Avishai Cohen - Trumpet: Cross My Palm With Silver

Karl Ackermann By

Sign in to view read count
If trumpeter Avishai Cohen's ECM debut, Into The Silence was a work of deeply personal content, Cross My Palm With Silver plays out with the same emotional impact, but on a global stage. Cohen composed the five pieces on this album in his native Israel, while contemplating the impact of political division on the human psyche. His hope is that the music contributes to a healing process.

Returning from Into The Silence quintet is drummer Nasheet Waits, a member of Cohen's Triveni group and whose close ties to the leader make for a seamless synergy. A long-time collaborator, pianist Yonathan Avishai, had also played with Cohen and his two siblings (multi-reedist Anat Cohen and saxophonist brother, Yuval) in their namesake trio. Replacing Eric Revis on bass is Barak Mori, a friend dating back to high school. Bori has most recently appeared on Madeleine Peyroux's Secular Hymns (Verve, 2016).

The sound—if not the sentiment—on Cross My Palm With Silver is quite a bit different in comparison to the previous album which included tenor saxophonist Bill McHenry. "Will I Die, Miss? Will I Die?" opens with Cohen's mournful muted trumpet, Avishai quietly adding background color while Waits brushes the cymbals. At more than ten minutes, Avishai and Cohen have the space to trade leads taking the piece to its forlorn conclusion. In a halting manner, Waits and Avishai usher in "Theme for Jimmy Greene" setting up for Cohen's evocative response. The piece builds up to a dramatic swell then ends reflectively.

"340 Down" opens minimally with haunting trumpet, augmented by Waits light touch before Bori and Cohen layer in a more complex textures. Avishai's extended solo—with an off-kilter classicism—begins "Shoot Me in The Leg," the most abstract of the compositions on the album. Another long piece, it closes with a haunting solo from Cohen. "50 Years and Counting" closes the album with an upbeat theme and Cohen playing at his freest.

Cross My Palm with Silver has a political point to make, reflecting the turmoil of the Middle East and global conflicts elsewhere. Titles like "Will I Die, Miss? Will I Die?" and "Shoot Me In The Leg" are testimonials to that effect. There remains an otherworldliness in much of Cohen's music whether elevating or affecting and he importantly, avoids saccharine effects in conveying powerful emotions.

Track Listing: Will I Die, Miss? Will I Die?; Theme For Jimmy Greene; 340 Down; Shoot Me In The Leg; 50 Years And Counting.

Personnel: Avishai Cohen: trumpet; Yonathan Avishai: piano; Barak Mori: double bass; Nasheet Waits: drums.

Title: Cross My Palm With Silver | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: ECM Records


comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Study of Touch CD/LP/Track Review The Study of Touch
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 20, 2017
Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Gledalec CD/LP/Track Review Gledalec
by John Sharpe
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Flux Reflux CD/LP/Track Review Flux Reflux
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Christmas With Champian CD/LP/Track Review Christmas With Champian
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read "Beauty & Truth" CD/LP/Track Review Beauty & Truth
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 13, 2017
Read "A Piece of the Apple" CD/LP/Track Review A Piece of the Apple
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 7, 2017
Read "In All My Holy Mountain" CD/LP/Track Review In All My Holy Mountain
by Roger Farbey
Published: February 12, 2017
Read "Mannequins" CD/LP/Track Review Mannequins
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: June 9, 2017
Read "Edit Peptide" CD/LP/Track Review Edit Peptide
by Glenn Astarita
Published: August 11, 2017
Read "Godspeed" CD/LP/Track Review Godspeed
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: December 9, 2016

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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