reviews of Cosmologic Syntaxis (CMCD035)
Cosmologic Syntaxis Circumvention 035

This is our first listen to the group "Cosmologic"... it certainly won't be our last... & if you love jazz with unique flavorings & meandering moods, you'll get on down & buy this CD! The group features some scorching sax (& flute/electronics) by Jason Robinson; trombone/percs by Michael Dessen, beyond basic bass by Scott Walton & percolating percussives by Nathan Hubbard. The quartet is a tight unit, definitely together, no "steppin'" on top of another player. They play th' full range... decidedly "free jazz" blowin to intiricate improvisation. One of the tastiest elements, if you go for deep listening, is th' integration of the percussion to the point where you (often) don't even realize it's there - yet it is clearly influencing the turns that get taken. Robinson's reeds just scorch your ears once "restless years" gets through th' intro... & Dessen's 'bone is alive on my favorite cut, "A Secret No One Knows". There are a couple of the compz that run a bit short for my tastes, but the recording is excellent, & this band rates a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for jazz-heads everywhere!

Rotcod Zzaj - Improvijazzation Nation


Cosmologic Syntaxis Circumvention 035

Cosmologic's second CD is a honest effort with its share of strengths and weaknesses. The Californian quartet approaches the free jazz idiom with fresh ears, injecting in it Vinny Golia's charts and a drop of jazz-funk. The tunes penned by trombonist Michael Dessen show the strongest resemblance to West Coast avant-jazz pope Golia; they have his knack for tying a melody into a complex knot. Restless Years is his more upbeat contribution. A stomping 7/4, it sadly lacks some muscle tone in the delivery. Dessen and saxophonist Jason Robinson could have turned it into a lava-hot lick but instead it remains only politely exciting. In Artichoke Clock Dessen's writing hits a peak, but his stylized motifs are no match to the more visceral and groovy pieces by Jason Robinson (Birdrock Dub & Axis) and Hubbard (A Secret No One Knows II). In these, the musicians show how good a live unit they must be: the solos are wild (Robinson¹s tenor flight in Axis provides the disc's peak), the beats infectious, the energy freely flowing from one group member to the next. Bassist Scott Walton gets an official feature spot in Metal Tear, but his beyond-the-bridge arco work had already provided key textural counterpoint to the first minutes of Mr. Hubbard's Shock Installation (otherwise trite). The closing Ten Directions sees Robinson trading the sax for a flute hooked to electronics, while Dessen and Hubbard provide a bed of hand drums and shakers -- an unexpected and delightful finale.

François Couture - All Music Guide