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...

3

Andrew Lisle Alex Ward: Doors

John Eyles By

Sign in to view read count
The pairing of clarinetist-guitarist Alex Ward and drummer Andrew Lisle dates back at least to 2014 when the pair recorded the album Red Kite (Raw Tonk, 2014) in a trio with saxophonist Colin Webster. As Ward is kept busy as a member of quite a few other groupings of various sizes, it is no surprise that Doors is their first duo release. Recorded on two separate days in August and September 2016, the album consists of four tracks of similar durations, ranging from sixteen-and-a-half to eighteen minutes. Rather unusually for Ward, two of the tracks feature him on clarinet and on the other two—recorded on a different day—he plays electric guitar. (The only comparable instance of this is on the download-only album Bring a Book that Ward recorded at Café Oto Project Space with Canadian drummer Mike Gennaro, also in September 2016, a week after the guitar tracks featured here.)

Rather than blocking together tracks featuring the same instrument, Doors alternates them, so emphasising the contrasts between Ward's clarinet and guitar playing. These contrasts are far more to do with the differences between the two instruments themselves than Ward having a Dr Jekyll personality! In each case he explores the limits of the instrument which takes him to very different places sonically. The first guitar piece, "Back," exemplifies this as it starts off very laid-back then accelerates as Ward elaborates and explores phrases. The second clarinet piece, "Open," follows a similar route from a smooth, mellow opening to a barnstorming climax. Each of the two makes the transition feel natural and unforced, without any clunky gear changes or jump cuts.

Thanks to Lisle, just as noteworthy are the contrasts between these duets and Ward's solo recordings; while keeping an ear on the music's pulse, the drummer operates as an equal partner with Ward, exchanging phrases, supporting and goading when necessary without hogging the limelight. The end product is music that is full of character and variety; from one track to the next, it is impossible to predict what one will hear, but it is certain it will be highly listenable and engaging. This duo has a bright future.

Track Listing: Front; Back; Open; Closed.

Personnel: Alex Ward: clarinet (1, 3), guitar (2, 4); Andrew Lisle: drums.

Title: Doors | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Copepod Records

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Doors

Doors

Copepod Records
2018

buy
Steeped

Steeped

Relative Pitch Records
2016

buy
Glass Shelves and Floor

Glass Shelves and...

Copepod Records
2015

buy
Projected / Entities / Removal

Projected / Entities...

Copepod Records
2015

buy
Bad Folds

Bad Folds

Copepod Records
2013

buy

Related Articles

Read Uplift The People CD/LP/Track Review
Uplift The People
by John Sharpe
Published: August 21, 2018
Read A New Shade Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review
A New Shade Of Blue
by Chris May
Published: August 21, 2018
Read Rabbits on the Run CD/LP/Track Review
Rabbits on the Run
by Glenn Astarita
Published: August 21, 2018
Read Imaginary Numbers CD/LP/Track Review
Imaginary Numbers
by John Sharpe
Published: August 21, 2018
Read Point Blank CD/LP/Track Review
Point Blank
by Chris May
Published: August 20, 2018
Read Tell Me The Truth CD/LP/Track Review
Tell Me The Truth
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 20, 2018
Read "Beloved" CD/LP/Track Review Beloved
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: October 10, 2017
Read "The Spirit Of Piteşti" CD/LP/Track Review The Spirit Of Piteşti
by John Sharpe
Published: October 25, 2017
Read "Live At The Magic Triangle" CD/LP/Track Review Live At The Magic Triangle
by John Sharpe
Published: January 13, 2018
Read "Opus" CD/LP/Track Review Opus
by Doug Collette
Published: March 29, 2018
Read "Monochrome" CD/LP/Track Review Monochrome
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: July 16, 2018
Read "Life Of Sensitive Creatures" CD/LP/Track Review Life Of Sensitive Creatures
by Roger Farbey
Published: December 4, 2017