14

Alchemy Sound Project: Further Explorations

Karl Ackermann By

Sign in to view read count
Alchemy Sound Project: Further Explorations The collective, Alchemy Sound Project, is a core quintet of composers and musicians whose compositions, on their debut album, Further Explorations cross over a foundation of chamber music with traditional jazz. The central players had united under the banner of the Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute prior to this project. With diverse interests in global influences as well as backgrounds in a multitude of musical mediums, their challenge was to create jazz influenced by classical principles, a bit of a reverse process from the conventional approach.

Saxophonist Erica Lindsay, who performs with the Oliver Lake Big Band, also co-leads a quartet with Alchemy Sound Project pianist Sumi Tonooka, a group that includes bassist Rufus Reid. Tonooka, whose accomplishments include a residency with The South Dakota Symphony Orchestra, drew considerable attention for her solo release Now (Artists Recording Collective, 2012). Multi-reed player Salim Washington was a member of Fred Ho's Afro-Asian Music Ensemble and a founding member of the activist group, The Eco-Music Big Band. Bassist David Arend works across multiple genres and has performed with artists that run the gamut from the San Francisco Symphony to Carlos Santana. Trumpeter Samantha Boshnack leads multiple groups and has played with Wayne Horvitz in the Washington Composers Orchestra. Not regular members of Alchemy Sound Project, trombonist Willem de Koch and drummer Max Wood join in on Further Explorations.

"Charcoal, Clear, Beautiful All Over" opens a ten piece collection prevalent with opulent yet understated expressions. The title track takes a more avant-garde approach but no less rich in atmosphere. Tonooka, Lindsay and Washington, in particular, build on the traditional lexicons of their respective instruments to keep the music from settling too long in one place. Following its stately opening, "Alchemical" provides a launch pad for some adventurous improvising from Tonooka and Lindsay before returning to a variation on the opening theme. More overtly jazz-oriented, "Waiting" and "Beta" have moments of wilder abandon while "Archetype" builds to boil and "Joie De Vivre" is as exuberant as its name implies.

Further Explorations is an excellent debut from a talented group of composers and players. The goal of jazz/chamber integration is well balanced, primarily because this group has evident passion for rendering their individual and collective contributions to that organic end point. The invention, tonal shading and occasional raucousness on this album give it a warm glow and a sense of fun.


Track Listing: Charcoal, Clear, Beautiful All Over; Further Explorations; Alchemical; Waiting; Beta; Her Name Is Love; Archetype; Divergency; Joie De Vivre; The Call.

Personnel: Erica Lindsay: saxophone; Sumi Tonooka: piano; Salim Washington: saxophone, oboe, flute, bass clarinet; David Arend: bass; Samantha Boshnack: trumpet; Willem de Koch: trombone; Max Wood: drums.

Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Artists Recording Collective


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "Free for One" CD/LP/Track Review Free for One
by Budd Kopman
Published: August 15, 2016
Read "Old Locks And Irregular Verbs" CD/LP/Track Review Old Locks And Irregular Verbs
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: March 18, 2016
Read "Live At the Stone" CD/LP/Track Review Live At the Stone
by Karl Ackermann
Published: November 29, 2016
Read "Dare to Be" CD/LP/Track Review Dare to Be
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: August 8, 2016
Read "Wild About You" CD/LP/Track Review Wild About You
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 2, 2016
Read "Early Americans" CD/LP/Track Review Early Americans
by Ian Patterson
Published: September 22, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!