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Bain, Andrew / Alex Bonney / Peter Evans / John O'Gallagher: No Boundaries [VINYL] (Whirlwind)

London drummer & percussionist Andrew Bain leads a quartet with Alex Bonney on electronics & live processing, Peter Evans on trumpet & flugelhorn, and John O'Gallagher on alto sax, through two improvisations performed live at The Hexagon, Midlands Arts Centre, in Birmingham, UK in 2017, challenging idiom, genre & instrumental boundaries in a thorougly modern jazz ensemble.

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product information:

Violet-Splattered Vinyl

UPC: 7061112355818

Label: Whirlwind
Catalog ID: LP-WWR-4750
Squidco Product Code: 28739

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: UK
Packaging: LP
Recorded live at The Hexagon, Midlands Arts Centre, in Birmingham, UK, on December 14th, 2017, by Alex Killpartrick.


Andrew Bain-drums, percussion

Alex Bonney-electronics

Peter Evans-trumpet, flugelhorn

John O'Gallagher-alto saxophone

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Artist Biographies:

"Andrew Bain: Drummer - Educator - Composer

Andrew Bain is one of the leading performers and educators in the UK. He has performed at many prestigious venues and festivals around the world with jazz luminaries such as Wynton Marsalis, Natalie Cole, Kenny Wheeler, Randy Brecker, Dave Liebman, Bob Mintzer, John Taylor, Mike Gibbs, NDR Big Band, Elliott Sharp, Gavin Bryars, Jason Rebello, Phil Robson, Iain Ballamy, Ivo Neame, Jim Hart, Mark Lockheart, Chris Batchelor, Jacqui Dankworth, Houston Pearson, John Parricelli, Stan Sulzmann, and Sir John Dankworth.

Receiving his BMus(Hons) from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 2001, Andrew was resident in New York from 2001-07 gaining his MMus from the Manhattan School of Music in 2003 and performing with Jon Irabagon, Jason Liebman, Mostly Other People Do The Killing, Dave Lalama, Alex Smith, and Matt Brewer. Since relocating back to the UK in 2007, Andrew has played in regular projects directed by Michael Janisch, Paul Booth, and Andre Canniere, as well as appearing with touring artists such as Walter Smith III, Jure Pukl, Tim Armacost, and Patrick Cornelius.

Andrew has a trio of his own projects in action at the moment. Player Piano (2015) with Mike Walker, Gwilym Simcock, Iain Dixon, and Steve Watts; Embodied Hope (Whirlwind Recordings 2017) with George Colligan, Jon Irabagon, and Michael Janisch; and his latest project - (no)boundaries (Whirlwind Recordings 2020) - a free improv exploration featuring Peter Evans, Alex Bonney, and John O'Gallagher out March 2020.

Andrew is Deputy Head of Jazz and Senior Lecturer at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. He is Artistic Director of Jazz for the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland and sits on the steering committee for the International Artistic Jazz Research Symposium. He will complete his Ph.D. - entitled Empathic Creativity: A Self-Reflexive Approach to Contemporary Jazz Improvisation - in summer 2020. "

-Andrew Bain Website (

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"Alex Bonney is a trumpeter, electronic musician and recording/mix engineer and producer based in London.

He leads the Alex Bonney Quartet, is a member of Leverton Fox,, Splice, BABs, Golden Age of Steam, Sefiroth, Olie Brice Quintet, plays in a duo with bassist Dave Kane, performs solo with electronics and in a variety of other improvising ensembles. When not performing Alex works with a variety of artists producing and engineering music for leading jazz, improvised and contemporary music record labels including ECM, HCR, Two Rivers, Whirlwind, Babel, Loop, Jellymould, Not Applicable and Edition. He also works as a music educator and photographer."

-Alex Bonney Website (

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"Peter Evans is a trumpet player, and improvisor/composer based in New York City since 2003. Evans is part of a broad, hybridized scene of musical experimentation and his work cuts across a wide range of modern musical practices and traditions. Peter is committed to the simultaneously self-determining and collaborative nature of musical improvisation as a compositional tool, and works with an ever-expanding group of musicians and composers in the creation of new music. His primary groups as a leader are the Peter Evans Quintet and the Zebulon trio. In addition, Evans has been performing and recording solo trumpet music since 2002 and is widely recognized as a leading voice in the field, having released several recordings over the past decade. He is a member of the cooperative groups Pulverize the Sound (with Mike Pride and Tim Dahl) and Rocket Science (with Evan Parker, Craig Taborn and Sam Pluta) and is constantly experimenting and forming new configurations with like minded players. As a composer, he has been commissioned by the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), Yarn/Wire, the Donaueschingen Musiktage Festival, the Jerome Foundation's Emerging Artist Program, and the Doris Duke Foundation for the 2015 Newport Jazz Festival. Evans has presented and/or performed his works at major festivals worldwide and tours his own groups extensively. He has worked with some of the leading figures in new music: John Zorn, Kassa Overall, Jim Black, Weasel Walter, Levy Lorenzo, Nate Wooley, Steve Schick, Mary Halvorson, Joe McPhee, George Lewis, and performs with both ICE and the Wet Ink Ensemble. He has been releasing recordings on his own label, More is More, since 2011."

