87

James Falzone - The Renga Ensemble: The Room Is

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Track review of "Until"

Enterprising Chicago-based clarinetist James Falzone and a core band of fellow improvisers signal a modern day avant-jazz summit, inspired by the leader's affinity for Renga, which is a Japanese poetic tradition where 2 or more poets work in parallel to produce a new work. Falzone yields dividends by enlisting an ensemble, featuring prominent trailblazers of the modern era's improvising circuit such as Ken Vandermark, Ben Goldberg, Ned Rothenberg and others of note. The performers' inner-workings are implanted within a holistic viewpoint, spanning stark minimalism, classical inferences and jazz with asymmetrical parts, structure and freedom. At times the musicians veer off into subgroups and explore numerous concepts via muscular unison choruses, playful breakouts, curvy dialogues and solemn inquisitions.

"Until" is the album's lengthiest work, clocking in at 13-minutes. Here, the sextet stops, starts and generates an airy environ with rests in between choruses amid many contrasts, given the artists' varied selection of clarinets and saxophones. They delve into a surfeit of exploratory processes, shaped with contemplative and microtonal etudes and a primary theme engineered with a vertical trajectory. They mix it up with verbose exchanges while also converging and splitting themes into micro-fragments. Towards closeout , Jason Stein, Keefe Jackson and Vandermark engage in a whirling bass clarinet cadenza as the band eventually goes all over the map with fiery exchanges. Thus, each piece poses its own set of circumstances and not solely centered on wild escapades or laborious journeys without an endpoint or zenith. There are quite a few moving parts as an irrefutable sense of excitement underscores the overall proceedings.

Track Listing:

Personnel: James Falzone: Bb and Eb clarinets; Ken Vandermark: Bb clarinet, bass clarinet, baritone saxophone; Keefe Jackson: tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, contra Bb bass clarinet; Jason Stein: bass clarinet; Ben Goldberg: Bb clarinet, contra Eb alto clarinet; Ned Rothenberg: Bb clarinet, alto saxophone.

Title: The Room Is | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Allos Documents


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read No Answer CD/LP/Track Review No Answer
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Agrima CD/LP/Track Review Agrima
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Bright Yellow with Bass CD/LP/Track Review Bright Yellow with Bass
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 18, 2017
Read Kurrent CD/LP/Track Review Kurrent
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: October 17, 2017
Read Duets CD/LP/Track Review Duets
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: October 17, 2017
Read "Comes Love - A Tribute To Ella Fitzgerald And Joe Pass" CD/LP/Track Review Comes Love - A Tribute To Ella Fitzgerald And Joe Pass
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 6, 2017
Read "Light Shines In" CD/LP/Track Review Light Shines In
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 2, 2016
Read "Aqustico vol 2" CD/LP/Track Review Aqustico vol 2
by Geno Thackara
Published: September 25, 2017
Read "The Catfish" CD/LP/Track Review The Catfish
by Chris Mosey
Published: February 15, 2017
Read "The Beautiful Day" CD/LP/Track Review The Beautiful Day
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 6, 2016
Read "Miles Goes Wes" CD/LP/Track Review Miles Goes Wes
by Jack Bowers
Published: April 18, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.