Fire Keeps Burning
Radio I-Ching www. myspace.com/radioichingnewyork contact: firstname.lastname@example.org New CD release: "The Fire Keeps Burning" THE INDIVIDUAL MEMBERS: Andy Haas began improvising when he took up the saxophone in the mid 1970s, before joining the Canadian New Wave band Martha and the Muffins with whom he recorded 3 LPs for Virgin Records. After moving to New York City, he became active in the downtown scene, playing and recording (with John Zorn, Marc Ribot, Fred Frith, Ikue Mori, Zeena Parkins, Cyro Baptista, Haino Keiji, God is My Co-Pilot, among others). Don Fiorino's path to improvisation started with rock & roll, through acoustic bottleneck and electric slide blues, Middle Eastern and Indian fusions, and jazz. He plays a variety of string instruments, including guitar, banjo, lap steel, lotar, glissentar, & mandolin. He has performed widely in New York City, and is also a member of the improvising ensemble Attention Screen. Dee Pop gained fame in underground circles for his work with seminal no wave act The Bush Tetras. He has also performed/recorded with the Clash, The Gun Club, The Shams, Richard Lloyd, Eddie Gale, Mike Karoli, Freedomland and many many more. These days in addition to Radio I-Ching and occasional reunions with The Bush Tetras, Pop curates the "Freestyle Jazz/Avant Garde Musics/Deformed Blues" series once at CBGB's and now at Jimmy's in the LES OF NYC. From The Providence Phoenix 2/2/08 THE POWER OF UNITY Sometimes it's fervent and pulsating. Sometimes it's blustery and wild. It's always thoughtful and engaging. The three New York improvisers who create under the name RADIO I-CHING have played long enough and often enough to sound like a working band - they move as one. So Andy Haas's reeds, Dee Pop's drums, and Don Fiorino's strings approach the excitement of group kinetics. Whether they're marching through Rahsaan's 'Volunteered Slavery' or sauntering through Charlie Haden's 'Song for Che, ' the power of unity is what you hear in their work. Staples on Manhattan's downtown noise-prov scene, they have active pasts in the Bush Tetras and Martha and the Muffins. Last Kind Words was a nifty debut, but many Ching zealots are waiting for The Fire Keeps Burning, the second CD that's due out soon. Time Out New York Radio I-Ching teams drummer Dee Pop (of Bush Tetras) with saxist Andy Haas and banjoist Don Fiorino. The trio's new self-released CD, Last Kind Words, reminds you why downtown music was a cool idea in the first place, as the players inhabit an anachronistic world where country-blues and old spirituals mingle freely with supple free-form jazz-and thankfully, there's nary a hint of postmodern rib-nudging. From Jazzwise UK April 2007: This trio of downtown New York Mavericks found their way to improvisation through the vagaries of No-Wave and alt-rock and, as you might expect, the result is deliciously warped take on the jazz tradition that reconstructs Ellington standards, traditional tunes and more recent classics with irreverent yet affectionate disregard for convention. At least half the fun comes from the continually surprising and fertile instrumental combinations that are brought to these interpretations: a fife and slide-guitar take on Dr. John's 'Walk on Gilded Splinters' that somehow manages to be even spookier than the original; banjo and electronically augmented saxophone providing a ghostly, swinging version of Ellington's 'Caravan'; and an electric guitar and saxophone rendition of Charlie Haden's 'Song for Che' with enough cosmic electronic twittering to make Acid Mothers Temple proud, It all adds up to an album of dense, imaginative, mischievous improv that's not afraid to crack a smile. - Daniel Spicer All About Jazz New York Veteran drummer and tireless promoter Dee Pop has, in a pleasant surprise, stepped forth with Radio I-Ching, easily his strongest project since way back in the '80s and his seminal funky-post-punk band Bush Tetras. Radio I-Ching deals in song and does so well. Hovering around the same sort of Americana vibe that Bill Frisell and Steven Bernstein have worked, they bring their own take, doing songs like "Brother Can You Spare a Dime?" or "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" without a hint of irony - even pulling off a drum and fife improv - and then slide into Dr. John, Duke Ellington and Charlie Haden. Pop sounds deeply at home with the trio, Andy Haas on sax and (subtle) electronics and Don Fiorino playing guitar, lap steel, banjo and lotar. - Kurt Gottschalk From Cadence Magazine: Radio I-Ching is the far reaching trio of deluxe drummer Dee Pop, saxophonist Andy Haas, who also uses oddball instruments such as the fife and the raita and the guitarist Don Fiorino, who also strums other things such as banjo and lap steel. Their 4/14 hit at Tritone (Philadelphia) proved to be a zany collection of songs and sounds, moving from a Bad Brains tune to a stunner called 'Selecter' which bled electronically altered sax with wavy lap steel for a drug laced dynamo. The finale found Haas simultaneously blowing soprano and piri (Korean Oboe) to Pop's quasi military butt kicking beat. These guys are doing some pretty impressive things and deserved to be checked out. - Ken Weiss Coda Magazine (Canada) More than 25 years after Rock fame - or is it infamy? - the drummer from Manhattan's uncompromising No Wave band, The Bush Tetras, and the saxophonist from Toronto's New-Wave hit makers Martha and the Muffins unite for a memorable CD. A unique form of Roots Improv, tunes range from 'Brother Can You Spare A Dime' and the title blues to 'Walk on Gilded Splinters' and Ellingtonia'. Haas plays fife, morsing, saxophone and electronics, while Fiorino moves among guitar, lap steel, banjo and lotar (Berber lute). The most effective use of the ethnic instruments comes on 'Morsing Code'. An Africanized jam, the andante end product is percussive and hypnotic, with thick picking from the lotar, rubber-band like twanging from the morsing and cross patterned drum rhythms. As for roots music, atypical instrumentation and conceptions are transformative not imitative. Melodic saxophone smears face claw-hammer banjo picking on 'The Mooch' while disconnected flams focus the percussion. The basic poignancy of '... Dime' is emphasized in Haas' warbling arpeggios as Fiorino alternates guitar frailing and flat picking. A penetrating version of 'Caravan' is all brittle reed trills and knob-twisting electronic whooshes. - Ken Waxman Terri's Music Blog - Thursday, December 20, 2007 I did decide to run down to Cake Shop on the Lower East Side for Radio I-Ching. Radio I-Ching was awesome. I'd only seen them once at Tonic and I have a CD. It's avant-garde, but appeals more to the masses than other stuff. They do a lot of covers their own way. Andy Haas is awesome on reeds and horns and Don Fiorino plays lots of guitar-type things. Then, they have Dee Pop on drums. It's really a great band and I'm surprised more people don't know about them. Dee introduced the show as being 'avant-garde dance music'. Oh yeah! I know, it's all dance music to me, but I love someone else acknowledging it!