All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review


Chris Gestrin: After the City Has Gone: Quiet

Jerry D'Souza By

Sign in to view read count
Back in 2004, Chris Gestrin (piano, prepared piano, percussion) went into a studio in Vancouver to record his music. He had a dream and he wanted to realize it with musicians that he had long wanted to play with and those that had made a mark on the improvised music scene. Some of it was written, most of it was improvised.

Improvisation is a process. It comes off best when there is empathy between the musicians. But there is also another factor—communicating with the listener. The former looks inward and while it has its positives, the greater impact comes in reaching out. Gestrin's two-CD set clocks in at two hours. Listening to it is worth the while, even if that experience has to come in segments for more rewarding listening.

There are many tunes that have an almost magical lure. The intensity that drives "Metres Per Second, with the ever inventive Peggy Lee (cello), is balanced by the calm that marks "Viewpoint 1. "Viewpoint 1 is a beautiful tune with Joseph Pepe Danza breathily gentle on the ney as he plays the wistful melody. He adds to the dimension with percussive elements on the hang and, with Gestrin playing quick, sweet melodic lines, the tune comes off as a remarkable ode.

One of the more common pairings on the first CD comes when Miles Black joins Gestrin on "Beauty Walks in This World. The two pianists interweave the bass and the high notes before they combine for some rhythmic propulsion. The track is short, but well-conceived.

There are two tracks with Gordon Grdina on the second CD, Quiet. Grdina plays guitar on "#47, with the accent on melody. His notes are gently paced and as he opens up space, Gestrin comes in drinking from the same melodic fount. "Moonshine Run is also impressive; here Grdina is on a prepared dobro, and sure enough, he brings in a country feel. As for Gestrin, he strums and plucks the piano strings. It's a different direction and a welcome one.

"The Lasting Taste of Spring finds Gestrin improvising on the melody. Where, at other times, he can pick his notes with an odd deliberation, his variations do not wander far on this succinct and delectable solo outing.

"Command and Promise is a blues tune. Jon Bentley brings the melody upfront on tenor saxophone, opening the road slowly but with his sights firm and assured. Bernie Arai's subtle shadings and Gestrin's occasional embellishments add to the mood and the glow, before it explodes into a free ride.

Gestrin has found his muse and his inspiration at these sessions.

Track Listing: Disc 1: Metres Per second; To Sink in Posture; Living Candles; Viewpoint 1; Prelude in D; Turnstiles: Many Skies; Beauty Walks in This World; Bees; The Seeds of My Departure; Viewpoint 2; As Pointless as the Weather; D.S.; With Such Unsettled Heart; The Loves of the Angels.

Disc 2: Write by Return to Your Longing; The Melody That Is; Guilty gates; #47; Moonshine Run; Command and Promise; On the Back of a Tiger; The Lasting Taste of Spring; Storied Walls; Silence of faded Emblem; The Evening

Personnel: Chris Gestrin: piano, prepared piano, percussion; Joseph Pepe Danza: shakuhachi, ney, percussion; Ron Samworth: guitar; Miles Black: piano; Peggy Lee: cello; Jon Bentley: saxophones: Bernie Arai: drums; Gordon Grdna: guitar, dobro; Bill Clark: trumpet; J.P. Carter: trumpet; Jeremy Berkman: trombone; Jesse Zubot: violin; Dylan van der Schyff: drums.

Title: After the City Has Gone: Quiet | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Songlines Recordings


comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
After the City Has Gone: Quiet

After the City Has...

Songlines Recordings

The Distance

The Distance

Songlines Recordings



Songlines Recordings


Times That Do Not...

Independent Records


Related Articles

Read Love & Peace CD/LP/Track Review
Love & Peace
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2018
Read La Saboteuse CD/LP/Track Review
La Saboteuse
by Chris May
Published: February 20, 2018
Read Memories of Maynard CD/LP/Track Review
Memories of Maynard
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: February 20, 2018
Read Cosmic Playground CD/LP/Track Review
Cosmic Playground
by Don Phipps
Published: February 20, 2018
Read For Gyumri CD/LP/Track Review
For Gyumri
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: February 19, 2018
Read Sextet (Parker) 1993 CD/LP/Track Review
Sextet (Parker) 1993
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 19, 2018
Read "Liquid Melodies" CD/LP/Track Review Liquid Melodies
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 21, 2017
Read "On The Radio: BBC Sessions 1971" CD/LP/Track Review On The Radio: BBC Sessions 1971
by Duncan Heining
Published: August 27, 2017
Read "The Cheap Ensemble" CD/LP/Track Review The Cheap Ensemble
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 10, 2017
Read "After The Rain" CD/LP/Track Review After The Rain
by Duncan Heining
Published: August 28, 2017
Read "Return To Mind" CD/LP/Track Review Return To Mind
by Roger Farbey
Published: February 8, 2018
Read "Secret Language" CD/LP/Track Review Secret Language
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 17, 2017