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Tiki Central Forums » » Tiki Music » » New exotica album: Third River Rangoon by Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
New exotica album: Third River Rangoon by Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
Mr. Ho
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 09, 2005
Posts: 431
From: Boston, MA
Posted: 2011-05-18 12:09 pm   Permalink

The CD is now on sale and shipping, as are tickets to our 2 CD release shows. We are also giving away 6 free MP3s from this album and the ESquivel big band at http://orchestrotica.com/mailinglist.cfm?ref=TCpr

CD Release Shows:

June 3 - http://orchestrotica.com/show.cfm?gig=215 (Boston)
June 18 - http://orchestrotica.com/show.cfm?gig=217 (NYC)

And info on the new album!:

-----PRESS RELEASE: THIRD RIVER RANGOON-----

On the heels of its highly-acclaimed debut CD,
The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel, Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica returns,
this time with its vibraphone quartet album, Third River Rangoon

Brian “Mr. Ho” O’Neill’s Exotica for Modern Living series continues
with the world’s first collection of third-stream exotica

An original and modern exploration of chamber, jazz, classical, and world sounds inspired by the escapism of the 1950s exotica genre, led by composer, vibraphonist, and multi-percussionist Brian “Mr. Ho” O‘Neill

Featuring Albanian flute and bass flute specialist Geni Skendo, Japanese percussionist Noriko Terada (Flangia, Women of the World), bassist Jason Davis (Earthsound), & special guest Tev Stevig (Kafana, Klezwoods) on oud

"…a marvelously flexible unit…"
—Jonathan Perry, Boston Globe

"…if John Zorn is an exotica Picasso, O’Neill is his Georges Braque…as Braque may have been the finer cubist, O’Neill may be, in the long run, a stronger exoticist than Zorn."
—Gordon Marshall, AllAboutJazz

"...brilliant...a must-haves for any exotica fan..."
–Tiki Magazine (about the Exotica for Modern Living series)

Editor’s Pick. 4 stars. "…incredible arrangements, musicianship, and artistic direction." —Frank Alkyer, Downbeat
(about Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica’s 2010 big-band album, The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel)


Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica, the world’s only ensemble dedicated to original third-stream exotica and the space-age pop music of Juan Garcia Esquivel, releases Third River Rangoon, its debut small-group recording, on May 31, 2011. This unique collection of works was recorded live at Futura Productions in Roslindale, MA, and was produced by exotica music authority Brother Cleve (Del Fuegos, Combustible Edison, Jetset DJ) and Mr. Ho. The result is a collage of exotic chamber music where the pre-concert lectures and post-concert meet-and-greets come with Zombies and Mai Tais instead of champagne, the concert hall is a Saarinen-modern, and the listener enjoys it all from the comfort of the latest Eames chair. (On the way out, insert your parking ticket into the tiki statue’s mouth to exit the garage).

Mr. Ho’s 2010 debut big-band release, The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel, was a Top Pick by AllAboutJazz, a 4-star review by the Sunday Times of London, and is currently playing in thousands of Starbucks stores worldwide. Third River Rangoon takes the Exotica for Modern Living series in a quieter, more introspective direction with eight new compositions by Mr. Ho that draw from the Italian tammurriata, Albanian drone singing (“Phoenix ,Goodbye”), the “Allegretto” from Shostakovich’s 10th symphony (“Moai Thief”), the Bulgarian kopanitsa (“Autumn Digging Dance”), and naturally, a song about the 20-foot-tall stone sentry at the former Aku-Aku restaurant in Cambridge, MA, that is now dressed up as a sad Gloucester fisherman (“Lonesome Aku of Alewife”). The album’s title, Third River Rangoon, is a play on Gunther Schuller’s third-stream music construct that allows blending of jazz and classical ideas, and the Rangoon, a not-so-authentic-but-comforting American Chinese dumpling. Together these two images suggest an unchartered, mysterious riverboat journey through music that explores multiple idioms in depth (without forgetting to be fun and sinfully delicious).

No exotica album would be complete without references to a semi-mythic past. While the album wouldn’t be mistaken for a 1950s Martin Denny record, Third River Rangoon will satisfy hardcore exotica fans with hints of the South Pacific, Caribbean, and the numerous unchartered territories of tiki. Spicing up the recording are new arrangements of works from an unlikely troika of composers: Milt Raskin, Cal Tjader, and Pyotr Ilitch Tchaikovsky (yep!).

