All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

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...


Ralph Peterson: The Duality Perspective

Dan Bilawsky By

Sign in to view read count
Balance is often overlooked in music criticism, yet it's such an important aspect in music-making and life. Light doesn't exist without dark, bold only takes shape when placed next to bland and earthbound realities are only truly understood by those who also know how to take flight. Drummer/educator Ralph Peterson understands this better than most, and The Duality Perspective documents his balanced outlook for all to hear.

This album is really two records in one, as Peterson splits the program between the latest incarnation of his two decade-old Fo'tet and his sizzling sextet, but the veteran maintains a sense of presentational continuity across these ten tracks. Part of the reason for this has to do with the bonds formed between the musicians and a shared philosophical outlook on how music should be made. The large majority of the players on this date have come under the expert tutelage of Peterson in some way, shape or form, and their connection and affection shows.

The other key to consistency here, which goes beyond the borders of either band, is Peterson himself. His pulse is the real connective tissue between the sounds of both groups. His drumming is always informed by a panoramic understanding of music, as he takes in the big picture and the small details at the same time. Peterson also posits that contrast is key to the realization of possibilities in performance, and understands that music, like life, can be a thing of beauty one minute and a slap in the face the next. He possesses a toolkit full of technique and taste that he uses to put every piece in good working order.

The clarinet and vibraphone-focused Fo'tet finds its footing with the swing-funk hybrid feel of "One False Move," takes Thelonious Monk's music to new places with an odd-metered Latin-ized look at "4 in 1," and wears its collective heart on its sleeve during "Addison And Anthony," which Peterson wrote for his twin grandchildren. The sextet is more typical in construction, with bass, drums, piano and occasional percussion in the back lot and saxophone(s) and trumpet out front, but the music still works off of the same sense of organic motion—flexible, yet focused—that's felt on the Fo'tet material. Saxophonists Tia Fuller and Walter Smith III sound terrific in this setting, but trumpeter Sean Jones is the undisputed star. His work on the final tracks—"You Have Know Idea" and "Pinnacle""—takes the music to new heights.

Peterson proudly displays the roots of his artistry on the album cover by name-checking mentors/heroes, but the music isn't about looking back at the past; The Duality Perspective thrives on the here and now.

Track Listing: One Flase Move; 4 In 1; Addison And Anthony; Bamboo Bends In A Storm; Princess; Coming Home; Impervious Gems; The Duality Perspective; You Have Know Idea; Pinnacle.

Personnel: Ralph Peterson: drums; Joseph Doubleday: vibraphone; Alexander L.J. Toth: bass; Felix Peiki: clarinet, bass clarinet; Luques Curtis: bass; Zaccai Curtis: piano; Sean Jones: trumpet; Walter Smith III: tenor saxophone; Tia Fuller: alto saxophone, soprano saxophone; Bryan Carrott: marimba (2); Reinaldo Dejesus: percussion (2, 4, 7, 9); Edwin "Eddie" Bayard: percussion (7, 10); Victor Gould: piano (9, 10).

Title: The Duality Perspective | Year Released: 2012 | Record Label: Onyx Music Label


comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Best of / Year End
Live Reviews
CD/LP/Track Review
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Dream Deferred

Dream Deferred

Onyx Music Label

Triangular III

Triangular III

Onyx Music Label

ALIVE at Firehouse12  Vol. 1 - The Unity Project

ALIVE at Firehouse12 ...

Onyx Music Label

The Duality Perspective

The Duality...

Onyx Music Label

Outer Reaches

Outer Reaches

Onyx Music Label


Related Articles

Read Lala Belu CD/LP/Track Review
Lala Belu
by Chris May
Published: March 23, 2018
Read All Melody CD/LP/Track Review
All Melody
by Phil Barnes
Published: March 23, 2018
Read The Future is Female CD/LP/Track Review
The Future is Female
by Paul Rauch
Published: March 23, 2018
Read Hunters & Scavengers CD/LP/Track Review
Hunters & Scavengers
by Mark Corroto
Published: March 23, 2018
Read Fill Up Your Lungs and Bellow CD/LP/Track Review
Fill Up Your Lungs and Bellow
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 22, 2018
Read Transatlantic CD/LP/Track Review
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: March 22, 2018
Read "can't believe, won't believe" CD/LP/Track Review can't believe, won't believe
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: January 14, 2018
Read "Music From An Imaginary Land" CD/LP/Track Review Music From An Imaginary Land
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 14, 2017
Read "Plays Dutch Originals" CD/LP/Track Review Plays Dutch Originals
by Jack Bowers
Published: February 14, 2018
Read "Collection Three: Spells (2014-2015)" CD/LP/Track Review Collection Three: Spells (2014-2015)
by Jim Olin
Published: October 11, 2017
Read "Steve Lacy’s Saxophone Special Revisited" CD/LP/Track Review Steve Lacy’s Saxophone Special Revisited
by Mark Corroto
Published: September 29, 2017
Read "Soulmation" CD/LP/Track Review Soulmation
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 22, 2017