215

Eri Yamamoto: Redwoods

Lyn Horton By

Sign in to view read count
Eri Yamamoto: Redwoods That pianist Eri Yamamoto brings her feminine instinct to her music crosses a threshold to all living things. It is often women who can fly the Homeric banners to pass down the stories of caring and hardship, attention and vigilance. Known for her work with groups formed by William Parker, who is one of the greatest musical storytellers of this era, and more recently for her highly acclaimed Duologue (AUM Fidelity Records, 2008), she has released another recording in a trio setting this time, entitled Redwoods.



Yamamoto's gender-ridden cast over her music begins with its earthy rootedness, her perception of the signs of life, and how they transform, how the grandeur impresses, or the delicacy of their transience abounds. She catches life's flow within the dynamic tone, and tempo of the phrasing of her piano playing; the eloquence of the bass and drums connect easily to and reflect Yamamoto's pianistic character.



The piano playing transmits an irrevocable spiritedness, even though it is weighty in bass chords; perhaps the bass lends seriousness to the tonalities. Frequent trills ("Bottled Water Princess"), Yamamoto's wonderful signature ostinato, occasional treble landings, slurs and upended rhythmic sensibilities, double-handed synchrony and an overall innocence ("This Is An Apple," "Wonder Land") establish the rich and wholesome language with which Yamamoto works. Even dissonance has a place as her fingers clip along the keyboard. She plots the extent of her sound palette smoothly (paradoxically in the piece titled "Bumpy Trail"); rarely does a jagged edge creep in. Yamamoto displays a never-ending insistence to pull heartstrings, carefully washing her tunes in a minor key ("This Is An Apple," "Dear Friends," "Magnolia") to leave behind a yearning for the shade from the hot sun or the sweet aroma of flowering trees.



The rhythm section responds directly to how Yamamoto's fingers land. Sometimes David Ambrosio's pizzicatos fall right in line with the piano sound so as to magnify and make more resonant the bass tones; he also has a knack for beautifully stepping through the hiatuses between phrases in the piano's structured movement ("Bumpy Trail," "Redwoods") or portraying an irrefutably, exquisitely solid stance ("Story Teller") like a partner would behave lovingly with a mate. Throughout the entire record, Ikuo Takeuchi's drumming is no less embracing than the music he balances with gentle brushstrokes on the snare or light touches on the cymbals; even in the spryest and bouncy "Wonderland," Takeuchi freely snaps at his kit, making the softest drum skin contact. Occasionally, the sticks come out in march-like motion ("Bumpy Trails," "Bottled Water Princess"); the drummer retains a valiant restraint which is complemented by strikes at the cymbals that open in full sibilance or recoil in a damped hush ("Bottled Water Princess").



This recording transforms the limits of its inherent physicality into divine energy. The musical purity of Redwoods jettisons Yamamoto's compositions into a space of eternal sound memory without which life would mean nothing for some, hopefully, for many.


Track Listing: This Is An Apple; Wonder Land; Bumpy Trail; Redwoods; Bottled Water Princess; Magnolia; Story Teller; Dear Friends.

Personnel: Eri Yamamoto: piano; David Ambrosio: bass; Ikuo Takeuchi: drums.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: AUM Fidelity | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Road to Forever CD/LP/Track Review Road to Forever
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Avenida Graham CD/LP/Track Review Avenida Graham
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 27, 2017
Read TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2) CD/LP/Track Review TAI Fest #1 (Vol.1&2)
by Nicola Negri
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Goat Man & The House of the Dead CD/LP/Track Review Goat Man & The House of the Dead
by Dave Wayne
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by James Nadal
Published: February 27, 2017
Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read "Holding the Stage: Road Shows Vol. 4" CD/LP/Track Review Holding the Stage: Road Shows Vol. 4
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: November 19, 2016
Read "Les Rhincéros III" CD/LP/Track Review Les Rhincéros III
by Tyran Grillo
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Source" CD/LP/Track Review Source
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: August 25, 2016
Read "Harmonicus Rex" CD/LP/Track Review Harmonicus Rex
by Edward Blanco
Published: March 21, 2016
Read "Young" CD/LP/Track Review Young
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 25, 2016
Read "Blooming Tall Phlox" CD/LP/Track Review Blooming Tall Phlox
by Mark Sullivan
Published: January 23, 2017

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

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!