Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

365

Kalle Kalima / Ed Schuller / Ernst Bier: Jazz Parasites: Very Early

By

Sign in to view read count
Parasites is an international trio that has been in existence for over five years. Drummer Ernst Bier and bassist Ed Schuller's long-fostered musical partnership is evident throughout, resulting in an airtight but loosely swinging rhythmic feel, no matter what the context. Similarly, guitarist Kalle Kalima demonstrates his diverse influences while never falling victim to them. He'll introduce a certain flexibility of vibrato or a delicate turn of phrase or change of dynamic that is beholden to none.

Kalima's subtle approach can be heard clearly on John Coltrane's "Wise One," which might be the album's finest offering. Check out the transition from metric freedom to the duple section to hear his subtle shadings, the long sustains, slight distortion, tasteful vibrato and hairpin bends that imbue each phrase. Coming out of a section containing glacial swells, crystal-clear harmonics and pure tones—stylistic traits associated with his teacher, Raoul Björkenheim—the timbral change is particularly effective. In this trio, no member is subservient, another group attribute demonstrated by this crucial musical episode. Schuller, who'd been demonstrating his formidable arco skills, begins to vamp, changing each repetition to suit Bier's accented and multihued percussives.

This entire review could be devoted to discussing this interpretation, so numerous are its changes in mood and color, but there's a lot more on offer. Highlights include the blues-inflected rock-solid groove of Kalima's "Parasites," where he demonstrates his subtle comping and fluid soloing. A cooler aesthetic opens "Very Early," as might be expected, but the results are never stagnant, largely due to Bier's intricate brushwork, Schuller's sensitive pizzicato and a particularly tasty solo. The trio breathes simultaneously as dynamics swell and fade, the varied and tasteful interaction keeping interest high.

The closer, a skewed updating of "Watermelon Man," finds Schuller offering another fine solo but flexing his rather small rap muscles. His faux-macho, heavily accented delivery and clichéd lyrics are what might happen if the butcher from the PBS show decided that a foray into hip hop was in order. "Who let the watermelon man out" indeed! It's cute though, which is all it was meant to be, and after a fantastic disc, such indulgences afford a chuckle.

Track Listing: Very Early; Johannes Kostaja; Falling Grace; Checker; Wise One; Parasites; Allen and Stanton; Watermelon Man.

Personnel: Kalle Kalima: guitar; Ed Schuller: bass; Ernst Bier: drums.

Title: Jazz Parasites: Very Early | Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Jazzwerkstatt Berlin-brandenburg E.v.

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Album Reviews
Live Reviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
High Noon

High Noon

ACT Music
2016

buy
 

Out to Lynch

TUM Records
2013

buy
Out To Lynch

Out To Lynch

TUM Records
2012

buy
Jazz Parasites: Very Early

Jazz Parasites: Very...

Jazzwerkstatt Berlin-brandenburg E.v.
2010

buy

Related Articles

Read Sheer Reckless Abandon Album Reviews
Sheer Reckless Abandon
By John Kelman
May 19, 2019
Read Gratitude: Stage Door Live @ the Z Album Reviews
Gratitude: Stage Door Live @ the Z
By Jack Bowers
May 19, 2019
Read To My Brothers Album Reviews
To My Brothers
By Victor L. Schermer
May 19, 2019
Read Social Music Album Reviews
Social Music
By Roger Farbey
May 19, 2019
Read Circle Inside The Folds Album Reviews
Circle Inside The Folds
By John Eyles
May 18, 2019
Read Momentum Album Reviews
Momentum
By Jerome Wilson
May 18, 2019
Read Bonsai Club Album Reviews
Bonsai Club
By Roger Farbey
May 18, 2019