Larry Ochs / Don Robinson Duo
Free improv following John Coltrane & Rashied Ali / Wadada Leo Smith & Billy Higgins
Larry Ochs, reeds, and Donald Robinson, drums, focus on their forthcoming cd, A Civil Right, releasing July 25, 2021 and available for pre-order on Bandcamp.
Donald Robinson – “a percussive dervish,” according to Coda – was the drummer of choice for ROVA’s revivification of John Coltrane’s Ascension.
The East Bay Express has said of the saxophonist’s sound: “Ochs’ full-bodied tenor is out of the John Coltrane/Albert Ayler ‘free’ tradition: forceful, passionate… talking-in-tongues,” while the Chicago Reader said about the drummer and his relationship with Ochs, “Robinson is neither flashy nor explosive, but his playing has heft and he covers lots of ground – he can maintain a feeling of order while playing meter-less rhythms or transform the pulse of jagged post-bop until it’s almost abstract. He’s a good match for Ochs, and over the decades the two of them have developed a fine-tuned rapport.”
Although Ochs and Robinson have collaborated in various groups for more than 20 years – including in the trio What We Live with bassist Lisle Ellis – their duo is a recent phenomenon, having developed over the past couple of years.
Ochs says, “Our playing together has evolved to a really special place, I think. We’re definitely coming out of the tradition of horn-drum duos from John Coltrane & Rashied Ali to Wadada Leo Smith & Billy Higgins, but we’ve found our own space after a long stretch of shows together. Our set will include new, original material, with some high-energy playing and things that are more spatial, as well as some homages to more popular music. In a sparse setting like this, the music hits a listener right away – nothing is obscured, everything is clear.”
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