2

Ran Blake & Christine Correa: Streaming

Gareth Thompson By

Sign in to view read count
Back in 1946, Ran Blake watched The Spiral Staircase and was rather freaked. This classic chiller's opening scene shows a silent film flickering whilst a woman accompanies the visuals on piano. Blake later composed his own piano sketches for each character and wrote fan letters to the entire cast. His only reply came from Carlton, the housekeeper's sleepy bulldog, via a paw print autograph.

Blake also claims a childhood interest in Irish ghost stories and church spirituals. Thus inspired, he would get up during the night to quietly caress the family piano. Five decades into his notable career and those early influences still linger. A devotee of noirish aspects, his playing retains an air of intimacy and stillness. Not that he can't also stun you with a single note, for Blake often emits a right rumpus amid the tenderness. Likewise, brute force is sometimes employed by Christine Correa as a singer, but all within the realm of erotic shadows. So the two artists are a dream pairing, that no music streaming service could recommend better.

Which leads us neatly onto the album title. As an eminent teacher, Blake refers to "streaming" as a route to finding one's artistic path. Prospective students are grilled on their aims and ideals before being taken on. We also note the importance of the Third Stream concept for Blake, wherein different genres combine to offer infinite new sounds.

Jazz and classical are two of several modes that converge on Streaming. A cover of "Don't Explain" avoids the sweeping melodrama of Billie Holiday's version, to emerge in Correa's hands as something confessional, like she's spilling all into a voicemail. Her intense tone ranges from vehement to vulnerable, being more akin to a Dagmar Krause or Sarah Bernstein than, say, Annie Ross or Diana Krall. "Lonely Woman" sees Correa unleash a cry that makes loneliness sound desolate and riotous by turns. Her gossipy vocal holds you rapt on "Bebopper," she turns jazz diva for "All About Ronnie," then burns with mystic fervour on a traditional Sephardic piece that feels an hour too short.

All the while, Blake remains quizzical and flirtatious at his keyboard. He takes us deep into solitude, stays eerily metronomic elsewhere, or goes soul-searching on the three "Stratusphunk" sketches by George Russell.

Much like The Spiral Staircase, this album is a product of painstaking craft and compelling performances. But only what you'd expect from two experts in shadows and light, whose music sends thrills down the spine.

Track Listing: Don’t Explain; Out Of This World; Lonely Woman; Stratusphunk I; Bebopper; All About Ronnie; Ah, El Novio No Quere Dinero; Stratusphunk II; Love Dance; Wende; Stratusphunk III; No More.

Personnel: Ran Blake: piano; Christine Correa: voice.

Title: Streaming | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Red Piano Records

Tags

Watch

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Misterioso

Misterioso

Ran Blake
The Newest Sound You Never Heard

Love Dance

Love Dance

Ran Blake
Streaming

Autumn in New York

Autumn in New York

Ran Blake
Ghost Tones

All That Is Tied

All That Is Tied

Ran Blake
All That Is Tied

Album Reviews
Multiple Reviews
Album Reviews
Live Reviews
Album Reviews
Bailey's Bundles
Album Reviews
Read more articles
The Newest Sound You Never Heard

The Newest Sound You...

A-side Records
2019

buy
Streaming

Streaming

Red Piano Records
2018

buy
Ghost Tones: Portraits of George Russell

Ghost Tones:...

A-side Records
2015

buy

Related Articles

Read Live in Newcastle, December 8, 1972 Album Reviews
Live in Newcastle, December 8, 1972
By John Kelman
April 19, 2019
Read HUJE 2018 Album Reviews
HUJE 2018
By Jack Bowers
April 19, 2019
Read Farallon Album Reviews
Farallon
By Jerome Wilson
April 19, 2019
Read Burning Meditation Album Reviews
Burning Meditation
By John Sharpe
April 18, 2019
Read Remembering Cecil Album Reviews
Remembering Cecil
By Dan McClenaghan
April 18, 2019
Read Apophenia Album Reviews
Apophenia
By Roger Farbey
April 18, 2019
Read Transcending the Sum Album Reviews
Transcending the Sum
By Chris May
April 17, 2019