All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

4

Quin Kirchner: The Other Side of Time

Kevin Press By

Sign in to view read count
Albums that clock in at anything near 90 minutes are not automatically major works. On the other hand, this new effort from Quin Kirchner and Co. is hard to describe in any other terms. Kirchner's six-piece band has delivered a wide-ranging, powerful disc.

Things get rolling with the appropriately titled "Ritual." From the start, tenor saxophonist Nate LePine will have you reminiscing about John Coltrane's glory days and his multitude of followers. It is a huge, phat track loaded with soul. Kirchner has penned a monster.

It's hard to believe that this opens his first album as a band leader. Kirchner earned his chops in Chicago as a sideman with a long list that includes Jeb Bishop, Greg Ward, Paul Giallorenzo, Bill MacKay, Ryley Walker, Rob Clearfield, Dave Miller, Nick Mazzarella, Nate LePine, Dave McDonnell and Keefe Jackson. He's also been a member of blink., Health&Beauty, Nomo, In Tall Buildings and Wild Belle. I asked Kirchner how all these partners have contributed to what he does.

"When I was young and starting out in New Orleans, I was just trying to make some semblance of a living as a musician," he says. "You want to do creative things and develop your artistic voice. But you also need to get gigs that pay, which means being flexible and versatile. I've always set out to be well-versed in all styles and it has really influenced my voice and informed how I play."

Certainly the album covers a lot of ground. "Together We Can Explore the Furthest Beyond" is a complex, thoughtful ballad. "Armageddon" is pure avant-garde. "Drums & Tines Pt 1" is hardly a jazz piece at all, lacking as it does a single brass instrument. Man, does it groove though. Part 2 is equally solid.

"The 'Drums & Tines' cuts come out of my time playing music with Elliot Bergman in NOMO, Wild Belle and Metal Tongues," says Kirchner. "The electric kalimba I play on those tracks is one from our kalimba building sessions in 2009 ... Those tracks are sort of an homage to that part of my style which developed a lot on the road with those bands."

Kirchner says Jeb Bishop, with whom he worked as part of a double quartet, is an important influence. "It opened my eyes to what you can do with long-form compositions."

That format shines brightest on The Other Side of Time. Not since Kamasi Washington's Epic has a new bandleader come out of the gate in this kind of form.

Strong enough to take a stab at Sun Ra's "Brainville." It is not the album's best. It's a respectful, well-performed tribute. But the band's personality takes a back seat to their hero, and it shows. The swing is nice, but it's not really them.

"Anyone playing adventurous improvisational music owes a lot to Sun Ra," says Kirchner. "His influence and worldview (or universe-view) continue to open up new possibilities in the music."

The band's take on two Charles Mingus pieces—"The Shoes Of The Fisherman's Wife Are Some Jive Ass Slippers" and "Self Portrait In Three Colors"—is more in keeping with what makes the full album work so well. The performances are superb.

There is material on this album that dates back a decade. Other pieces are brand new. It is of course the luxury of a debut album that you have your whole life to prepare it. But given the depth of this work, a sophomore jinx seems unlikely.

Track Listing: Ritual; Brainville; Crossings; Drums & Tines Pt 1; Wondrous Eyes; Limbo / The Shoes of the Fisherman's Wife Are Some Jive Ass Slippers; Resounder; Together We Can Explore the Furthest Beyond; Mumbo Jumbo; Flutter; Karina; Drums & Tines Pt. 2; Armageddon; Ripple; Self-Portrait In Three Colors.

Personnel: Quin Kirchner: drums, percussion, kalimba, sampler, Wurlitzer; Nick Broste: trombone; Nate Lepine: tenor saxophone, flute; Jason Stein: bass clarinet; Matt Ulery: bass; Ben Boye: piano on "Together We Can Explore the Furthest Beyond."

Title: The Other Side of Time | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Astral Spirits

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Rumah Batu CD/LP/Track Review
Rumah Batu
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 17, 2018
Read The Bat Swings! CD/LP/Track Review
The Bat Swings!
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 17, 2018
Read Terrestrial CD/LP/Track Review
Terrestrial
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 17, 2018
Read Get Somethin' CD/LP/Track Review
Get Somethin'
by Geno Thackara
Published: July 17, 2018
Read Bansangu Orchestra CD/LP/Track Review
Bansangu Orchestra
by Roger Farbey
Published: July 17, 2018
Read Smart Grid CD/LP/Track Review
Smart Grid
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 16, 2018
Read "For Lew" CD/LP/Track Review For Lew
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 18, 2018
Read "Atody Man" CD/LP/Track Review Atody Man
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 9, 2018
Read "Lattice" CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by John Sharpe
Published: December 14, 2017
Read "WashAshore" CD/LP/Track Review WashAshore
by Geannine Reid
Published: July 30, 2017
Read "Don't You Wish?" CD/LP/Track Review Don't You Wish?
by Patrick Burnette
Published: March 3, 2018
Read "Thinking, Whistling" CD/LP/Track Review Thinking, Whistling
by Anthony Shaw
Published: December 6, 2017