Rent Romus

You'll Never Be the Same

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This is a crazy record, and one that listeners with open ears toward the music of Albert Ayler, Ornette Coleman and Rahsaan Roland Kirk (among others) should enjoy. Rent Romus, who mostly plays alto but also occasionally improvises on alto and soprano at the same time, teams up with trumpeter Jay O., bassist Brock Lee and drummer Andrew Borger for seven songs that range from free bop to avant-funk. The one "cover tune" of the date is Sun Ra's "A Call for All Demons" and, with titles such as "Muddled Fruit," "Lonely Man with Cat" and "What's Your Archetype," it is obvious that this music does not lack humor. The musicians play together quite well with plenty of spontaneity and some worked-out frameworks. Romus is generally the main voice but his sidemen also have opportunities to express themselves in the highly emotional music. As the feisty liner notes state, the San Francisco-based Rent Romus is intent on playing original music and avoiding the pitfalls of the "neo traditional jazz rat race." He certainly has succeeded with this colorful set.

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