145

Matt Turner: Patina

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
No one will ever accuse cellist Matt Turner of being predictable. His work in a variety of situations (on cello, piano, and voice) has a restless quality that renders it ephemeral and elusive. Both of his solo records have been very adventurous in approach. Last year's fine Outside In (with pianist John Harmon) represented an high point for Turner—a recording of sustained clarity and vision.

On Patina, Turner turns inward. This record consists of fourteen solo cello improvisations, all heavily processed in real time. (For an striking antecedent to this sort of work, look to eclectic violinist Jon Rose.) It's essential to note that the pieces on Patina were not spliced, edited, or doctored up in the studio. (Four are overdubs, however.) So what you hear retains the spark of creation in the moment, and that endows the music with both inspiration and vulnerability.

The cellist approaches his instrument in very unconventional ways on this disc. The opener, "Scraps," features odd circular scratching noises that shuffle up and down the midrange, rarely settling into any sort of groove or formation. Scratches, cuts, and various glitches dot the piece. It's a declaration of independence, asserting freedom from convention. Accordingly, it requires a step back from the usual jazz norms. Patina is more about soundscape, as evinced through texture, color, and the unpredictable stroke of the brush, than it is about tunefulness.

While the opener may be a bit turbulent, it leads to lovely, subtle variations in color. The very quiet "Grain" has an undulating wave-like quality that suggests the wash of the surf. "Drez" rings out with bell-like clarity, closely resembling the odd, deep resonance of a Tibetan prayer bowl. "Space Cathedral," which sounds like its title, has the most striking melodic character of any piece on the record.

Patina is not for the faint of heart, but it's a very creative and often revealing document. Of course, there's a certain amount of bewilderment involved in the listening process, but the record is more about question than answer.

Contact Fever Pitch on the web.

Track Listing: Scraps; VjT; Mx c2L; Grain; Zkronque; Buoyant; Sus; Palimpsest; LF2 / p; Shro; Drez; Space Cathedral; Q; Drawn and Quartered.

Personnel: Matt Turner: silent cello and electronics.

Title: Patina | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: Fever Pitch Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Album Reviews
Read more articles
 

To the Moon

Ayler Records
2010

buy
Dada Ear Ink

Dada Ear Ink

Fever Pitch Records
2005

buy
Patina

Patina

Fever Pitch Records
2005

buy
Patina

Patina

Fever Pitch Records
2002

buy
 

Outside In

Stellar Sound
2002

buy
Crushed Smoke

Crushed Smoke

Tautology
2001

buy

Related Articles

Read Live at I.C.U.U. Album Reviews
Live at I.C.U.U.
By Karl Ackermann
June 16, 2019
Read 789 Miles Album Reviews
789 Miles
By David A. Orthmann
June 16, 2019
Read Follow Me Album Reviews
Follow Me
By Roger Farbey
June 16, 2019
Read You Get What You Give Album Reviews
You Get What You Give
By Ljubinko Zivkovic
June 16, 2019
Read Play The Bird And The Bee Album Reviews
Play The Bird And The Bee
By Dan Bilawsky
June 15, 2019
Read Appleblueseagreen Album Reviews
Appleblueseagreen
By Dan McClenaghan
June 15, 2019
Read The Rolling Thunder Revue: The 1975 Live Recordings Album Reviews
The Rolling Thunder Revue: The 1975 Live Recordings
By Doug Collette
June 15, 2019