Articles and Reviews
Featuring thirteen remastered compositions which have been culled from twenty-five years of previously released material, the album highlights some of the duo’s best moments in musical craftsmanship. Read More
Rear View is a 25-year retrospective of the music of Perpetual Motion. The founding and core members of the group are violinist Josie Quick and guitarist Tom Carleno, two extraordinary musicians…Read More
Perpetual Motion – REAR VIEW: I’ve reviewed this group before (issue # 139, specifically), featuring two high-talent players (Josie Quick – electric and acoustic violins, mandolin, percussion and Tom Carleno – guitars), as well as many others, since this is a 25-year retrospective kind of album. What you will hear when the album is final/ready (towards the end of January 2017) is some of the most forward-looking string-based work you’ve ever heard!
Violinist Josie Quick is always busy, whether she’s teaching, serenading a romantic wedding proposal, jamming with herself via looping, laying down tracks in the studio with Perpetual Motion, a jazz duo she shares with guitarist husband Tom Carleno, or playing with Coyote Poets of the Universe, a highly collaborative band she dubs “Progressive Alternative Americana.” She’s also a skilled ceramic artist, creating signature zen pots inspired by totemic images. Quick’s answers to the 100CC questionnaire follow. Read more
Stapleton Front Porch
This great little CD came in as part of a package for guitarist Tom Carleno..on this earlier outing (2006.Songs like the high energy “Spring Fever” will have you listening to this tune over and over again. “Jungle Spirits” was the clear winner for my pick as favorite, the changes are intricate and beautiful. I give Tom & crew a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for this CD.
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Christmas Time Is Here
Perpetual Motion is an acoustic world fusion ensemble headed by guitarist Tom Carleno and his wife, violinist/mandolin player Josie Quick, with fretless bassist Michael Olson and drummer Rob Chamberlin. They’ve been a staple of the Denver music scene for years and this wonderful collection of both holiday standards and solid originals shows why such is the case. Their simpatico sense of musicianship is the key to this album. Nearly every track has a different combination of the four players and two songs also feature the sultry jazz vocals of guest star Alyson Hayes-Myers: the Vince Guaraldi classic “Christmas Time is Here” and “Silent Night.” The four originals fit in perfectly with the other seven carols. Style-wise, the group’s music is a cross between folk, swing, jazz and the early instrumental works from Windham Hill. The group’s take on “The Little Drummer Boy” (here titled “The Little Drummer Boy (from Ipanema)” features Quick on electric violin and spices up the album with some bossa nova flavors. All in all, Christmas Time Is Here is a delight and a great addition to your holiday music collection.
Sometimes it is worth it to stop and enjoy something on your journey, rather than to always be in perpetual motion. This past Saturday we got to do both. Denver locals Josie Quick and Tom Carleno brought Perpetual Motion to Fresh City Life.
Right off, I’ll tell you that, if you missed this wonderful concert, we will be bringing Perpetual Motion back for an encore in the new year. They are fantastic!
This sought-after duo blends acoustic world music into a bright fusion of sounds. Mixing international styles, Perpetual Motion moves effortlessly between the traditions of Central and South American folk, progressive jazz, blues and rock. This eclectic approach to music informs their original compositions and cover tunes.
Perpetual Motion’s energy is what drives this dynamic group. Their eclectic jazz sound is a style of their own creation. Always on the move, their adept arrangements, great original pieces, and energetic stage presence are pitch perfect. You just have to hear them! If you missed them, stay tuned — they’ll be back to energize the great hall again.
Hope to see you at one of our upcoming fall concerts. Full Fresh City Life Calendar here.
March 10, 2005
Concert features genre-spanning sound
By Peter Jones
What do you get when you cross a guitarist who can’t write lyrics with a violinist who can’t sing?
“We focus on our strengths,” violinist Josie Quick laughed.
She and husband Tom Carleno are the nucleus of Perpetual Motion. The Denver band’s self-described style is “dynamic acoustic jazz, combining blues, rock, Latin and more.”
“More,” in this case, spans bluegrass to surf music.
“When people ask me what kind of music we play, I just say good,” Quick said. “It’s hard to put a label on it.”
Perpetual Motion brings its genre-spanning sound to the Lone Tree Public Library March 13 for a free concert.
It was not for lack of trying that Perpetual Motion gave up on putting words to its music. The couple has tried tapping into its love for Beatles lyrics,but the results were uniformly disappointing – more “moon in June” than “Here Comes the Sun.” Voices were not their best instruments either, they admit.
The couple has, however, incorporated lyrical melodies and a kind of vocal phrasing into their music. Carleno-Quick compositions are not so much instrumentals, they say, but songs without words.
“Surfing on Cloud Nine” is described in CD liner notes as “a song about the joy of being alive.” That may surprise listeners who assumed that instrumentals were not “about” anything.
