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Dave Sewelson/Stephen Moses/Jochem van Dijk/Steve Holtje - Orca Uprising (MechaBenzaiten)

13 November 2023

Nothing like a good old-fashioned free improv party. Baritone saxophonist Dave Sewelson, a member of the Microscopic Quintet, and a veteran of avant-jazz titan William Parker’s many groups, convened a house party with drummer Stephen Moses (Alice Donut, Voltaire), bassist Jochem van Dijk (Caterpillar Quartet, This Humidity), and keyboardist Steve Holtje (also the Caterpillar Quartet and This Humidity, as well as ESP-Disk’ and The Big Takeover), and Orca Uprising is the result. Though everyone here has history with aggressive or chaotic improvisation, that’s not what the vibe is on these four tunes. Instead it feels more like all four members lock into a groove, as off-kilter (but, thanks to Moses, still swinging) as it might be, and head toward the same destination. There are occasional side trips, of course, especially on the parts of Sewelson and van Dijk, but essentially “Don’t Talk With Your Mouth,” “Mutual Assured Distraction,” and especially “Idiot Suavant” are spontaneous soundtracks in search of films – preferably something unsettling, uncomfortable, and visually arresting. Gentlemen, your film awaits word.