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Magill, Rob: Blues Etudes (Kettle Hole Records)

A series of reed and wind improvisations, including two pieces with electronics, from Southern California composer and improviser Rob Magill, each of the 9 tracks on this album focusing on a different instrument: alto saxophone, soprano saxpohone, clarinet, flute, bass clarinet, bass recorder, sheng and tenor saxophone, plus a multi-instrumental "misc".

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product information:

Label: Kettle Hole Records
Catalog ID: KTHL009
Squidco Product Code: 32346

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2022
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded in Ojai, California, in February, 2022, by Rob Magill.


Rob Magill-composer, performer

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Artist Biographies:

"Rob Magill is a Southern California based composer/improviser/multi-instrumentalist/singer-song writer. Started recording solo material in 2010. Inspirations of music drawing from, 17th-21st century Classical Music, Jazz, Rhythm and Blues, Delta Blues, Psychedelic Rock, Soul, Post-Hardcore, Punk, American Folk, Indigenous Folk, Noise, Improvised Logics, and so forth. Using these ideas freely within specific contexts, along with unknown aspects of sound."

-Weird Cry Records (

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track listing:

1. Alto Saxophone 2:42

2. Misc 2:04

3. Soprano Saxophone 4:39

4. Clarinet + Electronic 2:53

5. Flute + Electronics 2:07

6. Bass Clarinet 3:40

7. Bass Recorder 1:33

8. Sheng 2:05

9. Tenor Saxophone 8:06
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"There is an attractive weirdness to the music of Rob Magill. With more than 80 recordings in his discography, his music is as diverse and hard to classify as the flora and fauna of the Amazon. His releases have ranged from jazz to classical, R&B, Delta blues, noise, psychedelic rock, soul, hardcore, post-hardcore, easy listening, punk, post-punk, folk, free improvisation, ambient, drone, space rock, math rock, free jazz, art rock, and bluegrass. Although one could not find Gregorian chant releases by Magill, it would not be surprising if he did dip a toe into the sounds of a monastery.

Magill is also a music presenter and label chief of Weird Cry Records, in Ojai, California. Blues Etudes is a solo recording for Gerrit Hatcher's Kettle Hole Records, where Magill's saxophones can be heard on the releases Triplet Fawns (2020) and Whole Abandoned Star (2021). Here he switches instruments on each of the nine tracks, sometimes also within a track, such as "Misc" where he opens with a mouth harp before substituting a flute and then harmonica. There is an idiosyncratic folk vibe throughout which evokes the spirit of Captain Beefheart's eccentricities. Like Don Van Vliet's music (and art) there is something primal yet attractive here. His "Alto Saxophone" honks in different keys before skidding off into a blues refrain and some altissimo refrains. The same is true of his "Soprano Saxophone" in which notes slather an ugly beauty. He applies bits of sooty electronic manipulation with his clarinet and flute work, and his "Bass Clarinet" track is a chest-pounding demonstration in the low end. The highlight here is "Tenor Saxophone," where his upper register explorations are contrasted with bottom notes and some impressive out playing. The music is weird and wonderful."-Mark Corroto, All About Jazz

Get additional information at All About Jazz
Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Recordings by or featuring Reed & Wind Players
West Coast/Pacific US Jazz
Solo Artist Recordings
New in Improvised Music
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