206

Marco Eneidi/William Parker/Donald Robinson: Cherry Box

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Listening to the 1998 recording Cherry Box is akin to spending an hour in dedicated meditation. After the intensity of the primary experience fades away, one finds oneself awash in spiritual calm. The trio of Eneidi, Parker, and Robinson use their shared experience to their advantage, ensuring coherence and cohesion. But spirituality is their main stock in trade.

Cherry Box pays open tribute to the spiritual music of Coltrane's small groups. In both the unpretentious intensity of the saxophone improvisations and the emphatic cardiac throb of the bass, this disc projects melodic energy. To offer a recent point of comparison, Cherry Box bears notable similarity to the '93 FMP Gayle/Parker/Ali record Touchin on Trane, though it makes more ample use of space, color, and melodic restraint. Alto saxophonist Marco Eneidi states deliberately simple themes, then subjects them to spirited reinterpretation using the full timbral spectrum of his instrument (including overtones and rapid-fire note flurries, as well as more relaxed passages with a bluesy sound). Even during moments of peak density, Eneidi's improvisations remain grounded. Of course, the presence of bassist William Parker does a great deal to anchor Cherry Box. Parker offers an intuitive combination of ostinato pulse, urgent walking basslines, and melodic complement. As usual, he plays an essential role uniting the group. (Astute listeners will note Parker's similar role on Gayle's landmark '93 FMP record.)

One of the most exciting aspects of this group is the remarkably versatile drumming of Donald Robinson. Robinson, a longtime Spearman associate, covers the range from "color percussion" through swing accents. While he shuns the center stage, his presence often spurs the other players to a higher level. It's worth taking a moment now and then to focus on Robinson's playing in isolation. At times he might play offbeat accents or shape his delivery around the other two players' statements, but he also devotes much of his effort to building multilayer polyrhythmic textures. This level of detail helps make Cherry Box a resounding success. I for one have not heard a stronger record from out of the post-Coltrane continuum in a long time.


Track Listing: Cherry Box; Slashing the Bird; Forget It; Barbequed Brahms; One More Thing; Spank.

Personnel: Marco Eneidi: alto saxophone; William Parker: bass; Donald Robinson: drums.

Title: Cherry Box | Year Released: 2001 | Record Label: Eremite Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read No Answer CD/LP/Track Review No Answer
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Agrima CD/LP/Track Review Agrima
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Bright Yellow with Bass CD/LP/Track Review Bright Yellow with Bass
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Kurrent CD/LP/Track Review Kurrent
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read Duets CD/LP/Track Review Duets
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 17, 2017
Read "We're All Gonna Die" CD/LP/Track Review We're All Gonna Die
by Doug Collette
Published: October 1, 2017
Read "Friendly Ghosts" CD/LP/Track Review Friendly Ghosts
by Roger Farbey
Published: September 1, 2017
Read "Aqustico vol 2" CD/LP/Track Review Aqustico vol 2
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 25, 2017
Read "Lea Áigi" CD/LP/Track Review Lea Áigi
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "Tyrant Lizard" CD/LP/Track Review Tyrant Lizard
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 2, 2017
Read "Aspiration" CD/LP/Track Review Aspiration
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 5, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.