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Ken Vandermark Predella Group: Strade d'Acqua / Roads of Water (2011)

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Prolific composer/saxophonist Ken Vandermark's first soundtrack Project, Strade d'Acqua / Roads of Water, brings together his multiple interests and sound designs, creating a work for the film by Augusto Contento. It can exists as a standalone album, separate from the film, without commentary.

Recorded in 2008, Vandermark's Predella Group reunites trombonist Jeb Bishop—an original member of the Vandermark 5—with the leader, as well as his replacement, cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm
Fred Lonberg-Holm
Fred Lonberg-Holm
b.1962
cello
. For this work, Vandermark arranges the sound in a sparse manner, perhaps to leave plenty of space for the visuals.

Relying heavily on Vandermark's new favorite drummer Timothy Daisy
Timothy Daisy
Timothy Daisy
b.1976
drums
—who plays a bit of marimba on "Sieve of the Soul"—the atmosphere is one of slowed tempos and space. In the gaps, Vandermark allows his players to fill in with breathy slurs and the occasional electronic flashes. Bassist Nate McBride's heavy opening to "Blue Over Green" carpets the unison horn lines that give way to seemingly casual single-note from guitarist Jeff Parker
Jeff Parker
Jeff Parker

guitar
, taking flight before the track abruptly ends mid-flight—as does "Signal," an open improvisation of horns, cast about and fuzzy electronics from Lonberg-Holm.

Highlights include Bishop and trumpeter Jaimie Branch's solos on "Dust Town." The moody walking piece first gets the blues treatment from the trombone, then Branch coaxes a very Miles Davis
Miles Davis
Miles Davis
1926 - 1991
trumpet
ian sound, before a slap-quick change into Vandermark's urgent solo over pounding drums and haunting guitar. The discovery here is Branch, her sound featuring minimalist breathing or tangy muted notes. Like the recent guest appearance of trumpeter Magnus Broo with V5, Branch's horn completes this project.


Track Listing: Further (for Anselm Kiefer); Blue Over Green (for Mark Rothko; Sieve of the Soul (for Bruce Naumann); Dust Town (for William Eggleston); Austral Cartography (for Cormac McCarthy); Signal (for Franz Kline); Dusk Meridian (for William Faulkner).

Personnel: Jeb Bishop: trombone; Jaimie Branch: trumpet; Tim Daisy: percussion; Fred Lonberg-Holm: cello; Nate McBride: bass; Jeff Parker: guitar; Ken Vandermark: reeds.

Record Label: Multikulti Project

Style: Modern Jazz


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