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Bebop Spoken There

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COFID- 19

In the current climate we are doing our best to keep everyone up to date. All gigs, as we all know, are off.

However, good old YouTube has plenty to offer both old and new to help us survive whilst housebound. Plus now is a good time to stock up on your CDs.

Also, keep an eye out for live streaming sessions.

Alternatively, you could do as they do in Italy and sing from your balcony.

Today

As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

CD Review: Josh Green & The Cyborg Orchestra - Telepathy & Bop

 (Review by Dave Brownlow)
An attempt by Josh Green and his Cyborg Orchestra to blend together modern jazz with contemporary classical music using surreal visual art and cinematic and television images as inspirations in a quirky, humorous style. Green has assembled a band comprising 3 reeds, 2 brass, 2 strings, accordion, guitar, piano, bass, and drums together with a conventional classical String Quartet and uses the instrumentation in an unconventional way in a striking and very different, off-centre sound. He’s studied jazz, classical music and composed film soundtracks and music for award-winning TV shows. The reviewer Ted Nash writes “Josh Green’s music is full of surprises and left me smiling. It is evocative and playful and certainly does not ‘fit in a box’. Mr Green has found a truly original voice.”
I can only agree……!
Boy and Dog in a Johnnypump has an ascending/descending chord sequence based on semi-tones and is like a suite in three sections: first an opening theme in lively rhumba tempo, second more sedate with strings to the fore, third featuring a wild ‘outside’ guitar solo and general chaos followed by a lengthy flute solo, more chaos and an abrupt ending. At times, the whole thing sounds like a circus band – no insult intended….The Lauer Faceplant: Based on a True Story plays like a clumsy spy-movie soundtrack using a theme of seemingly unconnected musical intervals. “I hate to take myself too seriously” Green explains, “and the thing that speaks to me the most is that wackiness in life” This piece includes a Michael Brecker-inspired tenor solo, a pizzicato string quartet section, and a fine trombone solo leading back into the ‘wacky’ theme.
Telepathy & Bop: 1, Telepathy & Bop: Interlude, and Telepathy & Bop: 2 are all influenced by Hungarian composer Gyorgy Ligeti (no – me neither!) and have stark atmospheres, dark harmonies and spectralism as their basis. Technically, beautifully played by all concerned and great if you’re a fan of abstract, contemporary, classical music. (I’m afraid there’s no sign of Ornithology, Oop-bop-sh’bam or Groovin’ High here!)   
La Victoire is inspired by painter Rene Magritte’s image of a cloud floating through a door by a seashore, and is more obviously a jazz vehicle with a conventional chord sequence, arrangement and a good tenor solo. Improvisation and Nebula is a dreamlike, atmospheric, piano feature with influences from Ligeti, Olivier Messiaen, Erik Satie, Claude Debussy, Bill Evans to Cecil Taylor. Great background music for a Planetarium…. Reverie Engine: The Ambiguous Rhumba is inspired by a photo of a cobblestone street in Cuba lined with classic American cars and features Todd Groves on EWI (Electric Wind Instrument). I can just picture Flavia Cacace and Vincent Simone dancing to this in a darkened café nearby………Soir Bleu: A Rag of Sorts has its origins in an Edward Hopper scene that finds a smoking clown amidst a group of Parisian diners. The promotional material suggests “Paris-by-way-of-the circus-rag” which aptly seems to sum this one up!
Is the album Interesting?  Yes,   Zany?  Yes, Colourful?  Yes.
Available February 24, 2017 from www.joshuagreenmusic.com.
Dave B.
Charles Pillow, Jay Hassler, Todd Groves, (reeds inc EWI ), Nathan Schram (viola), Clarice Jenson (cello), John Lake (tpt), Chris Misch-Bloxdorf (tmb), Nathan Kochi (accordion), Sungwon Kim (gtr), Michael Verselli (pno), Brian Courage (bass), Josh Bailey (dm) + The PUBLIQUARTET – Curtis Stewart (vln), Jannina Norpoth (vln), Nick Revel (viola), Amanda Gookin (cello).   Joshua Green (arranger and conductor).


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