Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

177

Uri Caine Trio: Siren

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Siren is the first studio recording to feature pianist Uri Caine leading a traditional acoustic trio since 1998's Blue Wail (Winter & Winter). Since then, most of Caine's albums have alternated between radical reinterpretations of the work of revered classical composers like Beethoven, Mozart and Schummann, and the heavily amplified funk excursions of his Bedrock trio with bassist Tim Lefebvre and drummer Zach Danziger. Stripped down to their basic foundations however, most of Caine's efforts typically revolve around the classic piano trio format. Bassist Drew Gress and drummer Ben Perowsky have been Caine's primary accomplices in this configuration, last documented on Live at the Village Vanguard (Winter & Winter, 2004). Maintaining a semblance of consistency, Perowsky returns for this sublime session, with John Hébert filling the bass chair.

An eclectic artist of catholic taste, Caine is by turns ruminative or animated; his fluid single note runs transition gracefully from hushed filigrees to boisterous arpeggios, leading Hébert and Perowsky through the chromatic progressions and modulating tempos of eleven diverse originals and one classic cover. Working as one, the trio's congenial rapport is suffused with an omnipresent blues feeling that pervades each of their interpretations—from a rapturous cover of "On Green Dolphin Street" to the impressionistic languor of "Hazy Lazy Crazy."

A neo-traditionalist at heart, Caine alludes to his abiding interest in pre-swing styles like ragtime and stride throughout the date—as demonstrated by the cascading intervals of "Interloper." Reveling in the joys of unfettered swing, the trio digs deep into the bluesy fatback grooves of "Crossbow" and the oblique angles of "Calibrated Thickness" with palpable fervor. They hint at stylistic interests beyond the mainstream, navigating multiple time signatures on the funky "Tarshish" and ebullient Latin rhythms on "Manual Defile," with no piece exceeding six minutes. Each of these compact tunes serves as a self-contained model of brevity, encouraging pointedly concise statements from Caine, Hébert and Perowsky.

Bolstered by astute listening skills, the trio's intimate three-way dialogues offer inventive interpretations of established traditions, the understated stylistic shifts providing a cohesive sensibility to the proceedings. The trio's mastery of dynamics enriches the quality of its harmonious discourse; Hébert's eloquent precision makes him an ideal partner for Perowsky, whose responsive dexterity encourages the leader's full range of expressionism—from the heartbreaking balladry of the introspective "Foolish Me" to the audacious freeform interludes of "Free Lunch." Siren is a welcome return to form for Caine, whose recent endeavors have highlighted his compositional skills more often than his improvisational mettle.

Track Listing: Tarshish; Interloper; Siren; Crossbow; Smelly; Succubus; Green Dolphin Street; Foolish Me; Calibrated Thickness; Hazy Lazy Crazy; Free Lunch; Manual Defile.

Personnel: Uri Caine: piano; John Hébert: bass; Ben Perowsky: drums.

Title: Siren | Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Winter & Winter


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Makes the Heart to Sing: Jazz Hymns CD/LP/Track Review Makes the Heart to Sing: Jazz Hymns
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 16, 2017
Read Song of No Regrets CD/LP/Track Review Song of No Regrets
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 16, 2017
Read Sounding Tears CD/LP/Track Review Sounding Tears
by John Sharpe
Published: December 16, 2017
Read Lighthouse CD/LP/Track Review Lighthouse
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 16, 2017
Read Kill The Boy CD/LP/Track Review Kill The Boy
by Chris Mosey
Published: December 16, 2017
Read Rain or Shine CD/LP/Track Review Rain or Shine
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 15, 2017
Read "The Day After" CD/LP/Track Review The Day After
by David A. Orthmann
Published: February 14, 2017
Read "The Last Sense To Leave Us – A Tribute To Pauline Oliveros" CD/LP/Track Review The Last Sense To Leave Us – A Tribute To Pauline...
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 10, 2017
Read "Retrorespective" CD/LP/Track Review Retrorespective
by Phillip Woolever
Published: June 15, 2017
Read "Sooner And Later" CD/LP/Track Review Sooner And Later
by Karl Ackermann
Published: March 4, 2017
Read "Just Left of Center" CD/LP/Track Review Just Left of Center
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: July 7, 2017
Read "Sermon Organ Combo" CD/LP/Track Review Sermon Organ Combo
by Jerome Wilson
Published: September 29, 2017

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!