187

Vinny Golia: A Gift for the Unusual: Music for Contrabass Saxophone

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Vinny Golia: A Gift for the Unusual: Music for Contrabass Saxophone West coast sax maven Vinny Golia brings out a set where he plays the tubax, a new type of contrabass saxophone designed by German inventor Benedict Eppelsheim. A standard contrabass saxophone is a rather unwieldly beast, often difficult to tame. Apparently, the tubax solves many of these shortcomings by being both a full-sounding and controllable instrument.

Right from the start, the opener finds the tubax often sounding like a contrabass clarinet, yet with a metallic and more powerful sound. Lasting slightly over one minute, this piece serves more as an introduction and to set the tone for the rest of the music. "Repetition" is a trio of tubax, trombone, and contrabass. This piece finds the three instruments weaving dark, melodic lines around each other. At times, the tubax and arco contrabass are difficult to distinguish from each other, their tonalities melding together.

"Eye My" is a swinging duo with Wayne Peet. The tubax really benefits from the piano's contrast in timbre and attack. Golia tends to play a more legato, linear style here, and the sharp, staccato of the piano is the perfect foil. Originally written for bass sax, "The Mozart of Vice" is a tubax/contrabass/trombone/piano outing. Bassist Bill Casale sets up an opening line over which Golia and trombonist Michael Pierre Vlatkovich weave the melody. With no fault towards the musicianship, the music just seems to plod along.

Golia has never been one to shy away from exploring different aspects of creative music, and this is no exception. His bravery in making a recording solely on tubax may be overshadowed by the limited tonality of the instrument over sixty four minutes. And his choice of instrumentation often keeps the sounds in the low registers, making repeated listenings a challenge. This CD may be more of an acquired taste than anything—the music, grounded in the bass register, rarely takes off.


Track Listing: Single Booth Enclosure: Prime; Repetition; Mr. Amons Builds His Bridge; Eye My; Single Booth Enclosure Third: Revisitation; The Mozart Of Vice; The 15th; Just Something I Thought Of; Once Upon A Time On My Way To The Studio; A History Of Everything That Ever Happened; The Last Of Its Kind.

Personnel: Vinny Golia: tubax, gordophone (10); Michael Pierre Vlatkovich: trombone; Bill Casale: contrabass; Wayne Peet: piano, organ, electric piano, Theremin, synthesizer; Jessica Catron: cello; Bill Barrett: chromatic harmonica.

Title: A Gift for the Unusual: Music for Contrabass Saxophone | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Nine Winds Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read I Know Who I Am CD/LP/Track Review I Know Who I Am
by James Nadal
Published: July 26, 2017
Read With You In Mind CD/LP/Track Review With You In Mind
by Doug Collette
Published: July 26, 2017
Read Departure CD/LP/Track Review Departure
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 26, 2017
Read Roll On CD/LP/Track Review Roll On
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 25, 2017
Read BACHanalia CD/LP/Track Review BACHanalia
by Jerome Wilson
Published: July 25, 2017
Read "Lookin' East" CD/LP/Track Review Lookin' East
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 22, 2017
Read "Our Second Set" CD/LP/Track Review Our Second Set
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 23, 2016
Read "My Tongue Crumbles After" CD/LP/Track Review My Tongue Crumbles After
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 1, 2017
Read "Centreline Theory" CD/LP/Track Review Centreline Theory
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 26, 2016
Read "Unstatic" CD/LP/Track Review Unstatic
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 9, 2016
Read "Ugly Beauty" CD/LP/Track Review Ugly Beauty
by Nick Davies
Published: July 20, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.