Reviews that mention Uri Caine

July 14, 2019

Dave Douglas - Uri Caine - Andrew Cyrille

Devotion
Greenleaf Music GRE CD-1071

Distinguished musical artists saluting other eminent artists would be the easiest method of describing proceedings on Devotion. Less decorously, the disc is actually 10 intricate compositions by trumpeter Dave Douglas performed in an unhurried but swinging fashion by three of the most serious and forward-looking contemporary Jazz musicians, Douglas himself, pianist Uri Caine and authoritative percussionist Andrew Cyrille.

The three, who have been associated with visionary stylists ranging from Cecil Taylor to John Zorn, and whose performances have encompassed interpretation of Sacred Harp, so-called classical and Haitian sound as well as exploratory Free Music, seem perfectly attuned as to how best to deal with tunes, which salute figures as expected as pianist Mary Lou Williams (“Rose and Thorn”) to Jerome Horwitz (“Curly”). That Jerome Horwitz is Douglas’ favorite of the Three Stooges. MORE

May 22, 2019

Uri Caine/PRISM Quartet

The Book of Days
XAS Records 106

A brief, engaging bagatelle from the PRISM Quartet, an America all-saxophone chamber ensemble, which as part of its commitment to New music commissions compositions by noted musicians. This time it’s pianist Uri Caine, who is known for his Jazz improvising and unique recasting of archetypal works of so-called classical music. The Book of Days is nothing like that however. Instead it consists of seven compositions reflecting the moods of each day of the week. Entertaining, the highly rhythmic compositions are mostly boisterous, but reflective at points. And they’re played with note-perfect animations by this variant of the PRISM 4 – soprano saxophonist Zachary Shemon, alto saxophonist, Robert Young, tenor saxophonist Matthew Levy and baritone saxophonist Taimur Sullivan – with the composer on piano. MORE

December 11, 2014

Flat Earth Society

FESXLS
Igloo IGL 257

Peter Kowald

Discography

Jazz Werksttatt JW 150

Taylor Ho Bynum 7-Tett

Navigation (Possibly Abstracts XI & XIII)

Firehouse 12 FH-12-04-01-019

Hans Lüdemann

Die Kunst des Trio 1-5

BMC Records BMC CD 196

Something In The Air: Outstanding and Unusual Boxed Sets

By Ken Waxman

As the availability of music on different media continues to proliferate, the focus of the durable box set has become equally diverse. No longer does a multi-disc collection have to be definitive or far-ranging. As a matter of fact some of the best, like the ones discussed here, concentrate on certain sequences in an artist’s career. MORE

December 6, 2014

Ernst Glerum/Uri Caine

Sentimental Mood
Favorite FAV9

By Ken Waxman

No mere divertissement, this 21-minute, five-song EP proves there’s brilliance in brevity. The featured duo provides both melodic fidelity and innovation in these foreshortened interpretations. Consisting of two Ellington classics, two from the Great America Songbook plus a Thelonious Monk line, Sentimental Mood’s originality lies in the fact that Dutch bassist Ernst Glerum is the theme protagonist with American pianist Uri Caine adding the coloration and swinging motion. MORE

May 14, 2014

Uri Caine Ensemble

Rhapsody in Blue
Winter & Winter 910.905-2

Théo Ceccaldi Trio +1
Can You Smile?

Ayler Records AYLCD 136

Samo Salamon & Slovene Philharmonic String Chamber Orchestra

Free Strings Orchestrology

KGOSF VD 013

Nils Wogram & Root 70 with strings

Riomar

Wog Records 007

Vijay Iyer

Mutations

ECM CD 2372

Something In The Air: Innovative Writing for Strings and Improvisers

By Ken Waxman

As genres draw closer to one another, the idea of a musician from one area playing and composing a work in another area doesn’t seem so far-fetched. More importantly the sophistication of many contemporary performers means that these inter-genre excursions are triumphant rather than merely passable. One form that is being explored by improvised musicians for instance is composing for the bedrock of the so-called classical music tradition: string groupings. MORE

