Saturday, August 03, 2013

Paul Dunmall and Tony Bianco - Tribute to Coltrane (SLAM, 2013)

About one year ago, tenor saxophonist Paul Dunmall and percussionist Tony Bianco issued an extraordinary album called Thank You to John Coltrane. This extraordinary LP knocked me out when I heard it last summer and became my number one album of the year at the end of 2012. They are back with a sequel that may be even better than last years masterpiece. The previous album mixed compositions from different phases of Coltrane's career, while this album focuses more on the free-jazz he created near the end of his life. "Wise One" is the exception from this pattern and along with "Reverend King" they make the more slower and hauntingly emotional aspects of the music. "Vigil" and "Sun Ship" are excoriating blasts of pure energy that shine with an incandescent light. Waves and waves of sound poor forth from Dunmall and Bianco as they allow no barriers to come between themselves and full mindful expression, one that not only sheds light on their extraordinary talent, but on the music John Coltrane made at the end of his life, much of it being unjustly ignored in the decades after his death. "Wise One" and "The Drum Thing" come from Coltrane's Crescent LP, which I always felt had a sombre air to it. Dunmall and Bianco keep the respectful tone on these performance, with understated percussion and saxophone. The driving "Ascent" however tries to rip a hole in the universe and discover the wonders that lie within. This was a wonderful album, shot through with passion, energy and burning drive to make the best music they possibly can. Highest possible recommendation, don't pass this up. Tribute to Coltrane -

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