William Parker Quartets – “Meditation/Resurrection” (AUM Fidelity, 2017)

“Meditation/Resurrection” was released in 2017 by “AUM Fidelity”. This interesting avant-garde jazz double album was recorded by a group of famous jazz masters – William Parker (bass), Hamid Drake (drums), Rob Brown (alto saxophone), Jalalu-Kalvert Nelson (trumpet in album 1), Cooper-Moore (piano in album 2). The music played by these five jazz masters, always have interesting and active sound. Energetic and vivacious solos, expressive and especially emotional playing manner, unique and fascinating sound, original and spontaneous improvising, inventive musical decisions – all these elements are masterfully mixed together in their improvisations. The musicians had been played together many times before this one – their collective improvisations have expressive playing, their own and independent playing styles and melodies gently fit together in one composition. These five jazz musicians are famous and active musicians of avant-garde jazz scene – they had been playing and collaborating with Cecil Taylor, Don Cherry, Milford Graves, Fred Anderson, Archie Shepp and many others famous jazz musicians.

This album compositions have many different sounds, sudden changes of styles, high variety of musical expressions and other musical language elements. Compositions of 2 albums are based on collective improvisations, spontaneous and wild fast solos, energetic and expressive melodies which bring to the album dynamic and vivacious sound. Musicians are improvising creatively, free and especially expressive. All compositions combine elements of many different music styles. Though all the music and improvisations are based on avant-garde. free-jazz, creative jazz and other experimental jazz styles, there are heard many sudden and extraordinary stylistic waves and changes. The elements of various modern jazz styles, especially – bebop, post-bop and hard -bop – and also some elements of cool jazz, contemporary jazz, intonations of traditional jazz styles are heard in these improvisations. Very expressive and emotional saxophone solos, bright, adventurous and outstanding trumpet improvisations (in album 1), subtle and vibrant bass solos, active, dynamic and sharp piano melodies (in album 2) and very contrasting and constantly changing drums are the main elements of these improvisations. Though the main mood of the compositions is very active, touching and expressive, it suddenly turns out to soft, calm, slow and peaceful improvisations. These episodes are based on static rhythmic, slow and restful saxophone solos, soft and gorgeous harmony and other similar elements which bring contemporary, cool jazz and traditional jazz styles elements to these compositions. The most effective episodes are speedy, active, especially expressive and turbulent collective improvisations – there the musicians improvise the most effectively, touching and passionately. Tenor sax and trumpet solos in album 1 are vivacious, vital, turbulent, wild fast and furious – they make these compositions to sound lively, energetic and dynamic. High variety of drums are heard in all compositions – unusual timbres, various rhythms of different world cultures and countries, all kinds and types of rhythms are heard in these improvisations. This huge range of different rhythms are colorfully illustrated with unusual, gorgeous, strange and interesting percussion sounds. Piano and bass duets are the most effective pieces of the album 2. Virtuosic, extremely fast, vivacious, sharp and aggressive piano melodies are masterfully combined with vibrant, intense and turbulent bass improvisations. Wide range of extended playing techniques, vibrant, interesting and vivacious improvising create original and innovative sound of this album.


5 thoughts on “William Parker Quartets – “Meditation/Resurrection” (AUM Fidelity, 2017)”

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