“Maika,” originally found on Milt Raskin’s album KAPU, brings listeners back to exotic 1959 with beautiful, bird-like flute playing by Geni Skendo. (Both Milt and Geni graduated from New England Conservatory—70 years apart.) Cal Tjader, the popular Latin-jazz vibraphonist, wrote “Colorado Waltz,” an uptempo 6/8 selection featuring solos by Skendo, O’Neill on vibraphone, and Terada on cajon. Rounding out the non-original tracks is O’Neill’s arrangement of “Arab Dance” from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker, which (finally) features an actual Arabic instrument: the oud. Arguably bringing Tchaikovsky’s “coffee dance” a step closer to authenticity, Tev Stevig—perhaps the top polymath in the Boston “guitar-like instruments” scene—adds a hauntingly beautiful solo on this instrument while providing harmonic support during the rest of the arrangement. Earlier Stevig appears on the 11/8 Bulgarian-infused “Autumn Digging Dance,” named for the fall harvest dance known as the kopanitsa. His oud solo is framed with percussion by both Terada and O’Neill, the latter of whom adds the booming Balkan tappan drum and riq (Arabic tambourine) throughout. (Stevig actually introduced O’Neill to Bulgarian rhythms while performing together in their original Balkan-jazz ensemble, Kafana).

O’Neill’s original “Thor’s Arrival,” is a bongo-laden tone poem inspired by Kon-Tiki, Thor Heyerdahl’s epic 1947 account of a raft ride from Peru to Raroia in French Polynesia, in which he proved that a raft made of materials and constructed with indigenous South American techniques could have made the 4,300-mile ocean crossing. While Heyerdahl’s goal was to show that the peoples of the South Pacific may have had South American roots, O’Neill’s was to provide a nice soloing framework for Skendo’s bass flute and his own vibraphone without toppling the musical vessel upon landing. “Phoenix, Goodbye” is perhaps the “reverie-scape” that AllAboutJazz’s Gordon Marshall refers to in his review, and musically depicts the rebirth cycle of the Phoenix bird. (It also subtly refers to O’Neill’s departure from his native Arizona.) “Phoenix,” which opens with O’Neill’s lap-style bodhran and Skendo’s flute, displays a panoply of influences, sounds, and forms: the cantor/choir call-and-response section is based on Albanian (Tosk) iso-polyphonic singing with the drone portions appropriately executed by Davis and Skendo on arco bass and flute. The time is marked by O’Neill’s Italian tammorra, an 18-inch tambourine. Minimalist ideas, ŕ la Philip Glass and John Adams, inspire the dual-meter coda that ends the piece. Closing out the album is “Lyman ’59,” a tribute to Arthur Lyman, who was perhaps the most famous exotica vibraphone player. This peaceful lullaby-like composition evokes haole images of the South Pacific that delicately float from left to right across the stereo field and oh-so-gently remind the listener to check that last email from Expedia about Hawaiian vacation packages.

Concerts:
• Fri, June 3 @ 830pm: Lizard Lounge: Boston, MA: CD RELEASE (quartet)
• Sat, June 18 @ 8:30pm: Otto‘s Shrunken Head: NYC: CD RELEASE (quartet)
• Sat, July 16 @ 8pm: Barbés: Brooklyn, NY: (quartet)
• Fri, July 29 @ 8:30pm: Lily Pad, MA (quartet)
• Sat, August 27 @ 7:30pm: Artsquest Musikfest Cafe, Bethlehem, PA (Esquivel big band)


Other “Exotica for Modern Living” album releases:
The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel (Nov. 2010) – http://orchestrotica.com/album

Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica is two ensembles: in addition to the third-steam exotica quartet, a big band–with over 20 musicians–performs the world’s only extant transcriptions of Mexican lounge king Juan Garcia Esquivel’s space-age pop arrangements.

Orchestrotica.com
Facebook.com/orchestrotica
Twitter.com/orchestrotica

Quick-listen @ http://orchestrotica.com/album2
About the quartet @ http://orchestrotica.com/tiki

----
Updated May 6, 2011





_________________

Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
Third-Stream Exotica Quartet • Esquivel Big Band
http://www.orchestrotica.com
http://facebook.com/orchestrotica
Twitter: @orchestrotica




[ This Message was edited by: Mr. Ho 2011-05-18 12:16 ]


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nature boy
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Apr 02, 2008
Posts: 69
From: Timonium, Maryland
Posted: 2011-05-19 07:55 am   Permalink

Got mine!!!

 
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Big Kahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2007
Posts: 2317
From: SoMass
Posted: 2011-05-20 4:59 pm   Permalink

YAAAAYYYY! Something cool I can make it to. I'll see ya June 3.

 
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DejaVoodoo
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Posts: 138
From: Woodbridge, NJ
Posted: 2011-05-20 10:00 pm   Permalink

Awesome! I just got a shipping notification for my copy of the album. I can't wait to hear it!

