Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Recording: The Mike Smith Company

Artist: The Mike Smith Company

Song: Famous Wildlife Movies

Recorded at The Tranzac's Main Hall (All-Set! Autumn Release Show), October 28, 2016.

The Mike Smith Company - Famous Wildlife Movies [part 1]

The Mike Smith Company - Famous Wildlife Movies [part 2]

This second release spectacular from All-Set! Editions added three new albums to their catalogue, and all three of the recombinant groupings played to celebrate. The highlight of the night was seeing the tunes from Mike Smith's new album presented by what was, by his own admission, "a large band".1 That added to a history of Smith treating his compositions with a certain malleability — besides its "fixed" iteration as a recording, I've seen the album's title track take on a few different manifestations. These large group arrangements were quite lovely, going as often to smaller, quieter shadings with different subsets of instruments as veering into full-on big band wallops.

[A less-expanded version of the Mike Smith Company will be playing at the Music Gallery's Moondog 100 concert this Saturday (December 3rd), playing songs from their own book as well as some new arrangements of Moondog's pieces.]

1 If my notes are correct, the ensemble at this show was:

  • Mike Smith – composition, conductor, flute
  • Pete Johnston – bass
  • Blake Howard – percussion
  • Jamie Drake – percussion
  • Jake Oelrichs – percussion
  • Jonathan Adjemian – synth
  • Ali Berkok – piano, clavinet
  • Heather Saumer – trombone
  • Tom Richards – trombone
  • Rebecca Hennessy – trumpet
  • Mika Posen – violin
  • Jay Hay – Tenor sax, flute
  • Karen Ng – alto sax, flute
  • Jeremy Strachan – guitar, sax, flute

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