328

Rez Abbasi: Things To Come

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Rez Abbasi: Things To Come With his sixth outing as a leader, Pakistani-American guitar hero Rez Abbasi continues to reinvent himself, both musically and ideologically. He intertwines the quest for growth with a sense of humanity on this compelling release. Interspersed with ceremonious Eastern song-forms, Abbasi helps turn a new leaf on the sometimes staid, progressive-jazz realm. Featuring the highly-regarded and supremely talented frontline of saxophonist Rudresh Mahanthappa and pianist Vijay Iyer, the program is laid out with a largely oscillating pulse, comprised of soaring, Indo- jazz crosscurrents and more.

Abbasi's linear and soaring single note leads propel the band into climactically- designed passages. At times, the musicians brand a slightly ominous edge, while also intertwining a positive stance into the grand mix. And the soloists dissect and reformulate melodies, abetted by Mahanthappa's sizzling 16th and 32nd note runs, with diva Kiran Ahluwalia equalizing the group's buoyancy during four pieces.

The guitarist often builds tension via his meticulously crafted solo spots, but also imparts a sense of spiritual fulfillment while generating a torrid prog-bop motif on the thorny "Why Me Why Them." Elsewhere, the musicians exercise a state of urgency, with bassist Johannes Weidenmueller and drummer Dan Weiss turning up the heat and kicking matters into eleventh gear. Abbasi varies the flow and overall perspective, however, during the moments of solitude heard at the onset of "Realities of Chromaticism." Here, guest cellist Mike Block's arco passages establish warmth, while Iyer counters with rhythmic block chords, as the unit segues into a sequence of high-impact statements. Mahanthappa spews bullets to assist with a consortium of angular dips and spikes, yet the musicians soften the implosion by revisiting the opening theme for its finale.

Abbasi signals in a polytonal and multi-directional muse for progressive-jazz, where hope looms mightily. It's an outing that reaffirms, and then extends his spiraling stature within global jazz factions. His acute perception and vision, coupled with a distinctly broad music vernacular translates into an album that irrefutably yields the bountiful fruit.


Track Listing: Dream State; Air Traffic; Hard Colors; Things to Come; Why Me Why Them; Within Sanity; Realities of Chromaticism; Insulin.

Personnel: Rez Abbasi: guitars; Dan Weiss: drums; Johannes Weidenmueller: bass; Vijay Iyer: piano; Rudresh Mahanthappa: alto saxophone; Mike Block: cello (2, 7); Kiran Ahluwalia: Indian vocals (2-4, 6).

Title: Things To Come | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Sunnyside Records


Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Thick as Thieves CD/LP/Track Review Thick as Thieves
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Dream Within A Dream CD/LP/Track Review Dream Within A Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Live At The High Noon CD/LP/Track Review Live At The High Noon
by Doug Collette
Published: June 22, 2017
Read As It Should Be: Ballads 2 CD/LP/Track Review As It Should Be: Ballads 2
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 21, 2017
Read Karoujite CD/LP/Track Review Karoujite
by John Eyles
Published: June 21, 2017
Read "Another Place, Another Time" CD/LP/Track Review Another Place, Another Time
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: June 18, 2017
Read "South Beat" CD/LP/Track Review South Beat
by Edward Blanco
Published: September 6, 2016
Read "The Core Trio Live, featuring Matthew Shipp" CD/LP/Track Review The Core Trio Live, featuring Matthew Shipp
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 20, 2016
Read "Trickster" CD/LP/Track Review Trickster
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: May 11, 2017
Read "Live At Maxwell's" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Maxwell's
by Budd Kopman
Published: September 23, 2016
Read "Currents 0" CD/LP/Track Review Currents 0
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 18, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

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