Monday, 22 December 2014

Oblik: Order Disorder (Ormo Records, 2014)

Let's not beat around the bush, this is one hell of a record. I have to wonder how come I've never heard of these guys before? Luckily, for me, Sylvian Didou dropped me a line from Nantes (France) to see if I'd be interested to hear his record, ObLik: order disorder. ObLik's bandcamp site describes their music as: "A la croisée entre le jazz et la musique improvisée, cette formation mélange tradition et modernité"*, which indeed sums up the group's music very succinctly. The album, out on the small French label Ormo Music, is an outlet for several of Didou's projects. The label has a few other little gems also worthwhile checking out, one example being The Wøøøh - more on that at a later date. In the meanwhile I'll stick to the most recent release, Oblik.

In a time when jazz tends to be based around the virtuosic soloist, this record demonstrates how the group is stronger than the individual. The album has a fantastic collection of compositions which enable the superb ensemble to create many delightful musical episodes. Composer and bassist, Sylvain Didou, has made some remarkable arrangements which really hold together well, describing the compositions as 'Mingus-esque' might give you some sort of clue as to the direction the music takes.

The quality of the music means that each track has plenty of high points, great melodies, group and solo improvisations, rhythmical developments, in fact so much it's nigh on impossible to pick out any one thing. Of the ten pieces, the amazing opening track Le Chat (tk1) takes us on a thirteen minute tour which makes you curious to find out what else will follow. The stuttering melody and sprinkled piano lines lead us into a complex arrangement where the whole group comes together to play a looping melody. The horns are split up into various configurations so that some play the unison melody whereas others join the piano and bass to play a counter melody. It's a powerful start to the album. The melodies of Longitudinal (tk2), Jazz, Jazz (tk3), Yeah (tk5) and Enea (tk8) are other compositions which shine out brightly. Even if melody is one of the main elements, pieces, such as Perdrigon (tk7), start with a skilfully arranged theme, but soon the ensemble dives into free form improvisation where everyone adds their voice as needed. 3D (tk9) builds from a tenor sax/bass duet into a finely detailed miniature piece where the sax line holds the composition together leaving the other instruments to gradually creep in unnoticed, playing atonal bluesy lines that wind around each other. On this record the soloists all come up with fine offerings, but, interestingly no one soloist grips the limelight, making the album a real ensemble work. 

As I mentioned earlier, the way the compositions are built reminds me a little of the way Charles Mingus liked to compose, finding ways to inspire his players but also to work within the framework of each piece, which could include tempo changes, stop-time and much more. Another reference is the ensembles sound - partly due to the groups make up - echoes, in a way, Elton Dean's Ninesence, mixing styles and strong melodies to great effect.

I said at the beginning this a very fine album which has many strengths. It's certainly one of the best albums I've heard this year, I suggest that you rush off to ObLik's bandcamp site, give it a listen, and see if you agree!

Highly recommended.  

Here's an mp3 of Perdrigon, track seven from the album  

ObLik is: Pierre-Yves Merel - Tenor sax; Alan Regardin - Trumpet; Alexis Persigan - Trombone; Cyril Trochu - Piano; Fabrice L'Hotellier - drums; Sylvian Didou - Double bass.   

If you're a Facebook user (I'm not) then there's also a link to Ormo Record's page here.

* = Translation: Somewhere between jazz and improvised music, this group mixes tradition and modernity"  

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Olie Brice Quintet: Immune to Clockwork (Multikulti, 2014)

This is a recording that I've been waiting for since sometime. Hints on Olie's site about the existence of the group, and the probable recording, have been appearing for some time, therefore, to finally see (and hear) the fruits of this group is very exiting. Along with Olie Brice (bass and compositions), there's UK musicians Mark Hanslip, tenor sax; Alex Bonney, trumpet; Jeff Williams on drums, and an interesting addition is that of Polish clarinettist, Waclaw Zimpel on alto clarinet. Fusing a combination of rhythmic and rubato melody lines, the music that Olie Brice writes reminds me, at times, of Ornette Coleman's 1970s Broken Shadows period. The idea of chord-less quintet playing a mixture of free oriented musical styles, makes for interesting listening, and something which suits this approach to making an improvised music which is neither totally free, nor written, but another form of modern jazz which takes its inspiration from all genres.  

