Pub Quiz question: Name a connection between La Monte Young, Terry Riley’s seminal record ‘In C’, Brian Eno, David Byrne, Bjork, Peter Gabriel, Ry Cooder, David Sylvian, Tears for Fears and Lloyd Cole plus his Commotions? Answer: they have all drawn on the talents of the essential trumpet player, composer and musical adventurer Jon Hassell. A former pupil of Stockhausen in the mid- 60s (alongside future members of Can), Hassell released his first solo album in 1977, the game changing ‘Vernal Equinox’ which from Eno’s perspective ‘opened the way for a fresh look at, and deeper respect for, the music of other cultures around the world’.
Influential and prolific from that point onwards, Jon Hassell has passionately nurtured his ‘fourth world music’ over an impressive sequence of releases and collaborations, combining futuristic electronics with the deep roots of non- westernised music. There was a slight pause between 2009 and 2018 before he returned with ‘Listening to Pictures (Pentimento Vol.1)’ and now comes news of the partner release ‘Seeing through Sound (Pentimento Vol.2) on 24th July via Ndeya records.
In preparation for the main event the opening track ‘Fearless’, all eight glorious minutes of it, is now available from all major digi-platforms. With a constant rhythmic pulse, swirling electro atmosphere and minimal horn punctuations, ‘Fearless’ wracks up the tension and leaves you at the edge…A perfect introduction then to Hassell’s mesmeric ‘painting with sound’ and what promises to be another landmark album from the 83 year old impressionist. Oneohtrix Point Never will be taking note once again!