335

Sam Rivers/Ben Street/Kresten Osgood/Bryan Carrott: Purple Violets

Rex  Butters By

Sign in to view read count
Sam Rivers/Ben Street/Kresten Osgood/Bryan Carrott: Purple Violets Sam Rivers has the energy of an old Taoist master. On his infrequent trips to Los Angeles, he's relaxed after gigs by mixing it up with local musicians all night long. One such after hours session resulted in Vista, with Adam Rudolph and Harris Eisenstadt. A night in Denmark resulted in Purple Violets, a collection of duets, trios, and quartets featuring Ben Street on bass, Kresten Osgood on drums, and occasionally Bryan Carrott on vibes. Rivers runs in good company—his gorgeous, evocative tone intact on tenor, soprano, and flute. His unique musical vision still mysterious and accessible, and his technical skill remains riveting.

A straight-ahead groover, "Solace," has Rivers joyfully dancing through the simmering rhythm section. Carrott takes a turn with some Monkish vibes, as Osgood and Street power the expedition. Ellington's "The Mooche" becomes a loping trio that launches Rivers' improvised soprano flights. Osgood turns in a very melodic drum solo. A stirring example of Rivers' sizzling free imagination, "Captain America" hurtles on invisible design. An obtuse samba, "Abalone," has Carrott again sharing the front line. Effortlessly negotiating the spiny theme, he emerges unscathed and sets the stage for Rivers, whose tenor sails a balance between virtuosity and taste.

Osgood and Street establish another mean momentum on "In Search of Buck Benny," and Rivers blows it down delighted. A duet with Osgood, "Turbulence" spins both musicians like adrenaline dust devils. Osgood dusts with the brushes on the languid "Where to Go?!?" Rivers sings soulfully on tenor, countered by Carrott's shimmering vibes. Rivers and Carrott square off for the apparently improvised "Space," a treacherous flash of inspiration that incinerates in four minutes. A moody flute trio, "Moderation," lets Rivers wring buckets of melody out of his instrument with halting rhythm accompaniment.

Purple Violets shows Rivers still at the top of one of the greatest games in jazz. Long may he rave.


Track Listing: Solace; Mooche; Captain America; Abalone; In Search of Buck Benny; Turbulence; Where to Go?!?; Moderation; Space.

Personnel: Sam Rivers: tenor, soprano saxophone, flute; Ben Street: bass; Kresten Osgood: drums; Bryan Carrott: vibraphone.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Stunt Records/Sundance Music | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read "The Great Jazz Gig In The Sky" CD/LP/Track Review The Great Jazz Gig In The Sky
by Roger Farbey
Published: July 8, 2016
Read "Roaring" CD/LP/Track Review Roaring
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 22, 2016
Read "Altadena" CD/LP/Track Review Altadena
by Mark F. Turner
Published: December 9, 2016
Read "Musings" CD/LP/Track Review Musings
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 2, 2016
Read "Inner Circle" CD/LP/Track Review Inner Circle
by Geannine Reid
Published: June 30, 2016
Read "Outside In" CD/LP/Track Review Outside In
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: July 9, 2016

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!

Buy it!