The Rites: Butch Morris Conductions Inspired By Stravinsky’s Le Sacre Du Printemps

2003 : TruGROID/AvantGROID

Experimental classical and electronic muses meet with a touch of weird, avant-garde jazz.
With: Lawrence D. “Butch” Morris, Pete Cosey, Mazz Swift, Melvin Gibbs, Okkyung Lee, Vijay Iyer, & Lewis “Flip” Barnes.


Recorded at The Fifth House, Brooklyn NY ~ October 8th, 2002
Recording Engineer ~ Peter Karl
Production ~ Greg Tate
Executive Producer ~ Jared Michael Nickerson for Burnt Sugar Index LLC
Photography ~ Arthur Jafa
Graphic Design ~ Nneka Bennett
Haitian Mer ~ Lion Sculpture ~ Serge Jolimeau
Jewerly ~ Sistaphyre

Extra Special Thanks for Ground Support To ~ LaRonda Davis ~ Cathy Campbell ~ Gabri Christa ~ Bill Bragin ~ Amy Gail ~ Sasha Dees ~ Other Music.Com ~ Dusty Groove.Com ~ Nedezdha Ball ~ Laz Lopez & Arts International

Additional Thanks To ~ Dorothy Desie ~ David Fricke ~ Stefanie Kelly & Robert Christgau


“Of course an eclectic lineup such as this requires strong direction and, this time around, the whip comes from guest conductor Butch Morris. His style of conducting is not to lead a group through a written score, but to react to the ongoing group improvisation and pulls what he feels are the right sounds and elements out of the musicians. His touch ranges from gentle string interludes that organically meld into fractured ambient washes to deep bass grooves and long guitar lines that produce soaring, sustained aches or disturbing subterranean agitations. The music is generally abstract, but there is an element of excitement as its form grows and the pieces sprout new limbs. “The Rites” is Burnt Sugar’s fifth album since forming in 1999 and there are several more on the way. Collect ”em all, kids.”
Tom Bojko: The Japan Times

“Sky Porch arrives in an already altered state. Skipping at speed/suspended in the air. Racing along/all still. Then the tempo gallops forward – that must be Pete Cosey playing a warped Jack Johnson riff. Returned after all these too, too long years. Things get really ripped apart, things get seismic in a trippy, queasy way. After 17 minutes of this, you’ve got to feel drenched, renched, reconfigured. They finally come to a rest, but you greedily want it to continue.”

“As with their live appearance in London recently, there”s a leviathan-like sense of a large mass gathering momentum. A sweating, straining, feeling alternative to the non-corporeal floodtide of electronica, Greg Tate”s groove-based, improvising, conductioned, yelling, tender, big (massive) band make an unassailable argument for the organic, the electric. Burnt Sugar are a mobile unit, heavy but limber as a panther – seemingly able to tackle any subject at will. The last hundred years is a smorgasbord for this groups delectation; join the feast.”
Colin Buttimer of the BBC online




  1. What Stravinsky …?
  2.  The Brahmsian l ….?
  3. The Brahmsian ll ….?
  4. The Russian ……..?
  5. Liturgical ………….?
  6. The Neoclassicist …?
  7. Or The Jazz Stravinsky?
  8. Sky Porch


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