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The “Levendis (duo)” represents one half of the fine contemporary classical-improv troupe known as “Ensemble Duchamp”. With Actions, Productive of a Process, oboist Lenny Young once again demonstrates his considerable wares as a cunning improviser on these chamber-like yet altogether free-flowing works. Whereas pianist Joshua Yohe is a near-perfect foil for Young’s witty and semi-austere incantations throughout these three multi-part pieces recorded live and in the studio.
The musicians serve up a series of capricious themes via an ebb and flow style of attack. On “Sounds Arising From Actions”, Young performs extended note patterns in parallel with Yohe’s illusory sense of meter as the musicians pursue verbose dialogue amid alternating motifs. Other than moments of solstice, the duo is equally adept at turning up the heat via boisterous and at times, protean exchanges, which is evident on the third movement, titled “Conscious Organization (and its absence)”. Here, Yohe provides swirling undercurrents amid traces of melodic evolvement intermingled with dissonant motifs. On occasion the duo performs with a sense of yearning or desire as they evoke a hodgepodge of moods and emotions. Hence, a characteristic that augments the inherent attractiveness of this thoroughly appealing set consisting of cagey interplay and sonorous tones.
* * * ½ (out of * * * * *)
Lenny Young; oboe: Joshua Yohe; piano
Track listing: I. Sounds Arising From Actions. II. Direct And Instantaneous Contact III. Conscious Organization (and its absence)
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.