422

Dom Minasi: The Vampire's Revenge

Jochem van Dijk By

Sign in to view read count
Dom Minasi: The Vampire's Revenge Dom Minasi's The Vampire's Revenge is not just a record, it's an event. 22 of New York's craftiest improvisers, scattered over groupings varying in size from two to thirteen musicians, perform ten of Minasi's adventurous and well-wrought compositions. Sometimes, as on "The Seduction" a short, returning motif alternates with free improv sections. More often, improvised and through-composed counterpoint coexist alongside each other, either peacefully, as on "Who's Your Dentist," or more belligerently in good old Mingus fashion, as on "The Transformation." Propulsive urgency happens by the greasy oompha of "The First Thing," or as on the title piece, by Byron Olsen's determined conducting hand.

The Vampire's Revenge is the album Eric Dolphy might have come up with if he hadn't died prematurely. This double CD is one of those rare releases that, to quote one of our more eminent jazz writers, embody the past, present and future of jazz.

Minasi made The Vampire's Revenge as a celebration of musicianship. The crème de la crème of the downtown scene was invited, and those players' contributions are essential to making this such a vibrant and rich record. Minasi himself plays his guitar as good as ever, but the focus for this project rests on Minasi the composer and musical director. There is something very Charles Ives-like to the music on The Vampire's Revenge. Its charm lies in its revelation of a deeply romantic soul hidden under a pioneer's bravado, and great joy in a seamless combination of "low culture and "high art. From Ives to Dolphy, with strains of Mingus, and Edgar Varèse, this is America's classical music, if there ever was one.

Inspired by Anne Rice's The Vampire Chronicles, the material has a lighthearted, delightfully offbeat touch, as on Carol Mennie's superb vocal on "Just One More Bite," a specimen of that venerable American musical tradition which again found its origin with Charles Ives and has been defined by Frank Zappa as "Does Humor Belong In Music?

This is two hours of delightful music with a lust for life, rather than blood. It is Pulitzer Prize material, and most likely album of the year. That a CD of this scope and excellence was made as an independent project—without any backing whatsoever by a record company—makes The Vampire's Revenge an all the more triumphant and astonishing achievement, and an inspiration to musicians everywhere.


Track Listing: The Seduction; Who's Your Dentist?; Just One More Bite; The Transformation; The Dark Side; The First Day; Blood Lust; The Hunt; Where You Gonna' Go? Where You Gonna' Hide?; The Vampire's Revenge.

Personnel: Dom Minasi: guitar; Ken Filiano: bass; Jackson Krall: drums; Perry Robinson: clarinet; Joe Giardullo: Soprano sax; Jason Kao Hwang: violin; Tomas Ulrich: cello; Carol Mennie: voice; John Gunther: reeds; Herb Robertson: trumpet; Steve Swell: trombone; Francois Grillot: bass; Ras Moshe: reeds; Matthew Shipp: piano; Mark Whitecage: alto sax; Borah Bergman: piano; Joe McPhee: tenor sax; Paul Smoker: flugelhorn; Sabir Mateen: tenor sax; Blase Siwula: alto sax; Peter Ratray: recitative; Byron Olson: conductor

Year Released: 2006 | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read June CD/LP/Track Review June
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read The Invariant CD/LP/Track Review The Invariant
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 22, 2017
Read Akua's Dance CD/LP/Track Review Akua's Dance
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 21, 2017
Read Daylight Ghosts CD/LP/Track Review Daylight Ghosts
by Mark Sullivan
Published: February 21, 2017
Read "Horizon Ahead" CD/LP/Track Review Horizon Ahead
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 17, 2016
Read "2016" CD/LP/Track Review 2016
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 13, 2016
Read "Meditations on Freedom" CD/LP/Track Review Meditations on Freedom
by Karl Ackermann
Published: January 11, 2017
Read "District 6" CD/LP/Track Review District 6
by Geno Thackara
Published: April 12, 2016
Read "The Golden Measure" CD/LP/Track Review The Golden Measure
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 25, 2016
Read "I Long to See You" CD/LP/Track Review I Long to See You
by Ian Patterson
Published: March 11, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!