Saturday, May 28, 2011

Louie Belogenis Trio - Tiresias (Porter Records, 2011)

The deep-seated and haunting nature of the music links this album to Albert Ayler’s free-jazz masterpiece Spiritual Unity, not the least because both sessions share the same drummer, the great free percussionist Sunny Murray. Louie Belogenis’ sandpaper raw saxophone tone and sparse use of swirls and slurs make him a natural heir to Ayler, but it is his patience and ability to let the music breathe that really allows this session to thrive. Nowhere is this more evident than their beautiful take on John Coltrane's sombre “Alabama,” where Michael Bisio’s beautiful bowed bass and Murray’s soft and deft percussion underpin Belogenis’ sad and thoughtful saxophone. “Divination” drives the band deeper into free-jazz territory, with the saxophone upping the ante with some torrid runs and bass and drums providing an ever shifting landscape to gallop over. “Seven Lives” pulls deep and strong tenor saxophone with a hint of caustic acidity along with elastic bass and drums to excellent effect. This is a fine session of wide open free-jazz, rooted in the past and reaching for the future. Inspired by the Ayler record they listened to so intently, the musicians cover a wide range of musical territory in an inspiring and thought-provoking manner. Tiresias -

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