488

The Claudia Quintet: Royal Toast

David Adler By

Sign in to view read count
The Claudia Quintet: Royal Toast With one exception, drummer John Hollenbeck hasn't taken prominent front-cover credit on releases by The Claudia Quintet. This holds true for Royal Toast, the band's extraordinary fifth album. The decision makes sense, for Hollenbeck's labyrinthine compositions get much of their subtlety and force from the individual players that have defined the group's identity from the start.

On Royal Toast, Hollenbeck yields the floor to each of them in turn and so "Ted versus Ted" features accordionist Ted Reichman in a brief double-tracked duet with himself; "Drew with Drew" highlights bassist Drew Gress in the same fashion; "Matt on Matt" gives vibraphonist Matt Moran his turn and "Chris and Chris" features the sparring tenor saxophones of Chris Speed. Of course there's also "Keramag Prelude," a Hollenbeck drum solo and "'Ideal' Intro," an abstract, reverb-soaked meditation by pianist and guest Gary Versace, who expands the quintet to a sextet. Each improvised sketch flows naturally into the dense through-composed track that follows; cleansing the palate and helping listeners digest the music in all its extended brilliance.

Hollenbeck has worked a good deal in chamber and modern classical settings, and his writing for The Claudia Quintet involves a level of multipart detail expected from a new music ensemble like Alarm Will Sound. The key difference is the fitful improvised component, as well as the raw rhythm lurking under every shimmering harmonic texture or contrapuntal flourish, from the slower passages of "Zurn," "Armitage Shanks," and the opening "Crane Merit," to the breakneck assertions of "Keramag," "Paterna Terra" and the title track. For all its clashing asymmetry and constant, baffling change, the music radiates with steadiness and grace.


Track Listing: Crane Merit; Keramag Prelude; Keramag; Paterna Terra; Ted versus Ted; Armitage Shanks; Drew with Drew; Sphinx; Matt on Matt; Zurn; Chris and Chris; Royal Toast; "Ideal" Intro; "Ideal Standard"; American Standard; For Frederick Franck.

Personnel: John Hollenbeck: drums, percussion; Ted Reichman: accordion; Chris Speed: clarinet, tenor saxophone; Matt Moran: vibraphone; Drew Gress: acoustic bass; Gary Versace: piano, accordion (16).

Year Released: 2010 | Record Label: Cuneiform Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Live at PafA CD/LP/Track Review Live at PafA
by Matthew Aquiline
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Ocean of Storms CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by Troy Dostert
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Transparent Water CD/LP/Track Review Transparent Water
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 20, 2017
Read Billows Of Blue CD/LP/Track Review Billows Of Blue
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 20, 2017
Read "Reunion" CD/LP/Track Review Reunion
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: September 17, 2016
Read "The Drive" CD/LP/Track Review The Drive
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 16, 2016
Read "Makes My Heart Sway" CD/LP/Track Review Makes My Heart Sway
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: August 23, 2016
Read "Visual Music" CD/LP/Track Review Visual Music
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 27, 2016
Read "Ocean of Storms" CD/LP/Track Review Ocean of Storms
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 4, 2017
Read "Alien Flower Sutra" CD/LP/Track Review Alien Flower Sutra
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 24, 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!