Various Artists

A Confederacy of Dances, Vol. 2

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Smashing genres, this collection of live recordings from a music series at Roulette in New York City is an interesting look at some of the leading postmodernists of the '80s and early '90s. Irène Schweitzer has never sounded better than on her solo piece, "Unexpected Demand," where she seems to encompass the whole history of the instrument. The same cutting-edge quality is found on the duo number featuring LaDonna Smith on viola and voice and Davey Williams on electric guitar. The other tracks are a mixed bag, with Robert Ashley's fine premiere of "Love Is a Good Example" a good introduction to his work, and Jerome Cooper's eerie multi-instrumentalist musical recitation on "They Told Me This -- But They Did That" curiously appealing. Well-packaged with extensive liner notes, this avant-garde smorgasbord should turn a few heads.

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