Brice's compositions, although strongly routed around free improvisations, also have melodies and chord progressions, which are used as a backbone for the group to develop their own free-er ideas. This helps make the album easily accessible and yet in no way compromises the soloist's own playing. The musicians manage to sustain the high level of group work throughout the album, working around the themes to produce some fine music. Each piece has its own atmosphere, often presenting a melodic motif which the group then dissects as it chooses.

Mark Hanslip's sinewy tenor sound snakes over the compositions, moving happily between dense melodic lines or textured multi-phonics to create some great music. The underrated Waclaw Zimpel, for all that don't know him, is one of the new breed of clarinettists working on the excellent Polish improvised music scene. His playing is always exciting, rooted in melody, yet always looking for new ideas and ways of expression. Check out his playing on the Hera records (on Multikulti), in collaboration with other's, or his own quartet. The other front-line player, Alex Bonney, also deserves a quick word. His playing is definitely understated, yet always perfect for each situation he plays in (he's also a laptop wizard, engineer and producer). Here he uses melody in a way that reminds me of players such as Bobby Bradford.   

As for the music on the album, there are several highlights to be found pasted throughout, here are some which spring to mind:

On the opening piece (The Hands, tk1), Mark's tenor roams around finding lines that work with the original melody which he also manages to incorporate within his solo, something we rarely hear nowadays in jazz.

Crumbling Shyly (tk4) and Tell Me Again (tk7) both hark back to 60s style rubato melodies that lurch forward before opening up to allow the horns to weave lines over the turbulent rhythm section. Tell Me Again, which closes the album, has a particularly poignant melody which the soloists seem to capture perfectly.

What Might Have Been (tk5) a fine ballad feature for tenor sax where Mark Hanslip shows how he is a master of free form and melody. 

The Old Yedidia (tk2), starts with a melancholic theme before giving way to a lilting 6/8 section for the solosits. Alex Bonney's trumpet leads off, playing some lovely phrases which keep within the boundary of compositions original idea. Waclaw Zimpel follows a different path, taking a more open approach to the music. His improvisations although rich in melodic ideas, react differently to the themes. His playing, which reminds me a little of John Carter, goes more for a mixture of sonic textures, sometimes gentle and at other times his searing lines push the rhythm section to follow him.

On Immune to Clockwork (tk3) the ensemble works tightly together, improvising as a group before letting Olie Brice and Jeff Williams take over, leading us to the end of the piece with a mixture of rhythm and melody.

This leads me to the fine work of Olie Brice and Jeff Williams throughout the record. They both work with the front-line in a way that compliments and supports both the front-line and the music throughout, a perfect team in such a situation. It's a pleasure to hear these fine musicians working together, it would be great to see the group live as music such as this benefits from being heard played in front of an audience. However, the music that the quintet makes is strong, manages to remain innovative and truly accessible, what more can one ask!


Try this track "Crumbling Shyly" (track #4):

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Antunes, Wooley and Corsano: Malus (No Business, 2014)

Unfortunately due to a very busy timetable this one has been sitting on my computer for the past few months, however, as they say, better late than never! Malus released by the excellent NoBusiness Records is the first record from the trio of Chris Corsano, Hugo Antunes and Nate Wooley. The trio have been working together for the past few years, and, from the sound of this record, hopefully they'll become a permanent working unit. The music made by the group is something special, using a variety of techniques to create a captivating collection of pieces ranging from dynamic rubato melodic improvisations to more abstract musical outings.

The album's strength is probably its varied approaches to the trio format, which the group explores from all angles. Although the trios sound is the main back-bone of the record, there are two pieces which are built from duo improvisations, and a third piece which showcases the group in an unusual format as an amplifier trio! But the music as a whole is beautifully paced throughout, often leaving plenty of space, both sound wise and musically, giving us a chance to discover details in each of the pieces. The crystal clear sound also helps making the record a joy to listen to, especially as on this recording you are able to hear each instruments individual timbres, due to the excellent work of sound man/wizard Michel Huon (who deserves a credit). 

As for the pieces on the record.... Gentlemen Of Four Outs (tk1), is an energy powered improvisation showing how the trio can combine melody and rhythm in a completely fluid way. 4 Cornered (tk2) continues in the same direction, introducing more abstract ideas and techniques, many of which are developed throughout the record. On this track, by creating space, the trio gives us a chance to really hear the developing process of building an improvisation. This continues on Sawbuck (tk3), the first of the duo pieces - bass and drums. Antunes and Corsano's use of bows at the beginning probably inspired the title (?), but the duo gradually works into a more rounded sound.

