The Dave Rempis Quartet
Dave Rempis – alto/tenor/baritone saxophone
Jim Baker – piano/electronics
Jason Roebke – bass
Tim Daisy – drums
The Dave Rempis Quartet is an improvising band. At face value, this statement may not appear to have much weight. But in an era where improvisers come together for short periods, perhaps even just one gig, and release a record of their excursions, the idea of a working band is perhaps a revived concept.
Founded by saxophonist Dave Rempis (Triage, Vandermark Five, Thread Quintet, Territory Band), the group features Jim Baker on piano and ARP synthesizer (as well as the occasional violin interlude), Jason Roebke on bass, and Tim Daisy on drums. Originally a trio which worked from February of 2000 until the fall of 2001, Daisy was added to expand the dynamic and sonic possibilities of the group in the spring of 2002. Having worked regularly as quartet since that time, including critically-acclaimed appearances at the 2002 Phrenology Festival and the 2003 WNUR Jazz Festival, the band has had ample time to fine-tune a sound which is based almost solely on long-form free improvisation. Feeling comfortable that the band was ready after so much work together, Rempis decided to record the group for the 482 music label in the fall of 2003.
The result of this long-term commitment, as exhibited on their 482 music release, “Out of Season,” is found in a group which is very comfortable with its musical possibilities, and which can therefore constantly work to open up new ones. While the band may have Rempis’s name on it, he can by no means claim to be the leader. As with any free-improvising ensemble, and particularly with a group which has spent so much time honing its craft, each player is an integral part of the whole, and contributes freely and equally to each performance. As a group, they have arrived at an aesthetic which can be described as thoroughly of their own era. Without completely rejecting the soloist-dominated/jazz-based approach to improvisation, the band has found ways to create music which is consistently based on a shared group movement and dynamic.