Daniel Carter / Matthew Shipp / William Parker / Gerald Cleaver: Welcome Adventure! Vol. 2By
If one had to pick a precedent, it would perhaps be Farmers By Nature, the cooperative trio which includes Parker and Cleaver, completed by pianist Craig Taborn. They share an egalitarian outlook which manifests in constantly evolving free flowing interchanges which unselfconsciously reference the tradition but without slavish imitation, where no one person dominates but each pulls their weight.
"Wordwide" exemplifies the shape shifting mutations on offer. It begins as a slow ballad, traced by Carter's breathy tenor saxophone, before darkening as Shipp punctuates the ambiance with a series of thunderous clashes to create an emotionally ambivalent atmosphere. Then out of nowhere Carter, often a cooling influence, proposes a sweet paraphrase of what might be some half remembered standard, his phrasing songlike if not his pitch. Parker and Cleaver roughen things up briefly, until all four return to the romanticized territory of the opening ploy.
Of the other tracks, "Sunverified" is the most immediate. Initiated in engaging complexity, it suddenly seems to snap into focus as a shuffling groove, with Parker walking his bass and Carter's blue-tinged alto cutting across the beat, before making space for Shipp to channel his inner Bud Powell with long brightly glinting lines.
Most unexpected though is "Blinking Down," a saxophone/drum duet which starts from a place rarely encountered in the format. Carter opens alone on tenor in an astonishing bat-squeak register. Eventually Cleaver joins, hammering on a deadened drum head as if trying to beat down a door. It's a remarkable combination. As the piece progresses Cleaver allows more resonance to escape and Carter's tone plummets down the stave to intersperse more burnished musings among the squall in what becomes a conversational exchange.
Proof, were it needed, that there's no sign of these particular streams of invention running dry.
Sunverified; Blinking Down; Mask Production; Wordwide; Da Rest Is Story.
Daniel Carter: saxophone; Matthew Shipp: piano; William Parker: bass; Gerald Cleaver: drums.
Title: Welcome Adventure! Vol. 2 | Year Released: 2022 | Record Label: 577 Records
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About Daniel Carter
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