Marc Ducret: Tower, Vol. 2 (2011)
The band kicks off the set with an impression of unsettled calm on the opener, "Sur l'Electricite." But Pifarely's dark and droning motifs, and a sensibility that bespeaks dour circumstances, don't last for long as the musicians get out of neutral, notching it up with scorching exchanges and unanticipated diversions. The musicians engage in scrappy dialogues and multifarious improvisational segments, where Berne and Ducret contrast, shred, and coalesce via oscillating unison choruses, atop Rainey's punchy, polyrhythmic beats.
With simmering interplay, the ensemble shapes the dynamic into variable flavors and rhythmic exercises while using counterpoint mechanisms throughout; a many-sided viewpoint, including cosmic burnouts and maddening unison lines, executed within a linear maze of sharp turns and passageways leading to dead ends. Pifarely's stinging staccato frameworks instill a budding or interweaving accent to the sum of the geometrically moving parts. Add several whirling dervish-like movements and odd-metered pulses, and the band's mind-bending, episodic succession of developments yields the archetypal knockout blow. A choice pick for 2011.
Track Listing: Sur l'Electricite; Real Thing #3; Softly Her Tower Crumbled in the Sweet Silent Sun.
Personnel: Marc Ducret: electric guitar; Tim Berne: alto saxophone; Dominique Pifarély: violin; Tom Rainey: drums.
Record Label: Ayler Records
Style: Modern Jazz