All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

412

Dapp Theory: Layers Of Chance

By

Sign in to view read count
The Dapp's back!

After a five years hiatus since the brilliant Y'all Just Don't Know (Concord, 2003), Dapp Theory returns with yet another stellar recording in Layers Of Chance.

Anchored by ex-Steve Coleman acolyte Andy Milne and drum wiz Sean Rickman, the quintet now sports a few new faces in bassist Christopher Tordini, reedman Loren Stillman and percussive poet John Moon, the latter joining after Kokayi's unfortunate departure. 24-year old Kenny Grohowski tolls the troops on the road in lieu of Rickman. Of course, as Kokayi's charismatic presence goes hardly unnoticed, Moon's diametrically different approach to MC'ing truly shines here. In fact, it veers the band into an emotionally deeper tangent previous line-ups had not ventured into.

For example, whereas Kokayi scored big with spectacular, machine gun performances like "Bermuda Triangle" and witty social critiques like "Trickle Down" and "Bad Air," Moon engages in less gung-ho, more sensitive exchanges, docilely drawing one into his words instead of spewing flamboyant and dashingly lashed out diatribes.

Such is the case in "Blackout," in which he cleverly plays with lexical fields pertaining to vision and perception. His tense, indecisive vocals places the narrator—a desperately lost, blinded soul searching to, in sum, "see through" the complexities and limitations of social interaction—in an emotive, insecurity-building spiral/revolving door, an effect also imparted to the captive listener.

That said, fans will still find the band's grabbing, MBase-fueled grooves in "After The Fact," with its perky piano/soprano sax interlude, as well as in the ostinato-driven "SOS," and "Deja Vu," a road-tested piece that encapsulates the group's musical spirit.

A multi-section composition, the track journeys back and forth (enhancing the feeling of deja vu the tune's text recounts) through diversely enthralling textural layers and atmospheres that Tordini's burly bass, Milne's spatial keyboards pads and Rickman's ricocheting, jerky beats create through colloquial interaction. The acute rhythmic sensitivity the players display in the manner they phrase this music, as well as the infatuating, offbeat thrust that results above which Milne's oblique, razor sharp motives, zigzag, has one ask rather humbly; "how in God's name do they do that?"

Augmented by two guests female vocalists brought in to harmonize entrancing, 3-against-4 polyrhythmic rounds above its minimalist theme and accompanying 16th note pattern, the title track's patchwork-like, collaged density dissipates to make room for a surprise, thinner-sounding piano/sax interlude, as well as for Moon and Stillman's solos, the latter in a relaxed yet rather inspired one. As a matter of fact, Stillman's elastic time feel adds another, welcomed dimension to the music's rhythmic flow.

If the strength of the performances herein is a token of what audiences can expect on upcoming live dates, than expect to be mesmerized and spend one exciting evening.

Track Listing: After The Fact; Blackout; Bodybag For Martin; SOS; If You Count It; Layers Of Chance; Tracing The Page; Bird Calls; Three Duets; Monk Walks; Deja Vu.

Personnel: Andy Milne: piano & keyboards; Loren Stillman: alto sax, soprano sax, flute & clarinet: John Moon: percussive poetry: Chris Tordini: bass; Sean Rickman: drums & percussion; Gord Grdina: oud (3,9); Latyana Hall: voice (6); Becca Stevens: voice (6).

Title: Layers Of Chance | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: ObliqSound

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Layers Of Chance

Layers Of Chance

ObliqSound
2008

buy
 

Y

Concord Music Group
2003

buy
 

Y'all Just Don't Know

Concord Music Group
2003

buy

Related Articles

Read Murals CD/LP/Track Review
Murals
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 20, 2018
Read Cosmic Language CD/LP/Track Review
Cosmic Language
by Chris May
Published: May 20, 2018
Read More Songs About Error And Shame CD/LP/Track Review
More Songs About Error And Shame
by Friedrich Kunzmann
Published: May 20, 2018
Read Jubilation! Celebrating Cannonball Adderley CD/LP/Track Review
Jubilation! Celebrating Cannonball Adderley
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 20, 2018
Read Earth CD/LP/Track Review
Earth
by Chris May
Published: May 20, 2018
Read Vegir CD/LP/Track Review
Vegir
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 19, 2018
Read "Genesis, Mystery And Magic" CD/LP/Track Review Genesis, Mystery And Magic
by Mark Sullivan
Published: July 6, 2017
Read "Exotica" CD/LP/Track Review Exotica
by Chris May
Published: March 19, 2018
Read "Sunshine! Quartet" CD/LP/Track Review Sunshine! Quartet
by Glenn Astarita
Published: June 13, 2017
Read "Before Dawn" CD/LP/Track Review Before Dawn
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 30, 2018
Read "Heptagon" CD/LP/Track Review Heptagon
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 23, 2017
Read "Crossing" CD/LP/Track Review Crossing
by Geno Thackara
Published: June 25, 2017