Anthony Braxton/Ben Opie: "Duets (Pittsburgh) 2008"

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Stalwart avant-garde master Anthony Braxton meets fellow reedman Ben Opie in a pair of duet sessions. Disc one is a performance of an early Ghost Trance Musics work, Composition 220; disc two is of a late GTM work, Composition 340. There are several lines blurred throughout: the division between composition and improvisation, and the differences between the two reed players. It's an intimate and exciting set of recordings.

Review from Wire magazine:

"Over the years, Anthony Braxton's sprawling discography has come to seem like the mapping of an expanding personal universe rather than a series of discrete releases. These two hour-long duets with fellow reedsman Ben Opie cover a lot of ground from sequences of punchy clockwork minimalism to textural purrs, wailing vibrato, aerobatic displays of circular breathing and fleeting hints of familiar tunes. The development of Braxton's pieces invariably involves a chess-player's sense of strategy, cerebral but in this case certainly not bloodless. These improvisations flow and grow in what seems an organic rather than a calculating way, and Opie proves a convincing foil, accurately tuned to Braxton's wavelength. Not an obvious point of entry into this distinctive musical cosmology, but the initiated will feel thoroughly at home." (Julian Crowley)