All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

22

Jason Kao Hwang: Sing House

Karl Ackermann By

Sign in to view read count
From the earliest part of his solo career, violinist and composer Jason Kao Hwang has employed an eclectic blend of Western and Eastern influences. His recording roots were no less wide-ranging, beginning with Anthony Braxton's Sextet (Istanbul) (Braxton House, 1995), even if the influences were harder to pin down. Hwang later recorded with William Parker and then Henry Threadgill and Dominic Duval but as he progressed, his music was less married to a recognizable jazz language. He arranged and performed for the Broadway production of M. Butterfly and composed a chamber opera, The Floating Box: A Story in Chinatown.

Sing House reunites Hwang with his EDGE and Burning Bridge colleagues, drummer Andrew Drury, Ken Filiano on bass (from both groups) and trombonist Steve Swell (Burning Bridge). This quintet is rounded out by pianist Chris Forbes. Forbes leads his own trio and is a composer and music educator who has written for symphonies, chamber groups, jazz ensembles, and musical theater. His diverse background makes him a natural fit with Hwang.

There is a return to a more definable jazz model with Sing House though there are subtle Asian influences as well. Each of Hwang's four compositions run into double-digit lengths allowing for vignettes to play out within each. Though there is nothing formulaic about "No Such Thing," it does set the stage for a loose pattern of intricate group improvisations and limited solos from all. "Dream Walk" opens in a reserved manner, works to all-consuming frenzy, and then quietly exits. "When What Could" (with Hwang on viola) and "Inscribe," move from moments of dark to light, reflection to turmoil, but both held together by the anchoring of Drury and Filiano.

Hwang continues to explore musical conditions that appeal to his fascination with the factors that go beyond rhythm, and melody. He relies heavily on his collaborators and their shared presence comes through in each of these compositions, the group channeling their individual strengths into a collective effort. Sing House is a challenging but highly accessible outing.

Track Listing: No Such Thing; Dream Walk; When What Could; Inscribe.

Personnel: Jason Kao Hwang: violin, viola; Chris Forbes: piano; Steve Swell: trombone; Ken Filiano: bass; Andrew Drury: drums.

Title: Sing House | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: Euonymus Records

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
My Favourite Things
CD/LP/Track Review
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Sing House

Sing House

Euonymus Records
2017

buy
Zilzal

Zilzal

Innova Recordings
2014

buy
Burning Bridge

Burning Bridge

Innova Recordings
2013

buy
Burning Bridge

Burning Bridge

Innova Recordings
2012

buy
Crossroads Unseen

Crossroads Unseen

Euonymus Records
2011

buy
Stories Before Within

Stories Before Within

Innova Recordings
2008

buy

Related Articles

Read Between the Silence CD/LP/Track Review
Between the Silence
by John Kelman
Published: August 19, 2018
Read Flying CD/LP/Track Review
Flying
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 19, 2018
Read Barxeta II CD/LP/Track Review
Barxeta II
by Geno Thackara
Published: August 19, 2018
Read Vidas Simples CD/LP/Track Review
Vidas Simples
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: August 19, 2018
Read Kinship CD/LP/Track Review
Kinship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 18, 2018
Read Ask For Chaos CD/LP/Track Review
Ask For Chaos
by Gareth Thompson
Published: August 18, 2018
Read "Pelagos" CD/LP/Track Review Pelagos
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 14, 2017
Read "Autres Paysages" CD/LP/Track Review Autres Paysages
by Glenn Astarita
Published: February 18, 2018
Read "Strykin’ Ahead" CD/LP/Track Review Strykin’ Ahead
by John Kelman
Published: September 2, 2017
Read "Form" CD/LP/Track Review Form
by Anthony Shaw
Published: November 14, 2017
Read "Initial" CD/LP/Track Review Initial
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: April 11, 2018
Read "Oriental Orbit" CD/LP/Track Review Oriental Orbit
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 19, 2018