Sunday, February 5, 2012

Zombi Jazz - Foreclosure (self-released, 2012)

Zombi Jazz - Foreclosure

self-released 2012

On Foreclosure, Zombi Jazz utilizes a wide spectrum of improvisatory and compositional techniques and textures featuring Michael Foster on sax, bass clarinet, and radio, Alex Hood on trumpet, trombone, and voice, Eric Silberberg on bass and violin, and Dan Stern on percussion. At times, the group bursts into what sounds like a free-form freakout (in the best sense of the phrase), when the quartet is more aggressive, the sounds produced are more staccato, jumpy, scattered, especially the sax and the drums.  They are all able to go full throttle, yet they still remain controlled, together, and attentive, maintaining a constant cohesiveness as a group. Also, the group always builds to these moments, through solo, through melody, etc. Hood’s vocals remind me of an album by Alan Watts called “This Is It". Really expressive, playful, syllabic/textural and a kind of haunted intensity. And when the group transitions into its “softer” moments, the silence is really able to shine. Those are the moments that I really enjoyed listening to in this album. The longer-form, more languid, expansive journeys really feature each member of the group quite well. Legato trombone tones, harmonics on the strings, deep bass drones, high pitched sax sounds, and jangly, chime-like percussion.   It’s also nice that all the members at different times throughout the album are comfortable with dropping out while one, two, or three of the other members are playing. Overall, if you pay close attention and listen carefully, you’ll hear a great exploration of sound and technique on this record, making for a very deep, dynamic listening experience.

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