Monday, February 07, 2022

Francois Carrier w/ Pablo Schvarzman, Diego Caicedo and Michel Lambert - Glow (FMR Records, 2021)

Recorded live in Barcelona in June of 2019, alto saxophonist Francois Carrier’s latest album finds him in fine company, performing along side Michel Lambert on drums, Diego Caicedo on electric guitar and Pablo Schvarzman on electric guitar and electronics. The title track “Glow” opens the album with abstract sounds probing the available space, as long tones of guitar, complex drumming and gradually developing saxophone set the scene. There is a section for skittish guitar that moves across the soundstage, setting up very ripe and pungent saxophone solo with overblown exclamations. The music evolves to a fast and exciting full band free improvisation, with everyone on equal footing, then alto saxophone in open space amid spare electronic sounds. Building back up as a whole, the band uses dynamism as fuel, bounding guitar and bass sounds, raw saxophone to the end. “Wilderness” uses quiet slurs of sound orbiting steady rhythm, creating deep depth of interplay regardless of speed or intensity. Gradually heading on with fearless forward motion, deep sounding saxophone is met by shockingly explosive electronic colors. The music is complex but accessible in its relentless drive and passionate manner of delivery, becoming truly free with grinding electric guitar and soaring saxophone meeting for an exceptional sharing of ideas. Choppy saxophone and guitar slowly grinding their gears as band pulls together on “Tide of Passion,” adding percussion and piling on the guitar to create an alien arena where anything can happen. Carrier sounds inspired, playing an angular and focused blend of saxophone, as the group throttles down to near silence, painting with sound, circling around to get returning momentum, to create a harsh oppressive finish “Heart Core” uses multi-guitar feedback to provide a foundation for a gathering storm of saxophone, while the drumming enters to add final piece to collective playing creating ominous medium up piece that pulls against itself at times, creating very interesting tension. The collective improvisation is deep and spontaneous creating raw and wonderful sounds that are deeply cutting. The finale is “Inner Sense,” a short, surreal sounding piece with saxophone that has a late night feeling of being stranded and alone, rippling and moving across haunting sounds, in an atmospheric and unique performance. This was a fine album where the acoustic sounds of the saxophone and drums meet the electric guitars to create a strong and powerful performance. Glow - Bandcamp

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