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CD/LP/Track Review

Cindy Blackman: Another Lifetime (2010)

By Published: March 21, 2010
Cindy Blackman: Another Lifetime In paying tribute to her friend and mentor Tony Williams
Tony Williams
Tony Williams
1945 - 1997
drums
through songs and other material associated with him, drummer Cindy Blackman proves that she is not a slavish imitator. Blackman has always been a tasteful drummer. Never obtrusive, she strikes the right combination of dynamics, harmony, and accent. At home both in jazz and rock, this is the perfect vehicle for her.

The moods on this release are varied. The textures on "Vashkar" are thrust into the open through Blackman's use of traps, bass, and cymbals that change and shape the dimension. The atmosphere gets dense and emblematic of jazz-rock when Mike Stern

Mike Stern
Mike Stern
b.1953
guitar
adds his melodic waves of sound. It all comes to a head on the intense three-way between Blackman, Stern, and Doug Carn
Doug Carn
Doug Carn
b.1948
keyboard
on the organ. However, it is quite a different angle on "Vashkar—The Alternate Dimension Theory" where the pulse is drawn back and the spaced out elements add a loose eclecticism. The pith is gradually upped by Stern and Carn with the dynamo Blackman stirring the rhythm and locking in the terrain with her powerful yet lyrical phrasing.

Blackman teams up with Joe Lovano

Joe Lovano
Joe Lovano
b.1952
saxophone
on "Love Song." The duet setting pares the tune down but the emotive cord between them has grit. Lovano opens with free flutters but quickly settles into the melody. His approach has just enough thrust not to overwhelm, and he reels off potent ideas in the even keel of his exploration. It all ties in with the myriad colors Blackman injects on the cymbals.

"Wildlife" is a scorcher with guitarist Vernon Reid

Vernon Reid
Vernon Reid
b.1958
guitar
igniting the heat. Rock and funk meet and assimilate, the change of mood coming from Patrice Rushen
Patrice Rushen
Patrice Rushen
b.1954
keyboard
whose lithe movement on the Fender Rhodes livens the progression.

Blackman proves to be a credible and eloquent witness to the legacy of Williams.


Track Listing: Vashkar; Where; Beyond Games; Vashkar Reprise; 40 Years of Innovation; The Game Theory; Vashkar--The Alternate Dimension Theory; Love Song; And Heaven Welcomed a King; There Comes a Time; Wildlife.

Personnel: Cindy Blackman: drums, vocals; Doug Carn: organ; Benny Rietveld: bass; Mike Stern: guitar; Carlton Holmes: synthesizer; Fionn O Lochlainn: guitar; Joe Lovano: tenor sax; Vernon Reid: guitar; Patrice Rushen: Fender Rhodes & synthesizer; David Santos: bass.

Record Label: Four Quarters Entertainment

Style: Fusion/Progressive Rock



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