Sunday, December 30, 2012

Gil Melle-Tome VI (the Jazz Electronauts)-1968,

Gil Melle, somewhat unjustly remembered almost exclusively for creating the unique very effective Musique Concrete score to the Classic 1966 Science Fiction Film 'the Andromeda Strain"
also Happened to be one the most adventurous and varied composer band leaders of the 50's and 60's , roughly working in the same territory as better known Contemporary Counterparts
such as, Jimmy Guiffre, George Russell, Duane Tatro,Teddy Charles and others.. introducing textural, and Harmonic elements and Complex arrangments previously foreign to Jazz language.

Quite apart from his innovative musical achievements, he was also  a painter, sculptor , graphic designer and instrument maker(the Tome VI being a primitive mini synth of his creation) who from the late 40's on created some of the most distinctive inventive record covers in History , Often Starkly Abstract they go a long way to making the records special, and in the case of his classic Monk covers for Prestige, or his own early Blue Note releases vividly underscoring ,almost embodying the mysterious 'ultra modernist' contents within..

like a lot of mostly white middle class educated Jazz musicians in the early Sixties Melle stopped making Records ,and opted for more lucrative studio and Film work ,largely as a Composer.

This record, made 18 months or so after the Andromeda strain ,is the first jazz record to incorporate,an electro acoustic element, with additional live processing by all the musicians as they improvise, a practice which is now common place among European, and American free improvising musicians,notably Evan Parker, Barry Guy , Acid Birds and Many others.

Musically its an effective fusion of Modal to free jazz,with some modest modish psych rock elements, quite good overall if not quite as fresh and urgent as his peak output from the 50's..(some of which is currently available on CD)

This was reissued on CD (2007) in Japan in limited edition, but alas has long since disappeared...

another  of his records in this vein from a few years later in 1970-1, 'waterbirds' never to my knowledge reissued can be found as MP3'S by googling.

Tome-VI- 1968, the Jazz Electronauts-Verve Lp V68744
Gil Melle-Soprano Saxophone, Effects Generator,Composer
Forrest Westbrook-Piano, and Electar
Benfaral Mathews-bass , cello,and envalope
Fred C.Stofflet-Percussion, Electric cymbal,

From the Liner notes (Regarding the Electronic instruments used)
the Electar
"theoretically the operation of this instrument, approximates the fundamentals of stringed instrument playing,in that conditions are employed by the player through controls,to determine, pitch,decay and amplitude."
the Envelope
'tones heard through this instrument,are not electronically generated but are conventionally produced mutations, it is used in conjunction with bass and Cello,the overall effect being rhythmic"
Doomsday Machine
'Best described as a lower register Electronic Cymbal'
Tome Vi
"Transistorized oscillator/Modulator envelope, a hybrid instrument consisting of a subminiture system of transistorized circuitry, built into a conventional Soprano Sax"
Effects Generator
"A Console Device,capable of Producing arpeggiated passages of infinite variety and complexity,Polyrythmic patterns are also Possible"
Green Safe 1and2
"are used are used to convert,the electricity from the above mechanical Energy"

Melle at IMDB
Melle on Amazon
Note although only his Prestige Sessions 'Primitive Modern","Quadrama'and the perennial "Gil s Guests" appear to be in print, there is a lot that can be purchased second hand
including some very reasonably priced , original lps of this very album!

it Seems that Zippyshare's free account Login Function is somewhat prone to Mal function , so in this instant i have uploaded as a non account holder,i can't guarantee the longevity of the upload , so feel free to create mirrors !!

Ripped from an original Stereo Copy, no Eq, Compression or other processing after the initial conversion of the Analog signal


SOTISE said...

Flac, Pics

Anonymous said...

just when you think you know it all, along comes sotise... ;)

thanks for this refreshening - very nice presentation, i knew nothing about gil melle, though i heard his name pop up before (and probably seen the andromeda flick).

happy new year down yonder,
(: lucky :)

SOTISE said...

Hey Lucky , all the best to you ..and family , its a quarter past midnight here
officially 2013 ... have a great one..

serviceton said...

Zounds! A lovely surprise. Even if Mel's Jazz Electronauts don't make any sounds as startlingly 'modern' as Sun Ra in 1954 (Super Sonic Jazz). 1968 - same year as 'Introducing Burton Greene' with it's 'new & amazing' moog.
Melle is by turns urbane and experimental on his reeds. A good listen - many thanks S!

apf said...

Thank you!

SOTISE said...

yeah , in a way one can see why this doesnt get reissued , it is a little dated, and no where near as good as the classic 50's stuff , one also misses the superb baritone , and occasional tenor..
mm..plate reverb...

SOTISE said...

the other thing one immediately hears is that he has in the interim been almost inordinately influenced by Coltrane's Soprano Sound...that dates this record as much as anything! he wasnt alone there i guess!

reservatory said...

I completely forgot this one, which I bought for around 50¢ in a big box bargain bin and haven't heard for around thirty years. Auld Lang Syne in the flesh. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

please in mp3 form. love this record

sotise said...

why dont you just download the software which is free ,DB power amp for example and do it yourself!!

serviceton said...

Foobar2000 is good for this too.

ushaped said...

unfortunately, it seems to have disappeared, is there a chance of a re-up?

all the best!

serviceton said...

Hi ushaped. Sotise may be away - give me an hour or 2 and I'll re-up it for you (watch this space)

serviceton said...

Try this

Anonymous said...

The Rapidshare link doesn't seem to work. Could you please re-up this recording in some other server? Thanks in advance.

magogiallo said...

thank you Serviceton for re-up it, but unfortunatly it doesn't work, usually i haven't troubles with RS..anyway thank you

serviceton said...

magogiallo, Anonymous - see if you have better luck with this new link

SOTISE said...

still available according to the page!

magogiallo said...

thank you Servicertone for the new link

bventure said...

Thanks for this sotise, and thanks to serviceton for the new links, both of which are still online.

rebf942 said...

Many thanks for this, which I've just caught up with. The Zippyshare link is still working.

onxidlib said...

I think I slept last December. Didn't realise this was posted.
Found this while searching for the Blue Note recordings of Gil Melle. (listening to the Prestige ones now)
Despite the seemingly vast and endless cyberspace I was led to you both guys. Obviously obviously I'm tempted to think.
Somehow it is astonishing that we humans have to proof that we are really humans - and not the robots that they are robots.
Philip K. Dick is greeting us...

Muff Diver said...

Both links still working.

Thanks, Sotise & Serviceton!

J. Sterling Ellison said...
This comment has been removed by the author.