Curtis Hasselbring's New Mellow Edwards is a group that was originally formed in 1988. Known back then as the Mellow Edwards, the trio of trombone, electric guitar and drums explored a unique combination of free jazz and heavy rock that was very unique for it's time. Continuing through the 90s
as a sextet with a similar musical onus, Hasselbring reformed the group as an acoustic quartet in 2002 and has made the New Mellow Edwards the focal point of his composing and band-leading.
Curtis's compositions and the New Mellow Edwards' playing defies traditional jazz conventions and favors primal garage rock-derived grooves, textural explorations and classicaly-influenced structures. The repertiore of the group can be humerous, dark, accessible and exciting, often simultaneously.
The New Mellow Edwards' self-titled debut album made many top ten lists for 2006, included the #2 spot in the Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll for best debut and several critics' lists in All About Jazz NYC. Curtis's tweaked version of a modern instrumental supergroup features strong performances from three of New York's most innovative musicians: Trevor Dunn (Mr. Bungle, John Zorn, Melvins), John Hollenbeck (Meredith Monk, Theo Bleckmann, Claudia Quintet) and Chris Speed (Human Feel, Bloodcount, Pachora) - ably led by the beautifully unorthodox and virtuostic trombonist.
April 2009 brings a new New Mellow Edwards recording, "Big Choantza" (Skirl 10), which will feature 9 Hasselbring originals as well as a cover of the Sonic Youth classic, "Youth Against Fascism".
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