All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

177

Greg Burk Quartet: Berlin Bright

By

Sign in to view read count
Pianist Greg Burk embraces deconstruction and counterpoint as a player and composer, so a playful method to the madness runs through his excellent new album Berlin Bright. The opener, "Fancy Pants," exemplifies how Burk solos and writes with mild chaos in mind. After the theme the tune fractures schizophrenically, with Ignaz Dinne soaring melodically up front on alto while Burk plays a roiling counterpoint behind him. This startling, clever effect sounds like two open music sites on the Internet playing different kinds of music simultaneously; Burk drives the band by creating tension and complexity behind the soloists. On "Ugly Butterfly" and "Zoo for Two," for example, he restlessly explores and works off the melody with his left field chord progressions. Throughout the album he runs the same race as his band mates, but does so along a slightly different track.

Whether through a spry, pocket-sized waltz like "Tiny Tune" or the Coltrane-influenced "The Invisible Child," Burk and his quartet display an ability to play straight-ahead jazz with texture, cohesiveness and versatility. The driving rhythm of "Without Annette" has a Bad Plus kind of energy; the Delta blues highlights every pulse of Jonathan Robinson's splendid pizzicato on "Back Home" and his overall skills as a bassist are the foundation of his richly layered composition "Auslanderlied," which has the earmarks of a standard in the making. Berlin Bright shows that the Greg Burk Quartet isn't afraid to challenge the audience, or itself, with music that, although sometimes unpredictable, is never inaccessible and always stimulating.

Track Listing: Fancy Pants; The Invisible Child; Back Home; Zoo for Two; Ugly Butterfly; Without Annette; First Impression; Tiny Tune; Auslanderlied.

Personnel: Greg Burk: piano; Ignaz Dinne: alto and soprano saxophones; Jonathan Robinson: bass; Andrea Marcelli: drums.

Title: Berlin Bright | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Black Saint

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Deep Blue Sky

Deep Blue Sky

Pink House Records
2017

buy
Clean Spring

Clean Spring

Steeplechase Lookout
2016

buy

Related Articles

Read Seymour Reads The Constitution! CD/LP/Track Review
Seymour Reads The Constitution!
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Half Light CD/LP/Track Review
Half Light
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 24, 2018
Read The Groove Hunter CD/LP/Track Review
The Groove Hunter
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Powered by Life CD/LP/Track Review
Powered by Life
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Mephiti CD/LP/Track Review
Mephiti
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2018
Read Seymour Reads The Constitution! CD/LP/Track Review
Seymour Reads The Constitution!
by Doug Collette
Published: May 23, 2018
Read "Under The Surface" CD/LP/Track Review Under The Surface
by Ian Patterson
Published: November 29, 2017
Read "La Saboteuse" CD/LP/Track Review La Saboteuse
by Chris May
Published: February 20, 2018
Read "Live at the Athenaeum" CD/LP/Track Review Live at the Athenaeum
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: January 12, 2018
Read "Returnings" CD/LP/Track Review Returnings
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 13, 2018
Read "Sediments" CD/LP/Track Review Sediments
by Ian Patterson
Published: March 10, 2018
Read "Living In Twilight" CD/LP/Track Review Living In Twilight
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 31, 2017