All About Jazz

Home » Articles » Multiple Reviews

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...


Eleventh Hour; Ash & Tabula


Sign in to view read count
Buried deep within the collective minds of Eleventh Hour and Ash & Tabula are Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. While neither is primarily devilish or sublime, both share an aspiration towards multiple personalities.

Fred Frith
Eleventh Hour
Winter & Winter

Fred Frith's compositional collection moves from odd-meter baroque to atonal romanticism in mere seconds. Written for chamber orchestras as diverse as the music itself, the movements travel through moments of weeping twelve-tone rows to flourishes of chaotic noise. While each demonstrates his ability to push the boundaries of experimental string music, the abrupt changes from serenity to chaos hint at a mind that can't decide if he's a musician with a composer's ear, or vice versa.

Nels Cline/Andrea Parkins/Tom Rainey
Out Trios, Volume 3: Ash & Tabula

The majority of Ash & Tabula sounds as if the trio is going through a group identity crisis: outbursts of genre-hopping abound as guitarist Nels Cline, keyboardist Andrea Parkins and drummer Tom Rainey freely weave between improvised melody and song structure. As with Eleventh Hour, this can be somewhat jarring; just as we are comfortable with a new groove or moment of adrenaline-induced noise, the trio will unexpectedly take a U-turn into another groundbreaking idea that is as eye-opening as the first.

Ash & Tabula opens with "Ruination, an even balance of free jazz atonalism and road warrior angst that starts out with an ear splitting feedback loop and seamlessly morphs into reversed psychedelia. Cline, in a moment of punctual discipline, sheds his distortion for the signature motif of "Problem Child, the album's final selection. His dry tone mixed with the off-kilter harmonies of Parkins and seizure-like soundscapes of Rainey give off the fond memories of lower Manhattan art-rock. The cross-genre quotables are even more present when after a brief exploration of reversed-delay-pedal alchemy, Cline and Rainey explode into a bunker-busting garage throwdown.

While this kind of chaos is commonplace in New York venues such as The Stone or Tonic, these moments of energized rock are what make this record unique.

Tracks and Personnel

Eleventh Hour

Tracks: Lelekovice; Tense Serenity; Allegory; Stick Figures; Fell.

Personnel: Arditti String Quartet: Irvine Arditti: : violin, Graeme Jennings: violin, Ralf Ehlers: viola, Rohan de Saram: violincello; Uwe Dierksen: trombone; William Winant: electric guitars; Fred Frith: electric guitars.

Ash and Tabula

Tracks: Ruination; Lower Story; Alleys of North America; Poem In An Ashtray; Pearly Turbo; Raptor; Problem Child.

Personnel: Nels Cline: guitar; Andrea Parkins: keyboards; Tom Rainey: drums.


comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Iain Matthews: Redefining Eclectic Multiple Reviews
Iain Matthews: Redefining Eclectic
by Doug Collette
Published: March 24, 2018
Read Minimalist Guitar: Clouds and Dreams Multiple Reviews
Minimalist Guitar: Clouds and Dreams
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 23, 2018
Read A Selection of Jazz on Sonorama Multiple Reviews
A Selection of Jazz on Sonorama
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: March 18, 2018
Read The Art of the Duo: Keys and Reeds Multiple Reviews
The Art of the Duo: Keys and Reeds
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 11, 2018
Read The Legacy of Big Star: Alex Chilton, Chris Bell and Luther Russell Multiple Reviews
The Legacy of Big Star: Alex Chilton, Chris Bell and Luther...
by Doug Collette
Published: March 4, 2018
Read Jon Catler: Sacred and Profane Multiple Reviews
Jon Catler: Sacred and Profane
by Geno Thackara
Published: March 3, 2018
Read "Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk & Najwa" Multiple Reviews Solo: Reflections and Meditations on Monk & Najwa
by Doug Collette
Published: December 23, 2017
Read "Joao Barradas: A New Place For The Accordion In Jazz?" Multiple Reviews Joao Barradas: A New Place For The Accordion In Jazz?
by Chris Mosey
Published: February 2, 2018
Read "Roots In The Green Mountains" Multiple Reviews Roots In The Green Mountains
by Doug Collette
Published: July 29, 2017
Read "440 Keys: A Batch of Piano Delights" Multiple Reviews 440 Keys: A Batch of Piano Delights
by Geno Thackara
Published: April 21, 2017
Read "Old, Borrowed and Just a Little Blue" Multiple Reviews Old, Borrowed and Just a Little Blue
by Geno Thackara
Published: December 11, 2017
Read "The Art (de Vivre) of the Trio" Multiple Reviews The Art (de Vivre) of the Trio
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 12, 2017