3

Trio 3 + Jason Moran: Refraction - Breakin' Glass

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
Trio 3 + Jason Moran: Refraction - Breakin' Glass If ever there was a threesome that hankered after being a quartet, it's Trio 3. Though working as a self-contained unit since 1986, pianists have often supplemented the core triumvirate, and in fact one has augmented each of the group's previous three recordings. Now Jason Moran fills the piano stool on Refraction—Breakin' Glass, adding to an already heady brew. From bassist Reggie Workman's youthful stint with John Coltrane, to drummer Andrew Cyrille's 11-year tenure with piano iconoclast Cecil Taylor, via saxophonist Oliver Lake's pioneering work as a founder member of the illustrious World Saxophone Quartet, their experience touches on many of the major innovations over the last 50 years. That makes Moran a good match: he studied with three great teachers—Jaki Byard, Andrew Hill, and Muhal Richard Abrams—but has found his own critically-acclaimed path, strong on rhythmic ingenuity.

In the summer of 2012, Moran joined the group for a week long residency at NYC's Birdland before going into the studio. That explains the tightness which pervades the ten cuts which constitute the program. It's a collective effort. No-one rests on their laurels. Each contributes tunes, which cover a wide stylistic spectrum, creating a winning mix of free form abstraction, kinetic riffs, and inventive interplay, studded with biting solos. Part of the joy of Trio 3 lies in the way even the relatively straightforward numbers feel on the edge of falling apart in a welter of delicious dissonance and arhythmic clatter, but never quite do. Case in point is Workman's classic "Summit Conference": it opens in a swirling rubato from which the theme emerges out of nowhere, before parting for a series of adventurous features. Likewise on Lake's "All Decks," time expands and contracts, but even when piano and alto saxophone lock, Cyrille combines grace and power in an unfettered commentary.

On the title track, they pull off no mean feat in marrying Moran's ominous lop-sided vamp with Lake's recitation of a wry poem about his mother's drive to make good. Unlike many combinations of jazz and verse, it bears repeated listening, due to the reedman's matter-of-fact delivery and the essential human truth it conveys, not to mention his incisive squealing alto. Other highlights are too many to recount, but include Workman's careening woody bowing on his lilting "Cycle III," Cyrille's throbbing tattoo on "Listen" which sets the scene for a call and response, presaging a procession of supercharged solos, and his propulsive homage to the late saxophonist David S. Ware on the surging "High Priest." After such a successful amalgam, ranking alongside gems like Time Being (Intakt, 2006) and The Berne Concert (Intakt, 2009), it should be no surprise that Trio 3 hooked up with yet another rising star of the keyboard in Vijay Iyer at Birdland in July 2013. There may yet be more collaborative entries to look forward to in the band's discography.


Track Listing: Refraction – Breakin' Glass; Cycle III; Luthers Lament; AM 2 1/2; Summit Conference; All Decks; Listen; Vamp; Foot Under Foot; High Priest.

Personnel: Oliver Lake: alto and sopranino saxophone, voice; Reggie Workman: bass; Andrew Cyrille: drums, voice; Jason Moran: piano.

Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Intakt Records


Related Video

Shop

More Articles

Read The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture CD/LP/Track Review The Angel and the Brute Sing Songs of Rapture
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Coldest Second Yesterday CD/LP/Track Review Coldest Second Yesterday
by John Sharpe
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Follow Your Heart CD/LP/Track Review Follow Your Heart
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 25, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Chicago II CD/LP/Track Review Chicago II
by Doug Collette
Published: February 25, 2017
Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read "Münster Bern" CD/LP/Track Review Münster Bern
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 28, 2016
Read "Shelter" CD/LP/Track Review Shelter
by Budd Kopman
Published: June 15, 2016
Read "True Love Collection" CD/LP/Track Review True Love Collection
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 24, 2016
Read "Nuit Blanche" CD/LP/Track Review Nuit Blanche
by John Kelman
Published: February 14, 2017
Read "The Linda Sessions" CD/LP/Track Review The Linda Sessions
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 30, 2016
Read "Freedom is a State of Mind" CD/LP/Track Review Freedom is a State of Mind
by Dave Wayne
Published: June 27, 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!