113

Steven Lantner / Mat Maneri: Reaching

Robert Spencer By

Sign in to view read count
This one is aptly named. Steven Lantner and Mat Maneri are indeed reaching: for new combinations, new sounds, new potentialities to realize. This is extraordinarily active music, lurching every which way, jumping, skating, flying, and swooping down into a brood. Microtonality - the huge caverns between the conventional pitches, explored by Mat Maneri's father Joe - is the order of the day on Lantner's "variable-pitch digital piano," and of course it's been the mainstay of Mat's violin from the beginning.

It is probably impossible with a violin and piano duo to avoid classical resonances - especially when the musicians are as astute and knowledgeable as Lantner and Maneri. These pieces recall the works of Schonberg and Ives, with some hints here and there of Cecil Taylor's work with Leroy Jenkins and others. Ornette Coleman's violin work comes inescapably to mind as well, which I mean as no insult to such an obviously "real" violinist as Maneri - but like Ornette, the man knows how to make full use of the possibilities of his axe, "right way" and "wrong way" to play be damned.

Sometimes Maneri's violin achieves a hornlike clarity ("Sway"); elsewhere on the same track he glories in the overtones. Lantner is often a broad and dark presence while Maneri skips and dances. Occasionally they skip and dance together - a particularly fascinating example is the lightning call-and-response of "Keeping it There." Who is calling, and who is responding?

Dark, low key, searching, furious, exalted, exalting improvised music.


Track Listing: Reachin' and Grabbin'; In the River; Inside; Sway; Old Style; Magic; Moving; Planet o' Love; Waltzing; For You (For Me); Keeping it There; No Other.

Personnel: Steven Lantner: acoustic piano, variable-pitch digital piano; Mat Maneri: electric violin.

Title: Reaching | Year Released: 1999 | Record Label: Leo Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Slægt CD/LP/Track Review Slægt
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: September 24, 2017
Read An Eye on the Future CD/LP/Track Review An Eye on the Future
by Jack Bowers
Published: September 24, 2017
Read Cherry ‎– Sakura CD/LP/Track Review Cherry ‎– Sakura
by John Sharpe
Published: September 24, 2017
Read Blow, Strike & Touch CD/LP/Track Review Blow, Strike & Touch
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 24, 2017
Read Elusive CD/LP/Track Review Elusive
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 23, 2017
Read Transitions CD/LP/Track Review Transitions
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: September 23, 2017
Read "On The Radio: BBC Sessions 1971" CD/LP/Track Review On The Radio: BBC Sessions 1971
by Roger Farbey
Published: June 6, 2017
Read "Music Box Music" CD/LP/Track Review Music Box Music
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 8, 2017
Read "December Songs" CD/LP/Track Review December Songs
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 5, 2016
Read "It's Always 9.30 In Zog" CD/LP/Track Review It's Always 9.30 In Zog
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 11, 2017
Read "Last Dream of the Morning" CD/LP/Track Review Last Dream of the Morning
by Mark Corroto
Published: August 28, 2017
Read "Ephimeral" CD/LP/Track Review Ephimeral
by Glenn Astarita
Published: April 28, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.