"Vibrant....brimming with ideas and influences."
The Oregonian A&E 1/7/05
Ken Ollis - drums
Bill Athens - bass
Chad Hensel - clarinets
Mary-Sue Tobin - saxophones
Third stream avant garde jazz. Former members of Glen Moore Ensemble, Flatland, the Inquisition Ensemble, Michael Vlatkovich, MS Tobin Quintet, the Matt Wayne Band...
Filling a void. Something new.
Repertoire includes music by: Mary-Sue Tobin, Chad Hensel, Ken Ollis, Bill Athens, Anthony Braxton, Olivier Messiaen, Louis Sclavis, Ornette Coleman, Tim Berne, Steve Lacy and more.
"Portland's Paxselin Quartet celebrates the release of it's
new CD with a rip-roaring field trip through 'third-stream
avant-garde jazz'... the quartet has a retro-1980s 'downtown NYC' eclecticism that is rigorous, swinging and quite a kick."
-Willamette Week, 5/19/2004
"...varied tastes for experimentalism, be that avant-garde skronk, cool minimalism and meter shifting prog-rock...cohesive and approachable."
-Oregonian A&E, five live promising shows, 5/14/2004
"...this incarnation of the quartet has been opening ears since the summer."
-Oregonian, A&E 12/3/2004
PAXSELIN QUARTET announces the release of their debut CD:
A Guide to Desolation Wilderness
Recorded live on April 6, 2004 at Kung Fu Bakery by Bob Stark and mastered by Ryan Foster at FREQ this CD contains six original compositions and one traditional (arranged by the band).
The original material is hard to classify and can best be described as third stream or avant-garde.
Influences on the band include: Steve Lacy, John Zorn, The Residents, Ornette Coleman, Tim Berne, Tony Malaby, Volapuk, Olivier Messiaen, Mike Patton, Charles Mingus, Rashaan Roland Kirk, Carla Bley, King Crimson, Steve Reich and a slew of international underground bands, musicians and composers.
CD Track Listings:
1. Death and the Child/Mary-Sue Tobin
Roaring, mixed meter and slightly Eastern European.
2. PaxselinOne#3/Chad Hensel
A free introduction commences into a ripping head and concurrent solos from Hensel and Tobin.
3. Blues For Ornette/Bill Athens
A musical commentary.
5. Addicts of Confrontation/Hensel
Dual rhythmic centers.
6. Smoke and Mirrors/Tobin
A slippery piece in 5/8 and 6/4.
7. Gambangan/Traditional, arr. Paxselin Quartet
Indonesian Gamelan minimalism.
Who are you:
Mary-Sue Tobin - alto and soprano saxophones, composition and arrangements
Paxselin founder, saxophonist and composer Mary-Sue Tobin is a former member of Flatland and the Inquisition Ensemble. She has played with a wide variety of bands and musicians including: Glen Moore Ensemble, Darrell Grant, The Temptations, Esperanza Spalding, D. Bayne, Tim DuRoche, Israel Annoh, Thara Memory, Jonas Tauber, David Valdez, Andre St. James, Chris Newman, Miss Mona's Caberet House Band, Carlton Jackson Big Band, DK Stewart, Border Patrol Big Band, Art Abrams Big Band, Dub Squad, Snow Bud and the Flower People, the Oblivion Seekers, Johnny Legend, the Stragglers, I and I, Instigators and literally hundreds of others. She has toured with and opened for legends like Herbie Hancock, James Moody, Billy Mintz, Wayne Horvitz, Third World, Steel Pulse and many others.
She led two previous groups, Loud Sistah and MST and the A-List, playing both saxophone and keyboards in addition to fronting the groups and writing much of the material. She is now concentrating primarily on jazz and saxophone and leads two of her own groups; the MS Tobin Quintet and Paxselin Quartet, in addition to a variety of side jobs. She has studied saxophone and jazz with some of Portland's finest including Warren Rand, Rob Davis, Alan Jones, Glen Moore, Scott Hall and Rob Scheps.
In the spring of 2003 she attended the International Banff Jazz Festival and spent three weeks in Canada studying with Dave Douglas, John Abercrombie and a staff of cutting edge jazz musicians from around the world. She has appeared in the movie "Hear No Evil" (starring Marlee Matlin and Martin Sheen) with Dub Squad and can be heard on numerous local releases (including Chris Newman's upcoming release for Flying Heart Records) over the past ten years. She recently helped research and write excerpts for Darrell Grant's upcoming book, "New Real Standards" and does free lance work for The Leroy Vinegar Jazz Institute as well as serving as the graduate teaching assistant for Portland State University's jazz studies department. She lives in SE Portland, OR where she plays music all the time.
Chad Hensel - clarinets, composition
Former mid-westerner, avid outdoorsman, painter and composer, Chad Hensel has played with nearly all the local "free" and avant garde luminaries including; Michael Vlatkovich, Rob Blakeslee, Jonas Tauber, Tim DuRoche, David Haney, Rich Halley, David Valdez and numerous others. While still a Wisconsonite Chad co-led, as guitarist and chief songwriter, the beloved cult metal band, Dr. Shrinker. In addition he led his own Portland based group, the Inquisition Ensemble, which featured not only his inventive clarinet playing but also his original compositions. Chad is currently working on two painting series and concentrating on the Paxselin Quartet as well as continuing to hold down his job as a woodwind repair technician at Wally's in Oregon City. Chad lives in SE Portland.
Ken Ollis - drums, composition
Ken is one of the top call drummers in Portland and for good reason. A protégé of Alan Jones, Ken is a hugely talented drummer who has played with Jonas Tauber, Michael Vlatkovich, Flatland, Rob Blakeslee, Chata Addy, David Haney, Pepe and the Bottle Blondes, Monty Amundson and numerous other bands and musicians. He has shared the stage with legends like Julien Priester, Bud Shank, John Gross, Ingrid Jensen and Kenny Werner and has backed up just about every jazz musician in Portland including a stint as drummer for Rob Scheps' Salon des Refuses. Recent recordings he appears on include two new Origin Records releases from Jonas Tauber and Michael Vlatkovich, in addition to Tom McNally's debut album. Ken is also a Banff alumnus. Mr. Ollis is currently an adjunct faculty member at Portland State University where he is the jazz drum set instructor. He lives in SE Portland.
Bill Athens - bass, composition
Originally a resident of Appleton, WI, William moved to Portland to play music. Upon arriving William began playing with many great artists including Mary Kadderly, Tim DuRoche, Christopher Woitach, Jerry Hahn, Darrell Grant, the Dave Mills/Carlton Jackson Big Band, Tim Wilcox, the Inquisition Ensemble, the MS Tobin Quintet and many others. William spends much of his time playing bass on board the Queen of the West and giving private lessons. Mr. Athens has a BM from PSU and is a trained professional, comfortable playing jazz, classical and all things in between. He lives in SE Portland.