211

Dave Douglas: Convergence

Robert Spencer By

Sign in to view read count
Dave Douglas: Convergence Trumpeter Dave Douglas' growing list of credits includes a star turn in the ever-increasing oeuvre of John Zorn's Masada, the celebrated quartet that turns Hebrew folk melodies into tremendous occasions of Ornette-flavored up-tempo jazz improvisation. Douglas himself has demonstrated, independently of Zorn, a flair for jazzing folk melodies that is at the forefront again on the magnificent Convergence, his new quintet release on Soul Note.

Joined by congenial partners, including violinist Mark Feldman, cellist Erik Friedlander, bassist Drew Gress, and drummer Michael Sarin, Douglas demonstrates here why he is one of the most exciting trumpeters on the contemporary scene. The centerpiece of the set is six originals, which betraying both affections that Douglas shares with Zorn: folk melodies and Ornette. Both peek through during the furious duelling of "Joe's Auto Glass," while "Tzotzil Maya" is considerably more subdued and provides one of the disc's rare non-Douglas highlights: a bowed climax courtesy Feldman and Friedlander. But Douglas' solo on this track and elsewhere show that for all the recognition he has received in recent years, he may be even better (and more important) than folks in the know are saying. For one thing, and rare praise these days, he is his own voice, instead of being another grainy copy of Miles or Lee Morgan or Brownie. His skills as a composer and an arranger also set him in another class.

Take "Meeting at Infinity," for example. Although nearly sixteen minutes long and full of vertiginously shifting approaches, this track never merely meanders or loses its focus. Heavy with strings (with this instrumentation, how could it not be?), it never loses its focus, and stands up well in the contemporary classical idiom next to the French composer Olivier Messiaen's "Desseins Eternels," which follows it on the disc, and Kurt Weill's arch "Bilbao Song," which follows the Messiaen piece.

Also included here is a delightful Burmese folk piece, "Chit Kyoo Thwe Tog Nyin Hmar Lar," and Bob Dorough's "Nothing Like You." These pieces are good indications of Douglas' expansive vision. But the main reason to get this disc is that it sounds good. Great, in fact.

| Record Label: Soul Note | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Summer Skyshift" CD/LP/Track Review Summer Skyshift
by John Sharpe
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Miniatures" CD/LP/Track Review Miniatures
by Mark Sullivan
Published: July 20, 2016
Read "Atmosphères" CD/LP/Track Review Atmosphères
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 13, 2016
Read "La Sombra" CD/LP/Track Review La Sombra
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 10, 2017
Read "Like a Bird or Spirit, not a Face" CD/LP/Track Review Like a Bird or Spirit, not a Face
by John Eyles
Published: March 4, 2016
Read "Moanin'" CD/LP/Track Review Moanin'
by Chris Mosey
Published: October 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!