The intriguing Seven Miles From The Moon builds from a single bass note, developing gradually into an delightful palette of sound colours. At the start of this piece Nate Wooley uses his trumpet as a percussion instrument, digging into his bag of sound effects to combine with the bass and drums. The trio's work on this piece shows exactly how well they manage to combine ideas without overcrowding each other playing.  

Sandbagged (tk5) continues the duo idea, this time for bass and trumpet. Both players rely on the staccato possibilities of their individual instruments, developing a conversational idea sounding not unlike two birds in a tree. Sewn (tk6) shows the group working with amplifiers, a technique which Wooley has been developing as a musical colour for the past few years. Here, the whole group delves into this sonic landscape to conjure up a distorted wall of sound, bluring the individual edges of each instrument, in a way that makes the music become an impressionist painting.

The last track Gentlemen of Three Inns (tk7) brings us back to the world of pure acoustic sound. Hugo Antunes's crystal clear bass lines opens the track before being joined by Nate Wooley and Chris Corsano. This is again a piece that uses melody as its central idea, Wooley using his muted trumpet in a way that gives the trios sound an intimate feel, not unlike Jimmy Giuffre's late trio sound - with Paul Bley and Steve Swallow.    

This is one of those records that deserves being heard by as many people as possible, and especially those who think of 'free-jazz' as something unlistenable. Its also a fine example of three musicians listening to each other, making music that is truly the sum of three individuals who combine together to produce a music which although probably not ground breaking, remains fresh, inventive and very listenable.

Highly recommended! 

Musicians: Nate Wooley - trumpet, amplifier; Hugo Antunes - double bass; amplifier and Chris Corsano - drums, amplifier (track 6).

* I'd normally put a little excerpt for (or video) to give an idea of the music. However, if you pop over to the NoBusiness site you'll be able to hear some samples of the music on the record company's website.  

Friday, 12 September 2014

Marc Ducret: Tower-Bridge (Ayler Records, 2014)

For all of those who haven't heard Marc Ducret's Tower series, now is maybe the time to start. This record represents the last instalment of an incredible journey through many musical territories, yet with one musical thread tying them together, that of Marc Ducret's original musical thinking. Tower-Bridge is the fifth, and supposedly last part of the series (see below) which took as its inspiration Vladimir Nabokov's novel Ada. There are copious liner notes - as liner notes throughout the various volumes - which give some explanations to the connection between the music and the book, but for this short review it is suffice to quote the Ayler Record's presentation which states, "[t]he music [is] composed to convey Nabokov's text complex structure and writing process"¹.

Although I reviewed several albums from the series - digital versions sent by Ayler records - so I haven't seen the covers.  However, I did get a hard copy of this latest record. I'll mention the music shortly but the packaging of this disc merits a detour. The album is made up of double CD, with triptych folding sleeve, a small booklet with extracts from Nabokov's Ada, and an interesting fold-out with some notes from Ducret - which include a score of his composition Real thing #3. A last bonus is quite a crowd draw, access to exclusive video content, a 23 minute film by Sylvain Lemaire titled Tower in the Mist. I won't tell you what's on the film, after all that would only spoil the surprise! So, what can I say except buying a 'physical' copy is well worth the money.

The music on the album is taken from two live concerts recorded in Strasbourg in 2012, producing around a 100 minutes of music over the two CDs. Like the previous albums, this recording re-examines pieces from the 'tower' series. An example such as sur l'électricité (tk1 CD1), has been presented in two formats. The first time was on volume two with Tim Berne: alto saxophone; Dominique Pifarély: violin and Tom Rainey on drums, along with Ducret on guitar. The second time was on volume four (an excellent album), where Ducret performed a selection of these pieces in solo format on acoustic guitar.² The appeal of Tower-Bridge lies more in the extended performances of these pieces, and of course the line extended up that performs them. The musicians, 12 in all, are the sum of all the albums in the series, forming a sort of mini big-band. This produces plenty of sparks and some fine music with powerful solos supported by tight ensemble playing.

If you haven't heard Marc Ducret's music before and you're open to rock meets free-jazz meets Zappa meets contemporary classical music, then you'll love this. There's plenty of dynamic interaction between the musicians. Ducret has a knack in providing action-packed pieces, his rhythmic concept often develops around tight interlocking contrapuntal lines to produce long melodies which have a logic of their own. He also loves to use dissonance as a tool, combining it with rhythm in a powerful combination.

