Lisbon Improvisation Players feat. Dennis González – Spiritualized (CF 062)
When one thinks of free improvisations, it is often of high-energy barrages of sound or esoteric sound explorations. The Lisbon Improvisation Players, a quartet/quintet (cellist Ulrich Mitzlaff is on the final two of the six selections) whose best-known member is trumpeter Dennis Gonzalez, plays a different type of free jazz. Not shying away from melodies, tonality and rhythms, the group develops all three as the music progresses. The results are consistently fascinating as the musicians literally create music out of thin air. The players are all very familiar with other styles of jazz and they draw their ideas from all eras while looking ahead. “Time-Rising Spirits,” a free bop piece that sounds like a rollicking blues in one chord, is a highlight. The constant and quick reactions of the musicians to each other’s ideas makes this chance-taking program a complete success. Altoist-baritonist Rodrigo Amado, bassist Pedro Gonçalves, drummer Bruno Pedroso and cellist Ulrich Mitzlaff, and Gonzalez himself deserve to be much better known.