Charlie Peacock: Love Press Ex-Curio (2005)
Many similarities exist between this (Peacock's first foray into the jazz realm) and Bitches' Brew or In A Silent Way. Peacock's compositions are simpler, but they allow for the same spontaneous composition that musicians like Wayne Shorter and Joe Zawinul so deftly incorporated into the aforementioned albums.
Love Press Ex-Curio listens like one track. The different tunes blur together, and the music represents more of a mood than set solos and melodies. Recurring themes appear, but these serve as jumping-off points for collective improvisation. Peacock's brilliant feel on the keyboards guides the music to all the right places, seemingly effortlessly.
"When Diana Dances leads off with an Arabian-style groove anchored by the trumpet, immediately putting the listener into a trance-like, nearly meditative state. Percussion and keyboards keep the groove alive, adding nice color to the proceedings. And just like that, with one keystroke from Peacock, the bottom falls out. The saxophone enters, leaving just the right amount of space for Peacock's fills before lifting the tune off into space. This is truly a collective piece, with each instrument (and there are many) playing its role perfectly.
"Super Jet Service continues the trance-like feel, this time with the bass anchoring the groove. Piano and trumpet trade licks in the spacey atmosphere before the trumpet takes over. Subsequently, Peacock once again spurs the saxophone to new heights with his unorthodox comping style. The piece concludes on an airy note.
And the rest of the album continues in the same vein, each piece perfectly complementing its predecessor. This is a brilliantly conceived album, and Peacock manages to achieve a collective recording while using a revolving door of musicians. A brilliant first effort.
Track Listing: When Diana Dances; Super Jet Service; Dodo's Whim; Be Well Johnny Cash; Frank the Marxist Memorial Gong Blues; Bucketachicken; London Twist N' Turn; Longing For Louis; All Or Nothing Grace.
Personnel: Ralph Alessi: trumpet; Jeff Coffin: tenor saxophone (except 2, 9); Joey Baron: drums (1,6,7); Ravi Coltrane: tenor saxophone (2,9); James Genus: acoustic bass (1,6,7); Tony Miracle: vibes, laptop, synths, ambient treatments; Jerry McPherson: guitar loops, electric guitar, treatments, ambient treatments; Charlie Peacock: piano, rhodes, programming; Kurt Rosenwinkel: electric guitar (4,8); Kip Kubin: ARP 2600 (2,4,8,9), ambient treatments; Roger Smith: Hammond B-3 (2,4,8,9); Kirk Whalum: tenor saxophone (1); Jim White: drums (1,7); Victor Wooten: electric bass on (2,4,8,9); Craig Nelson: acoustic bass (7); Henry Robinett: solo electric guitar (7); Myles Boisen: prepared and treated electric guitar (2,4,8,9); Gino Robair: percussion, drums (6).
Record Label: Runway Network