249

Lowell Davidson: Lowell Davidson Trio

Jerry D'Souza By

Sign in to view read count
Lowell Davidson: Lowell Davidson Trio Pianist Lowell Davidson was a man of many parts. A biochemist, he found his muse in music and a strong one it was. He not only played the piano, he also played drums with the New York Art Quintet. He was into avant-garde and free jazz forays that he raised to a new level through his manipulation of notes. The last is evidenced in the marvelous imagery that rises on this, his only record. Lowell had Gary Peacock on bass and Milford Graves on percussion, a rare pairing that gives insight to his vision. They work well in the free flowing and changing dimensions he sets up, ready for his every whim, alert to his agile shifts.

Davidson could make the piano speak in many different ways. His mainstay was improvisation, and he let his right hand find founts of inspiration and invention in beautifully flitting notes as well as deep emphasis. Davidson did not let space dominate the intervals. He let it in judiciously. And when he did, Peacock and Graves moved in.

There are five tunes on the CD, but "Strong Tears" and "Stately 1" show how Davidson could ramp up improvisation and let melody set the path for him.

Davidson sets up a repeated vamp on "Strong Tears" as Graves thuds with bass kicks and lets the rhythm hit a lighter flex with his rim shots on the cymbals. Davidson ups the pace and the depth and as intensity storms in, he darts about before cutting loose and hammering home a welter of well conceived notes. But it is not all boil and fury. Peacock takes over, drawing in the propulsion and getting Davidson and Graves to soak in the calm. It's well-crafted, with the groundwork paved with rich imagination.

The delicate melody of "Stately 1" is gently unfolded by Davidson. Graves is a tad too busy on percussion, but he does not detract from the effect. Davidson gives the melody more momentum before he fragments it. From then on the trio rides the open range executing ideas at the turn of a beat. When they have satiated themselves, and the listener, they return to acknowledge the melody. Davidson has used his take-off point with affecting dexterity.

ESP says that they hope to acquire tapes of Davidson performing in Boston. Meanwhile this recording serves well to define the extraordinary talent that was Lowell Davidson.

Track Listing: L; Stately 1; Dunce; Ad Hoc; Strong Tears.

Personnel: Lowell Davidson: piano; Gary Peacock: bass; Milford Graves: percussion, drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: ESP Disk | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read LifeCycle CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Right Up On CD/LP/Track Review Right Up On
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Wanderlust CD/LP/Track Review Wanderlust
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Imagination CD/LP/Track Review Imagination
by Geannine Reid
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Evolution CD/LP/Track Review Evolution
by Greg Simmons
Published: April 23, 2017
Read On A Monday Evening CD/LP/Track Review On A Monday Evening
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 22, 2017
Read "Nwayo" CD/LP/Track Review Nwayo
by James Nadal
Published: June 24, 2016
Read "Amiira" CD/LP/Track Review Amiira
by John Eyles
Published: June 23, 2016
Read "April" CD/LP/Track Review April
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: January 29, 2017
Read "Seasons 1-4 Live" CD/LP/Track Review Seasons 1-4 Live
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: January 6, 2017
Read "Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau" CD/LP/Track Review Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau
by Geno Thackara
Published: January 16, 2017
Read "Concentric Circles" CD/LP/Track Review Concentric Circles
by Jerome Wilson
Published: July 30, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

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!