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The Leaders: Spirits Alike

AAJ Italy Staff By

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Sono passati vent'anni dalla prima incisione di questo gruppo, che ai suoi esordi vantava la creatività debordante del compianto Lester Bowie. Del gruppo originario sono rimasti oggi solo il sassofonista Chico Freeman ed il contrabbassista Cecil MCBee: fantastici solisti, ma non in grado di surrogare l'estro del sopra citato trombettista.

Intorno ai due è stata allestita una formazione di superbi musicisti; una reunion anonima e senza mordente, che produce solo un jazz mainstream di squisita fattura, ma incapace di suscitare particolari emozioni nell'ascoltatore.

È un'asettica interazione dialogica, che porta solo a piacevoli sviluppi solitari di Bobby Watson e Freeman, senza preludere ad alcunché di significativo o che si differenzi dalle migliaia di CD di jazz, presenti sul mercato.

Poca l'ispirazione e tanto meno la tensione emotiva di un gruppo che punta tutto sulle evoluzioni dei singoli, a discapito della ricerca di un'identità sonora. A riscattare una proposta anemica e sciatta ci pensa il duo Freeman/Mc Bee, protagonista di una magnifica conversazione a due nel brano di loro composizione "Remembering Bob C".

Quanto al resto, il disco scorre senza sorprese su un neo bop agile ancorché canonico. Ma considerata la statura dei sei musicisti qui riuniti, ci si aspettava qualcosa di più pregnante sul versante della composizione e delle strategie d'arrangiamento. È un disco consigliabile solo a quanti guardano alla forma (i nomi) e non alla sostanza (la musica) delle cose.


Track Listing: 01. Deep Pockets (B. Watson) - 7:56; 02. Evolution (Freeman/Chari) - 5:18; 03. Spirits Alike (Freeman/Pulsford/Bond) - 6:37; 04. Consequence (C. Mc Bee) - 3:29; 05. The Ascended One (F. Harris) - 7:41; 06. Remembering Bob C. (Freman/Mc Bee) - 2:30; 07. Lullaby For Imka (B. Hart) - 7:06. 08. Lady Bugg (C. Mc Bee) - 7:53; 09. Alas Poor John (Freeman/Pulsford) - 8:51; 10. Remembering Bob C - (Freman/Mc Bee) - 3:01.

Personnel: Chico Freeman (sax tenore, soprano); Bobby Watson (sax alto); Eddie Henderson (tromba); Cecil McBee (contrabbasso); Fred Harris (pianoforte); Billie Hart (batteria).

Title: Spirits Alike | Year Released: 2007 | Record Label: Double Moon

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