380

Paul Motian: Live at the Village Vanguard, Vol. II

By

Sign in to view read count
Paul Motian: Live at the Village Vanguard, Vol. II This is indoor music: music for contemplating, sitting and smoking, letting it smolder in the ears and grow. Paul Motian, the veteran drummer whose mature, idiosyncratic percussive language has been shaped by years of playing with Bill Evans, Paul Bley, Keith Jarrett and others, shines on this album: he seems completely at home, considered, even slow at some points. Nearly a generation after he recorded the legendary session at the Village Vanguard with Evans in 1961, Motian returned with his Trio 2000 ensemble, a group with FLY (bass) and Chris Potter (tenor saxophone). They were joined by "+ Two," really + Three: pianist Masabumi Kikuchi, alto saxophonist Greg Osby and violist Mat Maneri, though Osby or Maneri sit out while the other is playing. This music is very different from that of Evans all those years ago: less rhythmic and more percussive, less melodic and more tonal, less virtuosic and more personal.

This album was preceded by another tremendous release from the same run and it delivers more of the same; frankly one wonders why the two discs weren't released as a two-CD set. Motian's atmospheric, freely flowing drumming is perfectly paired with Kikuchi's highly chromatic harmonic underpinnings, turning standard (even hackneyed) tunes, such as "'Till We Meet Again" and "If You Could See Me Now," into emotional, angularly improvised compositions, usually featuring extended solos by Potter and Kikuchi. Motian and Grenadier often take a back seat, highlighting the interaction between Potter and Kikuchi, which reaches a climax in the transition between Motian's "Ten" and "Divider." (Listening with good headphones reveals Kikuchi's humming, which adds to the intensity of his improvisation.)

Maneri is less prevalent on this disc, appearing only on a few tracks; his solo on "Fiasco," however, is perfectly timed and blends very nicely with Potter's tenor. His viola's tone recalls a very dark Stephane Grappelli, had he been less obsessed with fast licks and more with expressive, unusual improvisation. That cool, creative sentiment dominates this album and makes it a true pleasure to digest.

Track Listing: Till we meet again; Sunflower; The third walk; Ten; The divider; If you could see me now; Fiasco.

Personnel: Paul Motian: drums; Chris Potter: tenor saxophone; Larry Grenadier: bass; Greg Osby: alto saxophone; Mat Manieri: viola; Masabumi Kikuchi: piano.

Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Winter & Winter | Style: Free Improv/Avant-Garde


Shop

More Articles

Read Adam's Apple CD/LP/Track Review Adam's Apple
by Greg Simmons
Published: April 26, 2017
Read Dreamsville CD/LP/Track Review Dreamsville
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 26, 2017
Read April CD/LP/Track Review April
by Jerome Wilson
Published: April 26, 2017
Read Small World CD/LP/Track Review Small World
by Edward Blanco
Published: April 26, 2017
Read High Time CD/LP/Track Review High Time
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 26, 2017
Read Rags And Roots CD/LP/Track Review Rags And Roots
by James Nadal
Published: April 25, 2017
Read "El Viaje" CD/LP/Track Review El Viaje
by James Nadal
Published: September 14, 2016
Read "Trickster" CD/LP/Track Review Trickster
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 24, 2017
Read "Together, As One" CD/LP/Track Review Together, As One
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 7, 2016
Read "Parrhésie" CD/LP/Track Review Parrhésie
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 17, 2016
Read "The Unity Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Unity Sessions
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 7, 2016
Read "Bekkenjordet" CD/LP/Track Review Bekkenjordet
by Troy Dostert
Published: April 15, 2017

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!