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COBRA

RIO/Avant-Prog • United States


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Cobra biography
Like many of John Zorn's works, ''Cobra'' (first performed in 1984) is a semi-improvisatory piece that draws its structure and substance from an elaborate set of rules rather than from a score. To direct the work, Mr. Zorn held up cards bearing symbols. Cobra is probably the most celebrated of John Zorn's 'game' pieces. Zorn guides a large and diverse improvising ensemble via cards indicating style, speed of delivery and so on, thereby getting a credit as 'prompter?. This kind of directed improvisation has its roots in the work of John Cage and Stockhausen, but Zorn's aesthetic is different. Where Cage distrusted improvisation and Stockhausen shrouded it in mysticism, Zorn seeks to have fun with it and to draw out the individuality of the players involved.

One of the most often performed compositions in new music, the Cobra phenomenon lives on into the 21st Century with continuous monthly performances in Japan, Europe, Australia and the United States. Some Cobra performances are recorded on albums.


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Buy COBRA Music


First StrikeFirst Strike
Import · Remastered
Rock Candy 2008
Audio CD$10.47
$10.46 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Milkman by Mad Cobra (Cassette, Sep-1996, EMI Music Distribution) USD $2.99 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Sitting Army" CD USD $21.33 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "American Rubicon" CD USD $13.71 Buy It Now
New Music Record The Holy Mountain / Cobra Noir "Split" 7" USD $9.14 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Sitting Army" LP USD $25.90 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Bringing The War Home" CD USD $13.71 Buy It Now
New Music Record Doomriders / Sweet Cobra "Split" 7" USD $10.66 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Agitations" CD USD $16.76 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Bringing The War Home" LP USD $16.76 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Agitations" LP USD $21.33 Buy It Now
New Music Record Cobra Skulls "Never Be A Machine" 7" USD $9.14 Buy It Now
Survivor - Caught in the Game NEW 2010 PRIDE OF LIONS IDES OF MARCH COBRA TARGET USD $11.23 Buy It Now
Grupo Laberinto Transformer Y La Cobra CD ***NEW*** USD $7.24 Buy It Now
Betty Everett - Killer Diller - Cobra 2nd Soul Northern Crossover Motown Tmg Rar USD $9.99 Buy It Now 38m 38s
KING COBRA [USED CD] USD $11.76 Buy It Now 51m 46s
Cobra Verde - Haven't Slept All Year [CD New] USD $11.11 Buy It Now 2h 8m
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76/77 Cobra Killer Audio CD USD $11.02 Buy It Now 3h 14m
Das Mandolinenorchester [VINYL] Cobra Killer Vinyl USD $25.93 Buy It Now 3h 15m
SINEAD O'CONNOR the lion and the cobra LP EX/EX- CHEN 7 uk with inner 1987 USD $21.02 Buy It Now 3h 17m
SINEAD O'CONNOR the lion and the cobra LP EX/EX- CHEN 7 uk with inner 1987 USD $20.42 Buy It Now 3h 36m
To Hell -Digi- Cobra Audio CD USD $33.84 Buy It Now 4h 4m
Haven't Slept All Year - Cobra Verde (2008, CD New) USD $11.38 Buy It Now 4h 10m
Cobra the Space Pirate Audio CD USD $40.66 Buy It Now 4h 52m
BLACK COBRA - Bestial - CD ** Brand New ** USD $29.49 Buy It Now 5h 6m
BLACK COBRA - Bestial - CD ** Very Good condition ** USD $16.75 Buy It Now 5h 11m
Lion And The Cobra Audio CD USD $20.48 Buy It Now 5h 23m
Cobra - First Strike (NEW CD) USD $17.21 Buy It Now 5h 29m
SINEAD O'CONNOR - The Lion And The Cobra CD JAPAN CP32-5615 1988 USD $41.77 Buy It Now 5h 41m
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Black Cobra - Chronomega (cd) USD $9.99 Buy It Now 6h 25m
SINEAD O'CONNOR Orig 1987 "The Lion & The Cobra" LP w Troy SHRINK w STICKER NM- USD $19.99 Buy It Now 7h
cobra verde copycat killers cd limited edition USD $5.00 Buy It Now 7h 52m
Mad Cobra: Milkman Audio Cassette USD $6.95 Buy It Now 9h 53m
Barry Nash, Mad Cobra, Sayoko, G: Reggae Summer Splash Audio Cassette USD $10.43 Buy It Now 10h 9m
Midtown COBRA STARSHIP Snakes on a Plane RARE JUAN MACLEAN REMIX PROMO CD Single USD $18.99 Buy It Now 11h 22m
Widespread Panic - Uber Cobra NEW CD USD $15.43 Buy It Now 11h 23m
Baird Hersey-`Waking the Cobra`, Vocal Meditations on the Chakras CD NEW USD $19.01 Buy It Now 11h 58m
Popol Vuh - Cobra Verde (soundtrack) NEW CD USD $15.43 Buy It Now 12h 23m
