alan wilkinson / steve noble / john edwards Obliquity (LP, £6.25)label: Bo'Weavil Recordings
Obliquity is a free jazz record, if youll forgive the use of such a hoary, old fashioned phrase. Its scorching, heads-down momentum, rhythm and drive places it in direct line of descent from the fierce originators of the genre: Ayler, Sanders, Graves, Frank Wright. It also swings. At times it dances. Obliquity is a free jazz record through the prism of the improvisational movement in Europe, though. This is no attempt at polite revivalism or looking back/up to the 1960s. Wilkinson/Edwards/Noble are producing new, vital music of and for now. John Edwards pins down the trio with precision and energy - his tremendous internal rhythm on display to full effect throughout. Alan Wilkinson is a ferocious improviser, probably best known for membership of the demon Hession/Wilkinson/Fell trio. Obliquity features full-spectrum Wilkinson: flatouttakenoprisoners saxophonication, squeals, coughs, sustained improvisational experimentation and east London tribal chanting. Steve Noble is an upright drummer with a surgeons accuracy, his crisp percussion work has accompanied dancers, funksters, poets and tuba players. But hes not played better than here: great power, allied to grace, a subtle touch and solid time - the drumming drives the music on to real heights.
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