Over a slow, deep, bass drone, Marilyn Crispell slowly picks out a high melodic riff before adding chords to flesh out the bare structure of the opening “My Song”, then shatters the peace with a cascade of notes that introduces the drums. It’s an arresting opening to the album, an indication of the close listening each player maintains to the contributions of others.
This trio has been in operation for some time, although this is their first recording, but there is a confidence and honesty about them that convinces. The quiet opening track is soon overtaken by more robust outings, Crispell in alternately rumbustious or, elsewhere, quietly melodic form, Fonda standing out for his bowed drones, and Sorgen consistently impressive with his all-encompassing support.
The set ends as surprisingly as it begins, with Paul Motian’s wonderfully upbeat “Kalypso” dancing along in great style. A fine modern trio in action.
My Song; Portrait; Landscape; Our Own Tea Leaves; Dreamstruck; Read This; Area 52; Both Sides of the Ocean; On Bellagio; Kalypso (56.39)
Sorgen (d); Fonda (b); Crispell (p). Saugerties, NY, January–March 2018.
Not Two MW977-2