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Trapping - DL (1983)

by Bass Tone Trap

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1.
Sanctified 03:01
2.
3.
Stay There 04:14
4.
5.
6.
7.
A A K 02:50
8.
9.
Sleep Lights 10:00
10.
11.
12.
13.

about

DL only re-release of the tight, energetic and complex 1983 jazz-punk record which was the first outing on record for several artists who appear on subsequent Discus releases.

Trapping captures BTT virtually live in the studio - from memory, only the vocals were overdubbed - , and reveals a tight band which constantly rehearsed and modified it's music always with the next gig in mind. The recording covers the whole range of the band's music from free improv to RnB influenced pop.

The disc kicks off with "Sanctified", which combines Pete and Paul's stop/start riff with a horn part I ripped off from John Lee Hooker's VeeJay recording of Green Onions added to the bassline from Lee Dorsey's Ride Your Pony. Note Paul's certifiable bass playing behind the tenor solo. Shameless!

The first serious piece on the record is Neil's "Inner Core". After a dramatic free jazz intro, an ominous 2 chord riff from the guitars chimes under Derek's supremely virtuosic tenor solo, gradually building until my wind-down melody closes the piece in some style.

"Stay there" is based round a fidgety Jasnoch riff and a fantastic Ulmer like solo from same.

"Afraid of paper" is the most adventurous structure on the record, and is a pointer to the episodic writing style I pursued next. A rather creepy high pitched melody for clarinet and acoustic guitars is followed by a series of cameo like free improvisations featuring different subsets of the band, one of which develops into a repeated riff reminiscent of Roscoe Mitchell's "Nonaah".

What was side one rounds off with "Magnetic north", with my Shepp like tenor melody set over a spacey drone texture. Note Derek's high frequency clarinet solo.

"Intruder" is another Archer original with striking melodies and riffs passed between pairs of instruments over a rolling free jazz beat, with a suitably wild solo from Neil.

"AAK" seems like light relief (the title is a particularly unpleasant medical reference) but musically relates to some of the 2-step rhythms we were hearing from Ornette and Ulmer around that time.

"Complex aesthetic" is another episodic instrumental featuring subsets of the whole band, and the sax duet is a harbinger of what Derek and I did next in Hornweb.

The longest piece on the record is "Sleep lights". My opening melody on tenor is followed by an AACM style improv behind Derek's bass clarinet. Neil and John's quasi funk riff ushers in a lengthy duet for Paul's uniquely improvised vocals plus Derek's unashamed RnB tenor, winding up with a short and furious group improv.

The extra tracks for CD are Neil's tune "Rare & Racy", our first (and only other) release on Martin Lilliker's Office Box label, which features the band in a conventional theme and solos structure - something we should maybe have done more of.

"Africa calling" was one of the first pieces written by the band, based on Neil's rhythm idea, and was often used as an opening number in concerts. This was recorded at the same session as Rare & Racy, and was mysteriously omitted from Trapping under the pressure of newer material. Clipping along here at a furious tempo it features a fine pair of sax solos plus an extremely interesting conception of how (not) to play organ from me.

"Radio slot" finishes the record, and it summarises for me everything that was best about Sheffield at that time - young people with open minds in control and having fun.

Input 8 track studio in 1983 certainly wasn't Abbey Road, but maximun respect to Alan Walker and Peter Oldfield for coaxing the best results possible out of their temperamental machines!

- Martin Archer

credits

released April 2, 2021

Martin Archer - tenor & soprano saxes, violin, organ
Derek Saw - tenor and alto saxes, Bb and bass clarinets
John Jasnoch - electric and acoustic guitars
Neil Carver - electric guitar and little instruments
Paul Shaft - double bass, vocal
Pete Infanti - drums

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Discus Music Sheffield, UK

Discus Music was founded in 1994 by Martin Archer. The label releases leftfield rock music, free jazz, extended songform, electronics, improvised music, and other sounds which defy categorisation.

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