Jack Vees is a New Jersey-born bassist who played in
Forever Einstein from 1996 till 2001.
He studied with Morton Subotnick, has founded his own ensemble (Chez Vees),
has composed several avantgarde works and teaches music at Yale University.
His solo album Surf Music Again (CRI) is a post-modernist tribute to
the Sixties, and more to Jimi Hendrix (particularly the solo bass piece,
Surf Music Again) than to surf rockers.
Piano Trio (actually for three pianists on two pianos) and
Tattooed Barbie (for guitar, oboe and drum-box)
are the most significant pieces on the album, each one a different exposition
of a minimalist technique that has its roots in Morton Subotnick's and John
Cage's theories while opening them up to the very agitated dynamics of
The Restaurant Behind The Pier (Cuneiform, 2000) is a mixed bag. Vees
wastes a bit of his talent in three pointless covers, but then also
displays his sophisticated compositional technique in
The Restaurant Behind The Pier
and unleashes an Hendrix-ian bedlam of super-human, frantic glissandos in
Surf Music II is the massive tour de force of the album, a field of
floating harmonics that bridges Ligeti, Gordon Mumma and Brian Eno.
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