Saxophonist Colin Stetson
Listening to Stetson immediately reveals his instrumental debt to earlier visionaries who expanded the sonic palette of the saxophone and developed new solo languages, to Roscoe Mitchell, Evan Parker, Gianni Gebbia, Mats Gustafsson, and others. His compositional vision is much more melodic, however, and references very different musical vistas, including rock, folk songs, the creations of Laurie Anderson, and the seemingly incongruous drones, loops, and repetitions of classical minimalists. Stetson's rigorous training enables him to absorb these influences and their attendant instrumental techniques and to make them his own. Often lyrical, his music is saved from sentimentality by a rugged physicality that caused one listener to remark that Stetson is simply a force of nature. He will perform his solo magic at the Arthur Miller Theater on January 15 and 16.
[Originally published in January, 2014.]