141

Fonda/McPhee/White/Karetnick: Heat Suite

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
Fonda/McPhee/White/Karetnick: Heat Suite

Heat Suite, a four-part, freely improvised performance, is a towering achievement. It is music that is constantly flowing, constantly growing. It is full of flux and variety, and every note, every rhythm evolves organically and logically from what has previously been created.

"Part 1" begins with Fonda's scraping arco bass, which becomes the platform for White's alto. Soon enough, White and Karetnick engage in a duet, an unmetered meeting in which a fast pulse is suggested but not stated. There are other segments in Heat Suite that are free or rubato, but there's also time, funky time, Afro-time, and swinging time. There's a segment early in "Part 3" where Fonda struts a second line beat, Karetnick plays a complex but jumping counterpoint on brushes, and McPhee's trumpet intones a poignant song. "Part 4" opens with throbbing mallet rhythms underpinning White's stately alto. And much of "Part 2" has rip-roaring tenor work by White and McPhee, soloing and jointly improvising, over a barrelling, very fast 4/4 swing tempo.

All four musicians play with invention and passion, often displaying lyricism, even restraint. Joe McPhee is, quite simply, magnificent. The booklet says he plays pocket trumpet, but his sound is so full and rounded, so warm that it's easy to think he's playing a full-sized instrument. McPhee is a master of extended techniques on all his instruments, but he is also a master of beauty. So many of his improvisations could be songs. White, too, sounds very good. He listens well and his driving tenor solo on "Part 2" is especially powerful.

Fonda and Karetnick play with astonishing unity. They suggest a wild variety of approaches from rubato to marcato to swing, and always seem to think as one. Their solo work is consistently outstanding. If you care at all about the cutting edge of jazz, or free music generally, you'll want to check out Heat Suite. And if you have open ears, you'll find this one very much worth your while.

Visit Konnex Records on the web.


Track Listing: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

Personnel: Joe Fonda, bass, flute, voice, percussion; Joe McPhee, pocket trumpet, tenor sax, soprano sax; Cliff White, alto sax, tenor sax, baritone sax; Ben Karetnick, drums, percussion.

Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Konnex Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Final Concert CD/LP/Track Review The Final Concert
by John Sharpe
Published: February 19, 2017
Read Desire & Freedom CD/LP/Track Review Desire & Freedom
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 19, 2017
Read On Hollywood Boulevard CD/LP/Track Review On Hollywood Boulevard
by Budd Kopman
Published: February 19, 2017
Read The Motorman's Son CD/LP/Track Review The Motorman's Son
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 18, 2017
Read "Across the Universe" CD/LP/Track Review Across the Universe
by Dave Wayne
Published: May 1, 2016
Read "Goodbye Red Rose (2008/9)" CD/LP/Track Review Goodbye Red Rose (2008/9)
by John Eyles
Published: October 16, 2016
Read "This Could Be That" CD/LP/Track Review This Could Be That
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: August 2, 2016
Read "Dharma" CD/LP/Track Review Dharma
by Dave Wayne
Published: August 19, 2016
Read "Up and Coming" CD/LP/Track Review Up and Coming
by John Kelman
Published: January 6, 2017
Read "Kjølvatn" CD/LP/Track Review Kjølvatn
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 25, 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!