miércoles, 13 de mayo de 2015

Luis Perdomo & Controlling Ear Unit - Twenty-Two (2015)

Source: Jazzdagama
Gab's Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Once you stop trying to find the significant allusion to “Controlling Ear Unit” you will have a much easier time enjoying the absolute grandeur of this album by Luis Perdomo. The world of Twenty-two is a private one. It refers to the time Luis Perdomo has spent in the United States after his sojourn from Caracas. Some of this time has been shared by a number of musicians with whom Luis Perdomo has shared the innermost machinations of his music, as it unfolded from Venezuela to the United States of America. But there is much more existing in the interior landscape of Mr. Perdomo’s mind. Both the calm and the restless existential anxiety of introspective worlds have uncanny ways of expressing themselves in the world of aural art. Luis Perdomo found a breathtaking way of expressing himself here. Dark hued and full of dramatic mood shifts, his pianism soared through introspection finally bursting through into the open with profound beauty. For this reason – and this reason alone – Twenty-Two is a priceless record.

Luis Perdomo Twenty Two 2There is dynamism and a swirling energy in the music of this record. Piano, bass and drums are locked hand-in-glove in a dramatic collaboration. Luis Perdomo has never been one for pointless, frilly pianistic work. But he is not workman-like in his approach to his instrument either. His heart dictates how his fingers will strike the keys. And so ebony and ivory is caresses in sensuous motions. It is amid this romantic dalliance that Luis Perdomo creates his music. Phrases jump at you as often as they sneak up on you. Lines might be long and full of serpentine twists and turns, but they might just as easily dart excitedly sparking dramatic and explosive chain reactions. In his hands the piano basks in beautiful burnished tonal coloration. Music is brought to life with vaunted melismas. When a pianist plays with as much energy and naked beauty as Luis Perdomo does, it is impossible for the rest of the musicians – in this case bass and drums – not to respond in kind.

Mimi Jones’ playing is absolutely lustrous. Her pizzicato is electrifying, speaking her monstrous technique. Her playing con arco is simply ravishing. It has a fabulous swell that wells up in a proverbial vortex consuming all in its path. Ms. Jones works her bass violin as if were astutely harnessed to her body. Its contours become her contours almost as if the two become a sort of couple waltzing beautifully to the music that she creates in another dimension. Rudy Royston is the third character in this dramatically unfolding play. His playing is warm and sparkling, but beneath it all is a well-balanced piece of engineering involving snare, tom-tom, timpani and bass drum and a myriad of cymbals. The manipulation of this battery of instruments comes together as if by magic, becomes with great sleight of hand, a priceless work of art. Imagine what can happen when all of this comes together… What unforgettable music comes out of the swirling eddies of this ensemble – from “Love Tone Poem” to “Days Gone Days Ahead”. And it’s all on this disc, a memorable issue form Mimi Jones’ own label.

1. Love Tone Poem
2. Old City
3. Weilheim
4. A Different Kind of Reality
5. Two Sides of a Goodbye
6. Light Slips In
7. Looking Through You
8. How Deep Is Your Love
9. Aaychdee
10.Cota Mil
11.Brand New Grays
12.Days Gone Days Ahead

Luis Perdomo - piano
Mimi Jones - bass
Rudy Royston - drums

"Master your instrument, master the music 
& then forget all that & just play."
 - Charlie Parker -

Claes Andersson - Sketches (2015)

Sketches is a jazz project together with my favorite musicians, drummer and renaissance man Reinis Zarins, pianist Torbjoörn Gulz and bassist Filip Augustson. The music was recorded in just a few hours with some sketches – ideas and short themes – as a basis.

Claes Andersson, sax

Beat Rice
Miss Universe
Monkey Proof
Go Went Gone
From Where?

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins


Michael Wolff & Mike Clark: Wolff & Clark Expedition 2 (2015)

The band without boundaries, the WOLFF & CLARK EXPEDITION, with leaders pianist MICHAEL WOLFF & drummer MIKE CLARK, presents their second release on RANDOM ACT RECORDS. Featuring bassist supreme CHRISTIAN McBRIDE (Tracks 1, 2, 5, 6, 8 & 12), young bassist DARYL JOHNS (Tracks 3, 4, 9 & 10), trumpet giant WALLACE RONEY (Tracks 4 & 10) and rising jazz star saxophonist HAILEY NISWANGER, EXPEDITION 2 includes tunes from Monk, Ornette, Prince, Cream, Dizzy, Jimmy Heath, and Johnny Carisi, as well as formidable originals by Wolff and Clark.

