The Monash Art Ensemble/George Lewis
| Hexis | Jazzhead HEAD199
Philosopher, composer, improviser, conceptualist, computer-music pioneer and trombonist George Lewis has a mind as expansive as an ocean. He was an astute choice for Paul Grabowsky to bring out to work with the student-based Monash Art Ensemble (augmented by members of the Australian Art Orchestra) in realising Lewis’s groundbreaking and wildly imaginative compositions. The 16 players can generate massive blocks of granite sound, but more often Lewis extracts an extraordinary transparency, so that a maze of small—often contrasting or conflicting— sounds may be heard simultaneously. This is the cutting edge of jazz and new music colliding and comprehensively obscuring where notation stops and improvisation starts. Lewis’s trombone and Grabowsky’s piano share a foreground that keeps shattering before your ears.