369

Andrew Hill: Change

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Andrew Hill: Change Completed only five months after Compulsion (Blue Note, 1965), pianist Andrew Hill's creative free-form breakthrough, this quartet session was recorded, edited, titled and cataloged, but never officially released under his own name. Unceremoniously shelved at the time, like a number of recent reissues documenting Hill's more experimental 1960s work, the six principle cuts were eventually issued under Sam Rivers' name as Involution (Blue Note, 1976). The two alternate takes were included in The Complete Blue Note Andrew Hill Sessions 1963-1966 (Mosaic, 1995).

Available for the first time in its entirety, the aptly title Change is a rich and complex collection reflecting the gradual shift in Hill's writing from advanced traditional structures to outré forms. One of the finest avant-garde Blue Note titles, it is representative of the then burgeoning inside-outside aesthetic embraced by fellow label-mates Sam Rivers, Cecil Taylor, Grachan Moncur III and Jackie McLean.

The quartet immediately demonstrates their intense rapport and compelling interaction on "Violence," the turbulent, labyrinthine opener. Drummer J.C. Moses unleashes torrents of spitfire percussion, while Sam Rivers spews bristling, circuitous fragments on tenor. Hill's singular contributions are cerebral and abstract, but also soulful, churning with propulsive energy. Bassist Walter Booker delivers a monolithic bass solo in the eye of the storm, as Hill quietly accompanies him with brittle harpsichord clusters.

The jaunty "Illusion" deconstructs a montuno form with irreverent charm, while "Hope" intensifies from somber reflection to roiling vigor over a bustling waltz rhythm. The foreboding "Desire" blends a mid-tempo 5/4 cadence with focused deliberation and searing lyricism.

Unveiling a genteel side, "Pain" and "Lust" are restrained trio excursions. The curiously titled, "Pain" works a light-hearted Monkish vibe, showcasing brilliant bass work from Booker, while "Lust" is downright romantic.

The alternate takes provide further insight into the quartet's working methods. "Violence" is compact and intense, while "Desire" is brisk and assertive.

Knotty, jagged and abstruse, Hill's music from this period can be difficult for mainstream listeners, but yields great rewards. A fascinating document in the discography of one of the most important jazz composers of the twentieth century, Change is an essential reissue.


Track Listing: Violence; Pain; Illusion; Hope; Lust; Desire; Violence (alt. tk.); Desire (alt. tk.).

Personnel: Andrew Hill: piano, harpsichord; Sam Rivers: tenor saxophone; Walter Booker: bass; J.C. Moses: drums.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Blue Note Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Live at PafA CD/LP/Track Review Live at PafA
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Ocean of Storms CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by Troy Dostert
Published: February 21, 2017
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 "Conditions" CD/LP/Track Review Conditions
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 16, 2016
Read "Spring Feelings" CD/LP/Track Review Spring Feelings
by Andrew Luhn
Published: March 17, 2016
Read "The Magnificent Thad Jones" CD/LP/Track Review The Magnificent Thad Jones
by Greg Simmons
Published: November 10, 2016
Read "First Set" CD/LP/Track Review First Set
by Jerome Wilson
Published: February 6, 2017
Read "What's Wrong" CD/LP/Track Review What's Wrong
by John Sharpe
Published: December 2, 2016
Read "On Hollywood Boulevard" CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 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!