“We make the effort to make the melodies hummable. When I’m playing, I try to think vocally. I think where the breath would be if we had a singer,” Quick explained.
Perpetual Motion’s material ranges from the American folk roots in “The Wyoming Blues” to the scat-jazz of Wheels are Turning. “Surf ‘n Turf” honors surf guitar king Dick Dale.
Despite appearances to the contrary, the eclectic husband and wife team was not always this comfortable in its musical skin.
Quick was originally a “classical music nerd” who was growing steadily tired of playing note-for-note Beethoven in school assemblies. Her epiphany came from an unlikely source, a fiddle-based, southern-rock hit by the Doobie Brothers.
“I was just enthralled by “Black Water,” she said. “I realized I could play any style I wanted to on the violin.”
By the late 1980s, she was teaching the same lesson in a Denver music store, where Carleno happened to teach guitar down the hall.
Before long, the frustrated rock musician was smitten by his female colleague, His opening line had more truth than most, however.
“I’ve written some music. I’d like to hear what it would sound like with a violin,” Quick can remember him saying to her one day. “He thought he was so smooth, as cheesy as it was.”
A love connection was not all that gelled. Quick’s violin actually did sound pretty good with Carleno’s jazzy material.
Perpetual Motion was ready to move.
Although the band has seen as revolving door of personnel over the years, including two veterans of Boulder County’s Wind Machine, the married couple has always been the stable calm in the group.
Three or four can be a crowd sometimes, anyway.
“It’ll be just the two of us at the library,” Quick said.
Perpetual Motion will perform March 13, 2 p.m. The Lone Tree Public Library is located at 8827 Lone Tree Parkway. The concert is free, but reservations are required. Call 303-799-4446 .
Perpetual Motion “Christmas Time is Here”
GoGo Magazine, January 21, 2002
What a beautiful and inspired record this is. And, it’s holiday tunes no less. Making an album of traditional Christmas songs is tricky because the songs are sooooo overplayed during December, and because tasteful can turn to tacky in the blink of an eye.
Perpetual Motion’s holiday release brings high quality musicianship and creative instrumental arranging (very important on a record such as this) to standards such as “Joy to the World,” “Carol of the Bells,” and “Do You Hear What I Hear.” Also included is the title track by Vince Guaraldi and some well-placed original tunes like “Northern Lights” and “Nova.”
Perpetual Motion usually records instrumental records that fit in well with mellow jazz or New Age listeners. The founding duo of Perpetual Motion, guitarist Tom Carleno and violinist Josie Quick have such huge musical ears, however, that the music stays fresh and accessible to any “type” of fan with high musical standards. Even on a Christmas CD, the duo does not disappoint.
Surprise your family by putting on a CD filled with the holiday spirit during dinner this year. Tell them it’s a local band. How cool is that?
Profilin’ from the Rocky Mountain Bullhorn June 2001Perpetual Motionby Judy BradyThe phrase “perpetual motion” conjures up images of constant
change, innovation and movement–like an interactive Energizer
bunny, meeting every new challenge with a step forward, a new
idea and an unflagging energy.Colorado musicians Tom Carleno and Josie Quick named their band
Perpetual Motion, making the first of many bold statements
regarding their instrumental music. In the twelve years since the
two got together, Carleno and Quick have utilized a gamut of
influences, tastes and musical resources to form an unusual alliance
in the expanding Colorado music scene.Sometimes their music sounds like pop, or maybe classical. No, it,s
blues, maybe classic rock, or jazz. We should know by now that the
easier a band is to categorize, the crappier the music. But Quick and
Carleno bring out the beauty of acoustic music without lulling us to
sleep. Their selection of tunes, Carleno,s adept arrangements and
their energetic stage presence are always entertaining.Unusual, but certainly the backbone of the group,s sound, is
Quick,s violin. It,s not the symphony style we know from
Beethoven records and diamond commercials, but a much more raw
and emotional tone amplified to complement Carleno,s guitar.Their versatility makes the band great for intimate settings but can
transfer well to larger venues. And although their artistry and love
of the music are apparent as a duo, they have released three albums
featuring a number of stellar local musicians.Perpetual Motion,s appeal reaches a wide audience through the
tasteful use of great original pieces and an odd assortment of
cover-tune arrangements. Drawing from songs on their 1997 release,
Surfing on Cloud Nine, the band can easily shift to a fabulous
rendition of “Josie” from Steely Dan or The Beatles,s “Dear
Prudence.” And it all seems to work.At a time when many musicians think that louder, faster and more
aggressive is better, the music fan needs a moment to listen to
quality music that is not only artistic in its nature, but introspective
and inspiring. Carleno and Quick bring the sort of sensitivity to
their music that reveals professional skill and training along with a
warm chemistry extending past the microphonesalways different,
and always moving.
