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Douglas Detrick’s Anywhen Ensemble: The Bright and Rushing World (2014)

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Douglas Detrickâs Anywhen Ensemble: The Bright and Rushing World How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Go ahead, ask the question, "But is it jazz?" Douglas Detrick
Douglas Detrick
Douglas Detrick
b.1983
trumpet
's Anywhen Ensemble presents the ten movement suite, The Bright and Rushing World, a continuous piece of music, commissioned by Chamber Music America. So maybe it isn't jazz.

Detrick's ensemble contains a jazz drummer Ryan Biesack, who can be heard on Pieces (OA2 Records, 2013), a jazz recording by saxophonist Hashem Assadullahi, also a member of Detrick's ensemble. Ok, so it is jazz. But there is also a cellist, Shirley Hunt and Steve Vacchi's bassoon on this recording. Okay, let's back up a bit. The Anywhen Ensemble has played folk music with Wayne Horvitz
Wayne Horvitz
Wayne Horvitz
b.1955
piano
, and their previous release was Rivers Music (Origin Classical, 2011). So is it classical?

If we ask Gil Evans
Gil Evans
Gil Evans
1912 - 1988
composer/conductor
or Gunther Schuller
Gunther Schuller
Gunther Schuller
b.1925
composer/conductor
, they will say it's jazz. So would George Russell, Ornette Coleman
Ornette Coleman
Ornette Coleman
b.1930
sax, alto
, and probably Duke Ellington
Duke Ellington
Duke Ellington
1899 - 1974
piano
would tell us, "It Don't Mean a Thing, If It Ain't Got..."

That's right, this chamber ensemble's got that swing. A sly, deft swing that intermeshes a composed score with improvisation. The instrumentation implies classical, but then so did Eric Dolphy
Eric Dolphy
Eric Dolphy
1928 - 1964
reeds
's bass clarinet and remember Oscar Pettiford
Oscar Pettiford
Oscar Pettiford
1922 - 1960
bass
's switch to cello? The instrumentation is but a delivery device. Detrick's piece moves seamlessly between composed and improvised parts. Mallets are swapped for drumsticks, a cello is bowed and plucked. Then there is Detrick's bright trumpet work, it is as glistening as any classical player, yet, like Dave Douglas, it can growl and pop evocative jazz sounds. The longest piece on the recording is "A Question So Weightless It Floats Away." Here, the suite's general theme is deconstructed into various call-and-response parts, cello/trumpet, drums/saxophone and bassoon flesh out Detrick's theme. Assadullahi's soprano saxophone exchange with Bieseck leave no doubt this music is jazz. The pair uncover an impassioned passage worthy of a late night jam session, yet suited to this suite. This is joyous, classifiably unclassifiable music.

Track Listing: The Door Is Open; And You Watch As He Goes Out; A Seeker, Insubmissive; Into The Bright And Rushing World; Who, Over Years In Your Care; You Never Thought To Give A Name; You Gasp And Ask Aloud; How Can You Live Without A Name?; A Question So Weightless It Floats Away; On The Wind of His Leaving.

Personnel: Douglas Detrick: trumpet, composition; Hashem Assadullahi: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone; Shirley Hunt: cello; Steve Vacchi: bassoon; Ryan Biesack: drum set.

Record Label: Navona Records


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