All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

156

Chris Greco Trio: Pleiadian Call

Rex  Butters By

Sign in to view read count
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: 1.The Open Door 6:58 2. Pleiadian Call 12:27 3. Yvette 7:49 4. Rains and Prayers 8:49 5.Innocence 6:16 6. The Flight of A Bird Leaves No Trace 10:53 7.Ask 5:44 8. Messages 6:11 9.Afterthought 5:55

Personnel: Chris Greco : Soprano, Alto, and Tenor Saxophones, Flute, Clarinet. Chris Colangelo : Contrabass. Kendall Kay : Drums, percussion.

Title: Pleiadian Call | Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: gwsfourwinds records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Shades CD/LP/Track Review
Shades
by Doug Collette
Published: October 20, 2018
Read Putumayo Presents: Ska Around the World CD/LP/Track Review
Putumayo Presents: Ska Around the World
by Jim Trageser
Published: October 20, 2018
Read Pattern Recognition CD/LP/Track Review
Pattern Recognition
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 20, 2018
Read Just This CD/LP/Track Review
Just This
by Chris Mosey
Published: October 20, 2018
Read Live at Sowieso CD/LP/Track Review
Live at Sowieso
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 20, 2018
Read Displaced Diaspora CD/LP/Track Review
Displaced Diaspora
by Chris May
Published: October 19, 2018
Read "Louise Baranger Plays The Great American Songbook" CD/LP/Track Review Louise Baranger Plays The Great American Songbook
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: February 6, 2018
Read "Is That So?" CD/LP/Track Review Is That So?
by Jerry D'Souza
Published: April 9, 2018
Read "The Groove Cubed" CD/LP/Track Review The Groove Cubed
by Geannine Reid
Published: October 29, 2017
Read "Why Not" CD/LP/Track Review Why Not
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 26, 2018
Read "Lattice" CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by Jerome Wilson
Published: May 15, 2018
Read "First Impressions" CD/LP/Track Review First Impressions
by Chris May
Published: March 29, 2018