Flying Solo on SAJ Air

We are thrilled to roll out the next three digital releases from FMP. These are solo joints from sister label SAJ, only previously available on LP. They join the Evan Parker/Barry Guy duo Incision (SAJ-35), also recently available for sale at the D:O Store.

The first features tall John Tchicai, from 1977. At the time, this solo album convincingly made the case for John Tchicai as a great saxophonist and flutist. Unfortunately, few heard it! Unfortunate, as the performances are full of sinuous repetitions, memorable melodies that emerge and recede, and trance-like riffs. It contains an Indian-inflected flute piece reminiscent of Don Cherry, and a terrific duo with Albert Mangelsdorff. Throughout, Tchicai erases the line between composition and improv – in real time.

A split LP, one side each for cellist Tristan Honsinger and bassist Maarten van Regteren Altena, in live performance (duh). Side A features Honsinger at his most unfettered and unpredictable, unleashing startlingly fluid cello lines alongside whoops and hollers. Side B showcases Altena’s more percussive, jabbing, and patient approach — though he’s not above a cheeky duet with a metronome!

Emery, 1987. Photo by Dagmar Gebers.

Dubbed one of the world’s finest guitarists by numerous critics, James Emery remains unknown to many listeners. The solo Exo Eso is one of his absolute masterpieces and a perfect place to make his acquaintance. Imagine Derek Bailey with more of a through line and you’re halfway there. Emery draws on a deep arsenal of sounds — sparse scrawls intercut with startling flourishes; fluid torrents of notes played with abandon; moments of delicate hushed beauty. Exo Eso is never predictable and never stints on pleasure.

Category commerce, FMP, James Emery, John Tchicai, Maarten van Regteren Altena, Tristan Honsinger