Friday, August 17, 2012

Benjamin Duboc, Itaru Oki, Nobusiko

Contrabassist Benjamin Duboc and trumpeter Itaru Oki engage in extended free duet play on the intriguing album Nobusiko (Improvising Beings ib01). There are eight interactions, each one different, all filled with inspired freedom.

There are times when there is a kind of cosmic space between the notes that reminds me just a bit of classical music for the Japanese Noh. Other times there are lucid avant vocabulary conversations between the two in masterful fashion. Duboc shows his attention to contrabass sound in the ordinary and extended sense and has an intensity and dynamic phrasing that goes well with Itaru Oki's extended trumpet technique and soulful effusions.

There are points where Benjamin's bass combines with Itaru on flute, tubes and percussion for something ritualistic. It even got my wife's attention--something not easy to do with the amount of music wafting through our space on any given day.

A duet of this sort can become boring in the wrong hands. Duboc and Oki are never that. They maintain your interest and show that they are originals committed to the expression of the "now" of contemporary improvisation.

Definitely recommended.

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