268

Natsuki Tamura Quartet: In The Tank

Dan McClenaghan By

Sign in to view read count
Natsuki Tamura Quartet: In The Tank In a drifting and amorphous way, the sound on In The Tank feels as elemental as a delta blues; the opener, "Walking Squid," comes to life on a spare, tinny plucking of strings, like something you'd hear from Son House or Robert Johnson. Whether the plucking comes from a guitar or from Satoko Fujii reaching inside her piano to finger the strings (she's been known to employ the technique) matters not. The quartet consists of Natsuki Tamura on trumpet, Elliot Sharp on soprano sax and guitar, Takayuki Kato on guitar, and Fujii on piano. But much like some of Miles Davis' output in the late seventies (On the Corner comes immediately to mind) the question of exactly which instrument is making what sound hovers over the proceedings.

What a measured, finely interlocking set of sounds it is, especially considering this is a completely freely improvised performance (recorded in Japan in 2001). There aren't high or low points, no swoops or soarings; the atmosphere remains consistently contained throughout, even when the intensity level rises, as it does a couple of minutes in on the 22-minute "Crowing Crab." The ensemble stays in a tight formation.

Is this pure sound? Appealingly-structured noise? There are times that images of a computer-animated foundry or blacksmith shop come to mind, similar to what you encounter on the Jerry Granelli/Jeff Reilly set Iron Sky (Love Slave, '03). And through the interludes of rock structures, blues shadings, jazz moments, and classical electro sound washes, a feeling of underlying structure and detached watching-the events-from-above serenity remains.

It's best to suspend expectations here—that can be said for just about everything Tamura is involved in—and forget about analyzing or intellectualizing. Let it wash over you; let it seep into your pores.

Track Listing: Walking Squid, Flying Jellyfish, Sinking Shrimp, Crowing Crab

Personnel: Natsuki Tamura--trumpet; Elliot Sharp--soprano saxophone, guitar; Satoko Fujii--piano

Year Released: 2005 | Style: Ambient


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
  • Nax by Alberto Bazzurro
  • DuDu by Hrayr Attarian
  • DuDu by John Sharpe
  • DuDu by Dan McClenaghan
Extended Analysis
CD/LP/Track Review
  • Muku by Dave Wayne
  • Muku by Dan McClenaghan
Read more articles

More Articles

Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read One Minute Later CD/LP/Track Review One Minute Later
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 28, 2017
Read JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800° CD/LP/Track Review JK's Kamer +50.92509° +03.84800°
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Ephimeral CD/LP/Track Review Ephimeral
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Fly or Die CD/LP/Track Review Fly or Die
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read Speechless CD/LP/Track Review Speechless
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 27, 2017
Read "Abbey Road Sessions, Vol 1" CD/LP/Track Review Abbey Road Sessions, Vol 1
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: September 25, 2016
Read "Day By Day" CD/LP/Track Review Day By Day
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: January 16, 2017
Read "Jassemblage" CD/LP/Track Review Jassemblage
by Chuck Koton
Published: June 18, 2016
Read "In Denmark 1959-1960" CD/LP/Track Review In Denmark 1959-1960
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 7, 2016
Read "La Sombra" CD/LP/Track Review La Sombra
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 10, 2017
Read "Three Miles From Avalon" CD/LP/Track Review Three Miles From Avalon
by Doug Collette
Published: October 15, 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!