CLASSIC OPEYE | 2 Discs: Free Downloads!


2 Discs: Free Downloads!

1) SILK!


Silk! is a companion release to Moss ’Comes Silk (HB CD 1). It was recorded by engineer Myles Boisen the same two days in September 1995 as the earlier release. It is the only time all of the instruments OPEYE was using in performance were individually miked and recorded in a studio setting.

The music is a perfect complement to that on Moss ’Comes Silk. The flavors of Silk! are more subtle, more understated, but the multi-independent musical form is perhaps stretched even further.

From the notes to Moss ’Comes Silk:

OPEYE’s music is founded upon a new world creative aesthetic: one’s own experiences and background are central, but the fetters of provincial cultures are thrown off — we have all become heir to every tradition: Shared Humanity in all its richness and diversity — and the future is likewise embraced.

Free improvisation, we understand as a non-idiomatic approach to playing — an attitude about what we are doing — which is to say that although we remain attentive to all of our music experience, we are not playing music that is tied by necessity or design to any particular style or idiom.

Spontaneous composition, on the other hand, is the actual organizing of sound material, that which takes place at the beginning and end of each “piece” and in and between the lines of improvisation. It is the notions which formalize newly-created sound and the ways in which that sound is showcased.

Musically, we spoke before these sessions about moving more in the direction of true co-creation: we wanted each player to be as much as possible autonomous while remaining indispensable to the creation of the whole music.

In performance, we also frequently utilize masks, textiles, paintings, and unorthodox costume changes, adding a cross-cultural visual component to the music and heightening its dream-like and ritual qualities. For us, it becomes akin to a living shadow play, full of multi-cultural archetypes and (at times humorous) ambiguities.”


listen to Opeye | Improvisation No. 32


2) The Sun Divination Session

The Sun Divination Session is a self-recorded OPEYE rehearsal session from August 1996 at which only Ben and Esten Lindgren and John and Henry Kuntz were present. The open-ended and relaxed nature of our meeting (on an unusually warm Berkeley afternoon) facilitated the creation of some particularly organic music.

listen to Opeye | Drum Bear (excerpt)




Disc 1: C’AMELEON (39:43) listen to an excerpt

Recorded Live & Mixed Direct to 2-Track Stereo May 25, 2002 at TUVA Space Berkeley Ca by Scott R. Looney.

C & P 2011 Humming Bird Records

Disc 2: WHALAPAG’OS’ (41:08) listen to an excerpt

Recorded Live & Mixed Direct to 2-Track Stereo May 25, 2002 at TUVA Space Berkeley Ca by Scott R. Looney.

C & P 2011 Humming Bird Records

HENRY KUNTZ: tenor saxophone, musette, wood flutes, toy violins, Bali & Java gamelans DAN PLONSEY: Turkish clarinet, oboe, tenor & baritone saxophones CLEVELAND PLONSEY: flute (slide whistle) MICHAEL ZELNER: clarinet, alto saxophone, flutes and pennywhistle ESTEN LINDGREN trombone, trumpet, drums, percussion JOE SABELLA: tuba RON HEGLIN: tuba, trombone SUKI O’KANE: balafon, marimba, percussion BRETT LARNER: koto, zheng; HIRAM BELL: ukulele, clarinet, alto saxophone, harmonica, piano JOHN KUNTZ: ukuleles, guitar, mandolin, gamelans, percussion BRIAN GODCHAUX: violin, viola BOB MARSH: cello, JEFF HOBBS: violin NANCY CLARKE: violin JEFF PURMORT: Balinese gamelan instruments MARK SALVATORE: Balinese gamelan instruments

The theoretical concepts for the OPEYE ORCHESTRA, a world-expansive free-improvising ensemble, can be found by clicking here:

Thanks to the musicians who generously gave of their time and talents to breathe life into the OPEYE ORCHESTRA. Thanks to Eleanor Lindgren who provided Ben Lindgren’s painting “Exotic Jumble” for the performance and who took the orchestra photos. Thanks to Scott Looney who did the recording and mastering. Thanks to Michael Zelner for making copies of the results for each of the players. And thanks to Arjuna who invited the OPEYE ORCHESTRA to play at TUVA Space. —
Henry Kuntz (May 2011)

Recorded Live & Mixed Direct to 2-Track Stereo May 25, 2002 at TUVA Space Berkeley Ca by Scott R. Looney.

C & P 2011 Humming Bird Records

Two Outrageous Sets of World-Expansive Free Improvised Music!

