«Master of Time» is a commissioned live performance of percussionist Susie Ibarra & guitarist Tashi Dorji for the exhibition of «Bardo Now, The Second Buddha: Master of Time» at the Tang Teaching Museum in Saratoga Springs, New York, during a residency in April 2019. This is also the debut duo album of the Filipinx composer, percussionist, and sound artist Ibarra and Dorji who grew up in Bhutan before relocating to the United States. The vinyl album features two extended pieces and the digital version adds two short bonus pieces, also culled from the performance to give the listener a fuller sense of music.
«Master of Time» is also a welcome return of Ibarra, who has made a name for herself as one of the most in-demand percussionists in New York since the early ’90s, collaborating with William Parker, John Zorn, David S. Ware, Wadada Leo Smith, Mephista, and most recently with Myra Melford’s amazing Fire & Music Quintet, to experimental, free music. Dorji is known for his free improvised duos with Tyler Damon, Aaron Turner and John Dietrich and his trio Kuzu with Dave Rempis and Damon.
«Master of Time» has spiritual overtones but it does not attempt to follow free jazz’s familiar spiritual veins. Ibarra and Dorji build slowly the tension in the extended and mysterious «Confluence», as Ibarra cleverly orchestrates Dorji’s detuned rhythmic repetitive twang with her precise, resonating and melodic percussive attacks. The brief «Moments of Time» is Ibarra’s lush, gamelan-like piece. The second extended piece «The Way of the Clouds» is more conversational and more abstract. It highlights the deep affinity of Ibarra and Dorji and their deep listening dynamics as they create their very own sonic universe. The last piece «Mist of Light» is a minimalist and enigmatic piece that stresses the great potential of this one-of-a-kind duo.
Susie Ibarra (dr, perc), Tashi Dorji (g)