There is so much on this record it would be impossible to delve into each piece. A few highlights include Tim Berne's inimitable alto leading the way on sur l'électricité (tk1 CD1). This track has a lot of information, a great theme, and plenty of muscular interludes with several gripping solos. The fantastical atmospheres conjured up in Real thing #1 (tk2 CD1) builds around a succession of duet/trio sections leading gradually to feature for the violin of Dominique Pifarély. Track 3 (CD1), real thing #2 has a wonderful strident solo from Kasper Tranberg (trumpet) who manages to ride over the heavy rocking ensemble, punctuated by powerful piano chord clusters. Softly her tower crumbled into the Sweet Silent Sun (tk1 CD2) flies out of the speakers like an angry neighbour shouting. The final track of the album L'Ombra di Verdi (tk3 CD2) produces a mysterious theme in the closing half which hangs somewhere between a film noir theme and a 6/8 rock ballad.

What else can we say about such a great record? I guess that if you haven't heard Ducret before this is a good place to start, there's fine compositions and performances all here. And, if you like this then you'll need no encouragement to look into his work even further. As for Marc Ducret fans, if you haven't got this one, buy it!

The website says this is a limited edition of 1000. 

Here's a video of the group live. The recording is more 'centred' sound-wise, but here you get some idea of the groups sound, and size. If you look for Ducret's Tower-bridge project on Youtube you'll find plenty of other examples.

The musicians on this record are: Kasper Tranberg - trumpet; Dominique Pifarély - violin; Tim Berne - alto saxophone; Matthias Mahler - trombone; Fidel Fourneyron - trombone; Alexis Persigan - trombone; Frédéric Gastard - bass saxophone; Antonin Rayon - piano; Sylvain Lemêtre - percussion,vibraphone, xylophone, marimba; Tom Rainey - drums; Peter Bruun - drums and Marc Ducret - electric guitar

Other albums in the Tower-bridge series:
Tower, vol. 1, Tower, vol. 2, Tower, vol. 3, Tower, vol. 4

¹, accessed Sept. 6, 2014.
² It's interesting to add that volume four is the only record that has pieces unique to that record. There are a few pieces which are re-examined from the other volumes, however, tracks: From a Distant Land; Sisters; Ada; ... A Distand Land; Sybil Vane, and Electricity (by Joni Mitchell), are to be found only on this album.  

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Russ Johnson: Meeting Point (Relay Records, 2014)

It's always exciting when I see Tim Daisy's name on a record. For me he's one of the top drummers out there on the jazz and improvised music scene. In the past few years he's started his own label and this is the twelfth release - if you include the four live recordings in the catalogue. If you don't know the label be sure to check out the back catalogue, which has some fine recordings. If you don't know Tim's playing then I suggest you take some time to listen to his past work. He's been involved in some of the most interesting contemporary jazz and improvised music projects of the past years.

This latest release is from trumpeter Russ Johnson. Johnson is a fine player who's no newcomer to the jazz and improvised music scene. If you check out his blog you'll see a fine range of projects he's been involved in. I originally saw him many years back with Michael Bates' Outside Sources, playing some gigs in Europe. Since then his name has appears regularly, either in one of his own units, with bassist Cameron Brown or the Belgian saxophonist, Robin Verheyen's NY Quartet. 

In the meanwhile, the new record from Russ Johnson Meeting Point is the eighth studio project to come out on Relay Records. On this record Russ has chosen a quartet line-up made up of: Jason Stein – bass clarinet; Anton Hatwich –bass; Tim Daisy – drums, and of course Russ – trumpet.

The album uses melody, combined with free elements, to build compositions and improvisations, giving a nice balance between the two, that make the music easily listenable, yet challenging. The first track Lithosphere is a funky piece, with bass and bass clarinet underpinning the melody in what could be either a bass-line, or counter-melody. When the solos start, the bass and drums keep the whole thing together, but, whilst the trumpet solos above, the bass clarinet punctuates below, coming in from time to time with ideas to accompany. Eventually the two wind instruments swap places, as one fades out the other steps forward. 

