Music: Albums and Bands

All of Kynan’s albums are now released through Kynan’s own record label EnRusk Music. They can be streamed or purchased at the labels Bandcamp site EnRusk Music on Bandcamp

BIRDTOWN

2022

Music Composed for the film Birdtown 2022

Birdtown is Kynan Robinson’s first studio release in eight years. It is the soundtrack to the yet unreleased movie Birdtown written directed by his son Kalani Robinson. The music beautifully supports the movie and just as easily stands on its own. Birdtown draws from Kynan’s extensive, award-winning and diverse career as a jazz, classical, film, techno, & electronic/sample-based performer and composer.

“Robinson’s unique sound, instantly recognizable in whatever genre he is releasing, is all over this album. The sound is rhizomatic, borrowing and reconnecting from any genre nessasary to deepen the groove and drive the listener beyond. It’s not a mashup; it’s fluidity. It provides familiarity while shifting the sand under your feet. He describes his technique as ” record, sample, cut up, re-record, shift, remix, merge and fold the music and overall form back into and over itself, creating a “sound of becoming other, or a vellooming sound.

In this musical universe, the sum of the parts is always more significant than the whole. In moments the listener might feel they are hearing a Shostakovich string quartet, or music from Debussy, Mingus, Stockhausen, Morrocan Deep Grind, Miles, DJ Shadow, Old Des Peres, and then in the same moment, none of those things seem apparent. Instead, one hears a simple multiplicity of flowing lines of flight to the moment now.” David Spearze, Threesome Music Review

  • Composer: Kynan Robinson
  • Mixed and Mastered: Kynan Robinson
  • Kynan Robinson – Trombone, Electronics, Remixing
  • Andrea Keeble – Violin
  • Jason Bunn – Viola
  • Ronny Ferrella – Drums, Percussion
  • Anita Hustas – Acoustic Bass

THE ESCALATORS

The Escalators have released one album titled “Wrapped in Plastic” Music inspired by the films of David Lynch.

2010

Taking its inspiration from some of the artistic concepts of master filmmaker David Lynch the band developed its own very unique approach to music-making. “The Music is totally absorbing and it takes you on a journey that could easily be like a David Lynch film. The music creates a world that suggests strangeness and mystery, with the hint of events unfolding.” R Mitchell The Sun 

The Escalators includes

  • Marc Hannaford – Piano
  • Joe Talia – Drums
  • Michael Meagher – Bass
  • Lawrence Folvig – Guitar
  • Pat Thiel – Trumpet
  • Kynan Robinson – Trombone
  • DJ Element – Turntables

Brief History

The Escalators are made up of some of the finest and bravest improvising musicians in Melbourne.

In 2010 The Escalators released our debut album Wrapped in Plastic. They also completed a national tour of Australia playing sold-out shows at The Melbourne Recital Center, Brisbane Powerhouse, and in Sydney.  As the composer of the group, I sought to imply concepts such as an investigation into normality as well as an application of dual narratives involving both the ideas of reality and fantasy into the sometimes beautiful, sometimes unsettling music played by the Escalators.
The band has worked with visual artists Kiron Robinson and Michelle Robinson to create a set design that includes video, and a life show that tetters on the edge of haunting beauty and Lynchian weirdness.

A Sample of Media For The Escalators

The ABCs Music Show with Andrew Ford

Sydney Morning Herald Feature Article – Kynan Robinson and The Escalators

Review of The Escalators concert. Melbourne Recital Center, Melbourne Australia by Roger Mitchell

Download the Escalators Media Pack here Escalators Press Pack


ENRUSK

EnRusk have released two albums both considered significant landmarks in Australian Contemporary Jazz

The Self Titled album EnRusk

EnRusk 2002

“Robinson is more than just a highly-skilled player. He makes highly individual music full of creative surprises. This album is one of the more auspicious Australian debut albums. It’s a particular pleasure to hear someone so individual. Robinson’s compositions are meticulously are variously structured, free of clichés.” Radio National

1000 Wide

1000 Wide 2003

Led by trombonist and composer Kynan Robinson this Melbourne outfit has released a second album that builds grandly on its debut of a year or so ago. En Rusk has quickly become one of our best bands. If you haven’t begun collecting Australian contemporary jazz and jazz-related music yet, this would be a good place to start. 

Brief History

The band Enrusk is a contemporary jazz quintet from Melbourne Australia. Led by Kynan, it featured some of the brightest young jazz talents in Australia in the early 2000s, All have gone on to have very successful careers of their own winning awards including multiple ARIA awards. The unique, groove-heavy music Kynan composed drew from jazz but was not afraid to push to more contemporary approaches including pop, Avant-grade, and techno. While seemingly complex when looking at the music on the page, in the hands of these musicians and the sound the arrangements demanded the music has a flow that belies the complexities inherent in the song’s foundational structures. The groove comes from the collective flow. It was unlike anything else in Australian Jazz at the time which resulted in the band having great success releasing two very well-received albums both in Australia and internationally and touring the country on many occasions.

The two albums released were the self-titled album Enrusk and the stunningly beautiful album 1000 Wide. These two releases were the first in Kynan’s catalog and officially launched him onto a national and international stage as a composer and trombonist of the highest order.

EnRusk performed at every major Australian Jazz Festival including the Wangaratta Festival on two occasions and toured nationally twice to promote both albums.


