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Susie Ibarra & Assif Tsahar: Home Cookin'

AAJ Staff By

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New York drummer Susie Ibarra gained a notorious reputation for her versatility and touch while working with free jazz musicians like David S. Ware, Matthew Shipp, and William Parker. Tenor saxophonist Assif Tsahar also played with Parker, in addition to making his own records on Silkheart and Eremite. This married couple celebrates the genesis of their very own record label with a new duet recording, Home Cookin'.

The aptly titled work alternates between saxophone/drum duets (recorded February '98 at the Knitting Factory) and more whimsical "Dream Songs" on instruments like the thumb piano, djembe, toy gamelan, and recorder (recorded September '98 in their living room). Tsahar's distinctive voice on the saxophone draws a lot of obvious inspiration from Albert Ayler, though his persistent and unrelenting development of thematic ideas recalls Coltrane at his fieriest. Ibarra spans the entire gamut from African polyrhythmns to wildly colorful free playing. The interplay between these two musicians is incredibly intimate and personal. Home Cookin' is a terrific start for their new label, not to mention one of the best records of the year.

Track Listing: Arrival/Salutations; Dream Song #1; Ambrosia; Dream Song #2; Liquid Time; Dream Song #3; At Dawn; Dream Song #4; Happy Disillusion; Dream Song #5; What Is Not; Dream Song #6; Prayer for the Unseen; Dream Song #7; The Wordless Song: Found Treasures; Dream Song #8; Muchacho Loco.

Personnel: Susie Ibarra: drums, thumb piano, balafon, kulintang, vibes, djembe, tympani, toy gamelan, clay whistle; Assif Tsahar: saxophone, violin, talking drum, bass clarinet, flue, bells, bamboo recorder.

Title: Home Cookin' | Year Released: 1999 | Record Label: Hopscotch Records

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