PERCY HOWARD. CHARLES HAYWARD. FRED FRITH. BILL LASWELL . Meridiem . LP
MERIDIEM, a project by PERCY HOWARD.
The polymath bassist/producer Bill Laswell has worked with an awesome range of performers active in different genres as part of a quest to perpetually bush the boundaries; on this adventurous set, recorded at his Orange Music studio in New Jersey, Laswell’s irregular bass is joined by the veteran British avant-garde guitarist, Fred Frith, former This Heat drummer Charles Haywood, and former Nûs front-man, Percy Howard, for a shape-shifting excursion that skates the edges of experimental rock and free-form jazz.
The excesses of “Frozen” build on crescendos of cascading musical energy as Howard aims his voice ever higher; the strangely-named “Iurodivii” is a slow-jam contrast with intricate guitar picking from Frith, subdued cymbals from Haywood and semi-tone jazz bass from Lasweel. Released in 1998 on the Italian experimental label Materiali Sonori, this first Meridiem experiment was a beautifully challenging beginning to a lasting project with many other tricks up its sleeve, as revealed by the sporadic series of further releases issued during the new millennium.
SIDE A The 7th/ Mingle/ Interference/ Frozen/ Lurodivii
SIDE B Votive Rhythm/ Lunarsa/ Anaesthesia/ Crucible