186

The Contemporary Jazz Quintet: Actions 1966-67

Jerry D'Souza By

Sign in to view read count
One of the notable aspects of Atavistic's Unheard Music Series is the wealth of material it keeps unearthing from the vaults. Time does not seem to efface this music; instead, it stamps the indelibility of the compositions. So it is with the material here, which was recorded almost forty years ago.

The core of the Contemporary Jazz Quintet was formed in 1959. At first it played music that hinged on hard bop, but when Ornette Coleman came along, it made the switch to his music, which became the takeoff point for a move into free jazz and then the induction of the last member of the band, Niels Harrit.

The quintet's music is edgy and volatile, a cornucopia of sound that fills the till of free jazz with a dynamic fluidity. The eerie air that oscillates from Harrit's saw is countered by the vamp of Steffen Andersen's bass and the flexing groove that Bo Thirge Andersen sets up on the cymbals. But even as the rhythm section settles into a hardier bed, Franz Beckerlee's alto sax and Hugh Steinmetz's trumpet ride on it with fractured cries. Intensity is often at fever pitch, but it's always connected through that ingrained cord to emotion. Yet in one of the most effective moments, Harrit and Andersen, who bows on the bass, bring in a placidity that cools the atmosphere for a short spell before the churn evolves into a rousing joust between Steinmetz and Beckerlee. They may wail and they may yowl, but the listener is constantly drawn into the vortex.


Track Listing: Action II; action III; Action IV; action V; Action VI

Personnel: Steffen Andersen, bass; Hugh Steinmetz, trumpet; Franz Beckerlee, alto sax; Bo Thirge Andersen, drums; Niels Harrit, saw

Title: Actions 1966-67 | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Atavistic Worldwide


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn CD/LP/Track Review Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: November 18, 2017
Read The Princess CD/LP/Track Review The Princess
by Mark Corroto
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Queen City Blues CD/LP/Track Review Queen City Blues
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Latin Lover CD/LP/Track Review Latin Lover
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Reclamation CD/LP/Track Review Reclamation
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Provenance CD/LP/Track Review Provenance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 17, 2017
Read "Port Bou" CD/LP/Track Review Port Bou
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 15, 2017
Read "Special Night" CD/LP/Track Review Special Night
by Jim Trageser
Published: November 25, 2016
Read "Blue Skylight" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Skylight
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 5, 2017
Read "Rev" CD/LP/Track Review Rev
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read "Edit Peptide" CD/LP/Track Review Edit Peptide
by Glenn Astarita
Published: August 11, 2017
Read "Stage 'N Studio" CD/LP/Track Review Stage 'N Studio
by Jerome Wilson
Published: August 8, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.

Please support out sponsor