235

Harris Eisenstadt / Achim Kaufmann / Mark Dresser: Starmelodics

John Sharpe By

Sign in to view read count
Harris Eisenstadt / Achim Kaufmann / Mark Dresser: Starmelodics Canadian drummer and composer Harris Eisenstadt spans a broad spectrum. He has written for large ensemble, octets and small groups, in styles ranging from chamber to Senegalese pop. Though particularly enamored of African drum rhythms he also works readily in totally improvised settings, so his name on the sleeve rarely betokens an expected outcome.

On Starmelodics, the drummer in conjunction with German pianist Achim Kaufmann and bass virtuoso Mark Dresser takes a slightly sideways look at the modern piano trio, blending the written with free improvisation, with sometimes almost imperceptible joins. All three are equals in composition as much as the seat-of-pants interplay, each contributing two charts, alongside three collective improvs. With varied authorship comes subtle shifts in emphasis. To oversimplify, Kaufmann's pieces are the most cerebral, while Eisenstadt's verge on the jazzy, with Dresser somewhere in between.

After a mysterious opening collage of metallic timbres, Dresser's title track picks up momentum and edges towards a resolution which never quite materializes, for a nervy start to the 56-minute program. In the liners, Kaufmann describes the two independent lines scored in his "Qualtinger" as "controlled serendipity" and that same feel of ricocheting between congruence and dissonance emerges from much of this deliciously oblique offering. The pianist nuances his abstract lines by dampening the piano strings on his edgy pecking "Birdz," but elsewhere his ringing chords and measured droplets provide just the right foil for Dresser's thrumming twangs. Eisenstadt adroitly balances texture with pulse, especially on his exquisite "Seattle," imagined as a glorious place, bathed in warm autumnal colors. Dresser's astonishing arco introduction to the same piece confirms it as one of the albums' high points, with his harmonics, bent notes and strums evoking three simultaneous voices.


Track Listing: Starmelodics; Fifteen Languages; Vancouver; Birdz; Flac; Sigma; Qualtinger; Seattle; Myth.

Personnel: Achim Kaufmann: piano; Mark Dresser: double-bass; Harris Eisenstadt: drums, percussion.

Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Nuscope Recordings | Style: Free Improv/Avant-Garde


Shop

More Articles

Read Acceptance CD/LP/Track Review Acceptance
by Tyran Grillo
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 26, 2017
Read This Is Nate Najar CD/LP/Track Review This Is Nate Najar
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Joy Comes Back CD/LP/Track Review Joy Comes Back
by James Nadal
Published: February 26, 2017
Read Apocalypse CD/LP/Track Review Apocalypse
by Julian Derry
Published: February 26, 2017
Read The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door CD/LP/Track Review The Sound of Surprise: Live at the Side Door
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 25, 2017
Read "Music From Max Fleischer Cartoons" CD/LP/Track Review Music From Max Fleischer Cartoons
by Mark Corroto
Published: March 14, 2016
Read "Blue And Lonesome" CD/LP/Track Review Blue And Lonesome
by Doug Collette
Published: February 4, 2017
Read "The High Road" CD/LP/Track Review The High Road
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 8, 2016
Read "Black Orpheus" CD/LP/Track Review Black Orpheus
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 30, 2016
Read "Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972" CD/LP/Track Review Split Kick - Live In Sweden 1972
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: August 14, 2016
Read "Amorandom" CD/LP/Track Review Amorandom
by Roger Farbey
Published: March 3, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: Jazz Near You | GET IT  

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!

Buy it!