California-based post-bop saxophonist Jason Robinson,
who studied under George Lewis and Anthony Davis,
was originally a reggae musician
debuted solo on From the Sun (Circumvention, 1998)
Cosmologic, originally a quartet with
with trombonist Michael Dessen, bassist Scott Walton, and percussionist Nathan Hubbard, released
Staring at the Sun (Circumvention, 2000),
Syntaxis (Circumvention, 2002),
Cosmologic III (Circumvention, 2005),
Eyes in the Back of My Head (Cuneiform, 2008).
Tandem (Accretions, 2002) was a collection of duets with
George Lewis, Anthony Davis, Peter Kowald, etc.
The Cross Border Trio (with bassist Rob Thorsen and drummer Paquito Villa)
debuted on New Directions (Circumvention, 2006).
As a leader he released
Fingerprint (Circumvention, 2008) and
Cerberus Rising (Circumvention, 2009), moving towards music for larger
ensembles on the Greek-inspired
The Two Faces of Janus (Cuneiform, 2010) and
Tiresian Symmetry (february 2012 - Cuneiform, 2012).
The latter, featuring an all-star cast
(JD Parran on alto clarinet, contra bass clarinet and tenor sax,
Marty Ehrlich on alto sax, bass clarinet and flute,
Marcas Rojas on tuba, Bill Lowe on tuba and bass trombone,
Liberty Ellman on guitar, Drew Gress on bass,
George Schuller on drums and Ches Smith on drums)
reminiscent of Henry Threadgill's double-tuba Very Very Circus,
contains the exuberant, swinging and eloquent Stratum 3,
the deconstructed Brazilian dance Tiresian Symmetry, that at one point
is nothing but a swamp of dissonant sounds,
the romantic and fluid Radiate (despite the collective noisy
the witty childish and occasionally cacophonous Saros,
the full-tilt hard-bop singalong Elbow Grease,
the plainly humorous and poppy Corduroy,
the relatively subdued ballad Cosmolographie.
Throughout there is obviously a lot of math going on, with the instruments
pared in couples, opposites, triangles and who knows what else; the rare
case of brainy music that is playful almost like folk music.
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