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Genres You Will Love
Rock: Avant-Prog Moods: Instrumental Moods: Type: Instrumental Jazz: Jazz-Rock Jazz: Progressive Jazz

By Location
United States - Washington

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Moraine is an omnivorous instrumental quintet led by guitarist Dennis Rea and featuring violinist Alicia Allen, drummer Stephen Cavit, reed player Jim DeJoie, and bassist/baliset player Kevin Millard. Moraine’s expansive original repertoire spans avant-rock, out-jazz, deconstructed Chinese traditional music, and the unclassifiable. In a typical Moraine performance, haunting melodies cohabit with crushing riffs, lush textures, propulsive swing, and explosive improvisation. Moraine has been enthusiastically received by audiences ranging from jazz aficionados to metalheads. The group has performed in high-profile venues including the Seattle Art Museum Olympic Sculpture Park, Artopia festival, Beyond the Threshold International Dance Festival, Sounds Outside, and the Jazz: The Second Century concert series presented by Earshot Jazz, and has shared the stage with such renowned international artists as Richard Pinhas (Heldon) and Finnish dancer Mirva Makinen. Moraine's debut CD, Manifest Density, wasreleased by NYC-based MoonJune Records in August 2009.

Album Profile:
You could describe the output of this towering electric string quartet-plus-drums as “heavy chamber music.” With its several writers and full complement of ace instrumentalists, arrayed in striking combination, Moraine achieves a coherent sound while drawing on forms ranging from math-rock to fractured bebop to Chinese folk music to unleashed, plugged-in power jazz, and more. You have to love a band that lists its influences as Mahavishnu Orchestra, King Crimson, Terje Rypdal, John Abercrombie, Oregon, Art Zoyd, Univers Zero, Dr. Nerve, traditional East Asian music, and hurdy-gurdy music. Particularly one that adds plenty of its own to that diverting mix. At the center of the sound are Dennis Rea’s stellar guitar inventions. The much-praised veteran has deployed fierce, elusive imagination to build on decades of engagement with countless musical styles of multiple regions of the globe. He creates a dynamic, lyrical, enigmatic blend of modern jazz, boundary-pushing rock, experimental music, and world musical traditions. In other contexts – stay tuned for his next MoonJune Records release, Views from Chicheng Precipice – his output reflects the four years he spent in the two Chinas, where he was among the first wave of Western creative musicians to venture behind the tattered curtain of the devastating Cultural Revolution. (He is the author, in addition, of the fascinating Live at the Forbidden City: Musical Encounters in China.) On the band’s debut CD Manifest Density, Rea enjoys ideal support from all quarters in what is truly a collaborative endeavor of composition and performance: Ruth Davidson’s cello and Alicia Allen’s violin slash and singe with uncanny unity of purpose and design. Bassist Kevin Millard and drummer Jay Jaskot boast drive and thrust ideally suited to the task. All that begins to explain why Moraine has been embraced by audiences ranging from jazz aficionados to metalheads. The band squalls, sears, soars, and lilts over a novel musical terrain.