Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

309

Ingrid Laubrock & Liam Noble: Let's Call This...

Chris May By

Sign in to view read count
Though she's frequently heard on soprano saxophone, which she uses throughout this vividly painted little masterpiece of a disc, bandleader and composer Ingrid Laubrock has probably made her biggest impact as an instrumentalist on tenor. On the most recent release by her own band, Forensic (F-IRE, 2004), and in live performances with her own quintet and Polar Bear, the wild, off-the-page textural vocabulary Laubrock has created on the bigger horn has arrived amongst the most thrilling sounds in jazz.

But Laubrock plays with character on other horns, too, particularly, though not exclusively, the soprano. The low-down, low-register, baritone funk of "BLT" (on Forensic) was also a feature of her guest appearances with Tony Haynes' Grand Union Orchestra in its Bhangra, Babylon & The Blues concerts two years ago. (Laubrock emerged back-lit and Krishna-like from a cloud of dry ice, rumbling like a belligerent Gator Jackson.) At the same performances, she locked altos in a good humoured but gladiatorial cutting contest with fellow guest Jason Yarde.

Laubrock features the soprano centre-stage with her own band, with Monica Vasconcelos' NOIS 4, and in most guest situations, and Let's Call This..., a duo recording with the remarkable and empathetic pianist Liam Noble, shows why she loves it so much. As on the tenor, she combines sonic innovation with distinctive, often quite dark, harmonic invention. Her technique is breathtaking, and the broken notes, multiphonics, swoops, leaps, hollers and roars are perfectly articulated and controlled. And there's always structure in her improvisations, however out there and risky things get.

Daring, high-wire saxophone juju flashes throughout the album, but much of the time Laubrock and Noble focus on extended harmonic and rhythmic explorations of the tunes. There are six modern jazz standards (two by Monk, one each by Mingus, Ellington, Konitz and Dietz/Schwartz) and six originals. Most of the standards last around seven minutes, the originals around three. Polar Bear drummer and leader Sebastian Rochford adds subtle electronic modifications to four of the originals (the trippy, treble-register, piano mutations on "Spells" are especially effective).

Though not without some characteristically dark and edgy corners (it wouldn't be Laubrock without them), the album is an exhilaratingly playful and celebratory affair. Laubrock and Noble have worked together often enough to feel at ease in each other's company—but not so often as to lose a heightened sense of adventure.

After the whirlwind innovations of the last two years, Let's Call This... feels, in the best sense, like the restlessly exploratory Laubrock is pausing to reassess the eternal verities of classic tunes and changes, before setting off into unmapped territory once more. It's a trip alright, and who knows where the next stop will be.

Visit Ingrid Laubrock and Liam Noble on the web.


Track Listing: We See; Spells; Alone Together; The Electric Ant; Duke Ellington's Sound Of Love; Let's Call This; Peonies (After Hiroshige); Cells; Angelica; I'm At Your Throat Now; Subconscious-lee; Bells.

Personnel: Ingrid Laubrock: soprano saxophone; Liam Noble: piano; Sebastian Rochford: genetic modifications (2,4,8,10).

Title: Let's Call This... | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Babel Label


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Rain or Shine CD/LP/Track Review Rain or Shine
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Copenhagen Live 1964 CD/LP/Track Review Copenhagen Live 1964
by John Sharpe
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Somewhere Glimmer CD/LP/Track Review Somewhere Glimmer
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Lighthouse CD/LP/Track Review Lighthouse
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Lattice CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by John Sharpe
Published: December 14, 2017
Read I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert CD/LP/Track Review I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 14, 2017
Read "Mirror, Mirror" CD/LP/Track Review Mirror, Mirror
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 3, 2017
Read "Along The Way" CD/LP/Track Review Along The Way
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 5, 2017
Read "Bright Moments" CD/LP/Track Review Bright Moments
by Victor L. Schermer
Published: April 19, 2017
Read "Juxtaposition" CD/LP/Track Review Juxtaposition
by David A. Orthmann
Published: March 9, 2017
Read "Short Notice" CD/LP/Track Review Short Notice
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 30, 2017
Read "Happiness!" CD/LP/Track Review Happiness!
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 3, 2017

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!