-Peter Evans Website (

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"John O'Gallagher is considered one of the most compelling alto saxophonists and composers at work today on the New York jazz scene. He is known for an innovative style which pushes the boundaries of jazz while rooted in it's tradition.

"Mr. O'Gallagher is an exploratory alto saxophonist with a clear melodic streak" - The New York Times

Born in Anaheim Califorina in 1964 he began playing alto saxophone in grade school after his family moved to Spokane, Washington. Upon graduating high school he studied briefly at Eastern Washington University before moving to Boston to attend Berklee College of Music. There he studied with legendary saxophone gurus Joe Viola, Jerry Bergonzi and George Garzone.

During the past 25 years living in New York he has become known for his projects as a leader, and as a sought after sideman, working with artist such as Joe Henderson, Maria Schnieder, Kenny Wheeler, Billy Hart, Tony Malaby, Jeff Williams, Tom Rainey, Chris Cheek, Ralph Alessi, Rudresh Manhathappa, Mike Formanek, Ben Monder and numerous others."

-John O'Gallagher Website (

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track listing:


1. Improvisation I 16:20


1. Improvisation II 16:15
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"When a quartet of established, improvising musicians arrives on stage, there can be some expectation in our minds as to what might ensue. But in the case of live-recorded No Boundaries - with the combined acquired knowledge, intuition and invention of drummer/percussionist Andrew Bain, trumpeter/flugelhornist Peter Evans, alto saxophonist John O'Gallagher and electronics master Alex Bonney - we are prompted to explore spheres perhaps outside of our experience.

The final part in a trilogy of differentiated projects conceived by Andrew Bain (following 2015's Player Piano concert in tribute to the late John Taylor, and then his 2017 Whirlwind release of original material, Embodied Hope), this immersive, continuous sequence of free improvisation was captured at the intimate listening venue of the MAC (Midlands Arts Centre) in Birmingham. "It evolved from a composition project I presented some time ago", explains Bain, Senior Lecturer in Jazz at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. "That set, entitled 'Frontiers' - with Gavin Bryars, Percy Pursglove, Hans Koller and myself - became the catalyst for this new work, which is in stark contrast to the more controlled basis of my previous outputs. I've known and worked with Peter since the early noughties in New York; and John and Alex were also a perfect fit. Crucially, I'm challenging the idiomatic instrumental make-up of the jazz ensemble where conventional boundaries and comparisons are usually already set."

Also fundamental to the unfettered intent of this collaboration is the fact that the artists had never previously worked together as a quartet, nor was there any premeditated conversation or rehearsal. Among a traditional chordless environment of sax, trumpet and drums (minus piano and bass), Alex Bonney's real-time electronics sample, manipulate and restate live sounds from different sections of the performance, contributing to an arresting, reverberant arc of originality.

Bain's solid percussive set-up, with rock snare drum, informs shifting atmospheres which take us into galaxies beyond perceived jazz territory, firing our own imaginations. Here, asteroid whistles echo in hyperspace as haunting trumpet and sax evocations abound, accelerating frenetically across rolling, hollow drums. Fluttering valves and mouthpiece sputterings converse with three-dimensional electronic bleeps and agitated snare as O'Gallagher's chromatic alto continuously ascends and descends against the expansive maelstrom of Bain's kit. From a moment's repose, repeated solo horn riffs and searing electronics crescendo dramatically, swept along by profuse percussion until cavernous, cathedral-like spaces invite an intense rock-out.

As Andrew Bain reminds us, free improvisation is far from an alien concept, but possesses its own language, like bebop or other styles. "There's a lineage to free jazz, which didn't begin in the 1960s with Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane, but goes back at least as far as 1949 with Lennie Tristano's 'Intuition' recording. So we're talking some 70 years - a long time in jazz's centennial history, and in other musical forms, too. The scope of what we're doing can be vast, limitless, and is being created instantaneously, inspired by what has gone before. No Boundaries is liberating, exhilarating - and that challenge, for us all, is so important."-Whirlwind Recordings

Violet-Splattered Vinyl
Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings

Vinyl Recordings
Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Electro-Acoustic Improv
Collective Free Improvsation
Quartet Recordings
London & UK Improv & Related Scenes
NY Downtown & Metropolitan Jazz/Improv
New in Improvised Music
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