March 23, 2014

Marty Ehrlich Large Ensemble

A Trumpet in the Morning
New World Records 80752-2

Given a rare opportunity to show off his composing and arranging skills in a big band context, multi-reedist Marty Ehrlich accepts the challenge here. But in re-casting material for more than a dozen musicians he demonstrates the superiority of some of his compositions over others. It’s not that there’s any second-rate music here. But the tunes composed for college and high school ensembles maintain their academic and pedagogical roots. They’re pleasing yet simplistic performances without the depth and compositional sophistication of the other material. MORE

January 13, 2014

Uri Caine/Han Bennink

Sonic Boom
816 Records 816-1201

Joel Futterman/Alvin Fielder

Interinfinity

JDF Music JDF 9

Leaving enough space for instantaneous advances, reflections and deflections, two sets of experienced players use only one piano and one drum kit each to show how superior in-the-moment improvisations can result from vastly differing methodologies.

A busman’s holiday of sorts – and aptly described by its title – Sonic Boom, recorded in Amsterdam, matches visiting American pianist Uri Caine (b. 1956) and hometown hero, drummer Han Bennink (b. 1942). While the nine mid-length tracks may surprise those who only know Caine’s more grandiose orchestral projects, where he slyly reclaims the music of so-called classical music icons, Caine has always been an exceptional Jazz keyboardist, well-versed in contemporary tropes and even funk. Similarly while Bennink’s reputation was made in European Free Music with the ICP orchestra, saxophonist Peter Brötzmann and the like, his grounding is in modern Jazz, and he always brings a touch of studied swing to his solos, that reference Big Sid Catlett and Kenny Clarke as much as anyone more modern. MORE

November 16, 2009

Berlin’s European Jazz Jamboree Offers a Unique Take on American-based Jazz

By Ken Waxman

Like one of those novels of speculative fiction that posit a scenario in which the South wins the American Civil War; or perhaps like a variant of Superman Comic’s Bizzaro planet where everything is the reverse of earth, 2009’s European Jazz Jamboree (EEJ) offered an alternate view of jazz history. Here the music was essentially in the tradition, but, in the main, interpreted by Europeans rather than Americans.

This led to some spectacular performances taking place during the series of concerts in selected Berlin venues during mid-September. But as Superman found when he visited the Bizarro world, altered history can sometimes be disconcerting. Similarly some of the EJJ combinations failed to live up to their expected promise(s). In a further Bizarro-like irony, some of the fest’s best sounds came from aggregations whose music had very little to do with the EJJ’s stated theme. MORE

December 3, 2008

Mike Westbrook

Westbrook-Rossini
hatOLOGY 661

Uri Caine

The Othello Syndrome

Winter & Winter W&W 910 135-2

Reinhold Friedl/Ensemble Zeitkratzer

Schönberg Pierrot Lunaire Cheap Imitation

Zeitkratzer Records ZKR 001

Speed/Cheek/Furic Leibovici

Jugendstil

ESP-Disk ESP 4048

Notated Music and Improvisation: Extended Play

So-called classic music and jazz have had an uneasy relationship since the beginning of the last century. Notated musicians yearned for jazz’s rhythmic and improvisational freedom, while jazzers coveted orchestral colors and financial support. MORE

December 3, 2008

Uri Caine

The Othello Syndrome
Winter & Winter W&W 910 135-2

Mike Westbrook

Westbrook-Rossini

hatOLOGY 661

Reinhold Friedl/Ensemble Zeitkratzer

Schönberg Pierrot Lunaire Cheap Imitation

Zeitkratzer Records ZKR 001

Speed/Cheek/Furic Leibovici

Jugendstil

ESP-Disk ESP 4048

Notated Music and Improvisation: Extended Play

So-called classic music and jazz have had an uneasy relationship since the beginning of the last century. Notated musicians yearned for jazz’s rhythmic and improvisational freedom, while jazzers coveted orchestral colors and financial support. MORE

December 3, 2008

Reinhold Friedl/Ensemble Zeitkratzer

Schönberg Pierrot Lunaire Cheap Imitation
Zeitkratzer Records ZKR 001

Mike Westbrook

Westbrook-Rossini

hatOLOGY 661

Uri Caine

The Othello Syndrome

Winter & Winter W&W 910 135-2

Speed/Cheek/Furic Leibovici

Jugendstil

ESP-Disk ESP 4048

Notated Music and Improvisation: Extended Play

So-called classic music and jazz have had an uneasy relationship since the beginning of the last century. Notated musicians yearned for jazz’s rhythmic and improvisational freedom, while jazzers coveted orchestral colors and financial support. MORE

