Friday, November 30, 2012

Huseyin Ertunç Trio performing Phill Musra's "The Cretor Spaces" (Musiki - Intex, 1974)

A new world of improvisational freedom opened up for me when I first heard drummer Huseyin Ertunç's 1974 LP Musiki (Intex), with reedmen/multi-instrumentalists/brothers Phill Musra and Michael Cosmic. Ertunç returned to his native Turkey about twenty years ago (and performs with the Konstrukt collective), but Musra - this tune's composer - now resides in Los Angeles and, as regular readers of this blog know, is still active in music. Although I initially assumed that Musiki and Musra's companion LP The Creator Spaces were recorded at the same session, in truth Musiki was recorded months earlier. The Creator Spaces is a bit more spacious than Ertunç's date, though both are quite intense documents of self-produced and spiritually-directed improvisation. Knotty and weird, there's a folksy unhinged-ness that really spoke to me in a way quite different from Albert Ayler, the AACM, and other music I was spending time with when I dropped the needle on the trio's debut album. Ertunç's percussion work really shocked me and it's still absolutely fascinating (as you'll hear below), and Cosmic's organ playing behind/around Musra's tenor is just... something else. A CD reissue was floating around a few years ago and can probably still be procured.

My hope is to get Musra out to the East Coast next year for performances in Boston and Brooklyn. More details on that as things come together, of course. Though Michael Cosmic passed in 2001, there's also hope that Musra and Ertunç might be able to get together and perform again. But for now, enjoy "The Creator Spaces" and keep your eyes and ears peeled for more.

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