Thursday, September 22, 2016

Lambic Jazz Vol. 2

St. Louis Fond Traditional Gueuze Van Honsebrouck
The post-class hang continues and I'm going to try and keep these going for the rest of the semester.

The night started off with Paul Motian: Time and Time Again (ECM) Paul Motian (d) Joe Lovano (ts) Bill Frisell (g)
I was introduced to the Motian by way of Lee Konitz (and come to think of it, that's how I first heard Frisell too) and I was taken by his playing, both as a soloist and as an accompanist. This album is a great feature of the latter. I enjoy the way he doesn't play time the way you might expect, breaking things up, creating dialogue with the rest of the trio, seamlessly moving between different pulses and textures so naturally and utilizing space in ways few drummers do. Lately, I'm enjoying Motian the composer and there are some really nice tunes here - "Wednesday," "Whirlpool" and "K.T." They have a uncluttered, folk-song or nursery rhyme simpleness that appeals to me.

This trio is a great showcase three very identifiable musical personalities and while I 'm not a huge fan of Joe Lovano, this is the setting in which I prefer to listen to his music. As opposed to degenerating into an all-star hit out, these personalities come together as one to form a true ensemble sound, although at times they provide the illusion of moving independently of one another - perhaps a side-effect of playing together for 20+ years.

Next up was Liz Gorrill (these days known as Kazzrie Jaxen) and Andy Fite: Cosmic Comedy (New Artists Records) - a live set of nine piano and guitar duets to round the night out. There are a couple of things that stand out to me listening to these two - Karrie's rhythmic nature and drive and Andy's articulation and tone with an emphasis on the acoustic side of his instrument (which seems to be a rarity). There are plenty of surprises as they take some familiar forms to new places, it's a wild ride but a lot of fun. I'm not sure I can really put this into words but I feel it's rare to hear jazz like this - spontaneous improvisation at its finest. The music feels as if it could go anywhere and often, at the blink of an eye, it takes off on another plane. The way Andy's lines slide over the piano dirge on "Blues for the Child" always gives me a kick, and then there's the counterpoint throughout the album. It's hard to play favorites but the quiet surge of "A Dream of April" snuck up on me tonight.

Accompanying the music tonight was St. Louis Fond Traditional Gueuze by Van Honsebrouck. And now it's time to tune in to the cricket (1st test NZ vs India). Yes that's right, I'm combining three of my favorite things tonight.... make that four as I played some sax before dinner!

Vol.1 can be found here.

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