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Trumpeter Peter Evans sports an astonishing technique no two ways about that. His musical language is closest to that of Bill Dixon, who pioneered similarly inclusive and expansive approaches to sound in the mid '60s. Whether or not Evans will achieve Dixon's maturity and broad compositional scope remains to be seen, but these two discs present the young virtuoso as inventive and exploratory in his own right.
Evans' Quartet disc is more firmly 'in the tradition', which means only that notated material is present. Check out the Braxton-esque melody of "3/4 for the group take on complex structures that merge improvisation with melodic disjunction. Then, for an even more nostalgic take on postmodernism, listen through the head of "Sinatra , Evans' trumpet line doubled by bassist Tom Blancarte at a lower octave, as with "3/4 . The ever inventive and timbrally expansive guitarist Brandon Seabrook completes the picture with sumptuous '30s chordal accompaniment. Here, Evans functions largely in linear mode, demonstrating whimsical allegiance to Clifford Brown's speed and Woody Shaw's tone.
The Right Moves allow no such glances backward. Like a slightly tamer Fushitsusha, they take no prisoners, each track a blistering display of dynamic shifts, whiplash rhythmic precision and timbral prowess, all in incredibly brief snatches of time. Like much of Evans' justly acclaimed solo Psi release, This Is Your Message's first ten seconds demonstrate his huge arsenal of shrills, airy pops, ghost notes and high-register exhortations. For more, there are the almost human moans and whines that open the final piece, supported by guitar slides (Nini Morgia) and percussive rustlings (Kevin Shea). Like Seabrook, Morgia's approach to the guitar is fluid, both in terms of technique and sonic innovation. Indeed, these three players' shared vision of disciplined diversity keep the disc from getting stale, which it might have done in less capable hands. The beautifully droney opening of "Chubby Bartender is a case in point, a moment of sublime contrast to what precedes and follows it.
Tracks and Personnel
Tracks: !!!!!; Bodies and Souls; How Long; Tag; Frank Sinatra; Iris; The 3/4 Tune.
Personnel: Peter Evans: trumpet; Brandon Seabrook: guitar and electronics; Tom Blancarte: bass; Kevin Shea: drums.
This Is Your Message
Personnel: Peter Evans: trumpet; Kevin Shea: drums; Ninni Morgia: guitar.
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me
I grew up listening to mainstream '70s rock then ended up on the staff at the college paper at San Diego State, and volunteered to review heavy metal LPs. My second semester, the music editor dropped a Fenton Robinson LP on my desk, Night Flight. You like metal; they play guitar--he plays guitar, the editor told me. If we don't run a review, Alligator Records is going to stop servicing us.
Night Flight opened up a whole new world for me--the blues led me, inevitably, to Basie, who led to Duke, who led to Mingus, who led to Miles, who led to ...