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Daily articles carefully curated by the All About Jazz staff. Read our popular and future articles.

ALBUM REVIEW

Rova Saxophone Quartet: Steve Lacy’s Saxophone Special Revisited

Read "Steve Lacy’s Saxophone Special Revisited" reviewed by Mark Corroto

If you own a copy of the original Saxophone Special (Emanem, 1975), flip the LP over to view a photocopy of Steve Lacy's original notebook (with spiral binding) score of the compositions “Staples," “Swishes," and “Snaps." This is all music he performed at Wigmore Hall in London in December 1974 in a saxophone quartet that included Trevor Watts, Evan Parker, and Steve Potts. He also incorporated what he described as a “noise section" with guitarist Derek Bailey and the electronic ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Rova Channeling Coltrane: Electric Ascension

Read "Electric Ascension" reviewed by John Sharpe

John Coltrane's Ascension (Impulse, 1965) stands as a seminal moment in the development of modern jazz, presenting structured large group improvisation which renounced both the form and content of almost all previous models. It was never performed live, and this was one of the facts which initially captured the attention of the now venerable ROVA Saxophone Quartet, who have explored the work on multiple occasions. First was John Coltrane's Ascension (Black Saint, 1997) a fairly faithful homage which mirrored the ...

ALBUM REVIEW

Rova Saxophone Quartet: Resistance

Read "Resistance" reviewed by Kurt Gottschalk

Two premiere saxophone quartets came out of the final quarter of the last century, and both continue to carry on (each having lost one original member along the way). Rova and the World Saxophone Quartet (WSQ) are notable for having overcome the limitations posed by groupings of like instruments, each finding their way to distinct voices and full sounds. Where they differ is in tradition. WSQ are unabashedly a jazz group, recording an album of Duke Ellington material ...

ALBUM REVIEW

ROVA Saxophone Quartet: As Was

Read "As Was" reviewed by AAJ Staff

Ironically, the highest forms of freedom require the greatest discipline. And so it is with the ROVA saxophone quartet, rejuvenated in their earliest form on this '81 reissue. As Was documents the earliest form of this quartet, before Steve Adams replaced Andrew Voight. And it's heady stuff: fleet, adventurous, roving, and emotionally dense. Periods of arranged chordal progression slyly disintegrate into four independent voices of interplay, interweaving themes and fine-sculpted tones. The structure of the freer passages may be less ...


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