Thursday, May 29, 2014

Trumpets and Drums, Live in Ljubljana, Wooley-Evans-Black-Lytton

There are combinations that hit you straight off, sometimes before you even hear the music. The combination of two modern trumpet masters, Nate Wooley and Peter Evans, with two excellent drummers, Jim Black and Paul Lytton, was one that got my attention before I even played the CD. Trumpets and Drums, they matter-of-factly call themselves. The album Live at Ljubljana (Clean Feed 282) lives up to expectations.

What perhaps straight-off makes for interest is the contrast between the very extroverted, in-your-face, sonically brash outness of Peter Evans and Paul Lytton versus the slightly more considered dash of Nate Wooley and Jim Black. That in a way is a caricature because things never line up that simply with the four concerned. But nevertheless it points out what is a complementary working combination that comes through quite nicely on this set.

Wooley amplifies his trumpet for a wide-ranging sound. Similarly Black manipulates electronics in addition to his drumming. Evans plays a piccolo trumpet along with his usual standard trumpet and Lytton as expected gives us the added colors of extra percussion to his kit.

The music unfolds freely as one long, continuous performance. There are moments of aural experimentation, color building and there are times when the quartet takes it to the stars. A vivid sense of interaction, pacing and keen concentration from all four make it work excellently.

If you know these players you can imagine what the four together can do. They do it here and they do it very, very well. Grab onto this one and head for parts unknown.

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