The madness of crowds

Baker Hunt Sandstrom Williams – “Experiments on Animals in Space” from Extraordinary Popular Delusions (2007)

Kudos to Chicago’s finest improvising ensemble for paying homage to Charles MacKay’s apparently classic text on, as the t-shirt some jackass in your high school biology class wore states, “the power of stupid people in large groups.”

Jim Baker (piano, synths, ARP organ), Steve Hunt (drums), Brian Sandstrom (bass, guitar), and Mars Williams (reeds) play a weekly Tuesday night gig at Chicago’s Hotti Biscotti (3545 W. Fullerton, 3 blocks from my old place) that you must check out if you’re ever in the neighborhood. The music is of the free-jazz energy music ilk–i.e., not for the faint of heart–but unlike most of those experiments, Baker & co. remain interesting after 15 minutes of listening. The group listens to each other and responds and communicates as well as any of the great jazz ensembles. Their new album demonstrates their sympathetic improvising, but to hear them live on a Tuesday night is to know you are in the presence of real power, real art.

There’s an interesting video from the Gear Wire Web site featuring Jim Baker talking gear; also included are a couple nice clips of the group at top form.

Buy the experiment here

Take a look at the book here

Baker Hunt Sandstrom Williams
live every Tuesday, 8:30 pm (it’s free!)
Hotti Biscotti
3545 W. Fullerton Ave.
Chicago IL

Posted by Glenn

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Filed under 2000s, Experimental, Instrumental, Jazz

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