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David Chevallier - Valentin Ceccaldi: Zebres

Glenn Astarita By

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Track review of "ANCBL"

These two laudable French improvisers share their collective imaginations with the willing listener via these capacious works that include numerous trade-offs, mimicking lines and fastidious dialogues, occasionally intersected by nouveau chamber motifs. Essentially, the musicians are all over the map with a strong focus and a wealth of interesting propositions.

The duo seemingly maximizes their perceptual competencies on this winning release. With stark contrasts, droning extended notes, and subliminal melodies, they imply that angst and joy can seamlessly coexist as they weave structural elements with offbeat, yet not cantankerous exhibitions of camaraderie and sentiment.

"ANCBL" is a 10 ½ minute journey, featuring David Chevallier's detailed acoustic guitar phrasings for an articulate call and response session with cellist Valentin Ceccaldi. Here, the artists intimate a conversation of importance, and throttle the pitch, traversing lower and upper registers via disparate tonal qualities. It's a vibrant track, but subsided by Ceccaldi's solemn lines, depicting sadness, and shaded by Chevallier's quiet support with jazzy single note flurries. Moving along, the cellist paces the motif, dappled by the guitarist's gentle harmonics that tantalize the psyche while translucently morphing one storyline into another. Indeed, it's a presentation that is by no means monolithic or repetitive since the duo continually explores and revitalizes its course of action.

Track Listing: NOIR; OIRN; IRNO; BLANC; LANCB; ANCBL; NCBLA.

Personnel: Valentin Ceccaldi: cello; David Chevallier: electric guitar, 6 & 12-stringed acoustic guitars.

Title: Zebres | Year Released: 2018 | Record Label: Ayler Records

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