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Tsahar's 9-piece Brass Reeds Ensemble Herb Robertson, Chris Jonas, Rob Brown, Susie Ibarra, &c. is an ambitious and incredible undertaking of group improvisation.

Tsahar, Assif Brass Reeds Ensemble
The Hollow World

Tsahar, Assif Brass Reeds Ensemble: The Hollow World (Hopscotch Records)
Label: Hopscotch Records    
Released in: USA    

"In the realms of creative improvised music, ambitious undertakings are often a risky enterprise. Especially taxing is the drafting of music for large collectives of musicians. Designing an environment that nurtures both individual and group improvisation in a space populated by numerous instrumental voices can sometimes portend failure for even the most seasoned improviser/composer. On his latest release Assif Tsahar stares these realities boldly in the face and cleverly circumvents them through an ingenious use of space and an almost Ellingtonian-like understanding of the capabilities of the musicians in his ensemble. The finished product is something to marvel at, a nine-piece group comprised almost totally of brass and reed players and fueled rhythmically by only a single drummer. It's no accident that the drummer happens to be Susie Ibarra, Tsahar's wife. Her presence as rhythmic fulcrum is a crucial contribution to the successful strategy deployed by the group.

The cast of horn players assembled is no less impressive. Comprised of a cadre culled from the upper echelons of New York's current improvising community, the ensemble dives into Tsahar's compositions with enthusiasm and candor. Of particular note are the contributions of Chancey and Daley whose deeper brass instruments more than make up for the dearth of a traditional string bass presence. At the opposite end of the sonic spectrum Jonas handles upper register duties with a alacritous energy and imagination. The five pieces over which the ensemble ranges often focus on smaller combinations of instruments rather than the collective voice of the entire group, though no one ever stays on the bench for too long. Some of the most interesting moments occur when Tsahar pairs players together. The opening "Tapestry of Dreams" features a number of such duos including an exciting exchange between Tsahar and Brown. When these two trade phrases the results are rarely less than extraordinary. "Edge of Dreams" is likewise packed with insightful conversations from Brown and Daley, and Chancey and Vu. "Rainbow at My Table" builds a reverent tribute to William Parker, one of Tsahar's chief mentors, and the bassist's Little Huey Orchestra is invoked in the densely conceived horn charts Tsahar devises for the piece. [...]"-Derek Taylor

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
NY Downtown & Jazz/Improv
Octet Recordings

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Price: $13.95
In Stock


Shipping Weight: 3.00 units

Quantity in Basket: None

Product Information:

UPC: 015568230981

Label: Hopscotch Records
Catalog ID: Hop 03
Squidco Product Code: 11919

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2000
Country: USA
Packaging: Jewel Tray
Recorded by Jim Staley live at Roulette, New York on March 30, 1999. Mastered by Paul Geluso at Harvest Works.


Herb Robertson-trumpet

Cuong Vu-trumpet

Vincent Chancey-french horn

Joe Daley-tuba

Chris Jonas-soprano saxophone

Rob Brown-alto saxophone

Susie Ibarra-drums

Assif Tsahar-tenor sax

Highlight an artist name or instrument above
and click here to Search

Track Listing:

1. Tapestry Of Dreams 19:12

2. The Edge Of Infinity 13:15

3. Rainbow On My Table 5:29

4. The Hollow World 11:48

5. The Luminous Tree 12:02