December 3, 2008

Speed/Cheek/Furic Leibovici

Jugendstil
ESP-Disk ESP 4048

Mike Westbrook

Westbrook-Rossini

hatOLOGY 661

Uri Caine

The Othello Syndrome

Winter & Winter W&W 910 135-2

Reinhold Friedl/Ensemble Zeitkratzer

Schönberg Pierrot Lunaire Cheap Imitation

Zeitkratzer Records ZKR 001

Notated Music and Improvisation: Extended Play

So-called classic music and jazz have had an uneasy relationship since the beginning of the last century. Notated musicians yearned for jazz’s rhythmic and improvisational freedom, while jazzers coveted orchestral colors and financial support. MORE

July 27, 2006

Dave Douglas Quintet

Meaning and Mystery
Greenleaf Music GRE-04

Reminiscent of Miles Davis’ ability to replace one notable saxophonist with another in his classic bands, trumpeter Dave Douglas has tapped tenor saxophonist Donny McCaslin to succeed Chris Potter and – briefly – Rick Margitza in his working quintet’s front line.

California native McCaslin, who played with the Mingus Big Band and Maria Schneider’s Jazz Orchestra, at points injects rubato comments, but usually lets his riffing arpeggios serve as foils to Douglas’ trumpeting multiphonics. Dutiful on his first CD with the band, McCaslin’s musical relationship vis-à-vis the mercurial brassman is still somewhat diffident – like Hank Mobley’s was with Davis. MORE

October 18, 2004

URI CAINE TRIO

Live at the Village Vanguard
Winter & Winter 910 102-2

Finally the CD for which long-time fans of pianist Uri Caine have been waiting.

Not that his improvisational orchestral reworking of so-called classical music by Richard Wagner, J. S. Bach and Gustav Mahler isn’t impressive -- as a matter of fact it offers a whole new perspective on that music. It’s just that those who recall Caine’s playing as far back as the mid-1990s realize that he’s a dynamic jazz pianist. Now in a trio, rounded out by bassist Drew Gress and drummer Ben Perowsky, LIVE AT THE VILLAGE VANGUARD lets him expand that part of his identity. MORE

March 24, 2004

URI CAINE

Gustav Mahler - Dark Flame
Winter & Winter 910-095-2

Newest chapter in pianist Uri Caine’s POMO recasting of the works of the so-called Great Composers, DARK FLAME showcases an almost total vocal program.

Based on lieder composed by Austrian Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), the musicianship and inventiveness here are at the same high standard as Caine’s earlier meditations on the work of J. S. Bach, Richard Wagner and other Mahler projects. But with 14 selections rearranged over 77 minutes, there are times the variations move from novelty to gimmickry. Mahler’s oeuvre heard in gospel, Klezmer, rock or mainstream jazz variations is engaging; but linking it to turntable tricks, Oriental sounds, overwrought poetics or cocktail jazz works less well. MORE

October 22, 2001

MARTY EHRLICH

Song
Enja ENJ-9396 2

Among his other attributes, multi-reedman Marty Ehrlich has always been known as a melody man. And, as the title says, this euphonious CD brings these qualities even more to the fore.

Despite that promise and the standard horn-and-rhythm-section line up, be assured that this isn't one of those bucolic smooth jazz snorers or neo-con ballad fests. The woodwind specialist wrote most of the tunes here, and the covers he plays are from such unlikely sources as singer/songwriter Robin Holcomb, Jaki Byard, the late jazz pianist with whom Ehrlich studied and played, and Bob Dylan, who as they say, needs no introduction. MORE

December 1, 1999

URI CAINE - Gustav Mahler In Toblach

I Went Out This Morning Over the Countryside
Winter & Winter

By Ken Waxman

Like Karl Marx's Communism and Europe, jazz has long been haunted by the spectre of classical music. And, in truth, its effect on the music has been about as long lasting as the Soviet state.

From its very earliest days, jazzmen have toyed with the classical idiom. From the string-laden pseudo-symphonic work of Paul Whiteman, who tried to bring "respectability" to jazz, to the adaptation of "serious" pieces by such Swing era pacesetters as violinist Eddie South and bassist John Kirby, it seemed that every pre-modern jazzer wanted to prove he had impeccable classical training.

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