet formed in October 1977. The name "Rova" is an acronym formed from the last initials of the founding members: Jon Raskin, Larry Ochs, Andrew Voigt, and Bruce Ackley. When Voigt left in 1988, he was replaced by Steve Adams, but the group did not change the acronym.

Reception

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svgStar empty.svg [1]

In a review at AllMusic, François Couture said Ayaya Moses "showcases four gifted avant-garde guitarists" negotiating "demanding compositions". [1] He called Lussier's title track, "Ayaya Moses" "the strongest piece", and described the album as a whole as "[m]ore serious and industrious" than the quartet's next album, Upbeat . [1]

AllMusic Online music database

AllMusic is an online music database. It catalogs more than 3 million album entries and 30 million tracks, as well as information on musical artists and bands. It launched in 1991, predating the World Wide Web. As of 2015, AllMusic is owned by RhythmOne.

<i>Upbeat</i> (album) 1999 live/studio album by Fred Frith Guitar Quartet

Upbeat is a 1999 live and studio album by the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, a United States-based contemporary classical and experimental music guitar quartet comprising Fred Frith, René Lussier, Nick Didkovsky and Mark Stewart. It is their second album, after Ayaya Moses (1997), and was released by Canadian record label, Ambiances Magnétiques. The live material was drawn from concerts the quartet had performed in Germany, Switzerland, France and Spain in November 1997. The studio tracks were recorded at Tonstudio Amann in Vienna, Austria, also in November 1997.

Reviewing the album in The Wire , Mike Barnes described it as "a dazzling display of… well, virtually everything that electric guitars can produce in the right hands." [3] He said the music swings from "clean strumming and delicate melody ... to blocks of atonal noise and all points in between". [3] Barnes remarked that while the electric guitar in this chamber ensemble is far removed from its traditionally role in rock music, the "spirit of rock 'n' roll" still surfaces from time to time. [3]

<i>The Wire</i> (magazine) British experimental music magazine

The Wire is a British avant-garde music magazine publishing out of Hackney, London, which has been issued monthly in print since 1982. Its website launched in 1997, and an online archive of its entire back catalog became available to subscribers in 2013. Since 1985, the magazine's annual year-in-review issue, Rewind, has named an album or release of the year based on critics' ballots.

James Hale wrote in the Ottawa Citizen that the album's diverse range of musical styles gives the quartet an opportunity to display their skills. He said Frith's "Freedom Is Your Friends II" has "shimmering harmonic overtones", and Stewart's "Trummings" is "thrashing [and] heavily electronic". [4] Hale remarked that Didkovsky and Lussier's contributions are "atypical" of their usual rock and blues repertoire: Didkovsky's "She Closes Her Sister with Heavy Bones" is "suffused with melancholy beauty", and Lussier's "Ayaya Moses" "shifts from brooding to brutal" with none of his usual "loopy humour". [4] But Hale called the quartet's performance of Vivier's "Pulau Dewata" the highlight of the album, adding that it "allows the four guitarists to range from chime-like percussion to a majestic electric chorus." [4]

<i>Ottawa Citizen</i> English-language daily newspaper

The Ottawa Citizen is an English-language daily newspaper owned by Postmedia Network in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Michael Rosenstein also felt that "Pulau Dewata" is Ayaya Moses's high point. Reviewing the album in Cadence magazine, he said the quartet performs Vivier's complex work "with poised energy, stepping quietly through hushed sections ... then attack[ing] [the] percussive punctuations with chiming vigor." [5] Rosenstein opined that "through intriguing compositions [and] thoughtful improvisations", the quartet is opening up new possibilities for the electric guitar. [5]

<i>Cadence</i> (magazine)

Cadence: The Independent Journal of Creative Improvised Music is a quarterly review of jazz, blues and improvised music. The magazine covers a range of styles, from early jazz and blues to the avant-garde. Critic and historian Bob Rusch founded the magazine as a monthly in 1976 and served as publisher and coordinating editor through 2011. Musician David Haney became editor and publisher in 2012.

Track listing

All music by the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet, except where noted.

No.TitleYear composedLength
1."Ayaya Moses" (René Lussier)199410:42
2."The Stinky Boy Suite"
  1.  "Part 1"
  2.  "Part 2"
  3.  "Part 3"
19962:39
0:57
0:45
0:57
5."Geco Retile Mialgico" (Olivia Bignardi)19952:12
6."Blind Date"19961:05
7."Pulau Dewata" (Claude Vivier, arr. Jean René, Lussier)197713:40
8."Trummings" (Mark Stewart)19898:01
9."Freedom Is Your Friends II" (Fred Frith)19945:00
10."The Why Me Suite"
  1.  "Part 1"
  2.  "Part 2"
  3.  "Part 3"
19963:06
1:01
1:02
1:03
13."She Closes Her Sister with Heavy Bones" (Nick Didkovsky)19953:57
14."Uruk's Tablets" (Bignardi)19953:55

Sources: Liner notes, [2] Discogs. [6]

Personnel

Sources: Liner notes, [2] Discogs. [6]

Sound and artwork

Sources: Liner notes, [2] Discogs. [6]

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References

  1. 1 2 3 4 Couture, François. "Fred Frith Guitar Quartet: Ayaya Moses". AllMusic . Retrieved August 10, 2019.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Ambiances Magnétiques (1997). Ayaya Moses (CD liner notes). Fred Frith Guitar Quartet.
  3. 1 2 3 Barnes, Mike (January 1998). "Fred Frith Guitar Quartet: Ayaya Moses". The Wire . No. 167. ISSN   0952-0686.
  4. 1 2 3 Hale, James (September 27, 1997). "Soundtracks". Ottawa Citizen . ISSN   0839-3222. ProQuest   240126392.
  5. 1 2 Rosenstein, Michael (September 1997). "Fred Frith Guitar Quartet: Ayaya Moses". Cadence . Vol. 23 no. 9. ISSN   0162-6973.
  6. 1 2 3 "Fred Frith Guitar Quartet – Ayaya Moses". Discogs . Retrieved August 12, 2019.