150

DJ Wally: Nothing Stays The Same

By

Sign in to view read count
DJ Wally: Nothing Stays The Same Thirsty Ear has consciously positioned itself at a median point between popular groove-based musics and exploratory jazz. On this release DJ Wally has at his disposal music played by some of the cream of free jazz players, including Matthew Shipp, David S. Ware and William Parker. Nothing Stays The Same is composed of a number of medium length pieces, four or five minutes long, interspersed with shorter pieces, the briefest of which spans a mere 23 seconds.

Peter Gordon’s rather gorgeous, breathy flute threads its way through synth washes which soon fade out, leaving the flute to pirouette against silence. “A Day In The Life” brings on the beats and then walks them all over the place. The organ stabs, David Ware’s sax and Gordon’s flute combine together then pause briefly for a short beatless section of pouring rain mingled with vibes, then the beat kicks in again, underpinned by William Parker’s warm, on-the-one bass. There’s a strong sense of a narrative musical portrait being painted in sound by DJ Wally.

By the fourth track, "Thirsty Thrills," it’s clear that one of DJ Wally’s methods is to separate out the melodic kernels of the players’ solos and deploy them into musical collages. This technique is concerned with creating fluent compositions and moods, rather than exploring the possibilities of rupture and surprise, as exemplified by many of the original sample-heavy hip-hop classics. Indeed, there is a precedent for this in jazz production in some of Teo Macero’s early 1970s work with Miles Davis.

Given the combative, driving nature of the free jazz which comprises part of Thirsty Ear’s output, it would be interesting to hear a merging of the twin poles of groove and free jazz, challenging though such a prospect would be to achieve. The eighth track, “Shipp Solo (Interlude),” illustrates this dichotomy: it is a short, but demanding acoustic piano solo unmediated by any form of intervention by DJ Wally. There are many possibilities still to explore in the meeting between DJ/producer and the new jazz.

It would be churlish, however, to judge Nothing Stays The Same on criteria which it has evidently not set out to abide by. The fourteen tracks here display a wide variety of fascinating soundscapes and atmospheres which over the course of the CD travel a path of from cinematic mise-en-scene (“A Day In The Life”) to the psychedelic (“Paint By Number”) and tripped-out (“A- Plus”). DJ Wally’s latest release is a musical travelogue which navigates spaces, times and moods not a million miles from DJ Spooky’s Optometry with grace and elan.


Track Listing: 1. Hello (Intro) 2. A Day in the Life 3. Nothing Stays The Same 4. Thirsty Thrills 5. Lessons Learned 6. A Night In Savannah 7. Out Of The Blue 8. Shipp Solo (Interlude) 9. Paint by Number 10. Shaken 11. I Spy 12. Maybe Just One (Interlude) 13. A-Plus 14. Medley

Personnel: Guillermo E. Brown: drums; Daniel Carter: reeds; Keef Destefano: samples; Peter Gordon: acoustic and electric flute; Khan Jamal: vibes; William Parker: bass; Matthew Shipp: piano David S. Ware: sax

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Thirsty Ear Recordings | Style: Fringes of Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "Live In The South Bronx" CD/LP/Track Review Live In The South Bronx
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 31, 2016
Read "Confirmation" CD/LP/Track Review Confirmation
by Nicola Negri
Published: September 5, 2016
Read "Alpha Centauri" CD/LP/Track Review Alpha Centauri
by Mark F. Turner
Published: July 4, 2016
Read "Closer To The Sun" CD/LP/Track Review Closer To The Sun
by Mark Corroto
Published: September 10, 2016
Read "Flawless Dust" CD/LP/Track Review Flawless Dust
by Mark Corroto
Published: June 20, 2016
Read "Breathe" CD/LP/Track Review Breathe
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 25, 2016

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!

Buy it!