(Graeme Blevins, soprano sax; Chris Caldwell, baritone sax; Tim Holmes, tenor sax; Peter Whyman, alto sax; Hugh Hopper, bass guitar & loops on tr.2; Morgan Fisher, vocals/hurdy gurdy/electronics on tr.7)
I should report first off that I may not be the proper reviewer for this CD since the Delta Saxes have dedicated it entirely to the music of the legendary 70s jazz/rock group Soft Machine and I’m not very familiar with them. The Quartet specializes in the new music area, and its repertory includes works of Philip Glass, Gavin Bryars, and Steve Reich. Their management is named Music On The Edge, and that pretty well describes the thrust of this modern sax quartet.
The realizations of the 14 tunes from Soft Machine are strong and emotional, often fierce in their transformations for four saxes. I’m sure fans of the cult progressive rock/jazz band will love the new face they put on the tunes. My fav track was Somehow With the Passage of Time – a lush impressionistic sort of tone painting. The track I couldn’t abide was Outrageous Moon, in which they perform simultaneously two Soft Machine tunes: Out-Bloody-Rageous and Moon in June. Sonics are excellent.
TrackList: Dedicated, Facelift, Somehow With the Passage of Time, Mousetrap, Everything Is You, To, Outrageous Moon, Aubade, Noisette, Floating World, You, The Tale of Taliesin, Dedicated to You, Epilogue.
– John Henry