Arts & Sciences is a genre-bending quartet from Oakland CA. Rooted in the jazz and improvising traditions but borrowing extensively from pop song writing and old field recordings, the group features a unique instrumentation of alto and tenor saxophones, monophonic synths, vintage organs and drums as well as a variety of hand percussion and singing and maybe some dancing. With Michael Coleman, keyboards; Jacob Zimmerman, alto sax, flute, percussion; Matt Nelson, tenor sax, effects, percussion; Jordan Glenn, drums and percussion
CD in LP-Style Gatefold Sleeve. SSM-010. 2012.
If you’re ready to be taken on a burning trip of musical ideas and styles, then this is the one you might indeed be well advised to check out. – freejazzblog.org
Compositionally, the group takes it’s cues from a wide range of past masters, including Sun Ra, Tim Berne’s Bloodcount and Oakland-based experimental pop geniuses, The Curtains. The music fluctuates between through-composed vignettes and lengthier suite-like pieces that seamlessly weave together written material and improvisation. Texture and timbre are as important as melody and harmony and within one song, the group may move from a free jazz cacophony to an undulating polyrhythmic groove. Musical borders are crossed in an attempt to bring listeners into a aural wonderland where lyricism and dissonance not only co-exist but buoy each other.
Michael Coleman (keyboards and compositions) grew up playing music in Brooklyn, NY. He studied at Oberlin College and made the move to Oakland, CA in 2004. Since then, he has toured Europe and the US playing old-timey music, indie-pop, and jazz with his own groups as well as being a sideman with Miles Kurosky, tUnE-yArDs and countless other Bay Area groups.
Jordan Glenn (drums) was born and raised in Eugene, OR and relocated to the Bay Area in 2006. Since then, he has crossed paths with Fred Frith, William Winant, Zeena Parkins, Roscoe Mitchell, Ben Goldberg, John Schott, Cory Wright, Aram Shelton, Dominique Leone, Darren Johnston, Graham Connah, and the bands Jack O’ the Clock, Host Family, Efft, Beep!, tUnE-yArDs, Science Fiction, Evon, and the Oakland Active Orchestra. He also leads Wiener Kids.
Originally from Seattle, alto saxophonist and composer Jacob Zimmerman is an active member of the thriving Bay Area creative-music community. Jacob studied music at the renowned Garfield High School in Seattle, the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, and Mills College in Oakland. His teachers have included Roscoe Mitchell, Jerry Bergonzi, Joe Morris, Anthony Coleman, James Fei and Allan Chase.
Matt Nelson hails from California. He graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory and immediately made a name for himself in both the Bay Area and New York music scenes. Besides touring and recording with the experimental pop group tUnE-yArDs, Matt has played in groups led by Weasel Walter, Peter Evans, Graham Connah and John Pfeffer