"The sheer musical literacy of those involved seems to open up great vistas of options in the approach to both improvisation and composition." John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald . June 2000
Consisting of a core trio of Jonathan Dimond (electric bass, tabla), Mastaneh Nazarian (electric guitar) and Adrian Sherriff (percussion), the band has often augmented itself with artists of such virtuosity and breadth as John Rodgers (violin), Soumya Chakraverty (sarod), Gulfam Sabri (tabla) and the post-classical ensemble Topology. Loops has also performed in collaboration with projected film and early childhood theatre.
TOURS & RECORDINGS
The band has toured New South Wales and Victoria (2000) and has two Compact Discs of its own: "Recursion" (1999) and the double album "Ek!" (2001).
The trio is also featured on Jonathan's solo album "Journeys: People, Places" (2005) and "Airwaves: 100 Years of Radio" with the post-Classical quintet Topology (2005). More information can be found under recordings.
"The outcome is... energizing, exciting, and quite often very beautiful in a fresh, unsentimental way." John Clare, Sydney Morning Herald. August 2001
In 2002 Jonathan Dimond immigrated to the USA and established the American version of the band with Los Angeles musicians. The Brisbane-based Ken Edie (drums), John Parker (drums), Jamie Clark (guitar) and John Rodgers(violin) were the core members up until this point.
Loops has built up an extensive repertoire of original compositions by the ensemble members, and can also perform arrangements of standard-repertoire jazz with a modern 'twist'.
"The European Classical
tradition is at least as influential here as jazz. But then avante-garde
sound sculpture, progressive rock, and Indian Classical music are also
salient ingredients in this fascinating recipe."
John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald. June 2000
Adrian Sherriff is active internationally as a performer, composer and educator. He has studied and performed on percussion from South (mridangam, ghatam & morsing) and North (tabla) India, Cuba (bata), Bali (kendang) and Sumatra (rebana, repai, dhol) for over 20 years.
Initially trained in the art of mridangam as a disciple of leading South Indian percussionist Guru Karaikudi R. Mani, Adrian was awarded an honors degree in South Indian classical drumming from Monash University in 1996. Subsequently, he has performed regularly with his guru and other leading South Indian percussionists in India and around the world collaborating regularly with the Australian Art Orchestra. Adrian arranged and composed several major works, which have formed the basis of this collaboration with the AAO. On various trips to India, Adrian has undertaken specialist studies with senior artists on on ghatam (T V Vasan) and morsing (Srirangam Kannan). He was initiated into the Benares tabla gharana by his teacher, Kedar Nath Bhowmick in 1997.
Adrian began his studies of Balinese music in Bali in 1990. From 2000-2002, he toured internationally with the acclaimed Balinese/Australian music theatre co-production The Theft of Sita. Subsequently Adrian founded and directed the chamber Balinese gamelan Byar, which toured nationally with Musica Viva in Schools for some years. He has also instructed gamelan at several Australian tertiary institutions.
In 2003, Adrian took the first of several research trips to West Sumatra to study Minangkabau vocal, flute and percussive traditions. The culmination of this work was the setting of a full length Randai folk opera with an expanded Minangkabau orchestration which was premiered in 2006.
As part of his Masters research in 2005, Adrian studied the repertoire of Cuban bata drums with Alex Pertout at the Victorian College of the Arts. He has also recently furthered his studies in this tradition under master drummer John Amira (New York).
Since 2008 Adrian has been developing an original approach to the Zendrum percussion controller, adapting the techniques of South Indian, Cuban and Indonesian drumming and applying them to drumset, percussion and electro-acoustic sound sets across a broad range of musical styles.
Adrian composed, directed and toured a new original show, Five Elements, which premiered to acclaim at the Darwin Festival in 2010. Five Elements featured Guru Karaikudi Mani with other leading artists from both India and Australia . As a Zendrummer, Adrian undertook the role of principal supporting percussionist for Guru Mani for this show.
Since 2007, Adrian has been employed as a lecturer in the music degree program at NMIT Melbourne, directing electronic and intercultural music studies.
Mastaneh Nazarian graduated in 1995 with a BA in Professional Music (Guitar and Composition) from Berklee College of Music. She studied composition and orchestration with Gerard Brophy and Electro-acoustic composition with Rodolphe Blois at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music where she earned a Masters of Music degree in Composition in 2001.
Mastaneh has been performing as a guitarist leading her own groups since 1992. Her groups work on a collaborative structure that feature Mastaneh's compositions and arrangements. Her pieces for small improvising ensemble are based on jazz principles and capture a unique and personal narrative style. As a songwriter, she aims to compose both music and words as a united whole, often incorporating improvisation.
Since 1998 Mastaneh has worked as a freelance audio editor, film and theatre composer and project organizer in addition to her performance and teaching activities. In 1999 one of Mastaneh's compositions was performed at the International Guitar Festival in Darwin. In 2000 she was one of 18 composers who were invited to the Tufts University Talloire International Composers Conference. She has composed for various chamber settings from wind quintet to large mixed ensembles. As an electronic music artist/sound designer she has worked with theatre directors, choreographers, and lighting designers. In 2001 Mastaneh composed and produced music for two short films that were featured at various venues in the Brisbane area. In 2002 she was one of the few sound artists nationwide to receive a commission from the Australian Broadcasting Company's Listening Room program, a project celebrating ABC's 70th year.
As a project organizer she launched Kafka Pony, a multi-stylistic composers collective that explores improvisation and composition through the looking glass of surrealist fables. Their first full length CD was released in 2005.
Known from an early age as a trombonist in both Classical and Jazz styles, Jonathan Dimond became attracted to the electric bass by the recordings of Jaco Pastorius during his high school years in Australia. Jonathan then further broadened his stylistic base into North Indian Classical music and the various contemporary streams of the 20th Century. His award-winning thesis “Improvisation in Composition Since 1950” illustrates his interest in the marriage of independent styles and disciplines. Jonathan Dimond has two graduate degrees in Contemporary Improvisation from New England Conservatory, Boston, USA. He also holds a Bachelor of Music in classical trombone. Jonathan is an active composer, electric bassist and tabla-player, and is know for his eclectic and virtuosic performances, compositions and improvisations. He works as a teacher, freelance performer, and recording session musician, and was until recently based in Boston and Los Angeles, USA. He now lives in Melbourne with his wife and two children.
Promotional photos of the band can be downloaded on the Photo Gallery page.