Anthony Braxton (Splasc: Small Ensemble Music (Wesleyan) 1994
Braxton utilizes his sopranino saxophone on “Duo Improvisation” with drummer/percussionist Eric Rosenthal as the drummer expounds upon a horizontal plane with spurious inventions amid his – snap, crackle and pop style of execution. With this piece, Braxton pursues linear and at times fragmented lines yet it is “Three Compositions for Sextet” that is the showstopper! Along with veterans such as bassist Joe Fonda, drummer/vibraphonist Kevin Norton and others, the saxophonist steers the band through multihued themes and textures surrounded by complex and hypnotic choruses yet an underlying sense of continuity prevails. During these three compositions, i.e. N 44 (1080+96) + 168, N 136 and N 43 + (96) + 168, we hear microtonal passages, mood shifts and heated flurries yet on the final sequence (N 43...) the band coalesces for punctual unison choruses and modern classical style motifs. Throughout, the musicians spew forth-fascinating themes that often convey a sense of fragility or innocence yet with Braxton, we tend to gaze in wonderment at the end results.
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Anthony Braxton; Woodwinds: Brandon Evans; Bass Clarinet, Oboe & Shenai (Track 1): Andre Vida; Baritone & Tenor Sax (Track 1): Jeanne Chloe; Piano (Track 2): Roland Dahinden; Trombone (Track 2): Eric Rosenthal; Percussion (Track 3): Jason Wong; Violin (Track 4): Ted Reichman; Accordion (Track 4): Mike Heffley; Trombone (Track 4): Joe Fonda; Bass (Track 4): Kevin Norton; Drums & Vibes (Track 4).
Cadence North Country distributes
Style: Modern Jazz