Bhob Rainey, a Boston-based soprano saxophonist, is best known as a solo artist and as one half of nmperign, with whom he plays alien extended technique effects that are influenced by electronic music, environmental sounds and free improvisation.
Rainey studied at the New England Conservatory of Music with free jazz saxophonist Joe Maneri. Rainey's music during his early- to mid-twenties was, like Maneri's, characterized by long microtonal lines. Rainey's first CD, Ink, featuring Dan DeChellis, was released in 1997. After a controversial 1998 solo concert in Washington D. C. attracted a considerable amount of attention to Rainey's music, he and trumpeter Greg Kelley formed nmperign with the goal of avoiding linear approaches to form and melodic contour. nmperign, including Rainey, Kelley and Tatsuya Nakatani, recorded its first CD in 1998.
Since 1998, Rainey has recorded extensively, including a number of projects with nmperign (minus Nakatani) and collaborations with improvisers like Jack Wright, Fred Lonberg-Holm and Jason Lescalleet. He continues to pursue a more sound-based (as opposed to note-based) approach in his work with nmperign, whereas his solo work, while far from traditional, often involves the use of more traditional melodic lines. Since 2000, he has also led the BSC, a large ensemble that uses both acoustic instruments and electronics.