Thursday 4 September 2014, 8pm

ALEX WARD SEXTET WITH OLIE BRICE/TOM JACKSON/HANNAH MARSHALL/RACHEL MUSSON/STEVE NOBLE

No Longer Available

The Alex Ward Sextet features several of the most exciting London-based musicians currently working in the fields of composed and improvised music. Growing out of an ensemble originally convened to perform Alex's extended composition "Glass Shelves And Floor", the sextet's repertoire encompasses full-throttle ensemble improvisation plus a varied set of compositions by Ward, drawing on contemporary chamber complexity, avant-rock power and dynamics, and an askew-but-fond relationship to the "jazz" tradition. 

Alex Ward, Clarinet

Alex Ward is a composer, improviser, and performing musician, working primarily with clarinet and guitar. His involvement in freely improvised music dates back to 1986, when he met the guitarist Derek Bailey. He subsequently took part regularly in Bailey's Company events, and has gone on to become a major figure in British improvised music. 
His current work includes the avant-rock duo Dead Days Beyond Help in which he plays guitar, sings and co-writes the material; various groups which perform his compositions-for-improvisers including Forebrace, the Alex Ward Quintet/Sextet, and the Item series of ensembles (the first of which, Item 10, debuted at Cafe Oto in September 2017); and improvising collaborations both regular and ad-hoc with musicians including Steve Noble, Dominic Lash, Kay Grant, Joe Morris and Weasel Walter. Besides his own groups and improvisational work, he also performs in ensembles including the Duck Baker Trio/Quartet, Thurston Moore’s recent multi-guitar projects Galaxies and New Noise Guitar Explorations, and Charles Bullen and Charles Hayward’s This Is Not This Heat. He brings a unique energy and inventiveness to all these projects, elevating them far above the ordinary and injecting them with a thrilling sense of danger and possibility. Much of his work is documented on the label Copepod, which he co-runs with Luke Barlow.
 
"...guitarist Alex Ward [is] a compulsively creative polymath... a reliably unpredictable axe-hero for collaborators of all backgrounds." Stewart Lee, The Sunday Times Review

Hannah Marshall, Cello

Hannah Marshall is a cellist who is continuing to extract, invent, and exorcize as many sounds and emotional qualities from her instrument as she can. She has been a regular member of Alexander Hawkins’ Ensembles and has toured in Europe and South America with Luc Ex and Veryan Weston’s ensembles – SOL 6 & 12. She plays with ‘String Terrorists’ - Barrel (a trio with Violinist Alison Blunt & Violist/poet Ivor kallin). And has been invited by Fred Frith and Suichi Chino in their residencies at café Oto. She also plays with Terry Day, Tim Hodgkinson, Roger Turner, Paul May, Kay Grant, and the London Improvisers Orchestra. 

Steve Noble, Drums

Steve Noble is London's leading drummer, a fearless and constantly inventive improviser whose super-precise, ultra-propulsive and hyper-detailed playing has galvanized encounters with Derek Bailey, Matthew Shipp, Ishmael Wadada Leo Smith, Stephen O'Malley, Joe McPhee, Alex Ward, Rhodri Davies and many, many more. 

In the early eighties, Noble played with the Nigerian master drummer Elkan Ogunde, Rip Rig and Panic, Brion Gysin and the Bow Gamelan Ensemble, before going on to work with the pianist Alex Maguire and with Derek Bailey (including Company Weeks 1987, 89 and 90). He was featured in the Bailey's excellent TV series on Improvisation for Channel 4 based on his book ‘Improvisation; its nature and practise’. He has toured and performed throughout Europe, Africa and America and currently leads the groups N.E.W (with John Edwards and Alex Ward) and DECOY (with John Edwards and Alexander Hawkins). 

Olie Brice, Double Bass

Olie Brice is an improvising double bassist from London. He leads two bands - a quintet that plays his original compositions and a freely improvising trio featuring Tobias Delius and Mark Sanders. He has also worked with musicians including Paul Dunmall, Tony Malaby, Steve Swell, Achim Kaufmann, Alex Ward and Ingrid Laubrock.

“Brice makes the entire body of his bass sing. He has the ability to deliver a fractal line that is as purposeful as any by the great jazz bassists, but to do so within an entirely abstract setting” - Brian Morton, Point of Departure

Tom Jackson, Clarinet, bass clarinet

Tom Jackson is a clarinettist and saxophonist active in London and Europe, largely dedicated to the fields of contemporary classical music and free improvisation. He maintains an extensive and eclectic performance schedule and has performed throughout Europe, Australia and Asia.

Tom has worked with various contemporary chamber groups such as Apartment House, Lontano, Plus-Minus, ChampdAction, Ictus and Splinter Cell. He has recently completed a PhD at Canterbury Christ Church University on relational aesthetics and free improvisation.

“Tom Jackson conjured a jaw-dropping array of sonic effects.” – Cusp Magazine

musictomjackson.com
roamreleases.bandcamp.com

Rachel Musson, Tenor saxophone

Rachel Musson is a saxophonist, improviser and composer living in London, UK. She is involved with a variety of improvisation projects, including a trio with Hannah Marshall and Julie Kjaer, a duo with bassist Olie Brice, and a trio with Mark Sanders and John Edwards who have released a recent album Bibimbap (Two Rivers Records). Rachel also features on a trio album due to be released this summer 2019 with Pat Thomas and Mark Sanders (577 Records), and a quartet album later in 2019 with William Parker, Daniel Carter and Federico Ughi (577 Records). She plays regularly on the London and International improvised music and free jazz scene.