DR. MiNT is a veritable lightning rod for intuitive music. Their compositions are "100% spontaneously created," and their brand new album, "Kingsize Sessions," captures everything the band has become known to channel. Often associated with heavier rock, metal, or electronic musical styles, it’s easy to forget that the music that is being played, is always being played for the first time.
The band has previously released three full-length concept albums: "Ritual" (2013), "A New Symphony" (2008), and "Vision and Nightmares" (2008). Based in both Los Angeles and New York, this bi-coastal experimental rock band embraced long-form, uncut, and unedited recording, often completing an album in a single take. With "Kingsize Sessions," DR. MiNT focuses their “spontaneous composition” ethos on short, punchy, and concise themes, bending soundscapes, twisting grooves, and exploring some dark territory.
The band is Daniel Rosenboom (trumpets), Gavin Templeton (saxophones), Alex Noice (electric guitar and FX), Sam Minaie (electric bass and FX), and Caleb Dolister (drums and laptop). DR. MiNT formed in the studio in 2007. Several band members even met for first time just moments before hitting record and capturing a purely improvised record. That first recording was later released as “Visions and Nightmares" (pfMENTUM CD049), and was intentionally left uncut, and unedited.
Initially, the group embraced pure long-form improvisation. But after two completely improvised albums, the idea of working out improvised composition came into play. The band began to start a performance with a blank sheet of music paper, notating melodies and themes in real-time, and then conducting various “composed-on-the-spot” melodies and sections. This allowed the group to collectively focus improvisation on thematic material in addition to abstract improvisations.
This is apparent on Kingsize Sessions, when you hear the horns playing synchronized melodies. Each melody was composed and notated on the spot, during the take.
DR. MiNT continues to maintain their dedication to spontaneity by leaving these short tunes unedited and essentially untouched. However, a few new experiments on Kingsize Sessions include "Kingsize Strut," which featured an immediate second pass of both drums and bass, and "Mirror," in which the whole band improvised a second pass against a previously recorded track played in reverse.
Kingsize Sessions is an album full of character and exploration. Even with all of it’s unique qualities, it fully embodies the evolutionary direction of a band that identifies itself with attitude, fire, abstraction, and ferocity in improvisation.
released November 1, 2013
Daniel Rosenboom - trumpets
Gavin Templeton - woodwinds
Alex Noice - electric guitar and FX
Sam Minaie - electric bass and FX
Caleb Dolister - drums and FX
Sound engineered by John Baffa
Mixed by John Baffa and Daniel Rosenboom
Mastered by Sam Minaie
"Orenda Records punches above its weight... informed by rock, modern classical, and jazz, and combine these genres in a
natural, organic fashion... Orenda’s musicians grew up in a post-Braxton era where musical styles are viewed on a continuum rather than as individual silos of expression."
–Avant Music News...more
supported by 5 fans who also own “Kingsize Sessions”
Received my copy of the second pressing today, and it is stunning.
Flat, centered, dead quiet surfaces, and shockingly good sound.
A triumph of craftsmanship.
Well worth the wait.
And the music, of course, is an incredible contemporary Chicago celebration. mats gunnars