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Album Review

Serpentine is a hearty, exploratory meeting between percussionist Han Bennink and trumpeter Dave Douglas. The seemingly over-caffeinated nervous energy of "Neck Four" and "Delft," and the extended technique showcases such as "Stekelbaarsje," are somewhat offset by "Alap"'s meditative development and the straighter cuts "Too Close for Comfort" and "Serpentine." These last two feature more lyrical trumpet playing from Douglas and the softened accompaniment of Bennink's brushes. Each musician also gets a brief solo piece: the percussive "Rein" and Douglas' "Greenleaf." While not as wowing as some of Bennink's other duo work — namely, Dissonant Characters with tenor saxophonist Ellery Eskelin — this 1996 studio recording captures the good interaction of two excellent creative musicians.

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Serpentine, Han Bennink and Dave Douglas
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