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ALBUM REVIEWS

Yimba Rudo: Yimba Rudo

Read "Yimba Rudo" reviewed by Jerome Wilson

The phrase “Yimba Rudo" means “Sing Love" in Zimbabwe's Shona language. It is also the name of this trio which brings together musicians from three different worlds. Vibraphonist Kevin Norton is a respected figure in the avant jazz sphere who has worked with the likes of Anthony Braxton and Paul Dunmall. Bassist Steve LaSpina is a veteran presence on the mainstream New York jazz scene who has played with everyone from Benny Carter to Carmen McRae. Drummer Jim Pugliese has ...

RECORD LABEL PROFILES

Barking Hoop

Read "Barking Hoop" reviewed by Sean Patrick Fitzell

French filmmaker and writer Guy Debord's art probed how modernization and economic forces caused alienation in everyday life. Music composed in his honor was the impetus for an artist-run, independent record label: drummer-percussionist and composer Kevin Norton's Barking Hoop. It's dedicated to developing original and unique work outside established parameters, which Debord would applaud. A longtime sideman for multi-reedist Anthony Braxton, Norton was invited to compose and perform at the 1998 Tri-Centric Festival in New York. With Debord ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kevin Norton: Quark Bercuse: Solo Percussion Vol. 1

Read "Quark Bercuse: Solo Percussion Vol. 1" reviewed by Sean Patrick Fitzell

Solo music is perhaps the most challenging kind of all. With no place to hide, it's just the musician communicating to the listener. Percussion music presents additional challenges for both the performer and audience, since untuned instruments, like drums and cymbals, lack obvious melodic qualities and tuned instruments, like marimba and xylophone, are not inherently harmonic. But percussion instruments have a vast timbral and dynamic range with which a skilled percussionist can elicit implied melodies and harmonies and present complete ...

MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Kevin Norton: Time-Space Modulator & No Definitive

Read "Kevin Norton: Time-Space Modulator & No Definitive" reviewed by Kurt Gottschalk

Vanity labels and the digital age have perhaps resulted in an effluvia of recordings that will likely be enjoyed by fans in the single digits at best, but on occasion the DIY ethos in jazz allows documentation of remarkable work by artists who might otherwise be forever relegated to sideman status. Kevin Norton is the rare drummer with a strong sense for composition and more than mere competence as a bandleader and it's fortunate that he's able ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kevin Norton's Bauhaus Quartet: Time-Space Modulator

Read "Time-Space Modulator" reviewed by Mark Corroto

I must admit, I didn't consider Kevin Norton's latest entitled Time-Space Modulator to be a reference to L'szl' Moholy-Nagy's sculpture “Light-Space Modulator." Nope. I referenced the drummer's work with, and admiration for Anthony Braxton, and immediately connected this disc with Bugs Bunny's encounters with Marvin the Martian. I can even picture Braxton speaking with Marvin's voice and calling for “the P-53 time-space modulator."

But then I digress.

Norton, like Braxton (and Marvin) are partial to a ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kevin Norton: Intuitive Structures

Read "Intuitive Structures" reviewed by Sean Patrick Fitzell

Drummer-percussionist Kevin Norton is perhaps best known for his collaborations with multi-reedist and composer Anthony Braxton. But Norton is also an accomplished composer and bandleader. Intuitive Structures, his tenth record as a leader, captures Norton in an intimate live setting, with the emphasis on playing and group interaction. Living Language consists of saxophonist Louie Belogenis, cellist Tomas Ulrich, and bassist John Lindberg, frequent associates of the leader who possess both technical proficiency and emotional intensity. A vibraphone-cello duet ...

INTERVIEWS

A Fireside Chat with Kevin Norton

Read "A Fireside Chat with Kevin Norton" reviewed by AAJ Staff

Kevin Norton is one of the most original percussionists my side of the Atlantic. Having documented the music of Anthony Braxton on his Barking Hoop label, Norton, after a handful of convincing releases on the CIMP and Clean Feed labels, continues to advance creatively with Oceans of Earth, a new trio release with like-minded Tomas Ulrich and Joëlle Léandre. An impressively detailed recording, Oceans of Earth furthers the previous The Dream Catcher. Kevin Norton, folks, unedited and in his own ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kevin Norton: Change Dance - troubled energy

Read "Change Dance - troubled energy" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Percussionist/composer Kevin Norton’s latest production adds a little more amplitude to his stature as one of the leading thinkers and practitioners of progressive jazz. There’s a story behind Change Dance, and Norton approaches these intersecting works via multipart segments, each marked by key focal points that highlight the various instrumentalists.

With this release, Norton enlists an impressive cast for a thematic foray founded upon sinuous movements, long rests between measures, and inventive soloing. On the opener, “Section ...

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Kevin Norton & Haewon Min: Play The Music Of Anthony Braxton

Read "Play The Music Of Anthony Braxton" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Composer/percussionist, Kevin Norton has spent a lot of quality time with the estimable saxophonist/composer, Anthony Braxton. On this production, recorded live at “Roulette” in New York City, Norton and classically trained pianist, Haewon Min, reinterpret or perhaps personalize, five of Braxton’s works.

Norton utilizes small percussion instruments, vibes, and marimba as contrapuntal and exploratory devices throughout his quaintly organized and cleverly arranged passages with Ms. Min. On this release, Braxton’s geometrically inclined – new music type works are radiantly enacted. ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Kevin Norton (Barking Hoop: In Context/Out of Context

Read "In Context/Out of Context" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Drummer/percussionist and modern jazz composer Kevin Norton continues to infuse previously applied concepts and practices into novel ways and means of exploring the outer boundaries of swing, bop and improvisation, witnessed on this trio set titled, In Context/Out of Context.

Norton along with frequent collaborators, saxophonists Bob DeBellis and David Bindman embark upon the bass-less trio route as the band explores rhythmic variations in concert with, alternating dialogue and triggered responses. The leader commences the production with a shrewdly concocted ...


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