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about

Braxton had long been fond of working with improvising wind ensembles. In fact, the earliest incarnation of what would become the World Saxophone Quartet appeared on his landmark Arista album, New York, Fall, 1974. So his collaboration with the ROVA quartet … came as no surprise... Two pieces are by ROVA members, while one long work, "Composition 129 (+ 40F + 40O)," is by Braxton. The opening cut, Larry Ochs' "The Shopper," is an aggressive, rhythmic piece, with a staccato line forming a sold basis for solos by all members. Jon Raskin's title piece is more lush, with a relaxed counterpoint tossed back and forth beneath the solos and rich harmonies reminiscent of Julius Hemphill's beautiful arrangements for the World Saxophone Quartet. The composer does some very beautiful and rich baritone work on this piece, and the group improv sections are imaginative and compelling. The Braxton composition is knotty and compelling, filled with written passages having only a nodding acquaintance with jazz traditions but also including a couple of sections where faint glimmers of Ellington and a hint of march-time can be discerned. It's a testament to the musicianship of the ROVA band that they are capable of negotiating this intricate piece not only with mastery but humor as well. The Aggregate is a challenging recording, more so than most by more jazz-oriented saxophone quartets, but very rewarding on its own terms and an important document in Braxton's work for woodwind ensembles. --- Brian Olewnick , All Music

credits

released September 4, 2018

Bruce Ackley: soprano saxophone, Bb clarinet
Anthony Braxton: contrabass, bass, baritone, tenor, alto, soprano, and sopranino saxophones
Larry Ochs: tenor, alto, and sopranino saxophones
Jon Raskin: baritone and alto saxophones, Bb clarinet
Andrew Voigt: tenor, alto, and sopranino saxophones, flute

Track 1 by Larry Ochs, Track 2 by Jon Raskin, Track 3 by Anthony Braxton

On Composition 129+ see artist credits above
On The Aggregate
Braxton-lead alto / Raskin-baritone / Ochs-tenor / Voigt-alto / Ackley-soprano
On The Shopper
Ackley-soprano / Voigt-alto / Ochs-tenor / Raskin-baritone / Braxton-bass

Tracks 1 and 3 recorded live at Koncepts Cultural Gallery, Oakland, CA on July 30th, 1988
Track 2 recorded live at PreEchoes 2 in San Francisco, CA on August 22, 1986

Digital recording for both sessions by Robert Shumaker
Cover art by Doug Hall
Mastered at Studios Bauer, Ludwigsburg, in August 1989 by J. Wohlleben

Produced by ROVA and Pedro de Freitas

Catalog #: NBH-RI002

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