Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

267

Nicolas Masson Parallels: Thirty Six Ghosts

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
Switzerland reared tenor sax ace and composer Nicolas Masson draws inspiration from Yoshitoshi Taiso's (1839-1892) woodblock paintings. Hence, emotion and impressionism is projected via the power of jazz music, as Masson and his quartet render a poly-angled view that incorporates the artist's lucid imagery and contrasting colors. With Thirty Six Ghosts, the saxophonist leads a concentrated group-focused program, steeped within structure and loosely devised implementations.

Masson and his accomplices dish out driving jazz-rock pulses with large doses of punch and snap, yet equalize their approach with ethereal passages, sparked by Colin Vallon's airy Fender Rhodes work. However, Vallon and Masson align as a formidable improv duo amid brash movements and scorching grooves. Hence, the rhythm section—bassist Patrice Morel and drummer Lionel Friedli—plays a prominent role within the totality of the program, in concert with the front line's interweaving ebbs and flows. Masson possesses singing qualities, often shifting the unit into sonorous motifs where he toggles between high-impact and yearning lines.

Another component that serves the band well is its sense of balance. The musicians alternate an ominous and thrusting sound with introspective dialogues that blossom into full-throttle assaults. On "Yeah Baby," Masson's linear phrasings and Friedli's cymbal swashes provide counterpoint to Vallon's understated voicings and Moret's sublime bass notes. And they convey lots of depth by gelling the overall vibe into an ascending theme-building exercise, hued by knotty unison choruses and a take-no-prisoners mindset. Ultimately, Masson parlays a rather emotive and multicolored panorama of Taiso's artistic designs. Imagery becomes reality through the ever-expansive capabilities of progressive-jazz, used as a multi-tiered vehicle throughout this persuasive endeavor.


Track Listing: Sirius; Le Phasme; Hellboy; Arsenic; Thirty Six Ghosts; Sentinel; Bermuda; Yeah Baby; Yurel.

Personnel: Nicolas Masson: tenor saxophone; Colin Vallon: Fender Rhodes electric piano; Patrice Morel: double-bass; Lionel Friedli: drums.

Title: Thirty Six Ghosts | Year Released: 2009 | Record Label: Clean Feed Records


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Rain or Shine CD/LP/Track Review Rain or Shine
by Jack Bowers
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Copenhagen Live 1964 CD/LP/Track Review Copenhagen Live 1964
by John Sharpe
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Somewhere Glimmer CD/LP/Track Review Somewhere Glimmer
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Lighthouse CD/LP/Track Review Lighthouse
by Mark Sullivan
Published: December 15, 2017
Read Lattice CD/LP/Track Review Lattice
by John Sharpe
Published: December 14, 2017
Read I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert CD/LP/Track Review I Think I’m Going To Eat Dessert
by Mark Corroto
Published: December 14, 2017
Read "Reflections in Cosmo" CD/LP/Track Review Reflections in Cosmo
by Glenn Astarita
Published: March 16, 2017
Read "Little Steps" CD/LP/Track Review Little Steps
by Troy Dostert
Published: May 20, 2017
Read "Triplicate" CD/LP/Track Review Triplicate
by Doug Collette
Published: July 24, 2017
Read "Witchy Feelin'" CD/LP/Track Review Witchy Feelin'
by Doug Collette
Published: September 4, 2017
Read "Roque" CD/LP/Track Review Roque
by Chris Mosey
Published: November 11, 2017
Read "The Cheap Ensemble" CD/LP/Track Review The Cheap Ensemble
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 10, 2017

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!