Throughout his storied career, bassist/composer Gary Peacock has gone a long way to make the bass an emotive and compelling solo instrument. Yet, when one looks back onor better yetlistens back to the myriad of great recordings he has given us both as a sideman and leader, it is his emphatic, soul-intuitive, work within the piano trio format that makes us grateful. Think Bill Evans's '64 Verve debut Trio64. While ruminating in '64, listen to Peacock's exemplary work on Paul Bley's Turning Point. Jump ahead several decades to Amaryllis, an extremely rewarding and breathtaking 2000 release with Marilyn Crispell. And of course his vibrant, defining work with Keith JarrettAt the Deer Head Inn, The Cure, The Out-of- Towners, Tokyo '96 ...the list goes on.)
So it comes as no surprise that Tangents, a most visceral and poetic affair, wraps around the listener and intimately places him/her in the present while pianist Marc Copland and drummer Joey Baron lock into conversations that wind, reveal, and break free. "Contact" the fluid, Peacock-penned opener, comes to its grace slowly as the bassist and pianist feel each other out, then as Baron finds his place and piece takes flight. Baron's "Cauldron" at first appears to be searching for direction, then finds its tight focus. Copland, whose subtlety and suppleness opens to any harmonic possibility, is absolutely on his game with the elongated, free form "Empty Forest," and the restive, yet imagistic renderings of two Bill Evans' treasures "Blue On Green" and the cinematic "Spartacus." "Rumblin'" is an especially bouncy and earthy dance while the revisit of Peacock's "December Greenwings" allows ample airspace for each player to find something new. Another quiet triumph.
Contact; December Greenwings; Tempei Tempo; Cauldron; Spartacus; Empty Forest; Blue in Green; Rumblin; Talkin’ Blues; In and Out; Tangents.
Gary Peacock: double-bass; Marc Copland: piano; Joey Baron: drums.
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