Hi there! We’re Spontaneous Rex, a local experimental jazz/avant-rock band. We’re excited to be hosting our very first Racer Session, and hope we make a good one for ya!
For our Racer Session we’d like to explore further what we do in Spontaneous Rex with regards to free improvisation: i.e. free improv within structures and communicating drastic changes within pieces (and how to do so: via a certain musical cue, non-verbal cues, etc).
For the presentation portion, we’d like to play a couple of our pieces and explain what elements went into the composition and improvisation. For one of the pieces the improvisation is limited to over an A drone with a groove, separating the two statements of the “head.” The other piece uses it as a way to take a break from the rigorously structured composition and create a new vibe. It’s also used to separate the listener from the previously stated (and soon to be re-stated) material.
The two songs depend on free improvisation to bridge the gap and make the piece flow, so in a sense it’s limited and not completely “free.” But it never feels that way. Sometimes we find that free improvisation can be used as just a tool to make good, cohesive pieces of music. This ensures that our improvisation is contributing to the overall effectiveness of our sound.
Throughout all of this however, the most important part about making sure your improvisation sounds good is communication with the other musicians. Spontaneous Rex has only been a band for a year or so, but the four of us have played together for quite awhile before that. We know each other well, our tendencies, our potential, our propensity for unpredictability. We find that we make good improvisation because we know how to make each other sound good.
For the jam we encourage the performers to reflect on the themes we presented and incorporate them into the improvisation.
Spontaneous Rex is Jake Sele on piano/keyboards, Matt Williams on guitar, Nick Lonien on bass, and Joe Eck on drums. Here’s our album: http://spontaneousrex.bandcamp.com”