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Elements Of Style, Exercises In Surprise + Free Jazz Classics vol. 4 "Free Kings" - The Music of Roland Kirk [2CD]


  • Kod: ALP150L
  • Producent: Atavistic (USA)
  • Kod producenta: 0735286115024
  • Wykonawca: Vandermark 5
  • Nośnik: 2CD
  • Instrument lidera: saxophones
  • Kompozytor: Ken Vandermark
  • Cena: 75,99 zł
  • Poleć produkt

Avant Jazz / Free Improvisation / Avant-Garde
premiera polska:
2004-07-21
kontynent: Ameryka Północna
kraj: USA
opakowanie: plastikowe etui
opis:

Kwintet Kena Vandermarka, jednego z najważniejszych zespołów nowego jazzu w udoskonalonej odsłonie.

"Elements Of Style, Exercises In Surprise" jest dostępny w dwóch wersjach:
1CD i limitowana edycja 2CD "Free Jazz Classics vol. 4 "Free Kings" - The Music of Roland "
wg. czytelników www.diapazon.pl # 1 wśród jazzowych płyt roku 2004

Zine; 2004-10

'... 'Exercises In Style' to z kolei coś dla zaawansowanych. Wielce udany album sztandarowego kwintetu Vandermarka, który w zasadzie gra wciąż tę samą muzykę, a tylko zwiększa jej nasycenie. To najpełniejsze studium dynamicznych możliwości Vanderark 5, esencja akustycznego jazzu, który nowocześnie przetwarza motyw awangardy lat 60. niczym projekt Braxtona z tamtych lat wypada...'

Aktivist; 2004-09, ocena: A!A!A!A!A!
'...Vandermark 5 to sztandarowa grupa Kena Vandermarka, nadaktywnego wręcz lidera i mocarnego saksofonisty, który zdążył stać się legendą sceny chicagowskiej. Zespół działa na zasadzie nieustającego warsztatu i w zasadzie przez cały czas gra tę samą muzykę, a tylko zwiększa jej nasycenie. W owej praktyce tkwi sekret tego, iż ten kwintet białych muzyków niezwykle rasowo odświeża ducha czarnej awangardy lat 60. - która zapisała najbardziej heroiczne karty w dziejach jazzu. Na tle dotychczasowych dokonań Vandermark 5, nowy album jawi się najpełniejszym studium dynamicznych możliwości grupy. Zespół operuje między skrajnymi biegunami ciszy i hałasu - w sposób gładki i z czujnym groovem. Z tą samą swadą wygrywa liryczne pasaże, niczym z ery swingu, chrypiące loty muzyki free, funkowy puls i odrobinę kameralistyki. To jednak nie jest postmodernistyczna gierka. Epizody o niezależnym kolorystycznym klimacie płynnie i niepostrzeżenie nizane są w archipelag kompozycji. Gęste, powikłane, intelektualne struktury i dziki ogień wykonania przynoszą wypadkową o żrącej ekspresji. Wyśmienita porcja niezłomnego jazzu, przy której wynalazki w rodzaju Cinematic Orchestra smakują, jak budyń.

GAZ-ETA; 2004-09
'...Komunikatywne kompozycje lidera, ostra sekcja, świetna 'ściana' dęciaków (dwa saksy, czasami klarnet plus puzon), improwizacje godne pochówku przynajmniej na Skałce w Krakowie, po prostu miód. No i słuchać dobitnie, że muzycy się słuchają (jazz wszak opiera się na kooperacji!!!). Czego chcieć więcej? Już mi nawet nie brakuje gitarowych lotów, znanych z cedów V5 z lat 90-ych. Jakże żałosny jawi się w kontekście tej muzyki świat dżezu pojmowanego potocznie jako mainstream. Kto szybko nabył najnowszy V5 (pierwsze półtora tysiąca egzemplarzy), mógł także wejść w posiadanie bonusowego ceda z koncertowymi nagraniami kwintetu, który tym razem wziął na warsztat kompozycje Rolanda Kirka (tego od grania kilkoma rurami na raz)...'