The other pieces constantly move between styles. Confluence tracks 2-4, are (I imagine) a sort of suite - titled: 'Introduction', 'Part I', 'Part II'. Russ Johnson leads the way using the material from Part I, developing it as a drum duet. He stays close to the melody, not tempted to use his chops, other than for dynamics. Eventually the whole band joins in and the piece takes a sort of slinky feel, looping around the bass line with Jason Stein playing some excellent bass clarinet, managing to avoid melodic clichés by searching out sounds that fit within the harmony. It's a solo bass clarinet that carries us across into the Part II, creating a dark sombre atmosphere. Russ Johnson plays a lovely rubato theme which gives the ensemble a cue to step up the volume and energy. Tim Daisy leads the way with a great drum solo which evolves out of the music, until almost from nowhere we are introduced briefly to the first theme, which fades into the background. Great piece, fine playing all round.

There are three pieces titled Conversation, (tk5 with Stein, tk7 with Hatwich, tk9 with Daily). These improvised duet pieces add a nice touch (and interlude) to the album's main tracks. Each one has something special, according to the instrumental combination.

This leaves us with Clothesline (tk6), Chaos theory (tk8) and Half Full (tk10). Chaos theory is an excellent track, starting off with an 'Ornette-ish' type theme, which develops into a wonderful rubato piece where the rhythm section and soloist play off each other, melodically and rhythmically. It has great energy, and an elastic feel which keeps you listening. And, there's some fine soloing from everyone!

The last track Half Full is a very gentle piece, again using the melody as a bass line and the basis for the improvisations. It's a great way to finish off the album. The track gradually builds up its energy as it heads towards the end, stretching the time feel like an accelerating train. This gives a sense of urgency to the track, and brings us to the end of a very satisfying album. 

The music and the group are top notch throughout, keeping you fixed to your seat. It really combines so many elements, but, it a coherent way. It's a slow burner, as I've noticed through the weeks, which is perfect, after all who wants to know a whole album straight away? 

Great album, recommended to all who enjoy swing, freedom, melody and creativity.        

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

More from Singlespeed: #2 - Cory Wright Outfit: Apples + Oranges

Welcome to part two of Singlespeed Music's releases this month. Today it's the turn of the Cory Wright Outfit with "Apples and Oranges", or is that, as written, "Apples + Oranges"......?

I have to say straight away that this is a new one for me, a great surprise. Singlespeed mentioned in a press release that he was bringing out a record from Cory Wright, unbeknown to me this record was going to blow me out of my chair - sofa in fact.

Next, what type of music is it?

What really defines the music on this release is the excellent ensemble playing, combined with beautifully written charts and arrangements, there isn't one duff track on the record. The underlying trend of the music is built on tradition, and in particular that of hard-bop. Yet, the group, and the compositions, take this much, much further. The music develops in an extremely organic fashion, using some intriguing methods, tempo changes, improvised sections and hot fiery solos. The music sits on neither side of the fence, taking in straight ahead and improvised musical traditions. Cory Wright has put together a set of charts which succeed in the same way that the Ken Vandermark Five have tried in the past. Other groups, such as Atomic or Motif, have also pushed in the same direction, combining accessible melodies with alternative ways of soloing over (or with) material. 

On this record examples of that can be found from the start Freddie Awaits the Sleepers blasts off the record, a theme that could come straight from the Marsalis song-book (with a difference). Great melody, wonderfully arranged interlocking hits and rhythm section breaks, before letting the soloists play their magic over the whole thing.

That's just the beginning of the record, things keep coming at you! Low Impact Critter (tk2) starts off with some great free blowing before coming together for a theme, using an impro/theme/impro/theme type form, to great effect. St. Bruno's Preview (tk3), gives you a breather, a short 'to the point', quasi ballad. Many of the pieces tread a fine path between total freedom and organised melody, added to this the soloists negotiate each piece, fitting in perfectly. One of the key soloists, Evan Francis (alto sax and flute), plays some very fiery solos, using strong sinewy lines to bring tension to the music. Cory Wright also plays some excellent tenor sax, reminding me of Oliver Nelson at times - a way of playing a sax like a composer. He also plays clarinet on The Sea and Space (tk5), giving us new colours in the ensemble sound, and of course the solos also. But the whole ensemble is clearly top notch, Rob Ewing, on trombone, plays a key role in the ensemble's sound, adding fine imaginative solos along the way. Add to that the fine bass and drums team of Lisa Mezzacappa and Jordan Glenn who do a great job of bending over backwards to fit into all situations with equal energy and inventiveness. The album clearly works best listened to as a whole, the shorter pieces - all titled St. Bruno's .... - work as melodic interludes connecting the larger scale pieces.

