So what did we hear on the evening session of day 2? A few group improvisations that were floating and indeterminate to my ears. A combination with the Sydney rhythm section of Mike Majkowski and James Waples floated at first, but took off on top of wonderful rhythmic power from James. This was nowhere near a groove, but well-formed heavy notes with oblique overlays of stick play. I particularly enjoyed Hermione Johnson on piano in several outings. First with Jon Rose and Luiz where Jon’s humour and unconventionality and virtuosity, Luiz’s commitment, bowing and occasional pizz and Hermione’s densely passionate and expansive tone clusters were invigourating and emotionally satisfying. Hermione also impressed me when backing Super-8 experimental film artist, Louise Curham, along with Jeff Henderson on calls and wails on baritone sax. The whole show ended with the Barcode Quartet returning for a set and a welcome to all the other musos to join in to end the festival.
I have lots to learn of post-tonal music. This was a vivid exposure to a field and a happy one with a range of interesting and friendly performers from across the world. I have some reading to do in preparation for next year. And one last cheer to Richard Johnson for his great work in pulling this together for the fourth time.