Przekrój 22/08/2004; ocena: * * * *
'...CAŁY KOSMOS JAZZU - Vandermark w dwóch przystępnych wcieleniach
Ken Vandermark to od la jedno z najgorętszych nazwisk amerykańskiego jazzu. płyta '...Exercises in Surprise' jego zespołu Vandermark 5 nie niesie może jakiejś szczególnej niespodzianki, co sugerowałby tytuł, ale za to jest niezłym wejściem w świat świetnego saksofonisty i klarnecisty. Kto kocha bepop, znajdzie go tutaj, a kto lubi free jazz - i ten rodzaj grania usłyszy. Kto jednak okaże się oporny na wirtuozerię Vandermark 5, tego z kolei porwą kapitalne tematy Art Ensemble of Chicago i Sun Ra z płyty 'Radiale'

All About Jazz * * * * *:
Despite his ongoing prolific output elsewhere—including freshly reviewed efforts by Tripleplay and the Free Music Ensemble—adventuresome reed player Ken Vandermark seems to always find time for the Vandermark 5. And that's a very good thing. The artist may have one of the busiest performance schedules in improvised music (and some strong opinions on the subject, which can be seen at length in a recent AAJ Bulletin Board thread ), but he's still willing to put in studio time that counts.

Seven releases down the road from 1997's Single Piece Flow, Vandermark's flagship quintet continues to serve as a vehicle for his original compositions, which span the range from hard-swinging bop to funk to energy music and the great uncategorizable beyond. The dedicatees on Elements of Style include John Gilmore, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Glenn Gould, and Max Beckmann, to name a few. As might be expected, the connections are not necessarily all that obvious, but not much about what Vandermark does is obvious, anyway.

The front line of the V5 consists of Vandermark on various reeds, Dave Rempis on saxophones, and Jeb Bishop on trombone. Vandermark still has a fiery edge, manifested in the bubbling energy of "Strata," which churns and boils but isn't outright explosive—and that barely contained tension, constantly seeking release, provides an exciting ride through roughly charted territory. (One "surprise" heralded by the disc's title comes through when drummer Tim Daisy takes center stage midway through the piece and nearly halts the piece before jutting his way into some deep rumblings of his own.)

But rough overtones and raw intensity aren't there to crowd the field and demand attention; instead, they exist as a sort of musical counterpoint to more controlled action. To my ears the mixed settings work stunningly: "Knock Yourself Out" (dedicated to Basquiat) weds a funk groove to polyrhythmic swing, then passes through collective disquiet and hits a fierce climax before getting down and dirty once again. The tightness of the group (horns weaving in and out, bass and drums providing measured balance and opposition) is a tribute to years of shared sweat. Jeb Bishop's trombone work throughout the record is dramatic, assertive, and confident.

Less greasy pieces like the deliberate, seeking "Outside Ticket," the Euro-free "Intagliamento," and the free-bopping "Telefon" provide counterweight and delve into other stylistic corners of a jazz cosmos Ken Vandermark clearly views as an expanding universe. While Vandermark claims that "...recordings have gained a dangerous level of importance in the supposed understanding of jazz and improvised music," this listener for one is grateful that he doesn't eschew them. Elements of Style is one of the most engaging recordings I've heard this year and the best V5 release to date.
By AAJ STAFF

pitchforkmedia.com:
MacArthur Genius Grant recipient Ken Vandermark heads up another new full-length with his prestigious Chicago-based free-jazz quintet.

The academic establishment's gradual acceptance of jazz as a valid, complex art has produced a legion of white guys in turtlenecks, intent on the nerdification of what had been an inherently pre-cognitive form of expression. Theory, however, tends to oppose creation, and jazz today is often either a painfully intellectual or quaintly nostalgic affair, leaving few modern performers that aim both for visceral impact and musical progress.

That aim at the visceral is what makes The Vandermark Five, a quintet of white guys in turtlenecks, so unexpectedly refreshing. The avant-jazz scene is filled with those who wish to expand its sonic palette, or redefine the term "jazz" entirely within a world of samples and post-modern jumble. It's a rare group that purposefully and successfully advances the movement into modernity within the confines of a fairly standard ensemble, and the fact that traditionalists have questioned V5's "legitimacy" only strengthens their position. A listener will find something immediately gripping about their newest recording, Elements of Style... Exercises in Surprise: It's the sound of solid compositions filtered through unpretentious, energetic performing.

