Los Pirañas, El Shirota, and Mujeres Podridas are three bold bands making music that is evolving the Spanish language into a luminous heat that could burn, smelt or even vaporize, as Octavio Paz noted about poetesse maudite Alejandra Pizarniks poetry.
Audibly limbering up in an adjacent room in this heavily white-painted, minimalist Cologne church, the NYC alto saxophonist and multi-layering composer Lea Bertucci was appearing at Week of Surprise, formerly titled Night of Surprise. Innate saxophonic reverberation qualities rippled and bounced around the corner, through the doors, into the performing space, and Bertucci hadnt even started her set yet
For most of 2020 and at least half of 2021, musical artists were forced off of stages, out of venues, off the road, and into some form of isolation. Those circumstances brought forth a lot of streaming, remote performances, one-man-band-type recording experiments, and attemptssome astonishingly successfulto collaborate musically while working and playing in separated, remote locations.
The year is almost over. Is the pandemic? We are all poised to return to our former lives, to jump back into the pool of possibilities that life in New York offers. While following the rules and watching the statistics, we are left to wonder if we have learned anything from this, other than how much can be done on a computer (and how much of true living that leaves out).