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Venue:
Admore Music Hall23 E. Lancaster Avenue
Ardmore, PA Map
Price: $17 Advance / $20 Day of Show / $27 Reserved Buy Tickets
Sponsored by:
Sunday, December 10, 2017 - 7:00pm

Nels Cline / Larry Ochs / Gerald Cleaver Trio

Night School

Nels Cline, el. guitar
Larry Ochs, saxophones
Gerald Cleaver, drums

Ars Nova Workshop and Ardmore Music Hall are thrilled to present the return of the explosive trio of guitarist Nels Cline, drummer Gerald Cleaver, and saxophonist Larry Ochs. Three experimental icons, individually and collectively drawing upon the outer limits of Midwestern free jazz, Bay Area structured improvisation, and bicoastal noise punk, reconvene in Philadelphia for a rare meeting.

 

Jazzmaster assassin Nels Cline might be as close as the modern avant-garde gets to a household name. Before joining indie rock institution Wilco in 2004, Cline divided his energy between improvised contexts alongside Julius Hemphill, Vinny Golia, and brother Alex, and more song-oriented settings like Carla Bozulich’s alt-country outfit Geraldine Fibbers and Mike Watt’s Crew of the Flying Saucer. Cline continues to occupy the narrow space between pure sound and song, as exemplified by his longstanding Singers trio with drummer Scott Amendola and bassist Trevor Dunn, and his recent duo with guitar prodigy Julian Lage.

 

In his own words, Michigan-bred, New York-based Gerald Cleaver’s multifaceted approach to the drum set balances “static sound and extreme dynamics, melodicism within heavy texture, deep-rooted groove, unchained abandon, and the power and revelation of recurring form.” Cleaver made a name for himself through enduring partnerships with Vision Fest regulars like Roscoe Mitchell and Charles Gayle, but lately critics have been abuzz about his new musique concrète-cum-free rock quintet Black Host with Darius Jones, Cooper-Moore, Brandon Seabrook, and Pascal Niggenkemper. Pitchfork’s Hank Shteamer described 2013’s Life in the Sugar Candle Mines as, “a well-tended hot-house: feverish and bracingly weird, yet also purposeful and shrewdly strategic.”

 

Larry Ochs is best known as founder and executive director of the Rova Sax Quartet, a San Francisco institution that pioneered the application of improvisational strategies within the context of contemporary classical music in the late 70s. Equally inspired by modernist 20th century composition and the more worldly, abrasive strands of 60s free jazz, Rova and Ochs became widely celebrated for the lengths they would go to stretch the performance parameters of notated music through early collaborations with Henry Kaiser, Fred Frith, and John Zorn. This concert marks Ochs’ first Philadelphia appearance since the Celestial Septet, a big band encompassing both the Rova Sax Quartet and the Nels Cline Singers, performed at the International House in 2011.

Hollenberg-Millevoi Quartet perform the music of John Zorn
Matt Hollenberg, el. guitar
Nick Millevoi, el. guitar
Johnny DeBlase, bass
Jeff Eber, drums

From March to May 2015, John Zorn wrote 300 new tunes collected in a book of music called The Bagatelles. Like the Masada book (only more atonal), the compositions are meant to be interpreted by a wide range of musicians.

The Matt Hollenberg-Nick Millevoi Quartet is co-led by two emerging presences in modern guitar malevolence. Both Hollenberg and Millevoi hail from Philadelphia and are representatives of an electrifying new crop of Zorn acolytes that has emerged on the East coast in the last decade, but each arrived on the scene via slightly different paths.

Hollenberg descends from the Trey Spruance/Jim Martin school of scooped mids and Dick Dale leads, subverting heavy metal formalism with authentic CVLT perspective. It’s fitting that Hollenberg’s doom-, grind-, and ambient-laced quartet Cleric released their 2010 debut on Spruance’s Web of Mimicry label. Keith Carman of Exclaim writes of Cleric, “One hears the detonation of Pig Destroyer, adrenaline of Converge, creative technicality of Nomeansno and Psyopus, and outright weirdness of Fantômas uniting with P.I.L.'s Flowers Of Romance.” Hollenberg also serves in Zorn’s Simulacrum trio alongside John Medeski and drummer Kenny Grohowski.

Millevoi skews more toward the Ribot/Cline guitar axis, frequently employing feedback, raw noise, and alternate tunings in projects like the contemporary classical  incubator Archer Spade (with trombonist Dan Blacksberg) and Chris Forsyth’s Television-inspired Solar Motel Band. SPIN’s Chris Weingarten included Millevoi’s trio Many Arms’ Tzadik offering among 2012’s avant-garde highlights: “White hot Zappa-on-SST jazz-punk in athletic, hypnotic 15-minute excursions.”

Rounding the quartet are New York bassist Johnny DeBlase and drummer Jeff Eber, best known for his work in Dysrhythmia.