Though Ken Vandermark's playing bears the stamp of Sun Ra's influence, it contains none of the great spaceman's studio experimentation; while his style is sometimes compared to John Zorn's, one doesn't get the same sense that Vandermark's out to prove anything. His failure to indulge the time-honored Jazz tradition of honing persona and mystique may end up cementing him within the sidenotes, but it allows his playing to come across as sincere, egoless, and confident-- an important vibe to transmit in such obtuse musical territory.

Confidence is an audible quality in any improvisational performance, but perhaps none more so than free jazz. It might seem anti-intuitive to attribute the success of a braying, squeaking solo to nearly imperceptible subtleties, but it's the performer's intense vision and forward momentum that can give the music its force, or render it aseptic. From the first freakout of opener "Outside Ticket [for John Gilmore]", the listener is ready to place trust in Vandermark and his tight ensemble, rendered nearly telepathic in their musical communication from years of live performance.

Vandermark's compositions strike a balance between surface-level impact and deeper complexity. In one of the album's most solid tracks, "Knock Yourself Out [for Jean-Michel Basquiat]", drummer Tim Daisy and bassist Kent Kessler work in tandem to constantly shift the downbeat, and flow from solid groove to controlled chaos in a heartbeat. Vandermark, Jeb Bishop and Dave Rempis begin with a straight ahead funky octave hook, moving quickly to far-out territory and back again; each return to the theme increasingly explores the polyrhythms inherent in phasing or inverting it, and each departure becomes more abstract and minimal. Their juxtaposition of such a standard hook with their wild soloing could be seen as humorous or sardonic, but the passion with which it's all presented instead draws a connecting line from past to present. In "Telefon [for Glenn Gould]", the quintet leaps from frenetic swing to microtonal drone and then back again, a structure of calm in the center of a storm that paints an image of the great Bach pianist Gould sitting in Zen bliss as counterpoint lines flow from his fingertips into the surrounding air. The pieces here are all dedicated to various artists who have pushed their forms forward while remaining cognizant of those who've preceded them, reflecting V5's general preoccupation with their own place in jazz's linear history.

Just as V5's freedom within convention stands as a testament to their musicality, however, it's also what holds them in place. While the jazz greats can be spoken of in their "phases" and "periods," it's not clear that Vandermark is headed anywhere in particular. Despite the success of these compositions and energy present in the recording, Elements of Style would add little to the collection of one who owns V5's previous output. This pressing of the album includes a disc of Vandermark's arrangements of songs by the great Rahsaan Roland Kirk, famous for playing several saxophones simultaneously. Vandermark's arrangements are skillful, and an admirable attempt to focus attention on Kirk's music, rather than the man's defining gimmick. Ultimately, though, the recording feels dull-- while the pieces seem like they'd be excellent live, the disc is not an engaging listen following the unhinged joy apparent in the first.

Ken Vandermark is in a tough position, attempting to hone a modern style that delivers satisfaction to the audience-- to feel good about himself both as an artist and as a performer. He's managed to find a successful balance of both, though his overall consistency is approaching stasis, and one hopes that he's getting ready to mix things up or forge some new territory. Still, Elements of Style... Exercises in Surprise is a great album, and about as accessible as free-jazz can be. Full of energy and purpose, its should offer any music lover a refreshing oasis of excellent musicianship.
by Liam Singer

muzycy:
Ken Vandermark: reeds
Tim Daisy: drums
Kent Kessler: bass
Jeb Bishop: trombone
Dave Rempis: alto & tenor saxes
utwory:
CD1:
1. Outside Ticket
2. Knock Yourself Out
3. Intagliamento
4. Telefon
5. Gylene
6. Strata
7. Six of One

CD2 - Free Jazz Classics Vol. 4 "Free Kings" The Music Of Roland Kirk:
1. The Black And Crazy Blues [8:18]
2-5. The Free King's Suite [10:27]
6-8. Rip, Rag And Panic Suite [13:42]
9. Silverization/Volunteered Slavery [11:12]

wydano: 2004-08-06
nagrano: 1CD Recorded Semaphore Recording, Chicago, 9th & 10th of July, 2003
CD2 Recorded live at the Empty Bottle & The Green Mill, Chicago and mastered by Malachi Ritscher for the Savage Sound Syndicate, Spring 2004

more info: www.atavistic.com
more info2: www.kenvandermark.com

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