“Along with expanding the range of instruments available for improvisation in a cultural sense, (OPEYE has) been working to expand the formal bounds of improvisation itself. As a group, we have been consciously moving away from what I think of as a lowest common denominator approach to the ways players relate to each other in an improvisational setting. That is, we are not attempting to coalesce musically around some lowest common denominator note, scale, melody, rhythm, or whatever. Rather, we are attempting to bring to collective improvisation the formal complexity of a string quartet, wherein each player’s role is a complete role, perhaps even able to stand alone, yet at the same time absolutely essential to the group music…

“The OPEYE ORCHESTRA is a first experiment to find out how well this approach can work with a larger ensemble. It is, in a sense, a social as well as musical experiment since it explores the maximum freedom that individuals may attain within a group while still maintaining the cohesion of the group.”

– From “The Theoretical Framework for the OPEYE Orchestra” – Henry Kuntz (May 2002)


Free – Download

This download consists of one zip file containing the complete track list in 192kbps MP3 format along with album art in high resolution JPG format. Please click the following link: Opeye Orchestra Live at Tuva Space | FREE DOWNLOAD

Henry Kuntz & Paul V. Kuntz | YEAR OF THE OX – Humming Bird CDR 2

listen to Henry & Paul V. Kuntz | Year Of The OX |  Track One

listen to Henry & Paul V. Kuntz | Year Of The OX |  Track Two

listen to Henry & Paul V. Kuntz | Year Of The OX |  Track Three

listen to Henry & Paul V. Kuntz | Year Of The OX |  Track Four

Buy Henry & Paul V. Kuntz – Year Of The OX – Hummingbird CDR 2 (CD or MP3) here…

“These are the first recordings Paul and I have made together in 25 years. We had fun improvising and spontaneously shaping the music; each piece grew out of its own organic logic.” —Henry Kuntz

Paul V. Kuntz (b. 1961) began playing piano as a teenager. His fascination with jazz and free improvisation led him on an intense journey of musical discovery and self study. He delights in having a blank canvas and being able to create on the spot. Among his piano influences are Dave Brubeck, Alice Coltrane, McCoy Tyner, Keith Jarrett and Cecil Taylor.

Paul V. Kuntz is a professional photographer whose work has been exhibited in fine art galleries internationally. His photographs are in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts (Houston, Texas), Museet for Fotokunst (Odense, Denmark), and in various private collections including that of the late Helmut Gernsheim (Lugano, Switzerland). Most recently, his work appeared in a retrospective book of Mr. Gernsheim’s photography collection, Helmut Gernsheim: Pioneer of Photo History.

Vincent Frank playing accordion inside his home, Houston, Texas 2-26-1986 – Photo by Paul V. Kuntz

VITAL WEEKLY | number 698 | week 40


Paul is a professional photographer, but plays piano since his youth with a love for jazz and improvisation. With Henry Kuntz we are in the company of a veteran improvisor. We first hear him on a very early record of Henry Kaiser, “Ice Death” (1977). And two years later Kuntz started Hummingbird and released his first solo-album “Cross-Eyed Priest”. Releases over the years were not many. Concerning this new release Kuntz says: “These are the first recordings Paul and I have made together in 25 years. We had fun improvising and spontaneously shaping the music, each piece grew out of its own organic logic.” The reason for this long gap remains is not given. Also whether we are are talking here of two brothers, father and son, or another (family-)relation is not made explicit, but of course of secondary importance. But let’s come to this meeting. Henry Kuntz plays chinese musette, angel soprano recorder, bells ,voice. Paul Kuntz embellished piano, bell wreath. We find them in nine concentrated improvisations, each one starting from a different angle. The music comes to you very direct. It is of great purity and rawness, unpolished. This makes that the music has an immediate emotional impact, although it are very abstract improvisations. Like in ‘Ox 1’ Kuntz produces often very penetrating sounds from his instruments, whereas Paul attracts attention with his self-made prepared piano turning it into an almost percussive instrument. In ‘Ox 2’ Henry excels in (fake) japanese vocals. Virtuosity is not their thing. The music lacks ego and pretensions. It springs from a meeting between two very personal and dedicated players. Authentic music! (DM)

Massimo Ricci | Touching Extremes

The simpler instrumentation (Chinese musette, Korean soprano recorder, bells and voice against “embellished” piano and bell wreath) makes for a straightforward path to the immediate understanding of the music, which grabs the attention via the obvious contrast between the respective approaches. We’re told that Paul Kuntz’s pianism has been partially influenced by people such as Cecil Taylor and Alice Coltrane besides “regulars” as Dave Brubeck and McCoy Tyner, but you won’t find no eruptions or cascades here. The structure of the large part of the pieces sees the piano underlining – typically quite calmly and evocatively – single strained notes and cried-out overtones halfway through forest calls and liberation of inner tensions. If, at times, this might generate the impression of a chance meeting with an overall sense of unglued parts and bizarre intrusions, one also clearly detects the feel of non-constriction by stylistic necessities, and appreciates the honesty that appears to drive the brotherly quest for unusual communication. — Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes