The Madwort Sax Quartet formed in 2011 to play compositions by Tom Ward and guided group improvisation. Tom’s influences include numerology and the movement of the planet earth through space, Steve Coleman, pioneering saxophone quartet Rova, Tim Berne, and transcriptions of bird song. Of technical interest was exploring contemporary techniques such as complex time signatures and metric modulations without the presence of a dedicated drummer or percussionist, and exploring harmony without a chordal instrument.
All the members bring their own individual, contrasting voices to the saxophone: Andy’s warm-toned, mellifluous tenor; Chris’s assertive, energetic alto familiar to fans of Led Bib; Tom’s lyrical, passionate but more reserved alto; and Cath’s fluid, assured baritone. When required, though, the ensemble manages to blend beautifully into a homogenous whole that belies these contrasts.
The group has been very well received (“a significantly distinctive musical proposition” – LondonJazz blog, September 2012), has recorded an EP’s worth of material (slated for release late 2013), and has played gigs in London, Manchester (hosted by Efpi Records) and Derby (hosted by Corey Mwamba).
The line-up is:
Tom Ward: alto saxophone & composition (Porpoise Corpus, Quadraceratops)
Chris Williams: soprano & alto saxophones (Led Bib, Metamorphic, Let Spin)
Andy Woolf: tenor saxophone (Soma Quartet, Clube de Choro, London Vocal Project)
Cath Roberts: baritone saxophone (Quadraceratops, Lume Music)
For the latest news & recordings of this group, go to the Sax Quartet News Category.