Recorded live in Berlin in 1999, this quartet outing features longtime Cecil Taylor associate and drummer Andrew Cyrille. But guitarist Franky Douglas' intermittent injections of James Brown-style funk passages provide a curiously interesting curveball of sorts.
The quartet commences the set with a feeling-out process, greasing the pot prior to an onslaught of intertwining call-and-response choruses. And as many of us would surmise, Taylor and his quartet go climactically fast and furious for the jugular. The pianist peppers and accentuates his bandmates' rumbling and tumbling sense of forward motion. Then again, Douglas' wah-wah guitar choruses cast a bizarre edge to Taylor's avant-garde canon.
On "Carnation, cellist Tristan Honsiger's oscillating arco passages establish the framework for the musicians' capacious dialogues of expansion and contraction. At times Taylor tempers the hard-hitting flow with sublime chord clusters, periodically toggling matters down to a near-whisper. Overall, this recording is one his more compelling dates in recent years. It's partly about frenetic group interaction, shaded with Douglas' occasional implementations of mainstream R&B. Recommended.
Track Listing: Focus; Carnation; Cartouche.
Personnel: Cecil Taylor: piano, voice; Franky Douglas: guitar, voice; Tristan Honsinger: cello. Special
Guest: Andrew Cyrille: drums, tympani.
I was first exposed to jazz in 1961 (at age 10) when I was in a shopping arcade in Southport, England with my parents. I fell in love with the music playing over the PA system; Take Five by the Dave Brubeck Quartet
I was first exposed to jazz in 1961 (at age 10) when I was in a shopping arcade in Southport, England with my parents. I fell in love with the music playing over the PA system; Take Five by the Dave Brubeck Quartet. After going through Rock 'n Roll, the Beatles and Heavy Metal/Hard Rock phases over the next eight or so years, I finally bought my first jazz album; We're All Together Again for the First Time by Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond and Gerry Mulligan. I was hooked on jazz, and still am 40+ years later.
I moved from England to the USA in 2002, and founded the Brookfield Jazz Society in 2005.
I became editor of the quarterly IAJRC Journalin 2012. The magazine goes to the worldwide membership of the IAJRC (International Association of Jazz Record Collectors) and many major libraries and educational establishments around the world.
As well as being the editor of the IAJRC Journal, I write about jazz and review CDs, vinyl, DVDs and books on jazz.
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