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Living By Lanterns: New Myth/Old Science

Living By Lanterns is an instrumental outfit featuring musicians from both the Chicago & New York jazz and avant-garde scenes. On their new release New Myth/Old Science, the band, who are comprised of Greg Ward (alto sax), Taylor Ho Bynum (cornet), Ingrid Laubrock (tenor sax), Tomeka Reid (cello), Mary Havorson (guitar), Jason Adasiewicz (vibraphone), Joshua Abrams (bass), Tomas Fujiwara (drums), and Mike Reed (drums, electronics), have put together a collection of songs & improvisations that are based on an old archival rehearsal tape of the legendary Sun Ra from 1961. So, if you are at all familiar with the wild jazz and avant-garde sounds of Sun Ra, then New Myth/Old Science should be something of interest for you.

Jazz, avant-garde, and even prog lovers will find lots to love here on this release. The near 12-minute "Think Tank" has cascades of mallet, electric guitar shards, and squaling sax, a wild mix of avant-garde jazz and King Crimson-ish prog rock. "West Erie" is much more about swinging jazz, with Ward & Laubrock's dueling sax lines leading the charge over tricky rhythms. "Shadow Boxer's Delight" features the weeping cello of Reid, while "Forget B" is a straight up jazz piece that's not unlike classic Sun Ra meets Frank Zappa's mid '70s big band fusion explorations. That seques right into the bleak, atmospheric "Grow Lights", a nice vehicle for Abrams' bass, and noisy closer "Old Science" is free-jazz at its best, with dissonant sax, guitar, and tinkling vibes running rampant over Reed's busy drum work.

Fans of dark, challenging, avant-garde jazz will be right at home with New Myth/Old Science. Though the album drew inspiration from that old Sun Ra rehearsal tape, Living By Lanterns have more than filled this album with their own personality and style. It's at times a demanding listen, but still highly enjoyable.

Track Listing
1. New Myth 1:13
2. Think Tank 11:39
3. West Erie 5:38
4. Shadow Boxer's Delight 6:57
5. Forget B 6:46
6. Grow Lights 6:20
7. Old Science 5:53

Added: December 21st 2012
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Cuneiform Records
Hits: 1774
Language: english

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