Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Ivo Perelman on Leo Records part 2 -"The Art of the Duet - Volume One" with Matthew Shipp

It was quite a while ago that "Ivo Perelman on Leo Records part 1" was posted and it's only appropriate that part 2 would follow, if only now. Ivo Perelman released fifteen albums (as far as I know) since 2010, ten of which within the last year and a half on Leo Records. All of which are easily recommended I might add, some of which have already been presented on the blog ("Stream of Life" duo with Brian Wilson"Hour of the Star" by the quartet with M. Shipp, J. Morris and G. Cleaver as well as the two albums in trio with J. Morris and G. Cleaver).
The albums tribute works of a brasilian writer Clarice Lispector which creates a common narrative thread between each release. The second crucial element of the series is the musicians pool, that consists in only few of artists' long-time collaborators with whom Perelman, as it seems, decided to play in every possible line-up. The recordings feature Matthew Shipp, Joe Morris, Michael Bisio, William Parker, Gerald Cleaver and Whit Dickey in a various duo, trio or quartet configurations
As it would probably be excessive to try to present the entire voluminous output, the consistent excellency of the performances released makes it incredibly hard to make a definite selection. On a different day I might choose otherwise but at the moment I believe the albums that I'll present this week deserve a special recognition within the series. 

The Art of The Duet - Volume One
Ivo Perelman - tenor sax
Matthew Shipp - piano

Leo Records 2013

Ivo Perelman and Matthew Shipp have already recorded a duo cd, back in 1996. "Bendito of Santa Cruz" (Cadence Records) is a strong example of Perelman's early attampts at reinterpreting brasilian folk music within the fiery avant-free jazz context.

The musical connection was reignited as the two met again in the recent years. Ever since Shipp became one of the key figures in the most of Perelman's successive projects, result of which are well documented on Leo Records label (to begin with the excellent "Hour of the Star"). A duo album seemed like a logical continuation of the trend but the fact the cd at hand is only the first of three-volumes series proves even more clearly how the two artists appreciate and enjoy playing together.

Both musicians are very different in their personal expression. Perelman's vibrant and exuberant tenor is somehow mitigated by Shipp's majestic and dark piano, although any yin-yang interpretations would be an unnecessary symplification of the art they create. The music displays musicians' profound understanding of the moment, complete dedication  to the music and artistic integrity. No cheap trickstery is used.
Volume one presents 13 untitled duets, short forms, compact and daring in the execution, rich in expression and imagination. A compelling album and very unique possibility to look into the chemistry of Ivo Perelman's and Matthew Shipp musical relationship which stands among the most rewarding of the contemporary improvising scene.

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