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Should one listen chronologically to Hiromi Uehara's still-young musical output, Another Mind, Brain, and Spiral, then Time Control should come as no surprise. Hiromi has been progressing toward the outer reaches of fusion with every release, and with the addition of Screaming Headless Torso guitarist David Fiuczynski to her lineup, she has achieved the synthetic Nirvana previously achieved only by Jeff Beck's historic mid-'70s Sony albums Wired (1976) and Blow by Blow (1975).
On Time Control, the pianist largely restricts herself to the acoustic piano, giving the recording a firmly grounded tradition while her approach to the 88, coupled with Fiuczynski's guitar playing, hurl the music into hyperspace. The pianist's classical training is readily evident on pieces like the opening "Time Difference" and "Time Control, or Controlled by Time." Her chordal modulation is breathtaking in its virtuosity. "Time Control" evidences keyboard-guitar interplay with an impressive velocity. In total, this music is fresh and iconoclastic, bearing an assembly of styles and abilities. As it turns out, Hiromi has quite the sense of humor, as evidenced on "Real Clock" and the closing "Time's Up."
David Fiuczynski is given rock-star treatment as a member of the band. His playing on Time Control is reminiscent of the Jonas Hellborg/Shawn Lane collaborations on Time is the Enemy, Temporal Analogs of Paradise, and Personae. The guitarist's chops are beyond reproach, and in Hiromi's Sonicbloom, he finds a jazz soulmate. His presence on this recording helps the leader achieve her goal of perfectly integrated fusion. Hiromi Uehara is emerging as an important artist who stands to introduce significant and lasting changes in the idiom of jazz fusion.
Track Listing: Time Difference; Time Out; Time Travel; Deep In The Night; Real Clock Vs. Body Clock = Jet Lag; Time And Space; Time Control, or Controlled By Time, Time Flies, Time's Up.
Personnel: Hiromi: piano; David Fiuczynski: guitar; Tony Grey: bass instrument; Martin Valihora: drums.
Years ago now--in Rhodesia--listening to Voice of America with Willis Conover I heard Bunk Johnson play When The Saints Go Marching In, and Billie Holiday sing Don't Explain. I knew then there was no other life for me than jazz.