Wednesday, December 18, 2013

New Language Collaborative, Retreat

We should never forget that there are players out there very deserving of attention, who for whatever reason don't always get the attention they deserve, just as there are some who may get more attention than they merit. And I don't want to dis anybody, to say who, but if you want a name in the too much attention category, how about Al Hirt, RIP?

The group known as New Language Collaborative has some of those unduly neglected folks, and you can hear them carry themselves forward on their album Retreat (JaZt Tapes 039). The group for this outing includes Ted Daniel on trumpet, Eric Zinman, piano and keys, Glynis Lomon on cello, voice and aquasonic, and Syd Smart on drums and electronic percussion.

This is a free date, a collectively improvised set of definite merit. They let lose in three segments with some excellent interactive dynamics. Ted Daniel may not always be in the limelight these days but he is sounding very fit and eloquent here. Eric Zinman is an all-over pianist that has energy and the ears to match. To hear the two together playing off of each other is very much a something you should hear.

But Syd Smart is right there with them in very creative ways. Glynis Lomon uses her cello in part as a bass would function in such an ensemble, and in part as a soloists making good use of the sound color available to her. The range of color further extends by her vocals, the aquasonic, and the electronic sounds available to Syd and Eric.

Those who don't understand free playing sometimes think that it's just a matter of any and everybody doing anything. Good free playing hangs together in many ways, whether completely intuitive or mapped out to lesser or greater degree, with the ability of the players to make a statement, something in ways communicatively coherent, both in what each member plays and the totality of that effort.

New Language Collaborative make their statement. These are players well-schooled in what they do. And what they do here should be heard.

JaZtapes are limited edition CD-ROM disks put out by the musicians themselves. Go to the url to find out more about the series. And you can order this release via the email address

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