117

In Transit: Shifting Moods

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
In Transit: Shifting Moods Well-regarded for his co-leadership of the perennially progressive Fonda/Stevens group, pianist Michael Jefry Stevens is an accomplished solo artist and a much in demand session musician, who extends his reach globally. Featuring three European instrumentalists, the In Transit group devises a comprehensive playbook amid budding expansions into the free dominion. However, the modern jazz component underscores the improvisational factors. It's not about wanton cacophony. Conversely, the quartet's synchronicity instills a sense of perpetual motion, executed at various frequencies, throttling pulses, and sublime microtonal developments. Shifting Moods is a rather magical set, captured live at Moods Jazz Club in Zurich, Switzerland.

The program offers a fluctuating sequence of peaks, valleys, narrow passageways and curvy detours, under the portents of structure and emotive exchanges by Stevens and saxophonist Jurg Solothurnmann. "Last Famous Words" yields an in-depth glimpse of the quartet's complexion. Oliver Lake / Christian Weber / Dieter Ulrich delivers a ragtag percussion vista, using his cowbell and drum kit. But it's Stevens who spatially puts the theme-building exercise in motion with stunted block chords, intimating a primary melody that is shaped and shifted throughout, laying the groundwork for group-centric expansion. With Solothurnmann's whispery sax parts, the quartet gravitates toward a gently rising asymmetrical pulse, consummating the bridge with a hard stop. The reinvention phase then sets in, with Stevens speeding up the tempo into a circular, but slightly fragmented loop, followed by his band mates' rather vengeful assault.

Shifting Moods looms as an appropriate metaphor for the album that resides on an imaginary pedestal within the hordes of avant-garde-tinged products that lack originality and entertaining characteristics.

Track Listing: From Above--Very Spring; Color Deep; Spices & Devices, Part 1; Spices & Devices, Part 2; Dream Talk; Last Famous Words; Open End.

Personnel: Jurg Solothurnmann: soprano and alto saxophones; Michael Jefry Stevens: piano; Daniel Studer: bass; Dieter Ulrich: drums.

Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Konnex Records | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Ed Calle 360" CD/LP/Track Review Ed Calle 360
by Edward Blanco
Published: July 17, 2016
Read "Terre II" CD/LP/Track Review Terre II
by Tyran Grillo
Published: June 7, 2016
Read "Intersection" CD/LP/Track Review Intersection
by Mark Sullivan
Published: June 9, 2016
Read "All These Hands" CD/LP/Track Review All These Hands
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 20, 2016
Read "Reflections" CD/LP/Track Review Reflections
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Welcome to Swingsville!" CD/LP/Track Review Welcome to Swingsville!
by Jack Bowers
Published: March 26, 2017

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!