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Notes twirl with thrilling beauty in Anat Fort's hands. Infused of the free jazz and 20th Century classical music aesthetics (especially the Second Viennese school), A Long Story, her first effort for ECM, successfully captures a talent of rare profundity and breadth. Her innate sense of textures, as well as her free-flowing lines and dramatic use of the sustain pedal, makes her a poetess of the ivories.
The peaceful solemnity of "Just Now, a recurrent theme of disarmingly charming simplicity, instantly grabs the listener and act as a gateway into the stark yet magnetizing aural landscape that follows commanding both silence and abandonment of oneself to the music.
Like a tentative sunrise, "Morning Good slowly spills its luminosity with its uplifting melody, rising chord sequence and Paul Motian's light accompaniment. Reminiscent of the missed Keith Jarrett/Jan Garbarek collaborations, "Lullaby introduces clarinetist Perry Robinson's grainier sound to the trio. A two-feel ballad with fairly straightforward changes, it also features bassist Ed Schuller's a cappella intro and Fort in a short but astonishing solo.
The grave and menacing piano rolls that announce "Not the Perfect Storm swiftly breaks into a sunny spell and then ventures into a free section to end with a chiaroscuro sort of calm-after-the-storm coda. As most of the music herein, this piece has a strong visual imagery and programmatic quality.
Artful, stylish and captivating, Anat Fort is assuredly one to watch for in years to come.
Track Listing: Just Now, Var. I; Morning: Good; Lullaby; Chapter-Two; Just Now, Var. II; Not a Dream?; Rehaired; As Two/Something 'bout Camels; Not the Perfect Storm; Chapter-One; Just Now, Var. III.
Personnel: Anat Fort: piano; Perry Robinson: clarinet, ocarina; Ed Schuller: bass; Paul Motian: drums.
Jazz is a continuing revelation. The best show I ever attended was the
Roots Picnic at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia, or was it Robert
Glasper's Experiment at Lincoln Center, or was it Chick Corea with
Brian Blade at Oberlin College? Most of all I enjoy playing guitar and
composing beats with my Brooklyn-based group Space Captain.