Friday, August 29, 2008

Bill Dixon - Odyssey [solo works] (2001, box set 6cd)




A labor of love, this marvelous self-produced six-disc set collects trumpeter Bill Dixon's previously unreleased solo recordings since the 1970s. (Actually, a few of the many tracks add minimal accompaniment.) The final disc presents highly intelligent, fascinating oral commentary by the trumpeter on his life and music. Included in the oversized box are booklets containing several essays by two critics and two former students, and a collection of Dixon's beautifully reproduced artwork in color. At the time of this release in 2001, the trumpeter and retired professor was in his late seventies and in peak form, both intellectually and artistically. While five hours of solo trumpet is exhausting to hear (it should never be attempted at a single sitting), there is no denying Dixon's original voice, individual style, and astonishing technique. Space plays an important role in his sound, the trumpeter knowing when to harness the power of silence. Purity of sound is another important element, Dixon's pristine tone a pure pleasure. Dixon occasionally adds reverb, giving his notes a slight echo. Other distinguishing characteristics include his use of the full range of the horn, from the pedal tones to the highest reaches, and his extraordinary use of breath, pushed through the horn at varying volumes. Granted, this is not easy listening, and there are few melodies or conventional signposts. Listening to all these hours of solo Dixon takes self-discipline and might be compared to hearing a long postmodern poetry recital. But, for those willing to make the effort, and who can appreciate the contributions of an extraordinary talent, this boxed set will bring endless hours of pleasure. - Steven Loewy


CD1
CD2
CD3
CD4
CD5
CD6

10 comments:

Shannon said...

Glad to see this blog back in action. Any chance you could repost that Butch Morris Current Trends in Racism in Modern America album?

jizzrelics said...

http://www.divshare.com/download/3576877-f6d

krh said...

Thank you so much for this.

hideo said...

love Dixon and this is a real treat

thanks

Shannon said...

Thanks!

whyan said...

havent heard much from Bill Dixon. thanks for sharing.

wightdj said...

Such an under-appreciated artist! Thanks for sharing.

Ochyming said...

Thank you very much!

That B. Morris work is very rare, a relic!

roberto t. said...

http://www.bill-dixon.com/disco.html
This is a link to the discography of Odyssey. Limited edition of 1.000 in 2001 should have gone by now, though the site still says 80 bucks plus shipping. But I think it's right also for those who couldn't afford the original cd's to have the titles that sometimes are important (remember Paul Klee's titles to his paintings?). I must admit I was kind of sceptic about this, Dixon never really touched me before. I was wrong, this work is great, I would say the emotions elsewhere almost hidden, here come to the forefront, it's no work of perfection, it is a living effort of a musician who has a lot to tell. Great post, a million thanks!

Don Music said...

Thanks so much!

BTW, track 50 appears to be missing (I believe it's called "Hush").