All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

381

Mario Pavone: Trio Arc

Troy Collins By

Sign in to view read count
Trio Arc is bassist Mario Pavone's 18th recording as a leader, and the first to consist entirely of totally improvised music. Reuniting with his former mentor, legendary pianist Paul Bley, for the first time in 35 years, this freewheeling session recalls the halcyon days of the early Loft Era of the 1970s.

Pavone made his recording debut on Bley's Canada (Radio Canada, 1968) and continued to tour with the pianist in trio formation with drummers Barry Altschul and Laurence Cook through the early 1970s. Reminiscent of their seminal work, this spontaneous set finds the old acquaintances joined by another sympathetic drummer, Matt Wilson.

A mainstay in Pavone's groups, this is Wilson's fifth recording with him. His past work with Bley makes him the ideal candidate for this trio. A gifted virtuoso with a mercurial sensibility, Wilson's impulsiveness is anchored by Pavone's solid foundation. Together, their malleable tempos and dynamic accents provide an openly conversational foundation for Bley.

A legendary improviser and conceptual innovator, Bley's reputation precedes him. At age 76, his gift for melody is as strong as ever. His fragmentary cadences, jagged phrases and oblique lines are utterly singular. Driven by an internal logic drawn from years of experience, they reveal a wealth of historical weight and harmonious detail. Salvoes of spontaneous melodic kernels offer an array of stylistic possibilities—from sinuous blues and bittersweet romanticism to terse angularity and dissonant clusters.

Recorded with no rehearsal or discussion about the possible outcome, these seven tunes demonstrate the trio's intuitive abilities as they modulate between fervid expressionism and restrained finesse; their excursions offer a concise balance of instrumental sonorities, sensitive interplay and dynamic range.

The vibrant "Slant" opens the album with Pavone and Wilson locked into an off-kilter rhythm that churns with roiling momentum. Bley enters with a flurry of cascading notes before easing into a dark, bluesy duet with Pavone at the coda.

Conjuring an Asiatic air, Bley introduces "Lazzi" with pointillist ruminations from inside his piano. Pavone's bright pizzicato pedal tones and Wilson's metronomic pulse generates simmering momentum. The tune eventually ascends into a three-way discourse, embroiled in terse dialog and heated call-and-response.

The trio is at their most incisive on "Quest," a blast of elastic free bop dominated by bruising accents. Lyrical and restrained, "Hello Again" unveils itself gradually, with carefully considered melodic development. Scintillating cymbal work, yearning bass tones and animated impressionistic piano phrases define "Miro," while "Sweet" lives up to its title; a euphonious vehicle that weaves dulcet refrains with probing angles in a swirling miasma of color. "Solo Bley" closes the album on an introspective note.

On this multi-generational summit meeting, Bley, Pavone and Wilson reveal the rich sonic potential inherent in the traditional piano trio format. A modern classic, Trio Arc is a superlative and timeless example of free improvisation.


Track Listing: Slant; Hello Again; Quest; Miro; Lazzi; Sweet; Solo Bley.

Personnel: Mario Pavone: bass; Paul Bley: piano; Matt Wilson: drums.

Title: Trio Arc | Year Released: 2008 | Record Label: Playscape Recordings

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Deez

Deez

Mario Pavone
Deez to Blues

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Chrome

Chrome

Playscape Recordings
2017

buy
Vertical

Vertical

Clean Feed Records
2017

buy
Blue Dialect

Blue Dialect

Clean Feed Records
2015

buy
Street Songs

Street Songs

Playscape Recordings
2015

buy
Street Songs

Street Songs

Playscape Recordings
2014

buy
 

Arc Trio

Croatia Records
2013

buy

Related Articles

Read A History Of Nothing CD/LP/Track Review
A History Of Nothing
by Mark Corroto
Published: July 21, 2018
Read Turbamulta CD/LP/Track Review
Turbamulta
by Glenn Astarita
Published: July 21, 2018
Read 3 CD/LP/Track Review
3
by Jim Worsley
Published: July 21, 2018
Read World Domination Vol 1: Furie CD/LP/Track Review
World Domination Vol 1: Furie
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: July 20, 2018
Read 20 CD/LP/Track Review
20
by Jack Bowers
Published: July 20, 2018
Read Frank Salis CD/LP/Track Review
Frank Salis
by Mark Sullivan
Published: July 20, 2018
Read "Public Access / Headline / Crossings" CD/LP/Track Review Public Access / Headline / Crossings
by John Kelman
Published: March 25, 2018
Read "Do For You?" CD/LP/Track Review Do For You?
by Roger Farbey
Published: August 5, 2017
Read "Double Bass" CD/LP/Track Review Double Bass
by John Eyles
Published: April 7, 2018
Read "Live At The Magic Triangle" CD/LP/Track Review Live At The Magic Triangle
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 11, 2017
Read "Crazy Lights Shining" CD/LP/Track Review Crazy Lights Shining
by Gareth Thompson
Published: June 2, 2018
Read "Vol II" CD/LP/Track Review Vol II
by Geno Thackara
Published: May 21, 2018