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Frisell's Floratone Creates an Exotic New Language

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Frisell's Floratone Creates an Exotic New Language

Frisell's Floratone Creates an Exotic New Language

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MICHELE NORRIS, Host:

Two years ago, jazz guitar Bill Frisell and drummer Matt Chamberlain spent a few days free-associating in the recording studio. Their extemporaneous jams were then sampled, cut up and mixed together to create an unusual project called "Floratone."

Tom Moon has a review.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

TOM MOON: Floratone started with flashes of improvisation, two musicians playing live and unscripted in the studio.

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MOON: When the jam sessions ended, veteran record producers Lee Townsend and Tucker Martine got busy. After some cutting and pasting, looping and rearranging, these initial rifts grew into thick, multi-layered grooves. You can hear traces of the blues and funk, echoes of Jamaican dub and flashes of jazz anarchy.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MOON: Once the framework of a tune was in place, Frisell and Chamberlain returned to the studio to add simple melodies and more layers. Townsend says the goal was to build around the spontaneous ideas, surrounding them with the wondrous atmospheres of electronic music.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

MOON: Listen to these swirls of sound. It's almost like the beginning of some exotic new language, rising like steam from a swamp. It's also some of the most riveting instrumental music to emerge this year.

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NORRIS: That's critic Tom Moon reviewing the CD, "Floratone" from Bill Frisell and Matt Chamberlain. You can hear more music at npr.org/music. You'll also find a full concert by Bill Frisell and The Intercontinentals.

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