Jul 132013

John Zorn is a composer, multi-instrumental performer (though probably best known as a saxophonist), arranger, producer, improvisor, impresario, and MacArthur Fellow. Over a career spanning four decades, he has he has explored a wide spectrum of music and worked with a vast array of other musical artists. This year he turns 60 years old. In celebration of his birthday, he has been performing a series of worldwide concerts called “Zorn@60”. Last night, July 12, he put on one of these birthday parties at the Barbican’s concert hall in London. He had a few notable guests with him on stage, including Mike Patton.

I’m going to assume you know who Mike Patton is. Patton and Zorn have collaborated in the past (for example, on the 2002 experimental electronic/jazz album Hemophiliac), and Patton has also guested on releases by Zorn’s Painkiller and Naked City groups. Along with Joey Baron and Trevor Dunn, Patton was part of the “Moonchild Trio” that first appeared as the performers on Zorn’s 2006 composition, Moonchild: Songs Without Words, and went on to record other Zorn compositions.

So, this has been a long run-up to the main reason for this post, which is to show you some videos from the Patton-Zorn collaboration at Barbican last night. All four apparently feature music from Zorn’s album Templars: In Sacred Blood, with the composition again being performed both on the album and last night by the Moonchild Trio. What Patton does with his voice blew my shit away. The experimental music is also very cool. I think I need to track down this album. Watch and listen next. Continue reading »