Vol. 4-Platinum Reggae - Platinum Reg (2001, CD New) Sizzla/Cobra/Fiona/Capleton USD $14.67 Buy It Now 12h 54m
Mozart-Opera Overtures Album 1 - Maximianno Cobra (2010, CD New) USD $19.42 Buy It Now 12h 54m
Spot Light - Cobra (1992, CD New) USD $10.18 Buy It Now 13h 4m
Egomania - Cobra Verde (2001, CD New) USD $15.86 Buy It Now 13h 4m
Cobra by Original Soundtrack (CD, Jan-1999, BMG (distributor)) USD $10.98 Buy It Now 13h 4m
THE RIP CHORDS - HEY LITTLE COBRA -'60'S HYOT ROD -COL. STEREO LP USD $69.99 Buy It Now 13h 24m
Cobra Skulls - Bringing Home The War NEW Mini CD USD $11.10 Buy It Now 13h 25m
THE ULTIMATE TWENTY THIRTEEN- MAVADO- I-OCTANE- COBRA-CD USD $0.99 [1 bids]
13h 29m
Double Trouble - Cobra Records Various Artists Audio CD USD $12.49 Buy It Now 13h 42m
BLACK TUSK Pillars of Ash CD Sludge Stoner Metal Baroness Kylesa Black Cobra USD $11.99 Buy It Now 14h
Year of the Cobra USD $6.75 Buy It Now 14h 13m
Treasures From the Vault of Cobra Records Various Artists CD USD $30.81 Buy It Now 14h 17m
Audio CD Sunset in the Eye of the Hurricane - Cobra High - Free Shipping USD $5.47 Buy It Now 14h 33m
Audio CD Forever - Sweet Cobra - Free Shipping USD $9.49 Buy It Now 14h 39m
MAGIC SAM-OUT OF BAD LUCK THE COBRA, CHIEF&CRASH SESSIONS 1957 1966-JAPAN CD F04 USD $23.50 Buy It Now 14h 47m
COBRA STARSHIP-S/T-JAPAN CD BONUS TRACK D95 USD $19.50 Buy It Now 14h 48m
Cobra Fakir Miriodor Audio CD USD $26.29 Buy It Now 15h
King Cobra F-9499 (Woody Herman And The Thundering Herd - 1976) (ID:14749) USD $11.48 Buy It Now 15h 8m
CD - Sinead O'Connor - The Lion and the Cobra - Brand NEW, Sealed USD $4.95 Buy It Now 15h 14m
Maximianno Cobra - J.S. Bach: The Well-Tempered Clavier Book 1-Bwv 84 [CD New] USD $33.40 Buy It Now 15h 46m
Kiss My Sass (Colored Vinyl) [12 inch Analog] Cobra Starship LP Record USD $38.67 Buy It Now 15h 58m
New Music Record Black Cobra "Imperium Simulacra" 2xLP USD $33.51 Buy It Now 16h 4m
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THORCRAFT COBRA THE DISTANCE CD NEW PROMO USD $4.50 Buy It Now 16h 14m
COBRA (JAPANESE PUNK) Is Back LP VINYL Knock Out 18 Track Double Inc Dvd USD $21.60 Buy It Now 17h 3m
MADD COBRA Sexperience LP VINYL UK Jet Star 1996 10 Track (Verslp1) Writing On USD $3.92 Buy It Now 17h 4m
FIRST STAR My Grip Is Like A Cobra LP VINYL US Wrap 1990 11 Track Still Sealed USD $8.11 Buy It Now 17h 4m
Madd Cobra "Big Gun (Rakim Remix)" and Merciless (Sunshine Remix)" Promo Single USD $0.99 [1 bids]
17h 9m
Year of the Cobra In The Shadows Below LP Oxblood Vinyl OM Olde Growth Windhand USD $29.99 Buy It Now 17h 18m
FIRST STAR My Grip Is Like A Cobra LP VINYL US Wrap 1990 11 Track But Sleeve USD $3.92 Buy It Now 17h 33m
COBRA (REGGAE) Gold LP VINYL UK Charm 1991 12 Track Small Bit Of Writing On The USD $6.23 Buy It Now 17h 35m
MAD COBRA/GENERAL B/ALLEY CAT/OUTLAW CANDY Mr Hardcore/Gal A Go/Hey Diddle USD $6.23 Buy It Now 18h 25m
MADD COBRA Legacy 12" VINYL Dutch Columbia 1993 4 Track Classic Mix, Smooth USD $3.92 Buy It Now 18h 26m
MERCILESS/SIMPLETON/MAD COBRA Mr War War/Mr Old Nail/Them A Bad Man 12" VINYL USD $3.92 Buy It Now 18h 26m
ROCKWELL He's A Cobra 12" VINYL UK Tamla Motown 1984 2 Track Test Pressing With USD $3.92 Buy It Now 18h 26m
MAD COBRA FEATURING RICHIE STEPHENS Legacy 12" VINYL US Columbia 1993 6 Track USD $3.92 Buy It Now 18h 26m
MAD COBRA/SUGAR BLACK/CUJO BANTON Put It On/Tell Me Why/Good Sesimila 12" VINYL USD $3.92 Buy It Now 18h 26m
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EXORCIST Nightmare Theatre LP VINYL Canadian Cobra 1986 15 Track Some Edgewear USD $49.14 Buy It Now 18h 27m
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LES SAVY FAV CD THE CAT AND THE COBRA BRAND NEW SEALED USD $12.00 Buy It Now 18h 34m
Live at Dark Lord Day 2011 [10 inch Analog] Sweet Cobra LP Record USD $28.04 Buy It Now 20h 30m
The Detroit Cobras- Cobra Girl Embroidered Patch USD $3.74 Buy It Now 20h 40m
Tokyo Operations '94 by John Zorn's Cobra JAPAN cd w/ OBI MINT USD $63.00 Buy It Now 21h 20m
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PILEDRIVER ~ Stay Ugly *orig 1986 Cobra private press Metal SEALED USD $79.99 Buy It Now 22h 44m
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Broa De Mel: Banha Da Cobra Estica E Nao Dobra. Eurovision Portugal Final 1982 USD $5.00 Buy It Now 1 day
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NEW King Cobra (Audio CD) USD $17.48 Buy It Now 1 day

