Gunga Galunga, a new collective indie jazz ensemble presents its debut release, "Unlicensed Nuclear Accelerator." The album is a debut both for the ensemble and for the label, PJCE Records, the newest branch of the stalwart presenting agency the Portland Jazz Composers' Ensemble.
The album is available for download for a $7 minimum to encourage dissemination of and wide access to the music but we of course encourage you to support the artists with whatever you can contribute.
Gunga Galunga was originally created by drummer Tom "Euge" Goicoechea. Euge occasionally books gigs under his own name (keep an ear to the ground for future incarnations of the "Euge-tet") with various configurations of sidemen. This configuration convened to play a gig at local jazz sandbox the Camellia Lounge, and experienced such excitement both on the bandstand and in the audience that they decided to continue on as a good old fashioned band, naming the project after a quote from beloved cultural icon Bill Murray. The material performed reflects the circumstances of the band's creation; the group draws on a mix of old, orphaned songs and fresh, new ideas, all composed by its members. The spontaneous creation and development of the group exemplifies the spirit of PJCE Records and their mission to encourage experimentation and collaboration in the local jazz and creative music scene through their series of monthly releases.
Stylistically speaking, the material performed is even more diverse than the backgrounds of its constituents. "Jackson Hole" and "Rainy Day, Sunny Heart" convey beautifully the sophistication and pop sensibilities of trumpeter / composer Tom Barber. "Starbird" and "Portrait in Tears" are compelling and dark vignettes by tenor man Willie Matheis. "The Black Monk" and "How The Moon Broke" expose guitarist Dan Duval's interest in extended free improvisation and rich harmonic exploration both in and out of the modern jazz idiom. The most authentic punk rock explosions on the entire disc occur during "The Red C," by Euge. Bassist Jon Shaw keeps everything on the rails the whole time, no matter what is happening. It's exactly as engaging and accessible as it sounds. Which, to me anyway, is extremely accessible and engaging. This city is full of amazing jazz talent, and both Gunga Galunga and PJCE Records are creating a home for the music with one hand and pushing it forward with the other. So come help us celebrate all of that at the February 8th CD Release Show!
PJCE Records is a grassroots recording label documenting the wide variety of original music being created by Portland area jazz composers and improvisers. We aim to provide an outlet to encourage the dissemination of new music in the area as well as fostering community within the jazz and improvised music scene in Portland. We release one album per month digitally and/or in limited CD pressings. The albums are recorded live in one session per album, reflecting a common practice from jazz history and encouraging a rapid turnaround to document and enhance the thriving community of jazz and improvising musicians in the Portland area. The label is operated by the Portland Jazz Composers’ Ensemble and all rights to the music remain with the individual artists.
released January 15, 2013
Thomas Barber, trumpet
Willie Matheis, tenor sax
Dan Duval, guitar
Jon Shaw, bass
Tom "Euge" Goicoechea, drums
"Rainy Day, Sunny Heart" and "Jackson Hole" by Thomas Barber
"Starbird" and "Portrait in Tears" by Willie Matheis
"How The Moon Broke" and "The Black Monk" by Dan Duval
"The Red C" by Tom Goicoechea
Recorded November 19, 2012 at Tango Berretin in Portland, OR
Sound by Andrew Oliver
Design by Tiny Little Hammers
Special thanks to the PJCE Board, Alex Krebs, Dylan McConnell, and Joe Leonardo
all rights reserved