Quantum (Edgetone EDT4136) is the latest work by drummer and electronic percussionist E. Doctor Smith (Brian Eno, Madonna, Edo Castro) and his sixth album on the Edgetone Records label. Quantum reunites Smith with his former Drummstick band mate, guitarist Jack Wright (Quantum Kids, Temporal Chaos Project) and features Quantum Kids' bassist, Tom Shiben, and Smith's Feat of Clay co-founder, trumpeter Eric Dahlman. In this collaboration, Smith’s unique fusion approach to the new Zendrum EXP MIDI percussion controller (the first commercially sold EXP, designed by David Haney of the Zendrum Corporation), splash blends with Wright's inspired guitar work and looping mastery to create music swirling between the subtle, the beautiful, the incendiary.
Inspired by Wright's progressive rock compositions and musicianship, Smith’s Washington, D.C.- based Drummstick band performed Wright’s anthemic Reflections and syncopated Progress, bringing the guitarist’s work to the area’s larger venues for the first time. During a performance at a club in Northern Virginia in the fall of 2000, Smith was playing the Drummstick, (his original MIDI percussion controller), alongside Wright when the guitarist’s creative use of loops, especially in his beautifully crafted song PsychoBilly, prompted the legendary guitarist Bill Kirchen, who happened to be in attendance, to ask Smith, "What is that thing you are playing, Doc, who is that guitarist, and why have I never heard of him before?" Since then, Wright’s many memorable live performances and online presence have provided increasing recognition of his work and access to it for loyal fans.
Smith recorded two albums with Wright: The Drummstick in 2000 (Edgetone EDT4046) and The Drummstick 2 in 2007 (Edgetone EDT4053) after relocating to San Francisco with bassist Celia DuBose. Smith and Wright performing several times in San Francisco and agreed to work together again when the time was right.
Happily, in 2008 Smith reunited with Wright and fellow band mate, MIDI saxophonist and flautist Neil Mezebish at the Barn, Mezebish's recording studio in Taylorsville, Maryland and Smith recorded several of Wright's best-known compositions from the Quantum Kids repertoire, including Angular Momentum, Progress, PsychoBilly, and Son of Frunkenstein." Those sessions were the foundation for this album, which was completed with several pieces from Smith’s Feat of Clay repertoire, including Kodo and Blue Moon, recorded with trumpeter Eric Dahlman and Mike Hall on guitar synthesizer.
The result is Quantum, a mix of progressive rock and jazz with ambient and otherworldly sounds, a potent musical cocktail — definitely shaken, not stirred!