Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Full Blast and Friends - Sketches and Ballads (Trost Records, 2011)

Full Blast is a potent free jazz aggregation featuring Peter Brotzman on tenor saxophone and tarogato, Ken Vandermark on baritone saxophone and clarinet, Thomas Heberer on trumpet, Marino Pliakas on electric bass, Dirk Rothbrust on percussion and timpani, and Michael Wertmuller on drums. Nice friends to have! This concert was recorded live at Donaueschinger Musiktage, 2010. The music is played in one continuous performance, with dymamic shifts of music forging full out blasting sound and ebbing to moments of near-lyrical telepathy (the aforementioned sketches apparently) Ken Vandermark builds rapid swirling clarinet over bubbling bass and drums in a nice duet feature. Spare brass and bass build around bounding timpani with the percussion developing a nervous, urgent feel. Heberer is rumbling, probing and kneading the scilence featuring his spare unaccompanied trumpet blazing trails across the skies. Pinched tarogato rampages back in with strong drumming moving into overpowering force, then throttling back to a near ballad tenor feature. Brotzmann's tenor saxophone gains very harsh raw strength and subtle backbeat supports. The full group storms back out into full band confligration for a final blast off into the cosmos. Definitely a bracing jolt for torrid improvisation with some surprisingly gentle and melodic touches. Full Blast - Sketches and Ballads

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