All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 (or more) and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

240

Paul Motian / Chris Potter / Jason Moran: Lost In A Dream

By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Paul Motian / Chris Potter / Jason Moran: Lost In A Dream Flitting like drunken fireflies, luminescent tones flutter out of a saxophone, tracing capricious, spasmodic lines. In the background, washes of cymbals and softly-brushed snare sweeps weave discretely fine-spun rhythms around a shy piano that is busy rocking drowsy chords to sleep. Fragmented, almost to the point of abstraction, the music nevertheless expands, ebb and flowing placidly like sea waves licking at a sandy beach, pulse-less yet its life beating strong.

If a modernist spin on the old cubist aesthetic appears to be the inspiration behind the cover artwork of Lost In A Dream, then the analogy may also very well apply to describe its aforementioned opening track. A floating yet structured piece, "Mode VI"'s swerving theme and indented cadence recalls Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso's pictorial experiments with multiple and mixed perspectives. Characterizing the pair's innovative brushwork, authors Sam Hunter and John Jacobus point out, in Modern Art (Prentice Hall, 1992), "No matter how fragmentary and remote, references to the object are still discernible." Interestingly, their phrase conveniently sums up the music conjured by deconstructionist drummer Paul Motian, expert blower Chris Potter and pianist Jason Moran during this live set at the Village Vanguard in February, 2009.

"Casino" encapsulates the spirit and atmosphere instilled by the trio throughout the recording. Gently guided by Moran's soft, velvety pedaling, Motian's rubato composition shares with the sleepy opener the same oneiric mood evoked in the metaphor of the album title's. Similarly shrouded in reverie, the slow, dozy pace of the beautiful "Birdsong" also fits the program's Morphean theme admirably well but with a straighter, more conventional conduct. As such, it is likely to become a fan favorite for its touching melancholy and charming lyricism.

As Motian has been found repeating himself from project to project with no real surprises, it is saxophonist extraordinaire Chris Potter who comes out sounding the freshest. In fact, his mere presence on this type of date speaks volume about his versatility and keen musicianship. Be it in meandering, dreamy constructs like "Blue Midnight" and "Casino," or on the set's sole energetic piece ("Ten"), his melodic inventiveness, perfect phrasing and rhythmic command makes this release all the more delightful.


Track Listing: Mode VI; Casino; Lost In A Dream; Blue Midnight; Be Careful It's My Heart; Birdsong; Ten; Drum Music; Abacus; Cathedral Song.

Personnel: Chris Potter: tenor saxophone; Jason Moran: piano; Paul Motian: drums.

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: ECM Records | Style: Free Improv/Avant-Garde


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Profiles
Extended Analysis
Profiles
Extended Analysis
Jazz Poetry
Interviews
Read more articles
ECM Recordings
ECM Recordings
ECM Records
2014
buy
[no cover]
Paul Motian
Soul Note
2013
buy
Paul Motian: Jack of Clubs
Paul Motian: Jack of...
Soul Note
2013
buy
Paul Motian: Paul Motian (Old & New Masters Edition)
Paul Motian: Paul...
ECM Records
2013
buy
The Windmills Of Your Mind
The Windmills Of Your...
Winter & Winter
2011
buy
Paul Motian Trio 2000 + Two: Live at the Village Vanguard, Volume lll
Paul Motian Trio 2000...

2011
buy
Bill Frisell Bill Frisell
guitar
Joe Lovano Joe Lovano
saxophone
Enrico Rava Enrico Rava
trumpet
Don Cherry Don Cherry
trumpet
Kenny Wheeler Kenny Wheeler
trumpet
Fred Hersch Fred Hersch
piano

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.