The musical style of Perpetual Motion is one that shows great depth in the ability to develop and perform several genres of music harmoniously. Josie feels that it was her Classical chamber experience that prepared her for the kind of music that she and Tom create. She describes their musical sound as “counter point” or a “musical conversation” that is going on between the instruments. Josie feels that what makes their music unique is this musical conversation that is similar to what she experienced in her string quartet work, rather than the stringency of individualized parts that are expressed through rock music. For Josie “counter point” between the instruments “is the epitome of joy. I just love the way [it sounds] when you have two voices, three voices, intertwining and talking to each other.” The melody is described as “melodic fragments” where Tom plays keynotes on his guitar that Josie echoes on her violin. The point of their style is to play in harmony with the other musicians, complementing each other’s sound.
The music just sucks you in…a movie in every song, Can you hear the children running and playing in “Jacob’s Pond”? You can’t help but think of the outdoors, water and the joy of youth, And “Zero Gravity ..stars…can’t think of anything but stars. (Am I the only one who hears a few bars from the theme of Close Encounters?) The musical images are so vivid they almost spring forth from the strings.
When Perpetual Motion winds up their set with “Wyoming Blues, there is an almost audible sigh of regret from the audience. We had a casual fling with excellence and it was hard to let go.
From Riff Magazine January 2001
Perpetual MotionBy Bobby BensleyJust the name Perpetual Motion implies that this band has a busy sound. With 3 CD releases Ready Willing and Able, Surfing on Cloud Nine and Christmas Time is Here under their belts this band has earned the name.Eclectic and melodic the music of this group is hard to nail down to just one genre. If forced to do so I would call it Progressive Jazz, but would be doing it a disservice, as it is much more. The music of Perpetual Motion is as varied as their influences.Guitarist Tom Carleno plays with a flavorful fingerstyle that incorporates many different open tunings. Drawing from a background of rock influences such as Queen, The Beetles and Al Stewart, Carleno sets the ambiance for their instrumental landscapes. Running the gambit from Jazz to Blue Grass to Celtic, Perpetual Motion is at once delicate and relaxing, as well as strong and masculine and they can shift between the two with ease.Violinist Josie Quick really brings an element of uniqueness to this group. Drawing heavily from such Classical influences as Jean Luc’ Ponte, Stephane Grappelli and Django Rienhardt she adds color and classical movement to the rich and interlaced melodies that set this group apart from the rest.On their release Surfing On Cloud Nine, Quick and Carleno trade rapid counterpoints of melody which build a strong dialog around the drum and base lines of Chad Johnson and Maft Deason. Richly textured and layered with sensuous melodies, Perpetual Motion simply delivers good music that will leave you whistling.While available at major outlets such as Borders, Tower Records and Twist and Shout, the full collection of Perpetual Motion releases is available online at www.perpetualmotion.net as well as www.hapiskratch.com.
>This is from Westword December 14, 2000
A better… bet is Christmas Time Is Here, by the veteran Denver quartet called Perpetual Motion. Following a tasteful version of “Joy to the World” that also appears on Rocky Mountain Christmas, the combo enlivens “Northern Lights,” “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” and the wittily titled “The Little Drummer Boy (From Ipanema)” via stylish arrangements and the refined violin playing of Josie Quick. No, it doesn’t rock — but not everything has to, ya know?
This article ran in the The Daily on September 16, 2000Eclectic ensemble blends unlikely instruments, jazzBy Kate Lavin ,Daily Staff Writer
Click on this link for a review on our CD Surfing on Cloud Nine.
“Taking the folk idiom in a different direction, Perpetual Motion‘s Ready, Willing and Able mixes guitar and violin into a contemporary acoustic sonnet. The melancholy and moving instrumentals will earn this disc an easy spot on the late-nite listening list.”Dave Thomas The Denver Post
“Best Orchestral Maneuvering” Perpetual Motion
“The trio Perpetual Motion – violinist Josie Quick, guitarist Tom Carleno and percussionist Chad Johnson – calls its work “acoustic jazz with a classical flair”. That’s wonderful, but it’s not all this energetic crew does. Whether performing Carleno’s original compositions or covering jazz, pop, Celtic, classic and folk style, Perpetual Motion conveys a sense of melodic freshness. The group’s debut album Ready, Willing and Able shows what can be accomplished when players pursue styles outside their instruments’ “Best-Suited” field.”Westword Magazine Best of Denver – Arts & Entertainment June 28 – July 5, 1994
Perpetual Motion – Ready, Willing and Able – Swallowtail Mu probably would have winked at Quick before blurting out, “Hey baby, I think we could make beautiful music together.” Luckily for Quick, Carleno was a little more tactful, and instead opted for “I have some songs I’ve written. Would you like to get together sometime and play them?”