Search - John Abercrombie, Dave Holland, Jack Dejohnette :: Gateway

John Abercrombie, Dave Holland, Jack Dejohnette
Genres: Jazz, Pop
  •  Track Listings (6) - Disc #1

The Gateway trio of guitarist John Abercrombie, bassist Dave Holland, and drummer Jack DeJohnette made its debut in the midst of the fusion era, recording this album in 1975, but there's a flowing rhythmic ease and complex...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: John Abercrombie, Dave Holland, Jack Dejohnette
Title: Gateway
Members Wishing: 8
Total Copies: 0
Label: ECM Records
Release Date: 5/24/1994
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Styles: Avant Garde & Free Jazz, Jazz Fusion, Modern Postbebop, Bebop
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 781182106123

The Gateway trio of guitarist John Abercrombie, bassist Dave Holland, and drummer Jack DeJohnette made its debut in the midst of the fusion era, recording this album in 1975, but there's a flowing rhythmic ease and complex interplay that immediately distinguish the group's music from the day's electric jazz craze. Abercrombie's electrified lines scurry and wander into strange byways, especially on the extended "May Dance" and "Sorcery 1," but Holland and DeJohnette keep digging in and varying their patterns, knitting together coherent group music. Holland's own solos are models of order and invention, and the CD is also an opportunity for him to demonstrate his skills as a composer. He wrote four of the six pieces here, and the elusive "Jamala" is particularly beautiful. --Stuart Broomer

CD Reviews

The Lyrical Swing of Dave Holland
Jason Gubbels | San Diego, CA | 07/05/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Somewhat rawer in both tone and composition than your average ECM mid-70s release, this first meeting between guitarist Abercrombie, bassist Holland and drummer DeJohnette grooves along with the fire of early fusion (Abercrombie's tone is usually clean, yet he's clearly capable of exploding into shards of noise, and just dig DeJohnette's peerless attack), yet remains true to the melodic & structural compexities of classic jazz. The highlights are many, yet it's the relentless swing of Dave Holland on the opener, 'Back-Woods Song' that continues to draw me in. Essential for electric guitar fans, and a good investment for any jazz enthusiast."
Spooky Fusion and Ferocious Jazz Brilliance
P. McKenna | Atlanta GA | 12/09/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This 1975 release on the ECM label had more ferocity and fangs than your average ECM disc of the time. Having come fresh off a recording session with Oregon's Colin Walcott for his Cloud Dance album, the three musicians decided to stir up some electrified and inspired mayhem of their own.

Bassist Dave Holland leads the charge on "Backwoods Song", starting innocently enough with a country-ish groove, then enters DeJohnette to give it further drive, then Abercrombie steers it toward the outer fringes of the woods, so to speak, with a vaguely unsettling, warbling melody, leading to a bluesy turnaround. From there, JA takes you to the darkest most unknown parts of these woods with his relentless guitar musings. "Waiting" is Dave Hollands' hypnotic bass solo piece that definitely conveys that feeling very well in fact. "May Dance" is a sunnier, more upbeat bop-inspired romp with Abercrombie leading the way with a clean yet edgy jazz tone from his axe.

Things get more intense with "Unshielded Desire" a duet of Abercrombie and DeJohnette that recalls the fiery exchanges of Coltrane and Elvin Jones from a decade earlier, both musicians relentlessly search for new melodic ideas as the piece almost blows itself apart. "Jamal" is a beautifully mysterious and enigmatic interaction between Abercrombie and Holland, To close on a high note, there is "Sorcery 1", starting with menacing spook noises from Abercrombie and equally menacing percussion noises weave in and out, building in intensity until Abercrombie roars in with some of the spookiest long sustained notes this side of Hendrix as DeJohnette unleashes violent explosions of drums and cymbals while Holland roars authoritatively underneath them eventually winding down as spooks are flying out of the speakers (LOL).

As is typical with ECM recordings, the overall ambience is spacious as all outdoors, yet the instruments are so crisp (especially drums and bass) while Abercrombie is recorded with just enough reverb and distance to give him, to my ears, one of the most genuinely unsettling, spooky and unique electric guitar sounds of the time, he sounded like NOBODY else.

Fusion with a strong emphasis on the JAZZ part of the equation with that kind of looseness combined with the ferocity of the Mahavishnu Orchestra. A great postcard from when creativity was the norm!
Gateway...apt title indeed...
Mike Jacobs | Lakewood, OH USA | 08/25/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This album is completely mindblowing. From the cascading guitar runs to the heroic and athletic drums, let alone the magnificent bass lines. This is the ULTIMATE POWER TRIO! Rush: eat yer heart out! Peace - jacobs"