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10³²K: The Law of Vibration

Karl Ackermann By

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This is where the laws of physics meet the laws of the universe. The imaginative dynamism that marked 10³²K's debut That Which is Planted (Passin' Thru Records, 2014) is taken to another level on their new release The Law of Vibration. The trio of trombonist/trumpeter Frank Lacy, bassist Kevin Ray and percussionist Andrew Drury are joined on one track by the late Roswell Rudd.

Lacy is at home in many sub-genres of jazz. He has played in Carla Bley's large ensemble, was director of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers for a time, and is a member of the Mingus Big Band. On the other side of the coin he's worked with free jazz luminaries such as Henry Threadgill and Julius Hemphill. Ray has recorded or played with John Stubblefield, Oliver Lake, Greg Osby, Andrew Hill, Marty Ehrlich, Hamiet Bluiett, Nels Cline and many others. He has performed in the premieres of works by Joe McPhee and Leroy Jenkins as well. Drury is one of the most adventurous drummer/percussionists in creative music today, and a dedicated humanitarian. He has worked with Wadada Leo Smith, Brad Mehldau, Mario Pavone, Joe Fonda, Taylor Ho Bynum, Ken Filiano, Nate Wooley, and many other top avant-garde artists.

Lacy's talent as a composer stands out on his two contributions; the opening "1000 Years of Peace" is full of semi-familiar passages linked by spirited improvisations across the group. The trombonist's "All the While...Forgiveness" could be described as stately were it not for Drury's swift and expressively complex playing. He serves as the bridge to the second half where the tune takes a blissful turn. Ray's beautifully played bowed bass, and Drury—on what sounds like woodblocks and cowbells—mournfully begin former Air trio bassist Fred Hopkins' "RB"; the mood unchanging when Lacy's custom-built trumpet joins in. But Lacy finishes up the piece with something comparable to an avant-garde version of a New Orleans funeral march. Rudd's "Yankee No-How" is the freest of pieces with Ray again shining on his solo.

The Law of Vibration is an exceptionally enjoyable listen. Rolling melodies, spiked with insistent percussion and warm brass tones, work in tandem with highly creative improvising. The album is an excellent showcase for these three distinctively talented and adventurous artists, and quite different in comparison to their debut. Little escapes scrutiny in the compact and challenging trio format. When the typical instrumentation is abandoned the safety net is gone, nothing is predictable, and that is the case with 10³²K.

Track Listing: 1000 Years of Peace; RB; Yankee No-How; I’ll Be Right Here Waiting; All the While…Forgiveness; Living Space.

Personnel: Frank Lacy: trombone, trumpet; Kevin Ray: bass; Andrew Drury: percussion; Roswell Rudd: trombone (3).

Title: The Law of Vibration | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Self Produced

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