419

Chad Taylor: Circle Down

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Chad Taylor: Circle Down In-demand indie rock session player (Sam Prekop, Iron and Wine) and co-founder of the Basil Coetzee with Rob Mazurek, drummer Chad Taylor has quickly become an indispensable part of the New York scene since his relocation from Chicago in 2000. His recurrent collaborations with Cooper-Moore, Jemeel Moondoc, and Marc Ribot feature his talents in a wide variety of settings, but none quite as dynamic as the ensemble documented on Circle Down, the debut of his trio with pianist Angelica Sanchez and bassist Chris Lightcap—sympathetic peers who inspire some of Taylor's most nuanced playing.

Bolstered by astute listening skills and amiable restraint, Taylor, Sanchez, and Lightcap's intimate three-way dialogues unveil subtly inventive interpretations of hallowed traditions, embracing a range of genres and styles across the album. Writing credits are shared by Sanchez and Lightcap on the first half of the record, while the second is attributed to Taylor.

Lightcap contributes an eclectic trio of tunes, veering from the bittersweet folksiness of "Box Step" and the propulsive Latin rhythms of "Specifica" to the oblique contours of "Traipse." A compelling writer and formidable improviser, Sanchez's dazzling virtuosity is showcased on her muscular, yet introspective "Rock" and the vivacious "No Brainer."

The remaining compositions are Taylor's, who embraces a diverse array of styles. A pair of ballads highlights his lyricism—the poetic "Opal" and a romantic tribute to his wife, "Miriam"—while his penchant for experimentation materializes on "Level." A scintillating mosaic of sound woven from Sanchez's knotty filigrees, Lightcap's sinuous bass lines, and Taylor's crisp accents, the tempestuous mantra balances unfettered abstraction with harmonic ingenuity. Fueled by ebullient Afro-Cuban rhythms, the celebratory "Pablo" and infectious "Pascal" conclude the album on a high note.

Providing a cohesive sensibility to the proceedings, the trio offers subtle shifts in approach with each stylistic change. Their congenial rapport informs their intertwining discourse, yielding unconventional arrangements that keep solo orders and accompaniment unpredictable and fresh.

A dynamic and refined session featuring the stellar interplay of an empathetic trio, Circle Down is Taylor's most sophisticated work to date.


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

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

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: 482 Music | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
William Parker William Parker
bass, acoustic
Fred Anderson Fred Anderson
saxophone
Marc Ribot Marc Ribot
guitar
Henry Grimes Henry Grimes
bass, acoustic
Derek Bailey Derek Bailey
guitar
David S. Ware David S. Ware
sax, tenor
Hamid Drake Hamid Drake
percussion
SFJAZZ Collective SFJAZZ Collective
band/orchestra
Marc Ducret Marc Ducret
guitar

More Articles

Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
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 "Kirkastus" CD/LP/Track Review Kirkastus
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: February 28, 2016
Read "Hatch and Host" CD/LP/Track Review Hatch and Host
by Ian Patterson
Published: February 25, 2016
Read "Hank Mobley" CD/LP/Track Review Hank Mobley
by Greg Simmons
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "Heritage" CD/LP/Track Review Heritage
by James Nadal
Published: October 3, 2016
Read "Sarabande" CD/LP/Track Review Sarabande
by Budd Kopman
Published: March 3, 2016

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!