All About Jazz concert review by David R Adler


Michael Attias
Barbes
Brooklyn, NY December 3, 2009

Michael Attias is known for his work on alto and baritone saxophones, but on the new Clean Feed disc Renku In Coimbra he plays only alto. This was his game plan too at Barbes (Dec. 3rd), where he gathered together his Renku trio with bassist John Hebert and drummer Satoshi Takeishi. The music of Attias’ alto sax heroes bookended the set, starting with Jimmy Lyons’ “Sorry” and ending with Lee Konitz’ “Thingin,'” both of which appear on the new CD. Of course these tunes took on the spiky, free-flowing coloration that Attias and his partners have developed so beautifully, a language of sparsely orchestrated yet precise themes, open harmony and intuitive transitions. Without a pause, “Sorry” gave way to Hebert’s slowly pulsing “Wels” and Attias’ three-part “Bad Lucid,” broken up by virtuosic unaccompanied bass and a drum break that found Takeishi assaulting his snare from underneath. The bass-drum interplay crackled on Hébert’s “Fez,” with Takeishi hand-drumming at first, then moving on to more aggressive accents. Attias shifted the mood with a lyrical intro to his balladic “Lisbon,” inviting a fluent overlapping texture of arco, brushes and cymbal washes from the band. With the jazzier bounce of Attias’ “Spun Tree,” the leader forcefully took charge, navigating a tricky form with fire and poise. He drew improvisational focus from the simple melody of “Thingin'” before closing with “Renku,” the trio’s theme song, full of drive and contrapuntal detail. http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/article.php?id=35211

+ There are no comments

Add yours