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Painter's Spring

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Album Review

As the second release in the acclaimed Blue Series from Thirsty Ear Recordings, Painter's Spring by the William Parker Trio sustains the living bolt of energy infused in the free and avant-garde jazz genres by the debut of Matt Shipp's Pastoral Composure. Bassist William Parker wrote all of the compositions except the traditional "There Is a Balm in Gilead" and "Come Sunday," and together with Daniel Carter on alto and tenor sax, flute, and clarinet and Hamid Drake on drums, the trio lifts the program to the listener's attention with the melding of individual talents into one powerful musical force. The CD features a three-song suite — "Foundation #1," "Foundation #2," and "Foundation #4" — and all are pure Parker with their wicked, loosely defined vamps full of buzzing, open drones, and short jabs. His spontaneous feelings and subtle variations that on "Come Sunday," complete with ample blocks of rhythm and melody, allow one to experience another level of sound through his masterful musician dimensions. As a master of the acoustic bass, Parker's techniques on Painter's Spring range from playing the bass in a percussive-like mode to using a mixture to staffed notation and diagrams in order to achieve an orchestral fidelity. Daniel Carter's performances are never the same and he blows an amazing set from beginning to end. Hamid Drake improvises his visions within the setting provided by Parker and Carter, drums an astounding solo on "Flash," and through this dynamic trio, this program pierces the veil of avant-garde and free jazz mystery.


Born: 10 January 1952 in New York, NY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

In the early '90s, the direct musical heirs of Taylor, Ayler, and Coleman were mostly ignored by New York jazz critics, who found more to like about the hard bop revivalists who dominated major-label recording. Hence, the public visibility of musicians devoted to an "energy music" aesthetic was minimal. Despite its low profile, however, that strain of free jazz was kept alive by a fairly large group of Lower East Side musicians, many of whom gathered around the music's pre-eminent bassist, William...
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Painter's Spring, William Parker
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