Brooklyn-based guitarist/composer Mary Halvorson's second recording with her amazing working quintet of trumpeter Jonathan Finlayson, saxophonist Jon Irabagon, bassist John Hebert, and drummer Ches Smith.
Label: Firehouse 12 Records
Catalog ID: FH12-04-01-016
Squidco Product Code: 16199
All compositions by Mary Halvorson (BMI) Recorded July 30-31, 2011 at Firehouse 12 in New Haven, CT.
Jon Irabagon-alto saxophone
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1. Sinks When She Rounds The Bend (No. 22) 7:48
2. Hemorrhaging Smiles (No. 25) 7:59
3. Forgotten Men In Silver (No. 24) 8:03
4. Love In Eight Colors (No. 21) 10:15
5. The Periphery Of Scandal (No. 23) 7:50
6. That Old Sound (No. 27) 4:48
7. Sea Cut Like Snow (No. 26) 6:52
8. Deformed Weight Of Hands (No. 28) 7:09
9. All The Clocks (No. 29) 7:48
Related Categories of Interest:
NY Downtown & Jazz/Improv
Staff Picks & Recommended Items
Top 25 for 2012
sample the album:
"Bending Bridges is Brooklyn-based guitarist/composer Mary Halvorson's second recording with her working quintet and third consecutive title as a leader on Firehouse 12 Records. As on 2010's Saturn Sings, which appeared on nearly 100 best-of-the- year lists, she is joined by trumpeter Jonathan Finlayson, saxophonist Jon Irabagon, bassist John Hébert and drummer Ches Smith for a program of new original compositions written specifically for this ensemble.
"Saturn Sings felt like a beginning," she explains. "When that album was recorded, the band had only been together for a year and we had only played a handful of gigs. Since then, we have played together much more often, our sound has developed and we have become increasingly comfortable with the music and with each other. The more I get to know the quintet, the easier it becomes to compose for that instrumentation, and for those musicians specifically. Plus, over time the whole band becomes more relaxed, which allows us to take more risks during perfor- mances. That's a huge part of why I try to keep my bands together for a long time."
Ms. Halvorson's work with her quintet, which will hit the road this spring and summer in support of Bending Bridges, has inspired critics to call her "extraordinary" (John Fordham, BBC 3's Jazz on 3), "hugely inventive" (John Corbett, DownBeat), "daringly unpredict- able" (The New Yorker), "a distinct voice of her own" (Carl Wilson, Slate), "the most original jazz guitarist in a generation" (MichaelJ. West, Washington City Paper), "a multi-faceted artist whose writing is as impressive as her improvising" (Troy Collins, Point of Departure) and "one of today's most formidable bandleaders" (Francis Davis, Village Voice).
ABOUT MARY HALVORSON
"The quintet setting offers the Boston-born, Brooklyn- based guitarist entirely new harmonic possibilities," writes Jazzwise reviewer Peter Quinn, "and the results are hugely impressive...Halvorson's powerfully communicative music transcends the avant-garde experimental box." The Philadelphia City Paper 's Shaun Brady adds, "Halvorson has been steadily reshaping the sound of jazz guitar in recent years with her elastic, sometimes-fluid, sometimes-shredding, wholly unique style. Her compositions, shaped by a pop sensibility and unconstrained avant aggressiveness, are ably explored by five of modern jazz's young leading lights."
When not leading her quintet, or her other groups such as the longstanding Mary Halvorson Trio and the recently created Reverse Blue and Mary Halvorson Septet, Ms. Halvorson is the guitarist of choice for such notable bandleaders as Tim Berne, Anthony Braxton, Taylor Ho Bynum, Tomas Fujiwara, Curtis Hasselbring and Ingrid Laubrock. She also appears on the latest releases from the working ensembles Mary Halvorson & Jessica Pavone, The Thirteenth Assembly and the Tom Rainey Trio. All told, her recent career accomplishments include earning the top spot in the Rising Star Guitar category in the latest DownBeat Critics Poll and being named New York's Best Guitarist 2011 by the Village Voice among other honors."-Firehouse 12
• Show Bio for Mary Halvorson
"One of improvised music's most in-demand guitarists, Mary Halvorson has been active in New York since 2002, following jazz studies at Wesleyan University and the New School. Critics have called her "a singular talent" (Lloyd Sachs, JazzTimes), "NYC's least-predictable improviser" (Howard Mandel, City Arts), "one of the most exciting and original guitarists in jazz-or otherwise" (Steve Dollar, Wall Street Journal), and "one of today's most formidable bandleaders" (Francis Davis, Village Voice). The Philadelphia City Paper's Shaun Brady adds, "Halvorson has been steadily reshaping the sound of jazz guitar in recent years with her elastic, sometimes-fluid, sometimes-shredding, wholly unique style."
After three years of study with visionary composer and saxophonist Anthony Braxton, Ms. Halvorson became an active member of several of his bands, including his trio, septet and 12+1tet. To date, she appears on six of Mr. Braxton's recordings. Ms. Halvorson has also performed alongside iconic guitarist Marc Ribot, in his bands Sun Ship and The Young Philadelphians, and with the bassist Trevor Dunn in his Trio-Convulsant. Over the past decade she has worked with such diverse bandleaders as Tim Berne, Taylor Ho Bynum, Tomas Fujiwara, Ingrid Laubrock, Myra Melford, Jason Moran, Joe Morris, Tom Rainey and Mike Reed.
