Exposé Online banner

Josh Green & The Cyborg Orchestra — Telepathy & Bop
((Not on label) no#, 2016, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2017-03-31

Telepathy & Bop Cover art

No, the musicians are not machines. Their parts are not programmed. They are in fact real musicians playing real instruments together. The combination of instruments is a bit unusual, sort of a cross between a jazz big band, a chamber orchestra, and a few quirky touches like accordion. So you have five woodwind players (covering flute, piccolo, clarinet, bass clarinet, oboe, alto sax, tenor sax, and EWI), four brass (two each of trumpet and trombone), a small string section (a standard quartet plus a few extra violas and cellos), and a rhythm section (piano, bass, drums, guitar, and accordion). Green composes and conducts, and his music has a wide-ranging blend of playfulness and seriousness that is instantly appealing. He handles the textures and sounds available from the ensemble masterfully, covering most of the available possibilities from very sparse sections to sweeping full-orchestra swells. Starting with “Boy and Dog in a Johnnypump” (whatever that means) we have a lively latin-inflected bass and piano line punctuated by various groups of instruments in tricky rhythmic accents, having almost the flavor of John Hollenbeck interpreting a Raymond Scott piece. Guitarist Sungwon Kim gets a wigged-out solo turn that adds elements of modern avant-jazz, and there’s also an outstanding flute solo (not sure which player it is). There’s a section featuring sectional arpeggios that injects a bit of Philip Glass into the piece, and a splash of chaos near the end with honks and blasts and glissandos. All around, it is ten and a half minutes of pure musical joy. “The Lauer Faceplant” carries on with a great bass clarinet line, tremolos from the strings, and echoing saxophone backed by eerie accordion. All of the nine tracks contain strokes of brilliance, whether it is a great solo from one of the players, a particularly interesting bit of ensemble work featuring an unexpected combination of instruments, or just plain smile-inducing melodic twists. Telepathy & Bop is without doubt the finest recording for a large ensemble that I’ve heard in years, and in sheer enjoyment Green’s arrangements rank with those of master innovators like Toshiko Akiyoshi, Gil Evans, Thad Jones, and so on. Coming from the avant and progressive side, fans of jazz on Cuneiform should give this a listen, and anyone who thinks there’s nothing new in the world of big band jazz is in for a treat.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Joshua Green / Cyborg Orchestra

More info
http://intergalacticgreenmusic.com/merch/telepathy-bop-cd

Latest news

2021-02-14
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more

2021-02-10
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Magnum - Progressive Classics – This English "pomp-rock" (as those silly British metal mags used to call it) band has been around for donkey's years. Wide spread fame always seemed to elude them however, but given the...  (2000) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues