Reviews that mention Perry Robinson

February 6, 2019

Bobby Naughton/Leo Smith/Perry Robinson

The Haunt
NoBusiness Records NBCD 105

Milford Graves


Corbett vs. Dempsey CvsDCD052

Roscoe Mitchell


Delmark DE 4408

Instant Composers Pool


Corbett vs. Dempsey CvsDCD056

Cosmic Forest

The Spiritual Sounds of MPS

MPS 4029759122562

Something in the Air: CD Reissues help define the massive musical changes of the 1960s and 1970s

By Ken Waxman

As the advances musical and otherwise that transformed the 1960s and 1970s recede into history new considerations of what happened during those turbulent times continually appear. Reissues of advanced music recorded during that time, some needlessly obscure, some better known, help fill in the details of exactly what happened. MORE

December 5, 2011


Movement Between Clouds
Multikulti Project MPT 002

By Ken Waxman

Sometimes there can be too much of a good thing. At least that’s how it appears since American clarinetist Perry Robinson has joined the Undivided combo, adding his voice to what previously had been an indivisible whole, despite every member being from a different country.

Not that there’s anything particularly grating about the playing of the clarinetist who has followed a singular path since the 1960s. However by appending another reed sound to that of Polish bass clarinet, clarinet and tarogato player Wacław Zimpel, means that tentativeness infects this CD, compared to the band’s stronger debut session as a quartet, recorded five months previously. As a matter of fact, figuring that this record of a Warsaw concert is programmed in chronological order, all five don’t seem to be fully in sync until the final track, the nearly 20-minute “What A Big Quiet Noise.” MORE

February 12, 2011

Lou Grassi Po Band

Live at the Knitting Factory Vol. 1 (with Marshall Allen)
Porter Records PRCD 4051

Nu Band

Live in Paris

NoBusiness Records NBCD 16

By Ken Waxman

Recorded almost exactly seven years apart, these high-class discs illuminate drummer Lou Grassi’s hard-hitting yet rhythmically sophisticated style in two advanced group contexts. At home with styles ranging from ragtime to free form, Grassi advances any project in tandem with other players, never drawing undue attention to himself.

A welcome document involving the drummer’s long-constituted – since 1995 – Po Band, Live at the Knitting Factory features flutist/saxophonist Marshall Allen, linchpin of the Sun Ra Arkestra, guesting with the 2000 version of the group. Besides Grassi, trumpeter Paul Smoker, trombonist Steve Swell and clarinettist Perry Robinson are featured along with the late bassist Wilber Morris. That same year, Grassi hooked up with three other mature players to form the Nu Band. Live in Paris, recorded in 2007, demonstrates the close cooperation which has allowed it to flourish. Although each Nu Band member is a leader in his own right – as are Po Band’s participants – the CD’s extended tracks demonstrate the group’s collegial if not musical harmony. Mercurial reedist Mark Whitecage and fiery brass man Roy Campbell have an ideal setting for their contrapuntal connections, while the drummer and solid bassist Joe Fonda – who plays in as many bands as Grassi – not only keep the music on an even keel, but solos impressively. MORE

October 3, 2007

Anat Fort

A Long Story
ECM 1994

Symmetrical and ornamental, Israeli-born pianist Anat Fort’s compositions and playing seem geared more towards the comfort zone of her guests – bassist Ed Schuller, drummer Paul Motian and reedist Perry Robinson – than establishing a unique identity.

Crucial to this arrangement is the drummer, who once piloted the influential combos of Keith Jarrett and Bill Evans. His delicate cymbal taps and perceptive bounces shape the sounds as much as the tyro keyboardist. New York-based for a decade, among other projects, Fort was recently commissioned to create new arrangements of Israeli music. But no Middle Eastern tinges appear on this CD. MORE

November 21, 2006

Carnival Skin

Carnival Skin
Nemu 003

By Ken Waxman

Blending extended techniques from a variety of genres – including modern notated composition – with elements of Ornette Coleman-like free jazz, Carnival Skin proclaims its individuality in instrumentation.

That’s because the German-American quintet has as one lead voice, Bruce Eisenbeil’s guitar – an instrument whose sinuous fills and rough chording aren’t often heard in hard-core free improv situations. Similarly the overall instrumentation is less than commonplace. MORE