Press Quotes 1986-1995
what others say
This page consists of descriptive reviews from from The New York Times, The Wire, Der Tagesspiegel, Option Magazine, The Sydney Morning Herald, Sound Choice, Coda magazine, Giornale Della Musica, Montreal Voir, Salzburger Zeitung, Time Out New York, The Boston Phoenix, All About Jazz, Süddeutsche Zeitung, De Volkskrant, Frankfurter Rundschau, Time Out, The Oregonian, and many more.
'From one moment to the next, his violin might sound like a subway car screeching to a halt, the wailing of jimi hendrix's guitar, or a gently gurgling mechanical toy. From the cacophony arose memorable jazz riffs and paganini style virtuosity.'
The New York Times
'A process began by which the very being of the violin - physically, musically, and historically - would be taken apart and reformed piece by piece. Today, when so much contemporary music is just so much con, the music of Jon Rose seems to cut through the layers of musicological schlock with impunity.'
Ear Magazine, USA
'Jon Rose kicked off with an intense and highly charged performance, on a violin played with a bow equipped with a pressure sensor... Rose triggered cello samples, conjured up sounds by waving his bow in the air, and even used it to play another bow. His high precision playing demonstrated to stunning effect how electronics can enhance the capabilities of a traditional instrument.'
'A discovery of the first quality. Jon Rose turned out to be an allround entertainer who combines virtuosity and intelligence with subtle jokes. He kept the listeners and spectators breathless for the whole performance. Jon Rose is more than a musician; he is an explorer, who's rank secures him a position next to Columbus.'
AZ Tagblatt, Austria
'Throughout the concert, he used an interesting array of speed and timbre - sometimes just the sound of his bow could be heard, swishing through the air. In some ways he resembles a modern day Paganini, conjuring up endless possibilities at the end of his bow... he is perhaps taking the violin into the next century.'
'Rich ideas, humour and a variety of electronic sounds, connect Jon Rose to the natural sounds of his violin, with quotations from the Classics to Swing, interspersed with funny intervals: For example, when the acoustic hunt of a fly ends in success.'
'An incredible orgy of creativity!'
Giornale Della Musica, Italy
'Volcanic eruptions, a refreshing mixture of virtuosity and fun, with structure in an everchanging soundbath. Jon Rose is an excellent musician and he can clown in his network of electronic systems. He was the highpoint of quality in this year's festival (Ars Electronica). The Australian, with his violin and special bow, fires off a complete electronic sound system with modulation and recall. Bach and Vivaldi lost in space. He uses traditional music as a launching pad from which to shoot futuristic sound rockets. A virtuoso stands in the middle of his ever widening electronic field, in which he conducts a Karajan, a Paganini, a Domingo or a Charlie Parker. Strange, farcical and full of enthusiasm but leaving aside any attempt to dress it all up in philosophy.'
Der Standard, Austria
'No violin is a violin. You are so trusting of the charm and form of the violin, so desired and already experienced. This image will Jon Rose thoroughly clean out of your head with the highest sort of unconventional virtuosity. He has fabricated a violin concerto about violin concertos.'
'The evening's most ambitious work, improvisations of rapid jump-cut editing and sped-up footage... the most audacious music... inspired... with Mr. Rose creating a harsh-sounding, orchestrally varied array of electrified string voices.'
The New York Times
'Jon Rose put c&w, power tools and socio-political parody into a blender and out poured many inspired moments, hearing history being made on the spot - like nothing else on the face of the earth.'
'Virtuoso playing and humour with 'born' musician Jon Rose. The speed of his thinking and fingering held everyone in a spell... extraordinary.'
IJmuiden Courant, Holland
'Jon Rose creates the 'one man' big band through his multi-functional instrument - rhythms, background and melody all together. A virtuosic 'rare bird' with play-jokes, sparkling fantasy, strong intuitive structures... original and furious.'
Tages Anzeiger, Zürich
'The razor-fast Australian Jon Rose, provided a fiery interchange with spontaneous rhythmic moving patterns and mini theatre pieces.'
