426

Chad Taylor: Circle Down

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
With an insatiable appetite for music on the fringe, drummer Chad Taylor has been an active participant in the creative music environments of both Chicago and New York. In Chicago, he's been a member of Fred Anderson's trio, Sticks and Stones with Matana Roberts, and the Chicago Underground ensembles with Rob Mazurek. In New York, he's performed with Digital Primitives, known for its visceral abstract funk, as well as with Marc Ribot's Spiritual Unity.

Taylor, who was heavily influenced by AACM drummer Steve McCall, is distinctly percussive and not confined to any particular style. Circle Down is unusual in that it eschews many of Taylor's group work in favor of his own identifiable music. It represents his most accessible recording to date, leading a spectacular trio with the impressive bassist Chris Lightcap, and the increasingly brilliant pianist Angelica Sanchez.

The ten compositions are cerebral and kinetic, yet thoroughly engaging, as the trio moves with symbiotic precision—countering and interacting with one another as the electricity flows. The first three tracks set the momentum; the ruminative groove in Lightcap's "Box Step" displays the bassist's muscularity and lyricism. "Specifica"'s Latin and total avant-garde slant is highlighted by a breathtaking tempo and Sanchez's incredible frenetic playing. The impressionistic colors of Sanchez's "Rock" contains open-composition and dyad sequences with a march-style cadence and melodic counterpoint.

Whether providing exquisite "cymbalism" in "Miriam" (a lovely tune dedicated to his wife), or delivering Brazilian carnivalesque fare with hard bop rhythms in "Pablo," Taylor threads an array of astounding patterns and cadences. The trio's intensity is hyper-punctuated by "Pascal" where Lightcap's reverberating bass cuts the path for Taylor's ubiquitous drumming and Sanchez's emblazoned keys. There are some recordings that just sparkle with energy and Taylor's Circle Down is one of them.

Track Listing: Box Step; Specifica; Rock; Traipse; No Brainer; Opal; Level; Miriam; Pablo; Pascal.

Personnel: Chris Lightcap: bass; Angelica Sanchez: piano; Chad Taylor: drums.

Title: Circle Down | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: 482 Music


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren CD/LP/Track Review The Adventures of Zodd Zundgren
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 16, 2017
Read Any Other Way CD/LP/Track Review Any Other Way
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 16, 2017
Read The Chase CD/LP/Track Review The Chase
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 16, 2017
Read Paint CD/LP/Track Review Paint
by Jerome Wilson
Published: October 16, 2017
Read A Pouting Grimace CD/LP/Track Review A Pouting Grimace
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 15, 2017
Read Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis CD/LP/Track Review Witches Stew: A Tribute to Miles Davis
by Doug Collette
Published: October 15, 2017
Read "Generations" CD/LP/Track Review Generations
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 16, 2017
Read "Tangents" CD/LP/Track Review Tangents
by Karl Ackermann
Published: August 28, 2017
Read "The Last Remaining Payphone in L.A." CD/LP/Track Review The Last Remaining Payphone in L.A.
by Paul Naser
Published: October 18, 2016
Read "Lantern" CD/LP/Track Review Lantern
by John Kelman
Published: June 26, 2017
Read "Honey And Salt" CD/LP/Track Review Honey And Salt
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 10, 2017
Read "Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs" CD/LP/Track Review Discoveries on Tracker Action Organs
by John Eyles
Published: January 21, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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