246

Steve Swell/Perry Robinson: Invisible Cities

Clifford Allen By

Sign in to view read count
Steve Swell/Perry Robinson: Invisible Cities With Invisible Cities, trombonist Steve Swell and clarinetist Perry Robinson have created a unique snapshot of duo improvisation that, as much as it sounds like a Saturday afternoon loft rehearsal when the rhythm section was too busy, is a compelling document of the affinity between improvisers.

Robinson, of course, is the veteran of the two, having recorded his first LP, Funk Dumpling, with Henry Grimes for Savoy over forty years ago, as well as working with Gunter Hampel, Archie Shepp, Roswell Rudd and numerous others. Swell’s, in a span half as long as Robinson’s, has solidified a place as the contemporary creative trombonist of choice, working regularly in the brass chair with Lou Grassi, William Parker and Dominic Duval. Swell and Robinson complement one another perfectly, like Roswell Rudd and Steve Lacy—Swell the punchy gutbucket with astounding technical facility, Robinson occupying a uniquely subtle sound world of bent notes (‘is that a duck call?!?’) and austere cadences. For rather than extending the Giuffre school of clarinet, Robinson occupies the midway between two Rudd foils: Giuseppi Logan and John Tchicai, embodying both a penchant for viciously dissociative runs and a witty, cool swing. One doesn’t often have the opportunity to hear such unadulterated Perry Robinson, so this is a case of a real treat.

The lengthy “Rumor Exists under Abolished Victims” presents a series of unaccompanied passages over its eight minutes, punctuated by brief snippets of melodic dialogue. The dialogues themselves are not entirely made up of free jazz-cum-Dixieland collective improvisation, but rather run the gamut from languid tonal explorations (Robinson’s clarinet mimicking a toy recorder, a harmonica and a trombone on “Shallow Facades...”) to singsong romps (“Children’s Song”). In these dialogues, Swell occupies a unique place in that, like Rudd and Bob Brookmeyer before him, he is able to provide both melodic and rhythmic support to an ensemble otherwise devoid of a rhythm section—he is able to provide the antics-filled conversation with a sense of purpose that it might otherwise not have.

Visit Drimala on the web.


Track Listing: 1. Careful Little Hempen Clouds (5:41) 2. Resemblance Spilling Thick (4:24) 3. Lunatics Spend Redundant Mind (3:02) 4. Immortals Reveal Deeper Streets (2:25) 5. Visible Pink Plateau (2:44) 6. Rumor Exists Under Abolished Victims (8:01) 7. Children's Song (3:15) 8. The Places Have Mingled Relationships (4:09) 9. Shallow Facades Find Opaque Polyhedrons on (4:10) 10. Skyscrapers Swaying Toward Oases of Fresh... (2:34) 11. Suspicious Umbrellas Remembering Clearly (3:09) 12. The Copper Clock Unfurls Its Boiling... (3:31) 13. Patterns Will Be Revealed Outside Iron... (4:23)

Personnel: Perry Robinson: Clarinet; Steve Swell: Trombone.

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


Shop

More Articles

Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "In Tokyo, Japan" CD/LP/Track Review In Tokyo, Japan
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 16, 2016
Read "Which Craft?" CD/LP/Track Review Which Craft?
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: November 30, 2016
Read "Live At The Open Gate" CD/LP/Track Review Live At The Open Gate
by John Sharpe
Published: August 29, 2016
Read "Under the Influence" CD/LP/Track Review Under the Influence
by Doug Collette
Published: July 2, 2016
Read "Shipwreck 4" CD/LP/Track Review Shipwreck 4
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 13, 2016
Read "Copenhagen Diaries" CD/LP/Track Review Copenhagen Diaries
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: May 8, 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!