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!

252

Ron Horton: Subtextures

By

Sign in to view read count
On Subtextures, Ron Horton's sophomore release as a leader, the trumpeter/fluegelhornist continues his striking, impressionistic approach of synthesizing the free-ranging, out sounds of modernity with the softer, melodic palette of chamber music, a vision he unveiled to the jazz world's delight on 1999's Genius Envy (OmniTone).

Horton's racked up some excellent experience over the course of his nearly 30-year career, playing with legendary composer/pianist Andrew Hill, as well as in the Jazz Composers Collective, a vital New York organization that also boasts Mr. Medicine Wheel himself, bassist Ben Allison, and pianist Frank Kimbrough, both of whom starred on Genius Envy and return to shine on Subtextures ; also on board is drummer Matt Wilson, a vocal fan of Horton's '99 debut.

From the fugal flourishes that imbue the album, not to mention the lofty, horizon-scanning lines of his horn, one is readily reminded of Miles Davis and Chet Baker, two of Horton's admitted muses — especially Miles, from whom Horton has gained a wonderful, Birth of the Cool -style bouquet of tonal colors. This technique is plied to breathtaking effect on tracks like the title cut and the bittersweet "Ruminations," as well as on ambitious, delicate versions of Messiaen's "O Sacrum Convivium" and Chopin's "Etude."

But Horton isn't afraid to rock out: the bop standout "Malaby," an inspired tribute to saxophonist Tony Malaby, blasts off with an impossibly complex, dizzy chart before dropping into a solo passage by Allison, which is then overtaken by a growling, swishing conversation between Horton and Wilson, only to collapse into Kimbrough's desolate ponderings before exploding back into the tune's initial riffing. Another winner, the stuttering improv "Mutability," is highlighted by Horton's aggressive, bluesy blasts and Wilson's machine-gun press rolls.

Like that of Malaby, Andrew Hill, Miles, and Herbie Nichols (Horton, Kimbrough, and Allison are sometime members of the Herbie Nichols Project, formed to play unpublished Nichols tunes), the complicated but frequently melodic music on Subtextures blurs the boundaries between the straight-ahead and the avant-garde. And it does so with confident facility. Recommended.

Track Listing: Cantarnos, Malaby, Ruminations, Subtextures, O Sacrum Convivium, Rumors, Mutability, Etude

Personnel: Ron Horton--trumpet and flugelhorn; Frank Kimbrough--piano; Ben Allison--bass; Matt Wilson--drums

Title: Subtextures | Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Fresh Sound New Talent


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Baby It's Cold Outside CD/LP/Track Review Baby It's Cold Outside
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Wrong Turns And Dead Ends CD/LP/Track Review Wrong Turns And Dead Ends
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Lavaman CD/LP/Track Review Lavaman
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Paimon: Book of Angels Volume 32 CD/LP/Track Review Paimon: Book of Angels Volume 32
by Don Phipps
Published: December 13, 2017
Read Bad Hombre CD/LP/Track Review Bad Hombre
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 12, 2017
Read Aladdin's Dream CD/LP/Track Review Aladdin's Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 12, 2017
Read "Two Hands, One Heart" CD/LP/Track Review Two Hands, One Heart
by Roger Farbey
Published: February 8, 2017
Read "Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1" CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read "Neko" CD/LP/Track Review Neko
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "The Arrangement" CD/LP/Track Review The Arrangement
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: June 11, 2017
Read "Latin Lover" CD/LP/Track Review Latin Lover
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: November 18, 2017
Read "Where the Blue Begins" CD/LP/Track Review Where the Blue Begins
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 7, 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!