Carlos Bechagas / Carlos Bechegas

IK * Zs (3)/Flute Solos/Movement Sounds

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Like Robert Dick, Carlos Bechegas has taken the flute into entirely new territories of expression and experimentation. The two concert dates presented here reveal with startling clarity what his acoustic and electro-acoustic environments are capable of creating, in settings both solo and with his phenomenal trio that includes violinist Ernesto Rodrigues and percussionist Jose Oliveria. Both works are delineated as movements or sections, though one suspects this is for the ease of identification on the part of the listener. In the trio work, Bechegas and his group create a structural idea as a framework, a bare-bones skeleton, so to speak, and fill in the boundaries with group improvisation. Bechegas, who seems very comfortable with violin and the myriad percussion, explores not only the limits of the flute's sonorities but uses keyboards, processors, and synthesizers as well, so that his little group appears much bigger than it is. His ability to create sonic terrains for the group to explore is remarkable in that no two sound remotely alike. The interplay between the flute and plucked violin in the middle of the work is particularly satisfying for its demarcation of intervallic counterpoint. On the solo work, Bechegas digs deep into the well of classical expression from the early Romantic era to the present, as well as the worlds of jazz and free improv (which he illustrates by two pieces -- one dedicated to Steve Lacy and the other to Evan Parker). This feels, in spots, a bit gimmicky because of the manufactured string section sounds, but it's a small complaint. The flute playing is marvelous, full of trills, quadrilles, and angular turns of pitch and key in various modes created by interval structure and collapse. Given that this is such an auspicious debut, it is worth waiting for to hear what Bechegas comes up with next.

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