Monday, September 20, 2010

David S. Ware - Onecept (AUM Fidelity, 2010)

Saxophonist David S. Ware's comeback from serious health problems has been inspiring, and he continues an amazing run of music with this excellent trio album, designed to celebrate 50 years of playing the saxophone (he started at age 9!) Joined by bassist William Parker and drummer Warren Smith, Ware breaks out an arsenal of horns: tenor saxophone along with stritch and saxello. This gives him a range of sounds to call on during the course of this collectively improvised album. These men have been performing together in different context for several years and the experience that they have gained really comes through with an extraordinary album. All three musicians are deeply spiritual and the titles reflect that, and the music as well, coming from a post-Coltrane free jazz groove. Songs like "Astral Earth" develop slowly and patiently with Ware blowing long low tones over a rumbling foundation of bowed bass and percussion. The music develops more intensity as it heads for the cosmos, building to a majestic free jazz collective improvisation. They develop a torrid improvisational freedom on "Celestial" and "Desire Worlds" and Ware sounds like a man speaking authoritatively from great experience and humility as he weaves fast textures through the air. Parker and Smith are locked in with an ever shifting and evolving rhythm. The music is deeply woven and thoughtful and develops a completely unique sound that is amazing to hear. The have the tautness of the great Sonny Rollins trios of the 1950's combined with the freedom and elasticity of the music as it has evolved since that time. This joyful album is the consummation of Ware's art and is breathtaking to behold. Onecept -

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