Learn How

Help improve All About Jazz

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. For $20, we'll hide those pesky Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

113

Taeko Kunishima: Late Autumn

Lewis J Whittington By

Sign in to view read count
Taeko Kunishima: Late Autumn Taeko Kunishima's Late Autumn starts with a wandering solo entrance that engages the composer/pianist's stream of jazz style. It instantly feels both musically liberated and firmly rooted in multi-era reverence. This prologue, "To the Hebrides," open an otherwise freewheeling narrative by Kunishima and her dazzling lineup.

After the opening track the set ignites with the seven-minute scorcher, "Return To Life." Inside of its retro-progressive ascensions, shakuhachi virtuoso Clive Bell evokes a Japanese classicism which then vanishes, jarring the imagination. Sean Corby's trumpet and flugelhorn slash through like a comet, tempered by Bell's flute, essaying a thrilling, primal statement. The atmospherics are a fine example of Kunishima's style, mixing eras with sublime naturalism while employing dramatic cultural markers. She has a concrete points of musical view and isn't afraid to carve out unexpected territory.

"The Waves" features a swirling percussive drive by way of Bell's flute, which conjures a reflexive, cathartic jazz pool, then shifting as Corby's horn crashes in like a tidal wave. "Kimie" has an afterhours feel, and lifts the harrowing mood with Kunishima's meandering before being sent aloft by Bell's firebird flute and Corby's runaway horn.

A breather comes with the sinewy chamber jazz of "Spring Rain," with Kunishima, Bell and bassist Paul Moylan enchanting and vibrant; "Rain Sketch" is equally compelling, with a darker, more aggressive hard bop feel that seems ponderous, as it retreats to cinematic effects and keyboard artiness. The elegiac "Dusk," featuring Bell's shakuhachi, has its musical roots in antiquity, as Kunishima's strums the piano wires and Moylan essays lush sonorities, next to the bassist's bone-dry bowing, for arresting contrasts. There is a haunting and haunted serenity in the after burns.

"Promise," a filler track, seems a bit out of place, but acts as a breather before the title track, with the plaintively elegant vocal by Rio Roberts. The great interplay of Kunishima's lyricism around her whispering vocals leaves hope that this is a teaser for a full session next time around.

Late Autumn doesn't have a studio feel, and is a well-mixed session engineered by Matthew Collis and produced by Bell, recorded at 33 Jazz Studio in May 2011. Kunishima doesn't take a larger chunk of the musical spotlight with her band—even though, as this CD repeatedly indicates, she has a lot to say. The effects of the dual streams display the composer's intoxicating moods and unexpected atmospherics.


Track Listing: To The Hebrides; Return to Life; The Waves; Kimie; Spring Rain; Rain Sketch; Dusk; Promise; Late Autumn.

Personnel: Taeko Kunishima: piano; Clive Bell: shakuhachi, flute; Sean Corby: trumpet, flugelhorn; Paul Moylan: double bass; Maxwell Hallett: drums; David Ross: cajon, percussion; Rio Roberts: vocals (9).

Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: 33 Jazz | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Take Five With...
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Chick Corea Chick Corea
piano
Tom Tallitsch Tom Tallitsch
sax, tenor
Mark Colby Mark Colby
saxophone
Diane Hubka Diane Hubka
vocalist
Terry Plumeri Terry Plumeri
bass, acoustic
Nate Birkey Nate Birkey
trumpet
Quintin Gerard W. Quintin Gerard W.
saxophone

More Articles

Read Hear & Now CD/LP/Track Review Hear & Now
Read Known-Unknown CD/LP/Track Review Known-Unknown
Read Live At Vilnius Jazz Festival CD/LP/Track Review Live At Vilnius Jazz Festival
Read Stinger CD/LP/Track Review Stinger
Read Binary CD/LP/Track Review Binary
Read Piano Song CD/LP/Track Review Piano Song
Read "Until Now" CD/LP/Track Review Until Now
Read "Lovers" CD/LP/Track Review Lovers
Read "Romance 76" CD/LP/Track Review Romance 76
Read "Natural" CD/LP/Track Review Natural
Read "Nearly Extinct" CD/LP/Track Review Nearly Extinct
Read "This Is Where I Live" CD/LP/Track Review This Is Where I Live

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Get Jazz Near You via email!

Enjoy the convenience of receiving a comprehensive listing of jazz events in your area every Thursday. It's free!