 
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OnyaBirri
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 02, 2006
Posts: 419
Posted: 2011-05-22 2:18 pm   Permalink

Mr. Ho was kind enough to give me an advance copy when i saw him in NY. It has been in heavy rotation ever since. Great stuff, an essential exotica experience!

 
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socksoff
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 26, 2010
Posts: 184
From: A private Island off the coast of Macau
Posted: 2011-05-22 3:16 pm   Permalink

sweet. ordering mine right now.

 
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pablus
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 23, 2003
Posts: 2155
From: www.crazedmugs.com
Posted: 2011-05-24 7:04 pm   Permalink

I love it.

A great recording of a very soulful performance.


 
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Mr. Ho
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 09, 2005
Posts: 431
From: Boston, MA
Posted: 2011-05-28 2:13 pm   Permalink

Very happy with the nice comments and review on the new album by the Boston Globe!


http://www.boston.com/ae/music/cd_reviews/articles/2011/05/27/noisy_neighbors_looks_at_third_river_rangoon_the_new_release_from_mr_hos_orchestrotica_quartet/

May 27, 2011 by Jonathan Perry

Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica presents

"Third River Rangoon"

Hot (or cool) on the heels of last winter’s big band treatment of “The Unforgettable Sounds of Esquivel,’’ local exotica expert and composer/vibraphonist/percussionist Brian O’Neill (a.k.a. Mr. Ho) clears the Tiki lounge of all but his quartet for an after-hours nightcap that promises to carry on well into summer.

Working with Albanian flute virtuoso Geni Skendo, Japanese percussionist Noriko Terada, bassist Jason Davis, plus guest oud master Tev Stevig, O’Neill has again conjured a perfect cocktail of mid-century “space age bachelor pad’’ music deliciously accented with chamber, jazz, classical, and world music notes. The result is a heady yet soul-soothing concoction of contrasts — Tchaikovsky’s “Arab Dance’’ mingles with Cal Tjader’s “Colorado Waltz’’ and Milt Raskin’s “Maika,’’ for instance — that transcends novelty or kitsch. Informed by Mr. Ho’s panoramic tastes, pulsing vibraphone (the closing track, “Lyman ’59,’’ is O’Neill’s South Pacific-style tribute to vibes icon Arthur Lyman), and impeccable playing all around, this combo is deadly serious about its fun.

Obviously, a ton of talent, skill, and precision goes into distilling such a chilled disposition, all of which producer Brother Cleve captures with the same effortless elan and attention to detail he employs to create his signature libations in clubs around town. (Out Tuesday)

Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica Quartet hosts a CD-release show at the Lizard Lounge June 3 with the Rusty Scott Organ Group, 8:30 p.m. Tickets: $15 (door), $12 (advance). Ticket and details at http://orchestrotica.com/show.cfm?gig=215

best,
Mr. Ho

Artistic Director, Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
Esquivel Big Band & Third-Stream Exotica Quartet
http://orchestrotica.com/
1.347.482.1775



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DejaVoodoo
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 07, 2008
Posts: 138
From: Woodbridge, NJ
Posted: 2011-06-03 6:35 pm   Permalink

"Third River Rangoon" is far greater than its cover art would suggest. While awesomely retro and totally fun, the music within is, by stark contrast, a serious, late night album for the darkest corners of your own private tiki lounge.

"Third River Rangoon" is an introspective Exotica album that also breaks the traditional boundaries of what Exotica music has been and could be. No one would mistake TRR for camp or mere idol worship of the genre's founding fathers - TRR is art of the highest order and worthy of massive exposure not just to us tiki obsessed macadamia nuts but world music enthusiasts as well.

Seriously, the aspect of TRR that drew me in initially and keeps me coming back for more is the truly foreign sound bed Mr. Ho created. His original tunes and fresh updates (reimaginings) of more traditional songs blend seamlessly from track to track and culminate in one of the most cohesive albums I've heard in a long time. Never mind that I totally dig the middle eastern percussion added to the Arab Dance from "The Nutcracker." KILLER!

All in all, TRR is a sublime album and I'm thrilled to call a copy mine. Now, go get yours!


 
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Mr. Ho
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 09, 2005
Posts: 431
From: Boston, MA
Posted: 2011-06-04 1:48 pm   Permalink

DeJaVoodoo - man, this is the nicest feedback anybody (press or fan or whoever) has written about the CD so far. I am thrilled you are "Getting it" in terms of our attempt with the music (and genre) and are enjoying the music so much. We had a great initial Boston CD release last night and look forward to NYC in a couple weeks. Not sure where you are but hope to meet you one day!

