Satellite launch: a sneak preview of new music from the MCM

Free improvisation that’s as hot as a chilli and soft as a cream puff? Join the MCM’s Dr Rob Vincs and his CLV bandmates as they launch their latest CD, Satellite

By Dr Rob Vincs, Head of Jazz and Improvisation at the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

The music of Satellite is like an aural landscape. Rather than following a particular structure, it arises out of improvisation and ends up sounding textural rather than melodic. The style is roughly free jazz but to avoid all the baggage that comes with that term we’ve decided to call it “self-organising music”. You might hear tiny little ants’ feet dancing beside great, big mountain ranges.

We’re often blending together sounds that have intense qualities. When you eat a chilli and get a sort of hit, that’s a kind of intensity that’s different, say, to eating a cream puff, which has a different type of soft, sweet and fleshy intensity. Well, in this music there are moments of cream puff and moments of chilli – sort of transiting from one to another.

Myself and [MCM lecturer in Jazz and Improvisation] Ashley Cross, have been working on this style of playing for about 30 years now. We’re working with a younger ex-student of ours, Hannes Lackmann, who’s currently involved in the MCM Masters Program. Hannes has a love of poetry and incorporates spoken word into the performance, which is something Ashley and I haven’t done before.

On Sunday, we’ll be performing a collection of improvisations from Satellite – sonic textures and spoken word. The venue (Melbourne’s Neapoli Wine Bar) is pretty tiny – we’ll all be standing shoulder to shoulder. In the 1930s it was a notorious strip club, and there’s still a cage in the middle of the venue that was used by the performers. So despite being pretty gentrified now, the venue has an interesting atmosphere, and is rich with history.

You can get a sneak preview of what’s to come, below. Enjoy!

– As told to Sarah Hall

 CLV will launch its new CD, Satellite, at the Neapoli Wine Bar, 30 Russell Place, Melbourne, on 15 October, 2017, 7:30pm. Free entry.

Banner image: Damian Gadal/Flickr.