All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 (or more) and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

190

Blaise Siwula and Adam Lane: Tandem Rivers

Jeff Stockton By
Published:
Sign in to view read count
Blaise Siwula and Adam Lane: Tandem Rivers "One and one don’t make two. One and one make one," said Pete Townshend. He may as well have been talking about Blaise Siwula (alto and soprano saxophones) and Adam Lane (contrabass), whose instruments intertwine on this intimate, entirely improvised set where the saxophones pop to keep time and the bass growls disconsolately in a role reversal of sound.

Siwula and Lane go on some relatively long walks, but they rarely move faster than a jog, often grounded by melody or slowing down to find a common rhythm. The disc begins with "Opal," where Lane is a steady idle beneath Siwula’s revving and sputtering engine. On "Tandem Rivers," Siwula plays short staccato bursts before he lays out and Lane’s understated bass turns reflective, setting the tone for Siwula’s melancholy reentry. Siwula plays dry, vibratoless soprano on "Crystal Radio," and Lane’s arco bass imitates the soprano in the upper register. As the tune progresses, some vibrato creeps back into Siwula’s horn and he’s playing the Dixieland blues of Sidney Bechet, shockingly lyrical in this context.

Tandem Rivers is a disc where melodies bubble to the surface and evaporate just as quickly, where the tunes organically transform from abstract sound into second-line struts. "Night," the duo’s longest sonic tour, best illustrates their chameleon-like ability for mimicry. Performing more like a team of bass ‘n’ drum rather than bass ‘n’ horn, Siwula’s alto is percussive before it evolves into a source of warm, inviting musicality, and Lane’s bowed strings imitate the alto’s melancholy sound. "Night" defines the duo’s artistic approach. The track’s last two minutes conclude with resonant unity, as both alto and bass imply musical saws in perfect whiny two-part harmony.

The improvisational discourse is full of clever choices, wit and a variety of moods. Siwula and Lane command attention with subtlety and nuance.

This review originally appeared in the July 2003 issue of All About Jazz - New York .


Track Listing: 1. Opal - 12:44 2. Tandem Rivers - 16:07 3. Crystal Radio - 11:14 4. Night - 17:46

Personnel: Adam Lane - bass; Blaise Siwula - alto and soprano sax.

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Cadence Jazz Records | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

Multiple Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Multiple Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
"Songs of Deception"
Setola di Maiale
2016
buy
"Time In"
NoFrillsMusic.com
2016
buy
The Sunshine Don't Mind My Singing
The Sunshine Don't...
Nacht records
2015
buy
[no cover]
Now Matter
Not On Label
2011
buy
Live at The Matt Bevel Institute
Live at The Matt...
re:konstruKt
2010
buy
Live In London
Live In London
NoFrillsMusic.com
2010
buy
Evan Parker Evan Parker
sax, tenor
Ari Hoenig Ari Hoenig
drums
Kahil El'Zabar Kahil El'Zabar
percussion
Leon Thomas Leon Thomas
vocalist
Sonny Simmons Sonny Simmons
sax, alto
Joe Giardullo Joe Giardullo
saxophone
Marcus Shelby Marcus Shelby
bass, acoustic
Jeffrey Hayden Shurdut Jeffrey Hayden Shurdut
multi-instrumentalist

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.