REVIEW: Steven Bernstein’s Sex Mob @ Goodfoot Lounge (Portland, OR – 5/23/09)
FYI… PHOTOS of the SHOW at the BOTTOM
Sex Mob is a downtown NYC jazz band made up of bandleader Steven Bernstein on slide trumpet, Briggan Krauss on saxophone, Tony Scherr on bass, and Kenny Wolleson on drums. For those keeping score, Steven Bernstein is one of my top 3 favorite (living) trumpet players [Dave Douglas & Wynton Marsalis being the other 2]. I got into Steven via some of his CDs on John Zorn’s label Tzadik and their Radical Jewish Culture series… then I found Sex Mob (and also Millennial Territory Orchestra). Steven Bernstein came through Ohio just shortly after I moved away; so last night was actually my first time to see him live. And for it to be a Sex Mob show made it much more special.
The opener, Trio Subtonic, was great. I saw them last fall at a small college, but this time it was nice to see them in a more intimate, non-auditorium setting. They played for 75 minutes or so, more than a normal opener. In fact, had they not been so good, I would have kind of been pissed. :) In my opinion, the best part of their set was when they ripped into an instrumental jazzy, slightly obscured cover of Radiohead‘s “Just” (the original has one of my favorite videos). I was singing along… Shortly thereafter, they were joined on stage by a saxophonist for about half of their set – which was a great addition. Maybe they should add him permanently and change their name to Quartet Subtonic.
Sex Mob came on around 11:45, and they started in on an avant-garde piece. I’d seen Sex Mob’s saxophonist Briggan Krauss play with NYC downtown avant-garde musicians Ikue Mori and Jim Black in March 2007; so I expected some avant-garde from this group of downtown NYC musicians. Sex Mob mixed it up a bit and jammed as well, but every corner had a bit of the avant-garde nature hiding in it. Maybe more of a halfway point between groove jazz and avant-garde jazz would be a good explanation – “raucous.” I think my favorite from their set was the tune whose opener reminds me of Dizzy Gillespie‘s “Salt Peanuts.”
Sex Mob Intro @ the Goodfoot, 5/23/09
Sex Mob #2 @ the Goodfoot, 5/23/09
I hope they come back again soon… and maybe start earlier (or play closer to me). :) I bailed around 1am to head back home to Eugene. All in all, a great night for jazz.
The Appropriate Linkage:
- Sex Mob’s official page
- Steven Bernstein’s official page
- Sex Mob on MySpace
- Trio Subtonic
- Trio Subtonic on MySpace
- The Goodfoot Pub & Lounge
TRIO SUBTONIC / SEX MOB PHOTOS
all pictures (cc) 2009 Daniel Temmesfeld,
you may use freely under a creative commons attribution
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