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Marilyn Crispell - Tanya Kalmanovitch - Richard Teitelbaum: Dream Libretto

Glenn Astarita By

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World-class pianist, Marilyn Crispell crafts an endearing musical statement, where she and her cohorts execute a requiem framed on improvisations and succinct melodies based on the pianist's close friends and family who have passed on. Consequently, the first part of this set features Crispell, violinist Tanya Kalmanovitch and legendary electronics ace, Richard Teitelbaum, while the second part is a series of duets by the pianist and violinist.

An eerie calm cloaks "I" propelled by Teitelbaum's ultra-low register and barely detectable drone that underscores Crispell's poignant and resonating chord progressions, as if she were experiencing an extrasensory link from her psyche to her hands. Moreover, a touch of reverb and her capacious voicings sound as though she's performing in a cathedral. But Teitelbaum commences to mimic a sense of peril with menacing panoramas via his peculiar EFX permutations. However, "IV" is an experimental solo concerto by the violinist, shaded with stark and thorny soundscapes, and "V" is built around the pianist's cyclical ostinato and somber melody lines.

Turning to the second part of this outing, "Unburying the Silences" begins with Crispell and Kalmanovitch performing experimental chamber jazz pieces. Here, the duo engages in counterpoint, call and response passages and nervy interactions to offset dainty phrasings, which are also evident on "Where Water Moves." Essentially, the artists enact reflective themes amid Crispell's walking lines and the violinist's subdued staccato motifs, although they step up the pace and venture into forceful advances and open-ended dialogues before throttling back to temperate discourses. During "Walked Through To Sleep," the duo renders numerous episodic plots, and skirts minimalism, while fusing remorse, sadness and constructing a placid theme. It's a captivating production that bestows impassioned and quietly-penetrating qualities, in contrast to the somewhat emblematic high-strung and overly cerebral free-form improv fests.

Track Listing: I; II; III; IV; V; Climb To A Whisper; Unburying The Silences; Dark Reflection; Where Water Moves; Stones Remain Still; Walked Through To Sleep; Stars Visible And Invisible.

Personnel: Marilyn Crispell: piano; Tanya Kalmanovitch: violin; Richard Teitelbaum: electronics.

Title: Dream Libretto | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Leo Records

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