Monday, June 26, 2017

Silke Eberhard Trio - The Being Inn (Intakt Records, 2017)

Silke Eberhard is a saxophonist, clarinetist and composer based in Berlin, and on this album she focuses on alto saxophone and bass clarinet, in the company of Jan Roder on bass and Kay Lubke on drums. This is the trio's third album, and it also marks ten years as a working group. The conceptual inspiration of the album is of an an imaginary inn that the saxophonist pictured as she composed songs for this project, which vary between a lengthy suite and short vignettes. "Ding Dong" begins this album and opens the door, creating an appealing performance that takes into account the historic music of Eric Dolphy and Ornette Coleman with ripe alto saxophone building a taut and exciting improvisation in consort with flexible bass and drums. The most ambitious piece on the album, "Willisau Suite," is a lengthy and episodic performance that takes melodic sub-themes and uses the them as the basis for an ever evolving collective improvisation that stretches out to nearly twenty minutes. The remainder of the album alternates between short three to five minute songs interspersed by even briefer improvisations lasting thirty to fifty seconds. The most noteworthy of these are the spacious "Minatur" which has Lubke deftly using brushes and creating a soft rhythm that is made whole with the addition of subtly played saxophone and bass, creating a melodic and mellow performance. "Kanon" mines the Dolphy influence, making a bass clarinet feature that is supported by bass and drums. The music created has a thoughtful forward looking approach, allowing much open space to permeate the sound allowing for a wide range of possibilities. The short but very urgent "Towels" leads to "In Drei" which has very taut and impressive bass and drums setting the foundation for the music. Eberhard's saxophone weaves in an out of the accompaniment creating an upbeat and infectious sound, with the improvisation developing its own inner logic. "8915" is another saxophone based piece, an uptempo and pithy performance, with a fine feature for bass included, and the musicians reacting to one another in a very creative fashion. This was a very good album, one in which, the musicians take their influences and internalize them, and then create their own music, stretching language of jazz in new and interesting ways. The Being Inn - amazon.com

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