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COBRA discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

COBRA top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.31 | 4 ratings
Cobra
1987
2.67 | 3 ratings
Cobra (John Zorn's Game Pieces Volume 2)
2002

COBRA Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.50 | 2 ratings
John Zorn's Cobra Live At The Knitting Factory
1995
2.33 | 3 ratings
John Zorn's Cobra: Tokyo Operations '94
1995

COBRA Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

COBRA Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

COBRA Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

COBRA Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Cobra by COBRA album cover Studio Album, 1987
2.31 | 4 ratings

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Cobra
Cobra RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Apsalar

2 stars This is the last of John Zorn's 'games pieces', and just like his earlier attempts using this method, the results are less than successful. On Cobra Zorn steps back from a performing role and slips into the "prompter" persona. He has neither notated nor indicated a score, instead guiding an improvising ensemble via cards indicating style, speed of delivery, et cetera. Cobra's aleatory element leaves the results wide open for success or failure.

Released on HatHut's Hatology Cobra contains two discs, one studio, one live. Utilizing the aforementioned techniques the results of each disc is varied, with neither piece sounding alike. The freedom of interpretation leaves room for a wide variety of genres to be explored, not dissimilar to the mashing found in albums like 'Naked City', but with less coherency. Each piece spontaneously unfolds beneath a veil of dissonance, at times hint towards interesting music, but general these are just fleeting glimpses quickly petering out. The live disc is the more successful of the two interpretations. In the studio the ensemble feels weighed down by an awkward restraint, while the live disc the tension abates resulting in a semblance of harmony.

If your a fan of Zorn and wish to hear one of the games pieces I'd drop this one and pick up Archery, not fantastic but a little more successful than Cobra. For me, I sold the disc some time ago, and have not regretted it.

Thanks to snobb for the artist addition.

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