Reviews that mention Brandon Lopez

September 21, 2020

Whit Dickey

Expanding Light
Tao Forms Tao 02

Rob Clutton Trio

Counsel of Primaries

SnailBoingBoing Records SBB 007

Sean Conly/Michaël Attias/Tom Rainey

Live at the Bushwick Series

Gauci Music Recordings No #

Stretching the compact intimacy of the saxophone-bass-drum group in varied modes, one Toronto and two New York-based trios follow individual paths on these discs. While two are ostensibly directed by double bassists and the other by a drummer each group functions as a fused unit. MORE

March 19, 2020

Colin Fisher Quartet

Living Midnight
Astral Spirits MF211/AS 107

By Ken Waxman

Leaving his guitar back in Toronto, Colin Fisher took his saxophones to New York and recorded this sometimes sage, sometimes savage, trio of exemplary improvisations with three of that city’s most accomplished free players: multi-instrumentalist Daniel Carter, bassist

Brandon Lopez and drummer Marc Edwards, All four function as if they’ve worked together for years.

With Fisher on alto and tenor saxophones, while Cater roams among clarinet, flute, tenor, alto and soprano saxophones, the only disorientation occurs when both play saxophones. But on “Valley Spirit” for instance, the resulting layered reed affirmations create enough elasticized power to counter the rugged polyrhythms of Edwards, who is constantly aggressive, although his distinctive accents and patterns never disrupt the narratives. MORE

March 3, 2019

Ivo Perelman

Octagon
Leo Records CD LR 810

Vandermark/Wooley/Courvoisier/Rainey

Noise of our Time

Intakt CD 310

Allying himself with two different saxophonists, American trumpeter Nate Wooley puts aside distinctive personal projects to participate in these quartet session that approach improvisation in alternate fashions.

Another in what appears to be a continuous outpouring of discs on which Brazilian tenor saxophonist Ivo Perelman is coupled with a platoon’s worth of other Jazzers in constantly changing combo form, Octagon includes three equally resourceful Americans who have played with multiple partners: Wooley, bassist Brandon Lopez and drummer Gerald Cleaver. With tracks titled “Part 1” to “Part 8”, it’s obvious that this is a session of free-form improvisation. Alongside Chicago tenor saxophonist/clarinetist Ken Vandermark and Wooley, Swiss pianist Sylvie Courvoisier and New York drummer Tom Rainey interpret three compositions by the pianist, three by the reedist and three by the trumpeter. MORE

August 16, 2018

Lopez/Nelson/Nicodemou/Cleaver

The Industry of Entropy
Relative Pitch RPR 1063

Subtle Degrees

A Dance That Empties

New Amsterdam NWAM 093

One of the most refined and flexible percussionists in Jazz, Gerald Cleaver’s rhythmic skills have been put to use alongside everyone from Roscoe Mitchell to Samuel Blaser. On the CDs here, he’s a featured player in two divergent groups including a different tenor saxophonist, who incidentally also one-fourth of the four-saxophone, Battle Trance band. Both discs inhabit the Free Music spectrum. However A Dance That Empties is a no-holds-barred interaction between the drummer and Travis Laplante’s saxophone, while On The Industry of Entropy, is an integrated effort of timed instant group composing featuring the drummer, saxophonist Matt Nelson plus bassist Brandon Lopez and vibraphonist Andria Nicodemou. MORE

January 26, 2018

Nate Wooley

Knknighgh (Minimal Poetry for Aram Saroyan)
Clean Feed CF 434 CD

Nate Wooley

Battle Pieces II

Relative Pitch Records RPR 1058

Moving on from apprenticeship in other people’s bands, American trumpeter Nate Wooley has over the past half-decade established his own musical persona constructing concept pieces whose genesis uses brief composed heads to expand players’ interpretations of the themes. The concept, with its echoes of Anthony Braxton mixing and shuffling his modular compositions, doesn’t sound that unique. But the execution can be intriguing as these two recent quartet sessions indicate. MORE

May 8, 2017

Festival Report

Artacts ‘17
By Ken Waxman

One of Austria’s ski resorts abutting the Alps, St. Johann in Tirol also attracts music fans during the annual artacts Festival. Attendees March 10-12 could be forgiven for being smug. While warm weather limited optimal ski conditions, music fans’ experience was elevated without using chair lifts. Case in point was the DEK trio, which opened the festival at the comfortable rustic Alte Gerberei performance space. While American tenor saxophonist/clarinetist Ken Vandermark is wedded to jazz, Austrian drummer Didi Kern is involved with rock and Graz-based pianist Elisabeth Harnik at home in notated music, the resolution of these contradictions gave the performance its bite. Kern’s paddled beat lent veracity to Vandermark’s bar-walking sax honking, while Harnik’s pastoral patterning added emotion to abstract altissimo clarinet twists. Harnik’s attack could be brawny as well, extending her dynamic range by pounding darker phases from the lowest-pitched keys and plucking, rubbing and twanging inner piano strings. Although teaming with discordant touches, DEK’s sound never lost its sense of swing. MORE