COLLIDER

Collider has released two albums,

Band Members

  • Kynan Robinson – Trombone
  • Adam Simmons – Sax
  • Andrea Keeble – Violin
  • Jason Bunn – Viola
  • Ronny Ferella – Drums
  • Anita Hustas – Double Bass

Albums Released

Solo in Red

Music and production composed and created by: Kynan Robinson. Performed by Collider

Solo In Red 2010

“While the combined virtuosity of the individual members of Collider is nothing short of intimidating, in the context of this project each musician plays his or her role to perfection ensuring that it is the compositions themselves that take center stage. This was really visceral music and its effect was felt physically” Owen McKern RRR

The following is an excerpt from an interview and article written featuring Kynan. In it he explains some of the story of the creation and release of his most influential and serious work, Solo in Red.

The novels Blood Meridian, Sutree, Child of God, and The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy have been wholly influential in creating Solo in Red. The album is the music from the stage production of the same name. The production includes spoken word, a lighting design, and video production. The work was framed in the books of American Author Cormac McCarthy and was created and composed by Kynan Robinsonat with a commission from The Melbourne Writers Festival.

Robinson found solace in McCarthy’s writing as well as a similar philosophical outlook to his own, exemplified by the use of literal and metaphorical language and recurring themes of detachment, tension, harshness, and the fragility of life. The dry wit also found in McCarthy’s writing complemented Robinson’s personal perspective, mirroring his own understanding and contrasting against the rigid framework and realities of every day.
After 18 months of experimentation, Robinson was then able to piece together the mosaic, collect his thoughts and ideas, and discover a multifaceted and creative way to express them; the result is Solo in Red.


“McCarthy’s books come at you like a horrifying flood, a poetic and troubled rush of debris. His writing is sparse and operates within a supernatural or spiritual overlay that draws bleak attention to religion, truth and existence with his words presenting both the absolute beauty and absolute ugliness of existence, often within the same sentence. If you choose to enter McCarthy’s spiritual world, it will often result in the realization of both frightening and peaceful truths. With Solo in Red, I feel as though I have found the creative and artistic voice I have been searching for throughout my entire career, which has been nurtured to meet at the intersection of music, literature, and multimedia art. McCarthy’s texts introduced me to a new literary model from which I have been able to base my musical concepts on and expand on these captivating themes and atmospheres he creates as a writer, which in turn absorb you as a reader. It was this kind of absorption that I was interested and invested in creating and subsequently making my own.” Robinson

Combining with the extraordinary talents of Visual Artists Michelle Robinson, Dothan Caspi, and Sean Kelly, Solo In Red was created, a work that included music, video, lighting, and even scent, that sits right in the atmosphere of a Cormac McCarthy Novel and works on all the senses to provide an experience that is both outstandingly beautiful, mesmerizing and haunting.

The work is described in more detail on the page titled Solo in Red.

Words: Collider 2010

Words 2010

The music for this album used literary material as inspiration for the compositions. On Word’s Kynan Robinson drew on Japanese author Haruki Murakami. Robinson’s arrangement and use of a tight rhythmic approach combined with long melodies leave the listener with a familiar melancholic sense of dislocation that is often felt in Murakami’s writing. Like Murakami Robinson’s approach is in the same moment accessible yet unfamiliar, evocative, erotic, and with flow. Simmons’s more personal interpretation chose to draw on more traditional Russian classics.

Brief History

The combination of jazz instrumentation with classical musicians rarely goes well. There are few times it moved far from the well-worn cliches established as far back as when Carlie Parker recorded with strings. The Jazz players do the soloing-and the string players play supporting arrangements in support. Given that the truly unique and contemporary sound Collider plays with takes on the even greater appreciation. One part of the reason the band has overcome the standard pitfalls and created into the future is the fact that the band is co-lead by Kynan Robinson and Adam Simmons, both very strong performers and composers committed to developing a new sound rather than falling into an accepted sound. In particular, Kynan’s arrangements blend the instrumentation in ways where the players perform as one unique sound rather than a collection of individuals or even jazz/classical musicians.

The technique of blending, folding or, as Kynan refers to it, Vellooming is a technique he has pioneered and remains committed to exploring. Finally, it is the musicians themselves, specifically chosen for their incredible talent and ability, but also for the commitments each has made to their instruments beyond their fields. Each member can improvise in a way that is in the same moment quite unrecognizable and yet is additive in its commitment. Collider consists of Melbourne’s most innovative jazz players alongside some of the best classical players, members of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.

Floating With Doubt Past Smouldering Fires, an excerpt from Solo in Red: Composed by Kynan Robinson, Performed by Collider at 45 Downstairs, Melbourne, Australia.

Media Samples: Collider


OLD DES PERES

Old Des Peres (Des Peres) have released three albums,

Preserved

Ace Doubt

The Adventures of Cowboy and Miniman

Des Peres is a sample-heavy performance madness band that co-led by Kynan and his wife Michelle Robinson. They have globally released 3 albums receiving outstanding reviews and success. In the years 2002-2010, they toured Australia and the world, playing large festivals including The Big Day Out. They were famous for their genre-bending sound, Kynan’s unique ability to lead from the back performing and improvising the electronic beats, synths, and samples over the top of Live Guitar, Drums, Backing Vocals, Trombone MC – Mr Ection and the whole time being led from the front by performance artist, MC and the princess of anarchy Luva DJ – Michelle Robinson.

Also In Des Peres were Kiron Robinson, Tom Bass, Natalka Kohut, and Kelsey James


Kynan performs in many other significant and high-profile Australian bands including CW Stoneking, Melbourne Ska Orchestra, Peter Knights 5+2 Ensemble, Skazz, and the Adam Simmons Toy Band. He has also performed with several international touring acts including Michael Bubble and Reggae legends The Abyssinians. and Mabel Dawn For a full list click here

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