Trouw Dagblad, Holland
'Jon Rose throws into the works his own energetic display of illegal techniques.'
Zitty Magazine, Berlin
'Jon Rose is probably the most controversial figure involved in serious music in this country. A tremendous musician... he kept the audience rapt for more than 2 hours with the most marvellous sounds. His use of dynamics and his resourcefulness were almost miraculous.'
Sydney Morning Herald Magazine, Australia
'He plays with demonic fire, bravado and virtuosity. This is sonic art at the vanguard!'
Option Magazine, USA
'Master of Chaos - constructively modern and archaic at the same time... cheerful, fast, and reckless, with 'unbreakable' outbursts of emotions... he is great.'
'The instrument itself, and its discoveries, are the subject of the improvisations by Jon Rose... playing with vigorous technique, continuous in transformation, supported by excessive energy.'
Art Press, France
'Never before in this club have we heard such a rhythmic heart, aggressive melodic angles and wild chaos.'
Frankische Nachrichten, Germany
'Tradition, perfection, technique and noise.'
'Jon Rose produces from his violin, in a bizarre manner, the most incredible sounds... from the typical tremolo of a Neapolitan mandolin... to playing the instrument with his teeth, reminiscent of Jimmi Hendrix and his Stratocaster.'
Il Tirreno, Italy
'Rose displays his command of extended violin techniques to full advantage... flighty excursions and an encyclopedic array of violin textures and timbres.'
Sound Choice, USA
'One listens from the start till the end, and admires the ingenious intellect behind this Neo-Dada bricolage.'
Le Soir, Belgium
'Jon Rose, the mastermind behind unholy amalgams... not in the sense of making fusions, but by floating above categories in a non-affiliated way.'
The Sydney Morning Herald
'In the chaos of his violin sound, there is method.'
'He works out his ideas in the same dimension as the sound, indicating it simultaneously... it resembles a very personal language.'
Actual Magazine, Japan
'Jon Rose plays assorted violin instruments in styles that run from accelerated, tonally centred solos to free-form sonic explorations... a cadenza for amplified violin showed off a formidable technique while poking fun at classical virtuosity.'
The New York Times
'The afternoon show was a scream, a valiant effort to wrest chaos from the mad order of the International music Industry.'
'As for his performances, he plays like a frenzied manic Paganini, with full-tilt virtuosity and great improvisational invention.'
Option Magazine, USA
'Some of the timbres are in such bad taste that they're actually astonishingly beautiful. The distortions work. This tango is a delightful bit of musical tomfoolery of the highest order which bears many serious rehearings.'
Australian Music Magazine
'An iridescent and cunning multi-media show from the Australian virtuoso at the Freiburg Jazzhaus. The electronic cello manipulations associated exactly with the condensed film images. His cello groaned, talked, splintered, threatened, howled with amazing mobility, grinding surfaces and extreme fingering. His violin playing was likewise, rapidly revealing many sound folds and changes.'
'A collision between music History and the Violin by this virtuosos violinist. Paganini could have been his father!'
'There was an incessant and inventive higgledy piggledy chaos on stage during this noise music... sometimes it was pure, unbearable dissonance but the audience was falling over with amusement and pleasure.'
Berner Zeitung, Switzerland
'During this Jon Rose delivered a permanent counterpoint. His cello is all corners and ends, spanned by strings - everything on board functions. With this he brings all connections to the foreground - room ambience, the reaction of the public, satire, personal mood - sliding together with unbounded intelligence. '
'During the lunch hour, Jon Rose of Sydney, Australia, was about midway through his 10 hour marathon 'Don't Even Think About Moving'. While watching Petticoat Junction on TV, he was wearing sunglasses and playing a black violin. He paused to think every few minutes. Themes from The Godfather and Lovestory , played with cracked wit, were wound into difficult Bartokian passages. Vivaldi or a folk tune would snake into the piece. Perhaps Rose was commenting on TV as the unending backdrop of life? What if we were required to react to Television for 10 straight hours, could any of us provide the running commentary? Then The Rifleman came on.'
The Houston Chronicle