Brinkmann's double-disc album, A Certain Degree Of Stasis, and a 1974 Eastman recording are both due out in September.
frozen reeds has been silent since it launched in 2012 with a well-regarded live recording of a Morton Feldman composition, Cripple Symmetry. Now the label is preparing two new releases, both scheduled for a September arrival.
One is a new album from shape-shifting German artist Thomas Brinkmann, titled A Certain Degree Of Stasis. Showing Brinkmann "in command of a maximalist's palatte," we're told the two-part work "explores both fiercely distorted textures and sustained crystalline calm." It'll come on two CDs "to be played individually, together, or with previous frozen reeds releases," only in a limited edition of 350 copies—there will be no other release formats, and no repress—with sleeve artwork courtesy of Agnes Lux.
Also upcoming on frozen reeds is an unearthed recording of a 1974 performance of Femenine, a composition for chamber ensemble by Julius Eastman. A gay African-American musician and composer who died in 1990 at age 49, Eastman was a member of the prestigious Creative Associates at SUNY Buffalo (of which Feldman was once a leader), and he'd go on to settle in New York City in the mid-'70s, where he was involved in both the so-called Downtown and Uptown music scenes. Aside from his own pursuits, he worked or performed with figures like Arthur Russell, Peter Maxwell Davies, Pierre Boulez and Meredith Monk.
This is the only known recording of Femenine, and its release comes amid increased recent interest in Eastman's hard-to-find music. It was performed by the S.E.M. Ensemble, with Eastman himself on piano—it features "intertwining winds, piano, violin, pitched percussion, synthesizer and the composer's own invention of mechanized sleigh bells"—and recorded by Steve Cellum, who co-produced Russell's 1986 highly-regarded album World Of Echo. Its runtime is just over 72 minutes, and it's being put on CD with liner notes from Mary Jane Leach, a composer and author who's studied (and sought out) Eastman's work for years.
Listen to excerpts from both A Certain Degree Of Stasis and Femenine.
A Certain Degree Of Stasis
01. A Certain Degree Of Stasis (Part One)
02. A Certain Degree Of Stasis (Part Two)
frozen reeds will release A Certain Degree Of Stasis and Femenine on September 16th, 2016.