A few years ago, American composer and trombonist Peter Zummo discovered a 1984 recording of unreleased material from his Six Songs suite in his archive. Six Songs was the basis for Lateral Pass, his award-winning score for modern-dance choreographer Trisha Brown's work of the same name. Material taken from Six Songs can also be heard on his seminal Zummo With an X.
The work is now being released as a new LP, Frame Loop. Recorded live and in single takes, it features a stellar line-up of longtime Zummo collaborators: Arthur Russell on amplified cello, Bill Ruyle on marimba, and Mustafa Ahmed on congas. Zummo plays trombone and euphonium.
Zummo describes the recording as "an exercise in spontaneous arrangement". He mainly hews close to the score, while from time to time introducing canonic lines and variations. Russell, using his signature amplified cello sound, alternates between solos and rhythm playing. Ruyle vamps on the notation, while Ahmed's improvised percussion drives the forward momentum. Sometimes the music takes its time traversing a sonic landscape; at other points, it jumps from one section to another. Players' decisions push and pull the downbeat; rounds emerge, then disappear.
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