Home » Jazz Articles » Chris Greco Trio: Pleiadian Call

161
Album Review

Chris Greco Trio: Pleiadian Call

By

Sign in to view read count
Chris Greco Trio: Pleiadian Call
A recurring topic in some jazz mainstream press these days involves the proliferation of independent labels and their potential to dull the music's quality with mediocrity. Somewhere in the argument lurks trust in infallible A&R departments with unlimited resources. Sony's not done signing people yet, but until they get around to Chris Greco, be happy he runs his own label. Pleiadian Call finds the multi-reed musician in good company with Chris Colangelo on bass and Kendall Kay on drums and percussion.

Greco wrote the nine compositions with serial and bitonal applications, yet he resorts to very little dissonance. He seems to have a love affair going with his instruments. He troubles to shape tones and keep the upper register sweet. Some players shoot darts up high; Greco blows pearls.

Greco plays clarinet on 'The Open Door,' which opens with Colangelo walking the bass and Kay swinging the cymbals. A sudden drop features Greco's impressionist side, his humid tone occupying the sparse melody. In a shift, the rhythm section returns to the smoky basement and Greco goes free. Toned cymbals and the tenor sax's toneless keys played in runs opens the title track. Greco takes off on tenor song, made dramatic by Kay's smart entrances and exits. A surprise minimal multitracked flute/clarinet arrangement splashes color on Greco's diverse extended solo. Greco swings, plays blues, plays out, plays extended, easily changing mood and tempo.

'Yvette' yields the kind of perfumed elegance you'd expect from its name. Opening with a sultry flute and clarinet duet, plus melodic playing by Colangelo, the tune becomes a tour de force for Greco's flute with a solid rhythm section support. Colangelo plucks a meaty solo with impressionistic percussion by Kay. 'Rains and Prayers' begins with Greco on tenor and Colangelo in unison with Kay on percussion. Colangelo jumps on an activating bass line and Greco runs with it. 'Innocence' employs a nonchalant theme, but goes through tempo changes with the leader on alto.

'The Flight of a Bird Leaves No Trace' won a Julius Hemphill Award for composition and again features Greco's flute. The mini-suite features a number of varying sections showing off his versatility with Colangelo interspersing plucked and bowed passages. 'Ask' ambles along with the leader on alto. Kay dusts off the brushes and Greco makes a run for it. 'Messages' gives him a medium tempo vehicle for tenor, and 'Afterthought' uses a flute and soprano arrangement to introduce an urbane theme for his swinging soprano solo.

For those fearing the Bite of the New, Greco and Co. provide a painless escort into exotic and unfamiliar territory. For the more seasoned listener, Greco makes driving high speed over twelve tone roads sound easy.

Website: www.ejn.it/greco

Track Listing

The Open Door, Pleiadian Call, Yvette, Rains and Prayers, Innocence, The Flight of a Bird Leaves No Trace, Ask, Messages, Afterthought

Personnel

Chris Greco, reeds; Chris Colangelo, contrabass; Kendall Kay, drums and percussion

Album information

Title: Pleiadian Call / Music for Trio | Year Released: 2002 | Record Label: gwsfourwinds records


FOR THE LOVE OF JAZZ
Get the Jazz Near You newsletter All About Jazz has been a pillar of jazz since 1995, championing it as an art form and, more importantly, supporting the musicians who create it. Our enduring commitment has made "AAJ" one of the most culturally important websites of its kind, read by hundreds of thousands of fans, musicians and industry figures every month.

WE NEED YOUR HELP
To expand our coverage even further and develop new means to foster jazz discovery and connectivity we need your help. You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky ads plus provide access to future articles for a full year. This winning combination will vastly improve your AAJ experience and allow us to vigorously build on the pioneering work we first started in 1995. So enjoy an ad-free AAJ experience and help us remain a positive beacon for jazz by making a donation today.

Post a comment about this album

Tags

More

Times Like These
Nica Carrington
Existential Moments
Joe McPhee / John Edwards / Klaus Kugel
Freedom
Albare & Co.

Popular

Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and includes upcoming jazz events near you.