Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Marilyn Lerner, Ken Filiano, Lou Grassi, Arms Spread Wide, 2008

I am catching up with a release from 2009 that I am glad to hear repeatedly. It's an avant piano trio date recorded in 2008 for a No Business (NBCD 5) CD, Arms Spread Wide. The band is an excellent one: Marilyn Lerner at the piano, Ken Filiano, contrabass, and Lou Grassi at the drums.

All three players are inextricably intertwined in a very musical dialog. Ms. Lerner is an imaginative improviser who has listened to Cecil Taylor and Paul Bley and made her own way through those stylistic influences. Ken Filiano and Lou Grassi are well known and so need no introduction. They sound especially good here with Ms. Lerner. Lou's freetime is superb and mightily inventive; Ken is rhythmically and melodically alive in the best sense; both work with Marilyn to create long strands of improvised coherence and excitement.

It has connection with the roots of the music and yet it soars far and wide in its collective intelligence. That's a pretty good way to go! This one needs to be heard.

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