139

Paul Bley - Gary Peacock - Paul Motian: Not Two, Not One

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Not Two, Not One is the first recording featuring Paul Bley, Paul Motian and Gary Peacock as a working unit since Bley’s 1970 ECM recording titled, “Paul Bley with Gary Peacock”. Twenty-nine years later they reunite as the overall results prove to be substantially rewarding. Aided by ECM’s trademark pristine sound quality and masterful engineering by James Farber, these gentlemen once again display the meritorious attributes befitting of their respective importance in modern jazz history.

On “Not Zero: In Three Parts”, Bley investigates the lower ranges of his piano with his left hand while constructing a melody that unfolds featuring swirling clusters and rich harmonies as he achieves near flawless symmetry, amid various angles. Here, Bley is the lab scientist devising formulas and equations as the rhythm section of Motian (d) and Peacock (b) emerge and propagate loose frisky rhythms as if they were floating in air. On “Fig Foot”, Bley has a blast merging disparate themes while incorporating motifs that at times, include a dash or two of the blues as Motian and Peacock know the economy of rhythms via their combined stylistic approach and artful execution. Motian is liable to drop a few bombs yet maintains the weaving flow through his crafty, multi-colored cymbal work. Throughout, Motian and Peacock expertly shift the rhythms, every which way! Bley’s melding of abstracts and richly textured harmonies continues on “Vocal Tracked” as he bridges the gap between the “outside” and mainstream balladry while employing poignant melodies – as Bley is a master at toying with our senses.

Paul Bley is an expert at merging lush romanticism with avant-garde or free jazz improvisation. Few are better at this game than Bley who remains within a class of his own.......On “Set Up Set” Gary Peacock shares the lead with Bley as this piece progresses nicely via alternating motifs, while the men jab, spar and gracefully create a tune that evolves from a fabric of incidental motifs! - Artistry in motion and music magic - ....

“Don’t You Know” is probing, sentimental and climactic as a brief fifty-five second reprise of “Not Zero; In One Part” closes out this impressive recording. While not quite as serious minded as some might surmise, Not Two, Not One celebrates the reunion of three musicians who have respectively added a few significant chapters to this legacy we call jazz! * * * * 1/2


Track Listing: Not Zero: In Three Parts, Entelechy, Now, Fig Foot, Vocal Tracked, Intente, Noosphere, Set Up Set, Dialogue Amour, Don't You Know, Not Zero: In One (62:37)

Personnel: Paul Bley- piano, Gary Peacock- bass, Paul Motian- drums

Title: Not Two, Not One | Year Released: 1999 | Record Label: ECM Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read The Way of It CD/LP/Track Review The Way of It
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Tag Book CD/LP/Track Review Tag Book
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Hide Ye Idols CD/LP/Track Review Hide Ye Idols
by Troy Collins
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Spavati, Mozda Sanjati CD/LP/Track Review Spavati, Mozda Sanjati
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn CD/LP/Track Review Estonian Suite: Live In Tallinn
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: November 18, 2017
Read Queen City Blues CD/LP/Track Review Queen City Blues
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: November 18, 2017
Read "Sing House" CD/LP/Track Review Sing House
by Jerry D'Souza
Published: October 2, 2017
Read "A Piece of the Apple" CD/LP/Track Review A Piece of the Apple
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 7, 2017
Read "Days Are Not Days" CD/LP/Track Review Days Are Not Days
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 20, 2016
Read "Cultural Capital" CD/LP/Track Review Cultural Capital
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 4, 2017
Read "Stinger" CD/LP/Track Review Stinger
by Joe Gatto
Published: January 22, 2017
Read "Instrumental" CD/LP/Track Review Instrumental
by Mark Sullivan
Published: June 10, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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

Please support out sponsor