All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

234

Chicago Underground Trio: Slon

Rex  Butters By

Sign in to view read count
The prolific Chicago Underground expands its discography with a trio session featuring the fusion of laptops, acoustic jazz instrumentals, and charged free improvisations that defines their recorded output. The program of heated high speed interplay and cold techno ice caps displays a range of sonic intent rarely matched.

For “Protest,” Noel Kupersmith bangs the bass and the race is on. Taylor plays slap happy, and Rob Mazurek sounds a charge on coronet, occasionally sounding like an energized Don Cherry. Beginning acoustic, the band increasingly shares the presence of ambient electronics swelling around it. Kupersmith’s deliberate bowing shares the stability of the electro beat. Mazurek passes through the sound slabs overdubbed in duet. A menagerie of laptop chatter opens “Slon,” before a thick beat makes the Kraftwerk robot walk. Mazurek plays a haunting melody through the digital popcorn, occasionally giving way to subwoofer-withering bass tones.

Airy atmospherics with sharp edges open “Zagreb.” The aural dry ice parts for Kupersmith’s old school R&B bass, laced by Mazurek with muted blues. Taylor plays cymbal and varied drums lightly, giving the piece a spacious ease. A fun burst of energy, “Sevens” has Taylor playing all over himself, Mazurek and Kupersmith creating lively improvs of their own.

Beginning with electronics that echo Sun Ra, “Kite” unfolds as a computer piece with the trio improvising alongside. Its august landscape elicits color from Taylor’s percussion. A montage soundwash, “Palermo” uses sampled sounds of Palermo ambiently through cheerful computer loops. Back on acoustic instruments for “Shoe Lace,” the trio turns out a rugged thrill ride. Fading in down and late night, “Pear” features the trio with Mazurek muted and reflective. The highly romantic interlude fades out.

Inspired by the crazy melange of current events, Slon offers confrontation more often than consolation. However, these gifted improvisers at the top of their game make a strong argument for hope.


Track Listing: Protest; Slon; Zagreb; Sevens; Campbell Town; Kite; Palermo; Shoe Lace; Pear.

Personnel: Noel Kupersmith - Bass, Computer; Rob Mazurek - Cornet, Computer; Chad Taylor - Drums.

Title: Slon | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Thrill Jockey

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Extended Analysis
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Slon

Slon

Thrill Jockey
2004

buy
 

Slon

Giant Records
2003

buy
Flamethrower

Flamethrower

Delmark Records
2000

buy
 

Possible Cube

Giant Records
1999

buy

Related Articles

Read You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To CD/LP/Track Review
You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 24, 2018
Read We Out Here CD/LP/Track Review
We Out Here
by Chris May
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Best of the Bootlegs 2017 CD/LP/Track Review
Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read The Asylum Years CD/LP/Track Review
The Asylum Years
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Solo Contra CD/LP/Track Review
Solo Contra
by Daniel Barbiero
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Ellipse CD/LP/Track Review
Ellipse
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 23, 2018
Read "Solo a Genova" CD/LP/Track Review Solo a Genova
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: January 18, 2018
Read "Domains" CD/LP/Track Review Domains
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 13, 2017
Read "Such A Sky" CD/LP/Track Review Such A Sky
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: June 25, 2017
Read "Flying Heart" CD/LP/Track Review Flying Heart
by Troy Dostert
Published: January 23, 2018
Read "Wish You Were Here" CD/LP/Track Review Wish You Were Here
by Jim Olin
Published: April 3, 2017
Read "Spavati, Mozda Sanjati" CD/LP/Track Review Spavati, Mozda Sanjati
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: November 19, 2017