An improvisational set from one of the UK’s most innovative saxophonists.

Ben Vince is an experimental saxophonist based in London, whose music has appeared on labels including Where To Now?, ThirtyThree ThirtyThree Records and Depth of Decay.

For the latest in our series of live sessions filmed at 180 The Strand, we invited experimental saxophonist Ben Vince to perform a set alongside visual artist Catherine Chapman. In the 40-minute performance, Vince takes a largely improvisational approach, with a set full of drones and delicate tones created by his saxophone, laptop and MIDI controller.

Vince has previously contributed to a compilation on Curl, the label from Mica Levi, Brother May and Coby Sey, and his music has also leaned towards the dancefloor. In 2018 he released a two-track EP on Hessle Audio in collaboration with Joy O, in which Vince’s saxophone textures augment the rhythmic structure of club music.

“My live sets are completely improvised, however on very rare occasions like this I play my track ‘Transition 2’ with Joy Orbison, or a version of ‘Heartbeat’ (CURL),” Vince says. “I use the discipline of having nothing prepared to energise my sets and to reach a true state of vulnerability with the audience but I also like the freedom to play versions of or odes to existing music.”

The set also features visuals from Catherine Chapman, a moving image artist specialising in 3D animation who was recommended to Vince by their mutual friend and NTS host, Lawson Benn. “I wanted someone interesting with experience doing live visual performance and approach the session as a collaborative audio-visual improvisation,” Vince says. “I have only worked with visual artists on a couple of instances but this time everything seemed to flow and work symbiotically.” 

Vince’s most recent appearance on record is EP​/​64​-​57, a live album recorded with “Bristol improv ritual” EP/64, released on Avon Terror Corps. He also features on Visionist’s ‘Winter Sun’ from his new album on Mute, A Call To Arms. “I have some great collaborations in the pipeline but nothing I can speak on yet,” Vince says.

Find Ben Vince’s music at Bandcamp.

Credits:

Director: Pedro S. Küster
Edit & Grade: Kamil Dymek
Camera Operator: Aiko Roudette, Laima Leyton, Pedro S. Küster and Kamil Dymek