323

Kenny Drew, Jr. and Larry Coryell: Duality

Nicholas F. Mondello By

Sign in to view read count
Kenny Drew, Jr. and Larry Coryell: Duality The jazz duo affords its participants wonderful opportunities to stretch out creatively. Ideas, suggestions and negotiations of all musical kinds percolate back and forth. And, in the best of instances, they birth new nuggets for further development and exploration. At the same time, the duet framework can possibly limit, as competitive natures and stylistic dichotomies might overtake the mutual partnership and pose distraction.

Duality, which features the marvelous talents of pianist Kenny Drew, Jr. and guitarist Larry Coryell, epitomizes the absolute best in piano-guitar duo playing. The improvisational banter, the interplay and feeding of ideas throughout this effort is pure listening joy. Drew and Coryell work so well together that interest never wanes, regardless of tempo, tune or musical genre. What emanates from the musical mind-melding of these the two superbly cooperative and inventive artists is jazz elegance, swing, and subtle, creative power.

Horace Silver's "Silver's Serenade" sends the duo mission off on a neat mid-tempo foray. Whether guitar takes the melody, as Coryell's mellow playing does on this cut, or Drew's keyboard elsewhere, the result is a richness, a fullness easily giving an illusion of a larger musical unit. Both these fine players understand and brilliantly display the subtleties of accompanying a soloist. "Farmer's Waltz" lilts lightly, with Drew and Coryell stretching out and never straining.

Drew's touch, as his ability to stretch an improvisational idea, is all taste, with technique never dominating musicality. Likewise, Coryell deploys masterful technical wizardry to grab an idea, run with it and share.

What makes Duality so much fun is the respect that permeates it; this is no cutting contest. Drew, ever the technician, and Coryell, a true virtuoso, take snippets of ideas, and permutate and volley them back and forth. "The Night Has a Thousand Eyes" puts the duo in a fire-starter, up-tempo environment; both answer the bell, with ideas drawn from their respective, burning technical abilities. Each player contributes original compositions as well: Coryell with three; and Drew with two.

There's occasional subtle humor and note play, too, with Drew quoting a comped "New York, New York" during Charles Mingus "Nostalgia in Times Square." Coryell's "Oil on Water" broods, and Drew's salute to Hank Jones, "Goodbye, Mr. Jones," swings. "Duality: Nenad's Sonata" sends up Coryell's acoustic and amplified guitars running rapid fragments and comping chords in a stellar multi-movement showcase of strum. Bobby Timmons' classic, "Moanin,'" gets a cool, swinging treatment, with both Drew and Coryell displaying marvelous, soulful statements.

Duality is a prime example of first class musicianship and sublime improvisational partnership. Duo albums—or that of any sized ensemble—simply don't get more enjoyable than this.

Track Listing: Silver's Serenade; Farmer's Waltz; The Night Has a Thousand Eyes; Szabodar; A Silent War; Nostalgia in Times Square; Oil on Water; Goodbye, Mr. Jones; Duality: Nenad's Sonata; Moanin.'

Personnel: Kenny Drew, Jr.: piano; Larry Coryell: guitar.

Title: Duality | Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Random Act Records


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends CD/LP/Track Review Albert Mangelsdorff And His Friends
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Heaven On Their Minds CD/LP/Track Review Heaven On Their Minds
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Unnatural  Events CD/LP/Track Review Unnatural Events
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Rediscovered Ellington CD/LP/Track Review Rediscovered Ellington
by James Nadal
Published: August 16, 2017
Read Clean CD/LP/Track Review Clean
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 15, 2017
Read Expedition: Duo Electro-Acoustic Improvisations CD/LP/Track Review Expedition: Duo Electro-Acoustic Improvisations
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 15, 2017
Read "Mount Meander" CD/LP/Track Review Mount Meander
by John Sharpe
Published: November 19, 2016
Read "Meet Me At Minton's" CD/LP/Track Review Meet Me At Minton's
by James Nadal
Published: June 17, 2017
Read "Make The Changes" CD/LP/Track Review Make The Changes
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 12, 2016
Read "LifeCycle" CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read "Trandans" CD/LP/Track Review Trandans
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 20, 2017
Read "Green With Envy" CD/LP/Track Review Green With Envy
by James Nadal
Published: March 28, 2017

Sponsor: JANA PROJECT | LEARN MORE  

Support our sponsor

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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