Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

341

Scott Dubois: Black Hawk Dance

Raul d'Gama Rose By

Sign in to view read count
There is a deep, questioning spirituality that pervades the music of Scott DuBois. On Black Hawk Dance, his second Sunnyside release, the music becomes a kind of ancient/modern ritual that reaches outward and upward to seemingly attain—as Don Cherry once did—complete communion with the Divine. But the journey is not easy, as the music on this album will verify. It comes at a price. The artist is heard grappling with a soul in torment before he finds solace in the sound and silences of that which surrounds him. Respectful of the gift of musical nirvana that he has received in answer to his soul-stirring quest, the artist answers with seven offerings of his own, to commemorate his journey to bodily and spiritual oneness.

DuBois searches for a much deeper aspect of his art. He does not merely stop when he achieves the kind of tonal values and textures he is looking for; his quest is to find and create a canvas of total sound. This depth of involvement in his music includes weaving into the sonic tapestry both the sound and echoes of notes that chase one another as they form phrases and lines that criss-cross the soundscape. But they also include the space between the sounds—the silences that gain special meaning when the echoes of the notes played last that are left to pirouette and melt into their silences. The sonic shape-shifting that occurs when DuBois adds a myriad of overtones here is remarkable. Sometimes these swivel around the bass clarinet of Gebhard Ullmann as he reaches down gently into the depths of his instrument to play a mighty contrapuntal role in the song—in the interminable swing of "Black Hawk Dance."

On "Souls," on the other hand, the relationship between the stuttering calmness of guitar and Ullmann's restless tenor saxophone lines is much more contentious and relentless. Finally the saxophone drops out of sight altogether leaving DuBois' guitar to continue depicting the spirit world playing off Thomas Morgan's ponderous bass line, plucked amid splashes of Kresten Osgood's cymbals. In between these two tracks there are mighty swoops and swells in the conversations between a gregarious Ullmann and a reticent Dubois, as they journey through "Illinois Procession Rain" and "Dust Celebration," with its incessant shuffle. "Isolate" is another brooding composition that meanders in and out of beautifully improvised sections, while "River Life" is a pulsating journey full of rapid and thoughtful changes.

Scott Dubois is a thinking, almost brooding musician. His music is of a singular nature with well-crafted sound seeks to mirror the depth of an artist in the manner that John Coltrane and Alice Coltrane did in the sunset of their careers, when they discovered that the artist's life was greater than the sum of the music they had recorded. Still, their audiences cheered at having a record of their remarkable journeys, as is also the case with Black Hawk Dance.

Track Listing: Black Hawk Dance; Illinois Procession Rain; Dust Celebration; Isolate; River Life; Souls; Louis Frederic.

Personnel: Scott Dubois: guitar; Gebhard Ullmann: tenor and soprano saxophones; bass clarinet; Thomas Morgan: bass; Kresten Osgood: drums.

Title: Black Hawk Dance | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Sunnyside Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Album Reviews
Read more articles
Autumn Wind

Autumn Wind

ACT Music
2017

buy
Winter Light

Winter Light

ACT Music
2016

buy
Winter Light

Winter Light

ACT Music
2015

buy
 

Landscape Scripture

Sunnyside Records
2013

buy
Landscape Scripture

Landscape Scripture

Sunnyside Records
2012

buy
Black Hawk Dance

Black Hawk Dance

Sunnyside Records
2010

buy

Shop

Start your shopping here and you'll support All About Jazz in the process. Learn how.

Related Articles

Read The Martian's Playground Album Reviews
The Martian's Playground
By Geno Thackara
January 24, 2019
Read Ex Nihilo Album Reviews
Ex Nihilo
By Chris May
January 24, 2019
Read Path Of Totality Album Reviews
Path Of Totality
By Roger Farbey
January 24, 2019
Read Time Like This Album Reviews
Time Like This
By John Sharpe
January 24, 2019
Read Bulería Brooklyniana Album Reviews
Bulería Brooklyniana
By Dan Bilawsky
January 23, 2019
Read At The Hill Of James Magee Album Reviews
At The Hill Of James Magee
By Mark Corroto
January 23, 2019
Read Stomping Off From Greenwood Album Reviews
Stomping Off From Greenwood
By Mike Jurkovic
January 23, 2019