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MRC Trio: Tribal Dance

Jim Santella By

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Spontaneous composition, in its purest form, seldom swings with the kind of vitality that flows from the MRC Trio on this contemporary album. Each piece is wholly improvised, and Hugh Marsh adds quite a bit of off-the-wall electronic pizazz. Yet, Barry Romberg and Rufus Cappadocia ensure that their trio session swings thoroughly. The secret is in what cello and drums do with a rhythm. Both artists walk and sashay with a steady hand, while letting the mood swing this way and that. There are long periods, such as parts 3 and 4 of “Reunion,” where meter disappears and the trio assumes a major change of direction. This kind of flexibility comes from the spontaneity inherent in improvised music.

The impressions created by electronic effects and the two electronic instruments carry a wide range. “Slumber Party” moves with typical high energy, as well as with slower, dreamy sequences. Much of the thought that the trio has put into their improvisation comes from a world music influence. Exotic lands and faraway places coexist with traditional spirits. Some parts have more of a jazz swing than others do. The trio’s title track summarizes their adventure. It’s a tour of the world with scenic landscapes that capture it all spontaneously.


Track Listing: Reunion; Slumber Party; Simply Said; Tiger in the Sun; Tribal Dance.

Personnel: Hugh Marsh- electric violin, electronic effects; Barry Romberg- drums, toys; Rufus Cappadocia- electric 5-string cello.

Title: Tribal Dance | Year Released: 2003

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