As a bandleader and composer, one of Ms. Halvorson's primary outlets is her longstanding trio, featuring bassist John Hébert and drummer Ches Smith. Since their 2008 debut album, Dragon's Head, the band has been recognized as a rising star jazz band by Downbeat Magazine for five consecutive years. Ms. Halvorson's quintet, which adds trumpeter Jonathan Finlayson and alto saxophonist Jon Irabagon to the trio, has released two critically acclaimed albums on the Firehouse 12 label: Saturn Sings and Bending Bridges. Most recently she has added two additional band members-tenor saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock and trombonist Jacob Garchik-to form a septet, featured on her 2013 release Illusionary Sea. Ms. Halvorson also co-leads a longstanding chamber-jazz duo with violist Jessica Pavone, the avant-rock band People and the collective ensembles Thumbscrew and Secret Keeper."-Mary Halvorson Website (http://www.maryhalvorson.com/bio/)
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• Show Bio for Jonathan Finlayson
"Jonathan Finlayson has been recognized by the New York Times as "...an incisive and often surprising trumpeter," who is "...fascinated with composition." Born in 1982 in Berkeley, CA, Finlayson began playing the trumpet at the age of ten in the Oakland public school system. He came under the tutelage of Bay Area legend Robert Porter, a veteran trumpeter from the bebop era who took Finlayson under his wing; he was often seen accompanying Porter on his gigs about town and sitting in on the popular Sunday nights jam session at the Bird Cage. He subsequently attended the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music where he studied with Eddie Henderson, Jimmy Owens and Cecil Bridgewater.
Finlayson is a disciple of the saxophonist/composer/conceptualist Steve Coleman, having joined his band Five Elements in 2000 at the age of 18. He is widely admired for his ability to tackle cutting-edge musical concepts with aplomb. Finlayson has performed and recorded in groups led by Steve Lehman, Mary Halvorson, Craig Taborn, Henry Threadgill and played alongside notables such as Von Freeman, Jason Moran, Dafnis Prieto and Vijay Iyer."-Jonathan Finlayson Website (http://jonathanfinlayson.com/biography.html)
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• Show Bio for Jon Irabagon
"The winner of the 2008 Thelonious Monk Saxophone Competition, Irabagon has since topped both the Rising Star Alto Saxophone and the Rising Star Tenor Saxophone categories in the DownBeat Magazine Critics' Poll and been named one of Time Out New York's 25 New York City Jazz Icons. Jon was also named 2012 Musician of the Year in The New York City Jazz Record and is an integral member of such high-profile ensembles as the Mary Halvorson Quintet, the Dave Douglas Quintet and Barry Altschul's 3Dom Factor, as well as an established bandleader in his own right.
For Perpetual Motion, a project of Moondog arrangements, Jon (along with French saxophonist/clarinetist/composer Sylvain Rifflet) has been awarded a French-American Cultural Exchange grant from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, with generous funding from the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Florence Gould Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Institut Français, Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication, and Société des Auteurs et Compositeurs de Musique ("SACEM"). In addition, Jon has received a 2012 Mabuhay Award by the National Association of Filipino-Americans and a 2014 Philippine Presidential Award.
Jon's own record label, Irabbagast Records, has currently released five of his efforts, including I Don't Hear Nothin' but the Blues Volume 2: Appalachian Haze (with Mike Pride and Mick Barr), Outright! Unhinged (with Ralph Alessi, Jacob Sacks, John Hebert and Tom Rainey) and It Takes All Kinds (featuring Mark Helias and Barry Altschul), and most recently, the dual release of Behind the Sky (featuring Tom Harrell, Luis Perdomo, Yasushi Nakamura and Rudy Royston) as well as Jon's first solo saxophone recording, Inaction is an Action."-Jon Irabagon Website (http://www.jonirabagon.com/bio/)
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• Show Bio for John Hebert
"John Hebert was born in New Orleans, LA. He attended Loyola University from '90 to '92 where he was awarded with a complete scholarship. In 1992, John moved to the New York State area, completing his formal studies at William Paterson University in New Jersey; he graduated with a B.M. in Jazz Performance in 1994. After graduating, John moved to New York City where he quickly became a highly in demand bassist, both for live performances and studio sessions."-Marc Mommaas (http://www.mommaas.com/JohnHebert.html)
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• Show Bio for Ches Smith
"Born in San Diego, CA and raised in Sacramento, Ches Smith came up in a scene of punks and metal musicians who were listening to and experimenting with jazz and free improvisation. He studied philosophy at the University of Oregon before relocating to the San Francisco Bay area in 1995. After a few years of playing with obscure bands and intensive study with drummer / educator Peter Magadini, he enrolled in the graduate program at Mills College in Oakland at the suggestion of percussionist William Winant. There he studied percussion, improvisation, and composition with Winant, Fred Frith, Pauline Oliveros and Alvin Curran. One of Winant's first "assignments" for Ches was to sub in his touring gig at the time, Mr. Bungle (here he met bassist / composer Trevor Dunn who would later hire him for the second incarnation of his Trio-Convulsant). During his time at Mills, Ches co-founded two bands: Theory of Ruin (with Fudgetunnel / Nailbomb frontman Alex Newport), and Good for Cows (w/ Nels Cline Singers' Devin Hoff). He currently performs and records with Xiu Xiu, and Secret Chiefs 3. He has also performed with Ben Goldberg, Annie Gosfield, Wadada Leo Smith, John Tchicai, Fred Frith, and Trevor Dunn. In addition to Ceramic Dog, he also leads his two of his own projects, Congs for Brums and These Arches. He currently spends his time between Los Angeles, San Francisco and Brooklyn."-Ches Smith Website (http://www.chessmith.com/)
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