AUM Fidelity



Tao Forms is a new recording label devoted to contemporary free jazz of an elevated & enlightened nature. Drummer–improviser–composer Whit Dickey is the founder & creative director of this fresh endeavor, with management & distribution by AUM Fidelity. The label (still!) launched in May 2020.
The inaugural and second releases now available.
(Check Tao Forms on Facebook for lengthier intro and news as it comes)

TAO01 - MATTHEW SHIPP ..The Piano Equation

CD – $13
(4-panel digipak with illuminating
liner notes on the inner panel)

piano equation
swing note from deep space
piano in hyperspace
vortex factor
land of the secrets
void equation (((listen)))
tone pocket
clown pulse
radio signals equation
cosmic juice

All compositions by Matthew Shipp, ©2020 MattShippMusic (ASCAP)
C+P 2020 Tao Forms

Matthew Shipp - piano

Recorded by Jim Clouse at Park West Studios, Brooklyn
Produced by Whit Dickey & Matthew Shipp
Liner notes by Mia Hansford
Artwork by Ming@AUM


Further honing a singular cosmic musical language, Matthew Shipp begins celebrating his landmark 60th year with this new solo piano recording. The Piano Equation is also the inaugural release from Tao Forms, a new label founded by drummer-improviser-composer – and longtime Shipp collaborator – Whit Dickey.

Over more than half of his lifespan, Shipp has built up an unparalleled body of work and a wholly original musical language that only becomes more hyper-focused and distinctive with the passage of time. Shipp’s abstract eloquence is on vivid display throughout The Piano Equation, which presents him alone at the piano, brilliantly solving his higher-order musical mathematics, approaching each new unknown from unexpected vantage points as in some form of cubist algebra. Shipp builds his solo music in a cellular fashion, formed like the building blocks of human life out of disparate elements that combine and evolve in novel and fascinating forms. “There are billions of different human beings on the planet, all constituted with the same genetic material but all completely different,” he says. “All of these pieces can be generated with a different mother/father idea and the basic cellular material can unfold in billions of ways.”

Stride, swing and the avant-garde collide like so many elemental particles, the aftereffects radiating outward in increasingly complex and intricate formations. The scientific, the personal, the political and the fantastic co-exist throughout Shipp’s work, melding in the radical vocabulary that the pianist employs on the album, which speaks with its own alien yet familiar logic. Fragments of melody coalesce and transform, dissolve or shatter into kaleidoscopic reveries.

While some may have used the arrival of such a landmark occasion as their 60th anniversary of arrival here to look backwards, Shipp will spend the year continuing to move resolutely forward, further evolving a voice that is as intimately personal as it is cosmically adventurous.

TAO02 - WHIT DICKEY TRIO ..Expanding Light

CD – $13
(4-panel digipak with illuminating
liner notes on the inner panel)

The Outer Edge (((listen)))
Desert Flower
Expanding Light
The Opening

All compositions by Whit Dickey,
in collaboration with the Trio
© Whit Dickey (BMI)
C+P 2020 Tao Forms

Whit Dickey - drums
Brandon Lopez - bass
Rob Brown - alto saxophone

Recorded by Jim Clouse at Park West Studios, Brooklyn
Produced by Whit Dickey
Liner notes by Yuko Otomo
Artwork by Ming@AUM


Free improvisation is as much an act of discovery as of creation. On their breathtaking debut the new Whit Dickey Trio shines their collective illumination into the heretofore unexplored darkness between them. The album teams the drummer with one of his most long-standing collaborators in saxophonist Rob Brown & for the first time with the young firebrand bassist Brandon Lopez, in what is certainly hoped will be an ongoing communion.

The light and the dark, intimate friends and fresh relations – these are a few of the dualities embodied by the new recording label, Tao Forms. This second release by the label continues the creative renaissance which drummer Whit Dickey embarked on with his stunning 2019 double-album by the Tao Quartets, a Yin and Yang pairing of two distinct ensembles.

Expanding Light is an exercise in going full-bore Yang. Dickey described the experience of recording with his new trio as “incessantly and mightily grabbing the dragon by the tail, and not caring.” In other words, losing oneself to intangible inspiration, wherever it may lead. The result maintains a visceral ferocity even at its most abstract moments, influenced as much by Nirvana at their finest as by the holistic experimentation of Dickey's mentor, Professor Milford Graves. Of course, the Yin – the Expanding Light of the title – inevitably follows in the trio’s wake...

Dickey & Brown have worked together for over 30 years, forging an instinctual chemistry while still managing to surprise one another with a mutual penchant for risk-taking. Though Lopez was born a year before Dickey and Brown began playing together, he proved an ideal partner for the drummer in the low end of the Yang. Lopez has become a force on numerous NYC scenes in recent years, his relentless fervor and formidable power have led to collaborations in the realms of classical, jazz and experimental music with the likes of John Zorn, Tyshawn Sorey, Chris Potter, and the New York Philharmonic under Jaap van Zweden.




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