8

Eric Revis: Eric Revis: In Memory Of Things Yet Seen

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
Eric Revis: Eric Revis: In Memory Of Things Yet Seen Although the title to bassist Eric Revis' quartet offering appears to pay homage to some of the early AACM documents (think pianist Muhal Richard Abrams' unaccompanied manifesto Things To Come From Those Now Gone (Delmark, 1975)), the actuality is a different animal entirely. Having rung the changes since the acclaimed City of Asylum, Revis' outfit acts primarily as a vehicle for exploring imaginative charts drawn from across the band, along with two free jazz classics and two group inventions, this time without a piano in sight. And with a resume extended from a longtime home base with Branford Marsalis to include dates with reedmen Peter Brötzmann and Ken Vandermark, Revis defies easy categorization.

That ethos persists when considering the baker's dozen of cuts on this studio session, as the ensemble encompasses a wide range of terrain. With this end in mind Revis has assembled a versatile top notch cast. Alto saxophonist Darius Jones plies his customary blend of sweet sour tunefulness and atonal skronk, contrasting with the more muscular motif-driven legato of tenor saxophonist Bill McHenry. Drummer Chad Taylor handles whatever's asked of him with graceful assurance, from rhythms either funky or intricate to balls to the wall pulsation.

In spite of the talent on hand, the fare remains less about solos which tend to be concise, and more about group interplay and mood. Nowhere is breadth of intent better illustrated than in the opening two tracks, where Taylor's vibes infuse the wistful Satiesque "The Tulpa Chronicles I" framing the leader's spare melodic variations, while the structured improv "Hits" commences with a clarion burst alternated with short explosive vignettes from each member before a final unruly collective. Revis revels in darting lines, hocketed themes (whereby a tune is shared between two or more instruments), and multiple layers of action, evidenced by the joyously awry "The Tulpa Chronicles II" and the vibrant "The Tulpa Chronicles III" which features an energetic arco workout by the bassist.

Of the two covers, Sun Ra's "Shadow World" hews close to the version on Magic City (Saturn, 1966), featuring suitably extraplanetary shrieks by the two horns, as Taylor pummels to a frenetic crescendo, while Sunny Murray's "Somethin's Cookin'" juxtaposes slowly percolating saxophones against busy bass and drums. Revis' erstwhile employer guests on the boppish "Unknown" inserting a knotty tenor outpouring into the buoyant limber swing, and again on the improvised "FreeB" joining a melee of bickering reeds crashing like waves on the shore. Overall there is almost too much to savor. Five numbers clock in at less than three minutes and even the longest is just over seven, so it would be great to hear them stretch out on all of this material in a concert setting.

Track Listing: The Tulpa Chronicles I; Hits; Son Seal; Somethin’s Cookin’ ; Unknown; The Tulpa Chronicles II; Voices; A Lesson Earned; The Shadow World; Hold My Snow Cone; FreeB; The Tulpa Chronicles III; If Your Are Lonesome, the You’re Not Alone

Personnel: Eric Revis: double-bass; Chad Taylor: drums, vibraphone; Bill McHenry: tenor saxophone; Darius Jones: alto saxophone

Title: Eric Revis: In Memory Of Things Yet Seen | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: Clean Feed Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read I Believe In You CD/LP/Track Review I Believe In You
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Morning Sun CD/LP/Track Review Morning Sun
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 18, 2017
Read The Conscience CD/LP/Track Review The Conscience
by John Sharpe
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Harlem CD/LP/Track Review Harlem
by James Nadal
Published: August 18, 2017
Read Open Book CD/LP/Track Review Open Book
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 17, 2017
Read Stolen Moments CD/LP/Track Review Stolen Moments
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 17, 2017
Read "Pasar Klewer" CD/LP/Track Review Pasar Klewer
by Dave Wayne
Published: January 7, 2017
Read "Rejoice! I'm Dead!" CD/LP/Track Review Rejoice! I'm Dead!
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 11, 2017
Read "Lovers" CD/LP/Track Review Lovers
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: September 13, 2016
Read "Pigs & Fairies" CD/LP/Track Review Pigs & Fairies
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 16, 2017
Read "The Best of Big Star" CD/LP/Track Review The Best of Big Star
by Doug Collette
Published: July 16, 2017
Read "Ripple" CD/LP/Track Review Ripple
by Bob Kenselaar
Published: November 29, 2016

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.