141

Bennie Maupin: Penumbra

By

Sign in to view read count
Bennie Maupin: Penumbra One of the true challenges faced by the creative artist is the need to evolve over the course of a career, to respect the past while staring unflinchingly toward the future. This is especially true of improvising musicians, who do this while inextricably in the moment, creating structure from chaos, revealing the future in the blinding light of the present. Multi-instrumentalist Bennie Maupin takes on this challenge with Penumbra, a release that marks him as one of the true visionaries living today. Maupin is no stranger to jazz stages; he's been performing professionally for almost fifty years. He's kept a low profile throughout his career, but it seems that his days in the jazz periphery are over.

Penumbra is a wonderful album, thoughtfully conceived and masterfully executed. Maupin's quartet of bassist Darek "Oles Oleszkiewicz, drummer Michael Stephans and percussionist Daryl Munyungo Jackson play as one, establishing delicate settings that quietly belie the deep groove that prevails. The album's name comes from astronomy, referring to a partial shadow between regions of complete shadow and complete illumination and aptly describes the music it contains. Maupin masterfully toys with shades in "Walter Bishop Jr., his tenor a ray of light cutting through Oles' shadowy line.

On record and live at The Standard in April, 2007, "Message to Prez stands out as the highlight. The tune is a meditation on a line that Lester Young may very well have played, albeit in an entirely different setting. In unison with Oles' bass, Maupin states the melody before improvising with sublime restraint and creativity. His lines hang like wisps of smoke over the vamping bass and brushed shuffle, diatonic except for moments of aching, glowing dissonance.

Track Listing: Neophilia 2006; Walter Bishop Jr.; Level Three; Blinkers; Penumbra; Mirror Image; Message to Prez; Tapping Things; Vapors; One For Eric Dolphy; See The Positive; Trope on a Rope; The 12th Day; Equal Justice.

Personnel: Bennie Maupin: saxes, bass clarinet, flute, piano; Darek Oles Oleszkiewicz: bass; Michael Stephans: drums; Daryl Munyungo Jackson: percussion.

Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Cryptogramophone | Style: Beyond Jazz


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 "Shapes" CD/LP/Track Review Shapes
by Mark Sullivan
Published: September 6, 2016
Read "Los Guachos V" CD/LP/Track Review Los Guachos V
by Budd Kopman
Published: July 1, 2016
Read "Argonautica" CD/LP/Track Review Argonautica
by Troy Collins
Published: November 14, 2016
Read "Serpentines" CD/LP/Track Review Serpentines
by John Sharpe
Published: December 15, 2016
Read "New Affirmation" CD/LP/Track Review New Affirmation
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: February 6, 2017
Read "Crystal Moth" CD/LP/Track Review Crystal Moth
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 1, 2017

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!