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Nels and Alex Cline at The Jazz Bakery

Read "Nels and Alex Cline at The Jazz Bakery" reviewed by Jonathan Manning

Nels Cline / Alex Cline Jazz Bakery (Moss Theater) Santa Monica, CA January 13, 2018 Nine years ago, Nels and Alex Cline played live as a duo for only the third time ever. On January 13, just nine days after their collective 62nd birthday, they made it the fourth. The brothers Cline performed together at the Moss Theater in Santa Monica, near where they grew up. The event was partly instigated by ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Alex Cline's Flower Garland Orchestra: Oceans of Vows

Read "Alex Cline's Flower Garland Orchestra: Oceans of Vows" reviewed by John Kelman

Despite being a key participant in the “Left Coast" scene of more avant-leaning music from the American west coast--in particular, part of the Cryptogramophone imprint that, while less active than in its “glory days" during the first years of the new millennium--Alex Cline releases so infrequently as a leader that any new music from the percussionist/composer is worthy of attention. That he has flown so far under the radar, in recent years, that his last Cryptogramophone release, 2013's For People ...

INTERVIEWS

Alex Cline: Free-Spirited Drummer

Read "Alex Cline: Free-Spirited Drummer" reviewed by R.J. DeLuke

West coast drummer/percussionist Alex Cline is a sensitive player with a strong feel for interesting harmonies, shifting voices and changing moods when he writes music. It's a sensitivity not usually associated with drummers. But what's inside Cline, and comes through in his music, is from an artist and a musician, not merely a drummer.

He plays mainstream jazz gigs, but after his rock-influenced youth, he gravitated, almost by fate, to the free-form improvisers, getting his first ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Alex Cline: Continuation

Read "Continuation" reviewed by Troy Collins

Twin brother of guitarist Nels Cline, percussionist Alex Cline has often been portrayed as the quieter half, with his introspective leanings serving as the delicate yin to Nels' assertive yang. Cross-cultural metaphors aside, Alex's discography is filled with allusions to his longstanding interest in Eastern spirituality.

Fittingly, Cline's albums often exude an air of introspective tranquility--an aesthetic focus that contrasts with his brother's more omnivorous approach. Less prolific than his sibling, Continuation is Cline's eighth album as a ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Alex Cline: Continuation

Read "Continuation" reviewed by John Kelman

It's been a long time since percussionist/composer Alex Cline last released an album under his own name. 1999's Sparks Fly Upward and 2001's The Constant Flame (both on Cryptogramophone), culminated his evolving Alex Cline Ensemble, combining measured spontaneity with long-form writing that, in its near-classical approach to compositional development, was a unique confluence of form and freedom. Continuation represents two significant changes for Cline: first, it's a far more overtly improvisational disc than his Ensemble records, even as Cline's predilection ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Alex Cline/Kaoru/Miya Masaoka/G.E. Stinson: Cloud Plate

Read "Cloud Plate" reviewed by Peter Aaron

While Wilco guitarist Nels Cline may now be a household name to the indie rock world, his twin brother, drummer Alex Cline, like Nels, has been a respected player on the LA new music scene since the late '70s. But as long as Alex maintains the same high standard of innovation that's all over this terrific release--as well as in the work he's done with luminaries like Vinny Golia and Julius Hemphill, in his own Alex Cline Ensemble, and with ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Alex Cline/Kaoru/Miya Masaoka/G.E. Stinson: Cloud Plate

Read "Cloud Plate" reviewed by John Kelman

Sometimes it's all about context. A week after his previous studio effort, The Constant Flame, was recorded, percussionist Alex Cline was reconvened with guitarist G.E. Stinson and vocalist Kaoru from that session, also adding koto player Miya Masaoka, for a day of purely unstructured improvisation. The resulting album, Cloud Plate, is, to a large extent, in direct contrast to the more clearly constructed, albeit inarguably experimental, nature of The Constant Flame.

Still, what is remarkable about Cloud Plate is how, ...