274

Cindy Blackman: Music For The New Millennium

Mark F. Turner By

Sign in to view read count
Cindy Blackman: Music For The New Millennium A fierce and dynamic performer, Cindy Blackman is one of the top female drummers around, well-known for her years with cult rock icon Lenny Kravitz. A far cry from gigs for thousands of screaming fans, her muse is rooted in jazz, where she is an equally intrepid craftsperson having released a number of noteworthy, if lesser-known titles including High Note's In The Now (1998) with Ravi Coltrane, Jacky Terrasson and Ron Carter, and Someday (2001) with her current band—saxophonist J.D. Allen, keyboardist Carlton Holmes and bassist George Mitchell.

Music For The New Millennium is a two-CD release that's thoroughly engaging. Touching mainstream swing, urban grooves and progressive music, this is a fine showing for Blackman's skills and band that pushes the edges yet remains accessible.

Blackman is a drummer of agility and thunder, bringing to mind the propulsion and energy of the great Tony Williams, but clearly with her own identity. She solos with the music, always in motion— flurries, drum rolls, shuffles, and heavy backbeats—at times a constant barrage of sound, at other times pure finesse.

"Abracadabra magically sets a progressive stance with Holmes' Fender Rhodes providing icy chords, Allen's tenor the warmth, and Blackman and Mitchell the heat. Many of the tunes such as "Seven and "Black Town, have vamps where the musicians solo freely around ostinato pasterns.

Detroit tenorist J.D. Allen is a delightful surprise with a superb style that's warm and emotional, flowing with sophistication like seminal players Ron Blake and Ravi Coltrane. A cool yet dignified street persona fills the music as Blackman offers respects to her influences: "For Wayne, for Wayne Shorter; "Black Town, for Harlem; and the brilliant "Insight pieces for family—spanning from "Right Now to "The Future —the five tracks marked by a contagious repeating melody in various tempos and interpretations, each passionate and soulful.

Disc two is even more ear-provoking than disc one, opening with the gorgeous ballad "Sam Pei, where the aesthetic of each instrument is artfully captured. Blackman's obliterating drum solo on "The Drums and Me is contrasted by her delicate and intricate traps on "Star In Eyes, where Holmes spreads a blanket of tinkling keys. Hard-hitting riffs drive "All I Want, while the final "Insight piece, "The Future, reaches a galaxy expanding climax and the recording closes with Blackman's personal snapshot in time, the hymnal "Come to the Garden Alone. A stupendous and inspiring release.


Track Listing: CD1: Abracadabra; Seven; Insight (Past Wisdom); Letter To Theo; Black Town ((For Harlem); Insight (Right Now); For Wayne (Shorter That Is); The Infinite (For My Grandmother); THE ONE (For God). CD2: Sam Pei; The Drums And Me; Stars In Eyes; Insight (From My Father); Theme To Ginger's Rise; All I Want; Insight (From My Mother); Insight (The Future); Come To The Garden Alone.

Personnel: Cindy Blackman: drums; J.D. Allen: tenor saxophone; Carlton Holmes: Fender Rhodes, synthesizers; George Mitchell: bass.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Sacred Sound Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2) CD/LP/Track Review TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2)
by Nicola Negri
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Goat Man & The House of the Dead CD/LP/Track Review Goat Man & The House of the Dead
by Dave Wayne
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by James Nadal
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read "Across the Universe" CD/LP/Track Review Across the Universe
by Dave Wayne
Published: May 1, 2016
Read "Dixie Chicken" CD/LP/Track Review Dixie Chicken
by Sacha O'Grady
Published: May 28, 2016
Read "King of the Blues" CD/LP/Track Review King of the Blues
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 27, 2016
Read "Nearness And You, Duets and Improvisations" CD/LP/Track Review Nearness And You, Duets and Improvisations
by Mark Corroto
Published: April 13, 2016
Read "Dark Territory" CD/LP/Track Review Dark Territory
by Mark F. Turner
Published: June 15, 2016
Read "The Three Voices" CD/LP/Track Review The Three Voices
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 19, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

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!

Buy it!