Time Out Take Five: Douglas Cuomo Feat Nels Cline, Yaniv Taubenhouse, Falkner Evans & More

Time Out Take Five is a regular column comprised of pithy takes on recent jazz releases, spotlighting titles deserving attention that might otherwise go unnoticed.

Douglas Cuomo featuring Nels Cline and the Aizuri Quartet: seven limbs – On these arrangements of poignant and provocative compositions, the wide-ranging sounds of guitarist Nels Cline’s instrument, plus electronics, become integrated with that of four cello/violin players, the alternately whimsical and pointed sounds offering both counterpoint and unity to the album. Similarly, both acoustic (“Requesting”) and electric (“Rejoicing”) guitars complement each other during this ode to meditation referenced in this album title, the overall result of which is a potent combination of precision and passion, that becomes progressively more insinuating as these eighteen-parts unfold. 

Yaniv Taubenhouse: Roads – Moments in Trio Volume Three Conjured through this trio’s acute mutual sensitivity, an ebb and flow arise over the course of these ten tracks so that the musicianship turns deeply stirring by its conclusion. Transitions from track to track and within individual cuts are virtually imperceptible, thus conjuring radiant tranquility that belies radiates from Roads’ meticulous activity. The leader’s eloquent liner notes in the enclosed booklet are only the most obvious indication of how much thorough preparation went into the recording of this striking album

Lynne Arriale Trio w/Jasper Somsen & E.J. Strickland: The Lights Are Always On: Specifically conceived as an homage to those inspirational figures so prominent on our cultural landscape during the trying times of recent years, there is a tangible glow of nurturing warmth emanating from this music. However, pianist/composer Lynne Arriale’s selfless approach begins with the album’s billing: the assertive instrumental personae of double bassist Jasper Somsen & drummer E.J. Strickland are specifically credited, a designation in keeping with an overall instrumental balance the trio maintains, beginning right from the opener of “March On.” then all the way to the fittingly-titled closer “Heroes.”

Falkner Evans: Invisible Words – A means of exorcising grief in the wake of his wife’s death by suicide, Falkner Evans sounds deeply immersed in catharsis during each successive moment of tracks like the title cut or “Breathing Altered Air.” Yet he never sounds lost in the proverbial dream, instead of playing with increasing clarity that belies his measured touch. As a result, his solitary musicianship reveals how ideal is the simplicity of the solo piano setting for this concept: the dynamics of the sounds become analogous to the resolve of a human being to embrace life in all its positive and negative vagaries.

Yelena Eckemoff: I Am A Stranger In This World – The expanse of Yelena Eckemoff’s ambition here correlates to the prestige of her accompanists. Members of one rhythm section for I Am A Stranger In This World, bassist Drew Gress and drummer Joey Baron, are just two of a distinguished roster who contribute to the momentum of music that never flags during the shifting textures of the arrangements. The composer/leader’s piano sets an authoritative tone within which Ralph Alessi’s trumpet is no more or less prominent than the electric guitars of Adam Rogers and Ben Monder, so the resultant instrumental mesh imbues this work with a vigorous spontaneity. 

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