152

Mark Dresser/Denman Maroney: Time Changes

Brian P. Lonergan By

Sign in to view read count
Mark Dresser/Denman Maroney: Time Changes Listening to bassist Mark Dresser and pianist Denman Maroney's Time Changes is often like being in a car with someone trying to learn stick shift—smooth coasting is interrupted by sudden lurches, premature downshifts, or unexpected accelerations. To the musicians' credit, though, the music never stalls. By creating tension with so many rhythmically off-kilter sections, the passages where the music settles into a swinging groove come as a surprising relief.

The title should be taken literally. These complex arrangements by Dresser and Maroney focus on frequently shifting meters, tempos, and often polyrhythms among the instruments (percussionist Michael Sarin contributes on a number of tracks, as does mezzo-soprano Alexandra Montano). It's not the most immediately accessible album, but with repeated listenings the music becomes less abstract and warmer and more inviting.

The recording is weighted heavily toward rhythmic exploration and not harmonic or melodic development. Several of the tracks, like the ten-minute "One Plate and "Lateral Mass, take that exploration out to the border of free jazz, but they usually remain tethered by a rhythmic pattern.

Maroney plays what he calls "hyperpiano, which is acoustic, but he includes techniques that sound like playing and plucking the strings in different ways. He creates some interesting effects, getting those strings to sound slappy and scratchy and metallic, and there are some passages, when Dresser is also scratchily bowing his bass, where it's difficult to tell which instrument is which.

Montano's beautiful voice acts as a fourth instrument rather than assuming the role of vocal soloist, singing in plain syllables somewhere between scat and operatic recitative, sometimes doubling the piano.

Tracks to look out for include "M.C., with Montano's ever-climbing vocals and a Latin-ish vamp in the piano and bass; and the funky "Harkemony, probably the best all-out groove on the album, with plenty of polyrhythms and some wild "hyperpiano playing by Maroney.

Track Listing: Aperitivo; Pulse Field; Heap; M.C.; One Plate; Double You; Harkemony; Lateral Mass; Kilter; Between 17th and Bliss; Ekoneni.

Personnel: Mark Dresser: bass; Denman Maroney: hyperpiano; Michael Sarin: percussion and drums; Alexandra Montano: voice.

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Cryptogramophone | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop

More Articles

Read Petite Afrique CD/LP/Track Review Petite Afrique
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite CD/LP/Track Review Organ Monk, The Breathe Suite
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Wild CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Soul Garden CD/LP/Track Review Soul Garden
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: April 29, 2017
Read The Authorized Bang Collection CD/LP/Track Review The Authorized Bang Collection
by Doug Collette
Published: April 29, 2017
Read Cross My Palm With Silver CD/LP/Track Review Cross My Palm With Silver
by Karl Ackermann
Published: April 28, 2017
Read "Blue Innuendo" CD/LP/Track Review Blue Innuendo
by Edward Blanco
Published: May 14, 2016
Read "Mirror, Mirror" CD/LP/Track Review Mirror, Mirror
by Glenn Astarita
Published: January 3, 2017
Read "Songs Of Life" CD/LP/Track Review Songs Of Life
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 8, 2016
Read "Chasing Pixies" CD/LP/Track Review Chasing Pixies
by Eyal Hareuveni
Published: May 30, 2016
Read "Revelation" CD/LP/Track Review Revelation
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 16, 2016
Read "Live At Blues Alley" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Blues Alley
by Chris M. Slawecki
Published: August 4, 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!