New York Times, Paris Transatlantic
Thanks for checking in with us! A few fun things to report:
The New York Times provided a glowing review of our performance at the Greenwich House Music School last week! Here’s a snippet:
In an hourlong concert the band put it all out on the table: post-bop precision drills, boogie-woogie coughing fits, passing interludes of static or clangor. At the front line were the trumpeter Eli Asher, the saxophonist and clarinetist Josh Rutner and the trombonist and tuba player James Hirschfeld. They looked like the sort of guys who might peel off at any moment and start doing your taxes.
Instead they busied themselves with brisk and accomplished improvising, often in an overlapping tandem. Periodically one or more would drop into a crouch to tend to an aluminum mixing bowl or a transistor radio or some other noisemaker. Sometimes this felt merely like spectacle on a personal scale, the equivalent of waving a sparkler in each hand. Sometimes it imbued the music with welcome texture or a whiff of mystery.
Read the whole thing at www.nytimes.com!
This digital-only collection of 8 original songs answers the question “How are these guys gonna follow up the success of Sirius Respect?” That disc’s brilliant pairing of material by Sun Ra and Stockhausen got this hardworking band some much-deserved attention, but the sextet’s own composing talents are just as satisfying, drawing on a typically deep well of influences. Drummer Ted Poor’s “Stray Gator” carries over the Ra influence in an ominous blast-off featuring a brooding tenor saxophone solo by Josh Rutner and brash trumpet from Eli Asher. That’s followed by trombonist James Hirshfield’s “Tony I”, a romp which veers between Dixieland and ragtime with assorted ritards and percussive is-the-needle-stuck interjections. Pianist Red Wierenga seems to be channeling Jerry Lee Lewis on parts of the intricate title cut, while the band adds to the fun with big Latin horns on “The Hinske Plow”. Hirshfield’s yearning trombone really shines on the introspective “Vermont”, which conjures up echoes of the David Murray Octet, and the album ends perfectly with Rutner’s bebop send-up “I Want to Be Asher”, which sounds as fresh now as it would have on Savoy in 1945. As with previous releases you can’t escape the feeling that not only are these guys very good at what they do, they seem to have a lot of fun doing it.
Don’t forget to stream “Farcical Built for Six” (in its entirety) for FREE on Respect’s bandcamp page, respectsextet.bandcamp.com, and, if you like it, download it for only $7.
Also! Keep your ears to the ground for some great new performances we’ll be announcing over the coming weeks!