166

Glass Cage: Glass Cage

John Eyles By

Sign in to view read count
Glass Cage: Glass Cage Glass Cage is yet another ace trio featuring Gary Smith on guitar. Following his Stereo trio, Mass, Powerfield, and the recent Shoji Hano trio, this is another winner. And again Smith has come up with a great name, one that sounds like a prog-rock band and has all kinds of resonances.

The trio consists of Smith on stereo guitar, Hugh Hopper on bass and Shoji Hano on drums. As with the music of those other trios, this was all improvised live in the studio. It is music that stalks the blurred boundaries between rock and free improvisation, a zone that all three of these players are comfortable to inhabit. (And for those who may read too much into a name, the music has few obvious links to Philip Glass or to John Cage.)

Derek Bailey has talked of music that is not free improvisation but is built on the assumption that it exists. This music exemplifies that idea. None of the players here is afraid to employ the language of rock. Smith's playing includes more obvious rock references than at any time since his recording with Rhys Chatham. These references do not supplant his characteristic style, but rather are overlaid, adding another dimension to it. These trio settings always seem to bring out the very best in him. Hano's drumming straddles rock, jazz and improv, his restraint, control and economy being ingredients as important as his power; his uninhibited vocalising - exhilarating but, thankfully, used sparingly - is straight out of rock. Hugh Hopper underpins everything here; his fuzz bass frequently meshes with Smith's guitar to create a maelstrom, but he will also use the simplest of bass figures when the need dictates.

Let's hope they play some live dates!


Track Listing: Crash 2; Text; Box Crushed Flat; Gesture; Crash 3; Wall Hitting Floor; Construction; Monument; Rough Grey; Crash 1

Personnel: Shoji Hano, drums, voice; Hugh Hopper, bass, fuzz bass; Gary Smith, stereo guitar.

Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Paratactile | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read "Steeped" CD/LP/Track Review Steeped
by John Eyles
Published: October 20, 2016
Read "Better Than Anything" CD/LP/Track Review Better Than Anything
by Tyran Grillo
Published: April 20, 2016
Read "Natural Language" CD/LP/Track Review Natural Language
by Mark Corroto
Published: September 9, 2016
Read "Cuong Vu Trio Meets Pat Metheny" CD/LP/Track Review Cuong Vu Trio Meets Pat Metheny
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 20, 2016
Read "Pascal Battus / Dafne Vicente-Sandoval</em>" CD/LP/Track Review Pascal Battus / Dafne Vicente-Sandoval</em>
by John Eyles
Published: June 17, 2016
Read "Inhuman Wilderness" CD/LP/Track Review Inhuman Wilderness
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: May 6, 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!