Finally, as you can see there's plenty to say about this record. It's a top notch album that should be heard, especially by those interested to hear inventive music from the American west coast. This is how one imagines jazz should be, fresh, musical, adventurous, and certainly no pretensions.      

The musicians: Cory Wright - tenor sax & Bb clarinet; Evan Francis - alto sax, flute; Rob Ewing - trombone; Lisa Mezzacappa - bass; Jordan Glenn - drums.


Enjoy the clip from YouTube "Freddy Awaits the Sleepers", which is a pretty good taste of what the album sounds like.

If you enjoy this check some more releases on the Singlespeed Music label.

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Some more from Singlespeed: #1 - Aram Shelton's Ton Trio II.

Well here we are again after many months away, surely it's time to get a few posts up and running again? To start the ball rolling are a couple of new releases from Aram Shelton's Singlespeed music label. 

Aram's cooperative label has been gradually developing with nine releases to date so far. The latest three albums are all really top level releases deserving wide-scale attention from all those who are interested, especially those interested in creative improvised music but with composition, structure, melody and swinging free-bop as some of the central points. 

First up is Aram's own release, Ton Trio II: On and On (Singlespeed Music, SSM-013).

I haven't heard the first album from the Ton Trio, released back in 2009, titled "The Way". However, if this latest album is anything to go by I'll be ordering a copy to catch up on this very creative band. The musicians in the trio have now changed with the excellent Alex Vittum drums and Scott Brown on bass and Aram on alto sax, naturally. The thing that struck me most on first listen is the sheer energy and creativity in the music, which stays at a high level throughout the whole album. His style of composition, and playing treads a line between that of (the free-er side) Jackie McLean and the inner melodic logic of Ornette Coleman. Of course it's certainly not a copy, but the sound of Aram's alto, the bass and drums trio set up, make it difficult to ignore such a comparison. The other aspect that brings these giants to mind is the wonderful set of compositions which all have melody at their heart, almost catchy at times. 

As for Aram Shelton, like Jackie McLean, he seems capable of combing several elements into his music.This aspect comes up on his other albums and shows a strong melodic understanding, which also comes across in his playing. Melody is a constant thread throughout the improvisations, even with multi-phonic stabs or wild atonal lines. 

On this album the band pulls together at all levels showing some fine empathy for the compositions, floating through the free-er improvisations moving between free-bop and rubato sections with ease. Orange Poppies (tk2) burns away falling into a free section where the band follow each other like a dog chasing its tail. We Were Told (tk3) is a rubato melody that lays the groundwork for an open piece with plenty of space. Aram works on the tonal possibilities of the sax whilst Alex Vittum's drums accompany. It's also a chance to hear Scott Brown's bass playing as he steps forward on a short solo workout. On and On (tk4) and Let's All Go (tk5) are both pieces which tackle a 3/4 (or 6/8) feel both have bouncing melodies to accompany them. Interestingly both tunes make space for Alex Vittum to play some fine solo drum workouts which build themselves into the compositions. Freshly Pressed (tk7) is an all out free-bop romp, the alto steps aside at one stage to play some gently unison lines with the bass, leaving the drums to keep the high energy going. Findings (tk8) is the closest you come to a ballad on the record. The last track Turncoats show the group swinging hard. There are burning lines from Aram and some highly playful backing from the bass and drums who try to re-think the rhythmic pulse in several different ways, giving a constantly twist to the music. The music finishes by returning to an almost film like melody which is tinged with a certain sadness, a fine ending to a great album.

This splendid album is a 'must' for all those who really enjoy music that sits somewhere between open structures and melodic free-bop. It will surely appeal to anyone who has been (or is) a fan of Jackie McLean. There is a resemblance, although brought up to date, to such classics from Jackie's highly productive period of "Destination..Out", "One Step Beyond", "Old and New Gospel" or  even the musical experiments of Grachan Moncur III*. Of course if you haven't heard Aram's music before then you'll be in for a treat.    


There are a couple of videos from the trio to be found on YouTube, but I found this one "Freshly Pressed" nicely sums up the various aspects of the album 


* = Fine records, which have long been forgotten such as Evolution (1963) and Some Other Stuff (1964).
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