208

Chicago Underground Duo: Axis And Alignment

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
Chicago Underground Duo: Axis And Alignment The Chicago Underground Duo, made up of Rob Mazurek and Chad Taylor, has expanded and contracted from the two core members to alternately become the Chicago Underground Duo (which actually was a trio), Chicago Underground Trio (was sometimes a quartet), the Chicago Underground Quartet (was actually a quartet) and the Chicago Underground Orchestra (don't ask). This year's release finds the duo scaled back to just Mazurek and Taylor pushing ever outward into the nexus of jazz, electronics, and improvisation.

Their penultimate record, the eponymously titled Chicago Underground Quartet (2001), was perhaps their most ambitious session to date. The quartet added guitaritst Jeff Parker and Noel Kupersmith on bass to play music of a mostly compositional nature. Axis And Alignment returns to the duo's freeier work heard on the 2000 release Synesthesia. The disc opens with "Micro Exit," a vibraphone and muted trumpet, Hitchcock-like soundtrack piece. The album then falls into two definite patterns of shorter improvised tracks that act as samples from an artist's notebook and longer tracks that satisfy the need for a flowing vibe of storyline. The two and three minute tracks tend to be spacier ("Noon") and noisier ("Particle And Transfiguration"). The duo applies an economical use of electronics, as a simple looping beat on "Rotation" and the terrifying machine that shorts out on the clattery "Memoirs Of A Space Traveler." Taylor produces the varying beats, be they the thunder or the splashes of vibraphone color. As for Mazurek, his Don Cherry/Jon Hassell cornet conquers both open and muted free/world music. Their stripped-down duo minimal approach to music produces an apocalypse of sound


Track Listing: Micro Exit; Lifelines; Particle And Transfiguration; Exponent Red; Average Assumptions And Misunderstandings; Lem; Two Concepts For The Storagem Of Light; Memoirs Of A Space Traveller; Rotation; Access And Enlightenment; Noon.

Personnel: Chad Taylor: Percussion, Vibraphone, Guitar; Rob Mazurek: Cornet, Electronics, Piano.

Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Thrill Jockey | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Love Dance CD/LP/Track Review Love Dance
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Honest Woman CD/LP/Track Review Honest Woman
by James Nadal
Published: February 20, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read "Piano Song" CD/LP/Track Review Piano Song
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 9, 2017
Read "For King & Country" CD/LP/Track Review For King & Country
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 6, 2016
Read "Fierce Silence" CD/LP/Track Review Fierce Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: December 9, 2016
Read "Skarkali" CD/LP/Track Review Skarkali
by Budd Kopman
Published: October 26, 2016
Read "2nd Thoughts" CD/LP/Track Review 2nd Thoughts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 8, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!