Very generous feedback!

best,
Mr. Ho
info@orchestrotica.com

_________________
Artistic Director, Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
Esquivel Big Band & Global Jazz Quintet
“no group on the planet sounds like the Orchestrotica”–Lucid Culture
http://orchestrotica.com/ ••• New album Nov. 2013


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Dolewhip
Tiki Centralite

Joined: May 12, 2006
Posts: 52
From: Sunny Southern California
Posted: 2011-06-04 10:38 pm   Permalink

Can't wait to hear this new one; Was just listening to "The Unforgettable Sounds Of Esquivel," and it's absolute genius! A thorough reinterpretation of a legendary artist done in a fantastic way!

Can't say enough good things about it. If you haven't heard it yet, do so - even if you're not that familiar with Esquivel. It's that great!



Dolewhip


 
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virani
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 17, 2003
Posts: 1438
From: Volcanic area of France
Posted: 2011-06-05 01:58 am   Permalink

Love it too. Get this album now ! It features plenty of all kinds of exotica, classic and more adventurous with oriental instruments you don't hear often.
Great job on this album, bravo !


 
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Mr. Ho
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 09, 2005
Posts: 431
From: Boston, MA
Posted: 2011-06-27 09:58 am   Permalink

Nice album review from http://lucidculture.wordpress.com/2011/06/11/float/

Float Away to Third River Rangoon

The original “exotica” music from the 1950s was designed to evoke a cartoonish never-neverland of tiki torches, bikini-clad geishas sipping mai tais at night on the beach, innocuous insectile noises emanating from an utterly benign jungle just a few feet away. Vibraphonist/bandleader Brian O’Neill AKA Mr. Ho’s new album Third River Rangoon, by his shapeshifting ensemble Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica may have been inspired by that subgenre, but it’s considerably more magical. It leaves far more to the imagination, a lushly nocturnal collection whose most impressive feat of sorcery is getting a simple lineup of vibraphone, bass flute, bass and percussion to create the sweep of a hundred-piece orchestra. The production is genius: Phil Spector couldn’t have done any better than this. Playful and surreal, with an unselfconscious majesty, it’s music to get lost in, just as O’Neill intended. Here he’s joined by Geni Skendo on bass flute and C-flute, Noriko Terada on percussion (and vibes and marimba as well) and Jason Davis on acoustic bass. The tongue-in-cheek title alludes to the third-stream nature of the music, a little jazz, a little classical and more than a little cinematic ambience, like Henry Mancini in a particularly atmospheric moment.

While it’s true that the title track is a deceptively simple, catchy tune with interlocking bass flute and vibes over a bossa-flavored bass pulse, that’s an awfully clinical way to put it: it’s a raft ride under the stars in the subtropical paradise of your dreams. Thor’s Arrival plays an anthemic overture theme gently over a similar staggered bossa beat: it sounds nothing like Grieg or Metallica. Milt Raskin’s Maika plays up an underlying suspense angle, contrasting with restrained yet joyous layers of reverberating vibraphone tones over stately bass; Cal Tjader’s Colorado Waltz downplays the waltz beat (good move) with some memorably offcenter leapfrogging from the flute.

How do you give the Arab Dance from Tschaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite real Middle Eastern cred? Add an oud, of course. That’s Tev Stevig (of Macedonian group Jeni Jol and many other great bands) doubling the flute lines and then kicking in a terse solo that’s Arab, not just Arabesque. O’Neill opens Phoenix, Goodbye, a bright theme that quickly grows duskier, with some distantly tense knocks on a boomy tapan drum. The most direct and surprisingly hard-hitting number here is the noirish Terre Exotique, again bouncing gently on a bossa-ish beat. The jazziest one is Autumn Digging Dance, oud and vibes together, comfortably afloat on the soft, round tones of the bass flute, Sevig contributing a confounding and somehow perfect solo that’s half blues and half levantine. The catchy, slowly swaying, distantly martial Moai Thief nicks a familiar classical theme, while Lonesome Aku of Alewife turns from shadowy allusiveness to a catchy, poppier tune, the bass soloing fat yet incisive over the verse. The album closes with a brief vignette, Lyman ’59, a late 50s noir pop melody done as a lullaby – a funeral for a south Asian dictator’s mistress, maybe. Tune in, turn on, get lost. Mr. Ho’s Orchestrotica plays Otto’s Shrunken Head on June 18 – the classiest band by far to ever play that joint.
_________________
Artistic Director, Mr. Ho's Orchestrotica
Esquivel Big Band & Global Jazz Quintet
“no group on the planet sounds like the Orchestrotica”–Lucid Culture
http://orchestrotica.com/ ••• New album Nov. 2013


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