46

Kidd Jordan: On Fire

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
Kidd Jordan: On Fire Incendiary similes have always proven popular as descriptors of free jazz. Indeed, "Fire Music," has been used as a label for the whole genre. New Orleans-based saxophonist Kidd Jordan's 2006 outing, the superb Palm of Soul (AUM Fidelity), essayed a meditative calm, music which couldn't be more different from the accurately named 50-minute studio session On Fire. While bassist Harrison Bankhead and drummer Rocker Warren Smith would be eminently suited to a contemplative, even melodically inclined date, here they too pursue more rough-hewn ends.

As customary for Jordan, each cut is spontaneously created, relying on the participants' quick wits and instincts honed over 55 plus years of activity in not only avant jazz, but also, as in the case of Jordan, stints backing R&B royalty like Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder. Jordan's signature falsetto wail—an uncompromising but deeply felt sound—permeates each track although the resultant blowing is more than one- dimensional. He spikes his unbridled expression with insistent riffs or reflective codas, around which his colleagues rally and create emphatic conclusions. On "We Are All Indebted To Each Other," the combination of both approaches, with a beautiful luminous tone, makes for a strikingly affecting conclusion.

Smith's artistry is orchestral in scope, demonstrating mastery of timbre and rhythm. He effects an inspiring change of pace when he switches to shimmering vibes. Bankhead deploys a deep buzzing thrum, like a hive of bees, best heard in an extended flickering feature towards the end of "The Evil Eye," when he evokes flamenco stylings. He gets a name check all his own on the soulful "Harrison Carries Out the Coffin" where he accompanies another fleet-fingered solo with a melodic hum, leading to a richly bluesy Second Line finale.

Jordan and his band burn brightly, their blend of joyous abandon and searing intensity prove hard to beat.

Track Listing: Officer, That Big Knife Cuts My Sax Reeds; The Evil Eye; We Are All Indebted To Each Other; Harrison Carries Out The Coffin.

Personnel: Kidd Jordan: tenor saxophone; Harrison Bankhead: bass; Warren Smith: drums, vibraphone.

Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Engine | Style: Dixieland/New Orleans/Swing


Related Video

Shop

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Further Explorations" CD/LP/Track Review Further Explorations
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 23, 2016
Read "Blackwater" CD/LP/Track Review Blackwater
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: September 27, 2016
Read "The Long Journey Home" CD/LP/Track Review The Long Journey Home
by James Nadal
Published: March 17, 2017
Read "Bridges From The East" CD/LP/Track Review Bridges From The East
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 29, 2016
Read "Very Early" CD/LP/Track Review Very Early
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 23, 2016
Read "The Long Road" CD/LP/Track Review The Long Road
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 30, 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!