3

Edgefest 2017: Give the Drummers Some, Part 2-2

Troy Dostert By

Sign in to view read count
Finally, and not to be outdone, the two-drum lineup in Tomas Fujiwara's Triple Double anchored one of the festival's most riveting performances, timed perfectly to coincide with the release of the band's self- titled debut album the day before. The group uses an intriguing sextet concept premised on divisions into twos and threes: with duos involving drummers (Fujiwara and Gerald Cleaver), guitarists (Mary Halvorson and Brandon Seabrook) and horn players (Taylor Ho Bynum—cornet; Dave Ballou—trumpet), the group can also be envisioned as two trios, with Fujiwara's longtime colleagues able to assume different configurations within each piece as it unfolds. Dave Ballou replaced Ralph Alessi for this performance, but he fit in nicely with the band's vibe, which is a heady mixture of lyrical ensemble parts with dense layers of sound: the former spearheaded by Ballou and Bynum, the latter provided by the guitars and drums. But that's an oversimplification, as each instrument could at times assume the forefront of the music. Fujiwara's compositions have an organic logic with surprising twists and turns that still make eminent sense, and the music is by turns subtly beautiful and fiercely aggressive. Remarkably, despite each having a dynamic personality behind the kit, Fujiwara and Cleaver mesh seamlessly in their percussive rapport, and the entire band feeds off of the collective energy they create. There could be no better way to end a drummers' festival than with the music this group provided.

With programming that gets stronger with each passing year, it's clear that Edgefest will continue to set a very high standard for improvised music and creative jazz long into the future. Stay tuned for October 2018, when the festival promises to highlight the best of the current Chicago creative music scene.

Photo credit: Frank Rubolino

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Pat Metheny at Belfast Waterfront Live Reviews Pat Metheny at Belfast Waterfront
by Ian Patterson
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Crosscurrents at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor Live Reviews Crosscurrents at the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: November 15, 2017
Read Gary Peacock Trio at the Jazz Standard Live Reviews Gary Peacock Trio at the Jazz Standard
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 14, 2017
Read "Kongsberg Jazz Festival 2017" Live Reviews Kongsberg Jazz Festival 2017
by Henning Bolte
Published: August 17, 2017
Read "Festival International de Jazz de Montreal 2017" Live Reviews Festival International de Jazz de Montreal 2017
by John Kelman
Published: July 7, 2017
Read "Jazzkaar 2017" Live Reviews Jazzkaar 2017
by Martin Longley
Published: May 29, 2017
Read "Gary Peacock Trio at the Jazz Standard" Live Reviews Gary Peacock Trio at the Jazz Standard
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 14, 2017
Read "FORQ at The World Cafe Live" Live Reviews FORQ at The World Cafe Live
by Mike Jacobs
Published: August 18, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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

Please support out sponsor