All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

232

Carter Swell Ughi: Concrete Science

By

Sign in to view read count
Concrete Science is not a stiff, cerebral test of complex music. It is the natural unfettered dialogue between three masterful improvisers: saxophonist Daniel Carter, trombonist Steve Swell, and drummer Federico Ughi. Though cerebral in that concentration is necessary to improvise at the lofty levels captured here, the music never sounds forced or wonky.

The brisk seventeen-minute workout "Now and Ever Resistance" is a high-intensity, up-tempo piece with swirling horns that Ughi punctuates with stabbing cymbals and rolling drums. As on the rest of the CD, no one overpowers the proceedings and the players comment as they please. The crisp recording, with the horns panned in the mix, allows the listener to readily identify what each musician plays—helpful given the extended techniques and rapidity of notes. "Soul's Underwood Tunnels" explores more spacious and introspective terrains, with quieter dynamics provided by Carter's flute and Swell's mute. The movement is sparse, though the two horns match wits with unison stops and starts, effectively injecting space and illuminating the players' synchronicity.

Blasting density resumes on "Middleclass Madness," though the piece devolves into hushed tones, with Ughi laying out for a stretch. When he returns, the piece builds a startling crescendo to a bombastic conclusion. "Our Own Fingerprints" and "Concrete Science" test opposite ends of the spectrum: the former features a fleet Swell run with drum accompaniment and a blistering Carter clarinet; the latter closes the recording somberly with atmospheric textures and some warm, sustained unison tones.

With the uncommon sax/bone/drums lineup, the results are solid and disciplined, perhaps Concrete Science after all.

Track Listing: 1. Now And Ever Resistance (17:09) 2. Soul's Underwood Tunnels (12:34) 3. Middleclass Madness (18:08) 4. Our Own Fingerprints (7:18) 5. Concrete Science (6:24)

Personnel: Daniel Carter: Alto and Tenor Sax, Flute and Clarinet; Steve Swell: Trombone; Federico Ughi: Drums

Title: Concrete Science | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: 577 Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Seymour Reads The Constitution! CD/LP/Track Review
Seymour Reads The Constitution!
by Doug Collette
Published: May 23, 2018
Read Colours of Sound CD/LP/Track Review
Colours of Sound
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 23, 2018
Read A Blast From The Past CD/LP/Track Review
A Blast From The Past
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 23, 2018
Read Rhapsody CD/LP/Track Review
Rhapsody
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 23, 2018
Read You're Driving Me Crazy CD/LP/Track Review
You're Driving Me Crazy
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: May 23, 2018
Read Dirt...And More Dirt CD/LP/Track Review
Dirt...And More Dirt
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 22, 2018
Read "On The Way Downtown: Recorded Live On FolkScene" CD/LP/Track Review On The Way Downtown: Recorded Live On FolkScene
by Doug Collette
Published: October 28, 2017
Read "An Eye on the Future" CD/LP/Track Review An Eye on the Future
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 24, 2017
Read "Carpe Diem" CD/LP/Track Review Carpe Diem
by Don Phipps
Published: March 19, 2018
Read "Long Time Gone/To Beat Or Not To Beat" CD/LP/Track Review Long Time Gone/To Beat Or Not To Beat
by Doug Collette
Published: January 6, 2018
Read "The Tronosonic Experience" CD/LP/Track Review The Tronosonic Experience
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 9, 2017
Read "The Dreamer Is the Dream" CD/LP/Track Review The Dreamer Is the Dream
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 24, 2017