Amazon.com Widgets

Martin Speake with Ethan Iverson: My Ideal (2004)

By Published: | 5,161 views
Martin Speake with Ethan Iverson: My Ideal No stars How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

In 2002, British alto saxophonist Martin Speake toured the United Kingdom doing duet concerts with Bad Plus pianist Ethan Iverson. At the end of the tour, they recorded My Ideal.

Speake plays alto with a tart, dry sound that recalls Lee Konitz, and his pairing with Bad Plus bad boy Iverson may seem like an odd couple, but for the most part, it works. When Speake plays melodies, he is a very direct and lyrical player, and when he solos, he swings in relaxed fashion. At times he investigates the furthest reaches of the chord progressions, and sometimes he snarls flurries of notes, especially when prodded by Iverson. Speake is particularly inviting on "What Is This Thing Called Love?" and "You Must Believe In Spring."

Ethan Iverson adds interest by using a variety of stylistic approaches. He is bombastic and dissonant on "Everything Happens To Me," and he hammers out a mock tango on "So In Love." But Iverson is most appealing when he undergirds Speake with a sly swing, as he does on "My Ideal."

At times, the improvisers clash, as on "You Must Believe In Spring," where Speake responds to the pianist's clambering accompaniment with his most aggressive solo of the date. And too many of the performances seem to settle into the same medium tempo. Most of the time, however, these two perform this program of standards with a genuine rapport, peeking into musical nooks and crannies and creating this gently rewarding CD while they're at it.

Track Listing: Everything Happens To Me, My Ideal, What Is This Thing Called Love?, So In Love, Loverman, Smoke Gets In Your Eyes, Stardust, How Insensitive, You Must Believe In Spring.

Personnel: Martin Speake, alto saxophone; Ethan Iverson, piano.

Record Label: Basho Records

Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


comments powered by Disqus
Support All About Jazz Through Amazon

Weekly Giveaways

Mark Elf

Mark Elf

About | Enter

Stefano Bollani

Stefano Bollani

About | Enter

Carmen Lundy

Carmen Lundy

About | Enter

Wadada Leo Smith

Wadada Leo Smith

About | Enter

Sponsor: Nonesuch Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.

or search site with Google