All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

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...

35

Mike Reed's People, Places & Things: Clean on the Corner

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Originally founded in 2008 to commemorate the lesser known "people, places & things" that have historically supported Chicago's progressive jazz scene, Mike Reed's ensemble of the same name continues to ply its bold interpretations of lesser known covers and swinging originals on Clean on the Corner, their fourth recording for 482 Music. Although this session breaks from the prevailing concept that defined their first three releases, it continues to skillfully balance inside and outside traditions, drawing inspiration from past antecedents and current innovations.

Since Proliferation, their 2008 debut, the drummer's acoustic quartet has issued a pair of records featuring notable contributions from fellow Windy City artists. 2009's About Us recruited peers Jeb Bishop, David Boykin and Jeff Parker as guests, while 2010's Stories and Negotiations documented an all-star concert with elder statesmen Art Hoyle, Julian Priester and Ira Sullivan. This date follows in the footsteps of the band's sophomore effort; pianist Craig Taborn and cornetist Josh Berman each appear on two tracks apiece, joining the longstanding line-up of Reed, alto saxophonist Greg Ward, tenor saxophonist Tim Haldeman, and bassist Jason Roebke.

The majority of the tunes are new, although there are two notably obscure covers: a prickly interpretation of Roscoe Mitchell's "Old" and a blistering run through "Sharon," written by under-sung altoist John Jenkins. The former number establishes the group's link to the seminal work of the AACM as Haldeman and Ward spin acerbic variations from Mitchell's bluesy theme. The later piece finds the unit updating bebop conventions with a strident modernistic slant, underpinned by Reed and Roebke's taut, in-the-pocket groove; their adroit facility for subtle, intuitive interplay is even more apparent on Reed's ethereal tone poem "December?." The remainder of the set alternates between diverse blues moods, from the wiry free bop of "The Lady Has a Bomb" to the impressionistic balladry of "Where the Story Ends."

As with the quartet's prior endeavors, the guest contributions prove to be highlights. Taborn's bristling arpeggios elevate the aforementioned "Sharon," while his punctilious filigrees buttress the expansive tonalities and elastic rhythms of "The Ephemeral Words of Ruth." Berman serves as the yin to Taborn's yang; his dulcet brass ruminations on the languid "House of Three Smiles" and contemplative closer "Warming Down" provide harmonious contrast to Taborn's oblique extrapolations, trading urbane expressionism for forthright lyricism.

Clean on the Corner adds a new chapter to the legacy celebrated by Reed's initial People, Places & Things album trilogy, gracefully moving the tradition forward informed by lessons of the past.

Track Listing: The Lady Has a Bomb; Old; December?; Where the Story Ends; Sharon; House of Three Smiles; The Ephemeral Worlds of Ruth; Warming Down.

Personnel: Mike Reed: drums, percussion; Greg Ward: alto saxophone; Tim Haldeman: tenor saxophone; Jason Roebke: bass; Craig Taborn: piano (5, 7); Josh Berman: cornet (6, 8).

Title: Clean on the Corner | Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: 482 Music

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Decay Of The Angel CD/LP/Track Review
Decay Of The Angel
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 14, 2018
Read Encontros - Orquestra Atlantica CD/LP/Track Review
Encontros - Orquestra Atlantica
by Chris Mosey
Published: August 14, 2018
Read Sorrows & Triumphs CD/LP/Track Review
Sorrows & Triumphs
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: August 14, 2018
Read Od Ponedelnik CD/LP/Track Review
Od Ponedelnik
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: August 14, 2018
Read Coast to Crossroads CD/LP/Track Review
Coast to Crossroads
by Mark Sullivan
Published: August 13, 2018
Read Body CD/LP/Track Review
Body
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: August 13, 2018
Read "We Call All Times Soon" CD/LP/Track Review We Call All Times Soon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: June 2, 2018
Read "Beloved of The Sky" CD/LP/Track Review Beloved of The Sky
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: May 29, 2018
Read "Backstage Pass" CD/LP/Track Review Backstage Pass
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2018
Read "Intention" CD/LP/Track Review Intention
by John Sharpe
Published: April 18, 2018
Read "Faces and Places" CD/LP/Track Review Faces and Places
by Kris Perdew
Published: October 25, 2017
Read "Concentric Circles" CD/LP/Track Review Concentric Circles
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: May 11, 2018