The Beholder’s Share brings together an ad-hoc British free improvising trio of trumpeter-electronic musician-recording and mix engineer-producer Alex Bonney, legendary sax player Paul Dunmall (some of his recent albums were mixed by Bonney) and Dunmall’s long-term collaborator, drummer Mark Sanders. The debut album of this trio was recorded at Sansome Studios in Birmingham in November 2022 and was mixed by Bonney, who also took the cover photo, The Egyptian white desert.
The title of the album refers to a term, popularized by art historian Ernst Gombrich, for what viewers bring to pictures in order to make sense of them. Gombrich referred in particular to the need to draw upon ‘prior knowledge of possibilities ‘to separate the code from the message’. Where representational images depict what is familiar from social knowledge and employ familiar textual codes, viewers tend to be unaware of the contribution they are making to the process of representation.
In this musical meeting, Bonney, Dunamll and Sanders bring their own personal share of experience in free improvised settings. These creative musicians balance an urgent need for sonic exploration with close and democratic interaction and an organic flow of stormy music on the aptly titled, opening piece «Resonance Refractions». The trio’s sense of sense exploration intensifies in the second piece «Arid/In Phase» when Bonney plays on synth and electronics and pushes Dunmall and Sanders into abstract yet dramatic, otherworldly terrains. The last, 19-minute of the third piece «Generating Worlds» matches remarkably the British school of intense free improvisation with the eerie, alien electronic aesthetics.
Alex Bonney (trumpet, modular synthesizer, laptop), Paul Dunmall (saxophones), Mark Sanders (drums)