4 Compositions for Sextet

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4 Compositions for Sextet
4 Compositions for Sextet Cover.jpeg
Studio album by Tony Oxley
Released 1970
Recorded February 7, 1970
Genre Avant-garde jazz, Free jazz
Length 38:14
Label Columbia
Tony Oxley chronology
The Baptised TravellerString Module Error: Match not foundString Module Error: Match not found 4 Compositions for Sextet

4 Compositions for Sextet is an album by English free-jazz drummer Tony Oxley, which was recorded in 1970 and released on CBS. The album, the second of a trilogy that Oxley recorded for major labels, features the same band with whom he recorded the previous, The Baptised Traveller, expanded to a sextet with the addition of trombonist Paul Rutherford.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[1]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz 3.5/4 stars[2]

In his review for AllMusic, Thom Jurek states "The four tunes are all outer-limits numbers; all methadrine takes on what were happening improvisations. It's true that there are loose structures imposed on all four tracks, but they quickly dissolve under the barrage of sonic whackery."[1]

The Penguin Guide to Jazz notes that "Four Compositions was a title guaranteed to offend players and fans who wanted to set aside any implications of predetermined structures."[2]

In his book Honesty Is Explosive!: Selected Music Journalism, music writer Ben Watson claims about the album "It is a stone-cold, drop-dead, ice pick-in-the-forehead masterpiece. It was too much for the marketing department at Columbia, and Oxley was dropped."[3]

Track listing[edit]

All compositions by Tony Oxley
  1. "Satunalia" – 10:09
  2. "Scintilla" – 8:56
  3. "Amass" – 13:00
  4. "Megaera" – 6:09



  1. ^ a b Jurek, Thom. Tony Oxley – 4 Compositions for Sextet: Review at AllMusic. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  2. ^ a b Cook, Richard; Brian Morton (2002). The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD. The Penguin Guide to Jazz (6th ed.). London: Penguin. p. 1160. ISBN 0140515216. 
  3. ^ Watson, Ben (2010). Honesty Is Explosive!: Selected Music Journalism. United States: Borgo Press. pp. 111–112. ISBN 1434457834.