Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Taylor/Lyons/Parker smoke it up in Germany
Joe Pierre | Los Angeles, CA United States | 05/28/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's too bad this one is out of print -- it's a pretty awesome date by CT, Jimmy Lyons on alto, William Parker on bass, and Rashid Bakr on drums playing live in Germany in 1981. Originally released on LP in abridged form, this HatHut CD has the complete concert spread across 2 tracks, "Calling it the 8th" at 57 minutes, and "Calling it the 9th" at 11 minutes.
For me, this is the best latter-day recording featuring Jimmy Lyons to own -- in part because he's given ample solo space and the recording is pretty crisp -- but also because he sits out quite a bit too, leaving CT alone with the rhythm section. This is, incidentally, the first recording that paired CT with William Parker -- something that would continue for years to come. Simply put, after some initially drumming and chants to kick things off, Cecil is on fire for the rest of the concert -- he's playing dense, fast, and feverish pretty much throughout and so the energy of the band is consistently high. The addition of the second track, "Calling it the 9th" is interesting -- kind of a summary of track 1 in miniature that once again shows that CT isn't just banging the keys randomly -- the music is notated and laid out and can in fact be repeated. I really don't love Jimmy Lyons, but even so this concert, like the Monmartre dates from two decades earlier, deserves 5 stars."
It is a question of recognizing ideas and expressions of ord
greg taylor | Portland, Oregon United States | 07/04/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"First, the most excellent news. This CD has been recently (circa June 2006) reissued by hatOLOGY and is available. As always, if you have trouble finding a copy, drop me an email and I will make suggestions.
Secondly, I agree with Mr. Pierre below. This is a classic Taylor quartet date (the drum chair is being filled by Rashid
Bakr who was just beginning his second stint in Taylor's band). Cecil and the band are very much in full force here playing with strength, heart, soul and mind.
I also want to second Mr. Pierre on his remarks about Cecil Taylor's being in absolute control of his music. Anybody who doubts that Cecil Taylor has a very well developed methodology behind his music should read the liner notes to his recent CD collaboration with the Italian Instabile Orchestra. The members of the IIO (all of whom are great musicians) came away with enormous respect for that methodology.
The issue Mr. Pierre raises brings me to the title of my review which is a partial quote from Cecil Taylor (Art Lange provides the full quote in his excellent notes). Music like this is demanding not because it is random or too intellectual but because most of us do not have a way to approach it. Our usual musical reference points (e.g.,"it sounds kind of bluesy" or "I can hear a little of McCoy in his left hand") just don't apply with a musician like Cecil Taylor.
One suggestion that I can make is to focus on the playing of Jimmy Lyons on this disc. Listen to what he is doing and then listen to how everyone responds to him and vice versa. And this brings me to where I disagree a little with Mr. Pierre. I love Lyons' playing and always have. He is a member of that interesting group of players who grew up with bebop truths but found their way leading into free jazz. Jackie McLean found a very different way to solve this same musical puzzle. Both of them came up with very individual styles that I, for one, find very striking.
Another way to approach this CD is to simply let it wash over you. Don't try to make sense of it, let that emerge however it does. I took my (infinitely patient) wife Sherri to a David S.Ware quartet concert about six years ago. In the full powerful presence of Ware, Shipp, Parker and Brown, she finally understood what I heard in this kind of music. The point being that she now no longer tries to figure out what the heck the musicians are doing. She simply enjoys it.
Obviously, this is not music for everyone. But I strongly feel it is music that everyone should try out. When it hits you, it will do so like a revelation.
Cecil is true jazz icon. There are few who can equal his record of achievements. hatOLOGY has done us a great favor by rereleasing this. Their printings are usually only in the few thousands. Get yours while you can."