The leaders sizzle on two Piano/Drums duets on Tracks 7 & 11. Pure invention, chops, soul and powerful rhythms are the hallmark of this group. Building upon their last RAR outing, their first EXPEDITION with bassist Chip Jackson, WOLFF & CLARK continue to deconstruct familiar tunes to create their own incredibly unique versions.

There are four Trio tunes with McBride: Wolff’s opener, “CLARK BAR,” an obvious homage to his partner, swings mightily; “MONK’S DREAM” is a funky romp; “STRAY” is Wolff’s gorgeous ballad for Billy Strayhorn; and “IN WALKED BUD” burns from beginning to end, even in a complicated time signature.

Cream’s “SUNSHINE OF YOUR LOVE” is indicative of the W&C approach: With Niswanger on alto, the rock opus becomes pure up-tempo jazz. “ISRAEL” is given a compelling arrangement, with Clark playing without sticks at the onset, Wolff digging the blues and Niswanger wailing away.

The Mikes’ nod to Nelson Mandela, “MADIBA,” shines a light on the great Wallace Roney – Almost a mini-suite, it tracks the South African icon’s life and travails. The alto/trumpet parts are reminiscent of Wolff’s former employers, Cannonball and Nat Adderley. Roney blows the roof off on Dizzy’s tune, too…Prince’s trivial pop tune is utterly transformed into a seriously enjoyable, musical event with Wolff waxing Bulgarian and Niswanger wielding her soprano.

With their years of experience playing with the likes of Herbie Hancock, Sonny Rollins, Nancy Wilson, Joe Henderson and others, the WOLFF & CLARK EXPEDITION continues to inspire and to explore broad swaths of musical territories.

01. Clark Bar 7:37
02. Sunshine of Your Love 4:37
03. Israel 4:08
04. Madiba 8:28
05. Monk’s Dream 5:26
06. Stray 4:55
07. Gingerbread Boy 3:13
08. Mulgrew 6:23
09. 1999 4:56
10. A Night In Tunisia 5:50
11. Invisible 3:30
12. In Walked Bud 5:25

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins


Michael Wolff & Mike Clark: Wolff & Clark Expedition (2013)

Source: GLENN ASTARITA / allaboutjazz

This jazz piano trio date by world-class musicians is all about the groove. Drummer Mike Clark, revered for his slippery jazz-funk beats, hearkening back to this tenure with Herbie Hancock's Headhunters, is touted as one of the most sampled drummers of the digital age. However, he is first and foremost a jazz drummer, as his resume includes stints with a list of greats too lengthy in scope to cite here. Teaming with fellow jazz giant pianist, Michael Wolff and first-call session ace bassist Chip Jackson, the trio generates a spunky set, awash with soul-jazz inflected overtones amid driving R&B, swing and bop frameworks via a democratic engagement, augmented with brute force and artful dynamics.

The band kicks off the festivities with an up-tempo spin on The Beatles' "Come Together," as Clark puts his own stamp on Ringo Starr's infamous tom-tom patterns —serving as a catalyst here and throughout. Wolff, a onetime member of sax great Julian "Cannonball" Adderley's band , gives "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy" a funky makeover, solidified by Jackson's booming bass parts. Indeed, it becomes easily apparent that the band is having fun along the way.

The musicians use space as a vantage point during many of the open-air like improvisational sprees. They impart counterpoint, and gel to a throng of call and response dialogues. And on "Flat Out," the trio teeters on the free-jazz schema with a loose demeanor. But Clark dances across his hi-hat and snare drum while dishing out a complex rhythmic fabrication on "Is There a Jackson in the House," where Wolff's rippling harmonics and reverse engineering mechanisms deftly contrast Latin-jazz vamps and rock beats. But they temper the pitch and close it out with a sequence of airy and nimbly devised choruses. Other than the anticipated high-level of musicianship, the trio broadcasts a convivial aura during the course of these alluringly, revved-up musical proceedings.

Michael Wolff: piano
Mike Clark: drums
Chip Jackson: acoustic bass

Come Together
What Is This Thing Called Love?
Mercy, Mercy, Mercy
Flat Out
Song For My Father
Is There a Jackson in the House?
For the Love of Money

"Hearing is Everything" Peter Watkins