Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

18

Chris Potter: The Dreamer Is the Dream

Mark Sullivan By

Sign in to view read count
Saxophonist/composer Chris Potter's two previous ECM albums as leader both had a "special project" air about them. The Sirens (2013) was inspired by the epic poem The Odyssey, and featured an unusual quintet with two keyboardists. Imaginary Cities (2015) featured the Underground Orchestra, an expansive lineup of his Underground quartet plus two bassists, percussion, and string quartet. For this third release Potter presents a new acoustic quartet. It's not a studio band: the recording sessions were preceded by a long string of live performances.

While the combination is new, the players have history together. Potter and bassist Joe Martin have played together in New York clubs since the '90s. He and drummer Marcus Gilmore appeared together previously on saxophonist Mark Turner's Lathe of Heaven (ECM, 2014). Gilmore was on pianist David Virelles' Mbókò (ECM, 2014) and the experimental EP Antenna (ECM, 2016). Potter describes the personnel as "cross- generational"—a startling reminder that he could reasonably be described as a "veteran," having been an active performer since 1989.

Opener "Heart In Hand" finds Potter on tenor saxophone, still his main voice despite the range of reed instruments he employs on the album. It's a rhapsodic introduction to this vibrant new band, Potter's playing receiving empathetic, increasingly energetic support . "Ilimba" begins with the sound of Potter playing the title instrument, a Tanzanian thumb piano that is like a larger version of the well known Zimbabwean mbira. That pattern sets up the piece, which also features a powerful drum solo. The title tune is a low register delight, featuring expressive bass clarinet and a lyrical, unaccompanied bass solo. "Memory And Desire" opens with atmospheric electronics from Potter's sampler (and overdubbed woodwinds), giving way to soprano saxophone. "Yosadhara" provides Virelles space for an extended piano solo.

In short, while this is the most conventional of Potter's ECM albums, it's still a kaleidoscopic affair, full of contrasting moods and tonal colors. It's a splendid showcase for the leader's composing and playing, but still offers plenty of space for the other band members. Here's hoping we hear more from them.

Track Listing: Heart in Hand; Ilimba; The Dreamer Is the Dream; Memory and Desire; Yasodhara; Sonic Anomaly.

Personnel: Chris Potter: tenor and soprano saxophones, bass clarinet; David Virelles: piano, keyboards; Joe Martin: double bass; Marcus Gilmore: drums, percussion.

Title: The Dreamer Is the Dream | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: ECM 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.

Upcoming Shows

Date Detail Price
Apr16Tue
CHRIS POTTER TRIO
New Morning
Paris, France
€28.60 - 28.60
Apr26Fri
Chris Potter Circuits Trio
Regattabar
Cambridge, MA
$30
Apr26Fri
Chris Potter Circuits Trio
Regattabar
Cambridge, MA
$25
Apr27Sat
Chris Potter Circuits Trio
Regattabar
Cambridge, MA
$25
Apr27Sat
Chris Potter Circuits Trio
Regattabar
Cambridge, MA
$30
May2Thu
Chris Potter
Jazz Standard
New York, NY
May2Thu
Chris Potter
Jazz Standard
New York, NY

Related Articles

Read Our Story Album Reviews
Our Story
By Troy Dostert
March 25, 2019
Read Influences Album Reviews
Influences
By Don Phipps
March 25, 2019
Read The Transitory Poems Album Reviews
The Transitory Poems
By Mark Corroto
March 25, 2019
Read Birckhead Album Reviews
Birckhead
By Mike Jurkovic
March 25, 2019
Read Live At Moods Album Reviews
Live At Moods
By Chris M. Slawecki
March 25, 2019
Read Live at Frankie's Jazz Club Album Reviews
Live at Frankie's Jazz Club
By Jack Bowers
March 24, 2019
Read Asperger Album Reviews
Asperger
By Don Phipps
March 24, 2019