Adventurous trumpeter Dave Douglas refuses to ease off the gas | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Adventurous trumpeter Dave Douglas refuses to ease off the gas


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Throughout his career omnivorous trumpeter and composer Dave Douglas has deployed his innate curiosity as a calling card. While he’s had certain bedrock bands, like the excellent quintet he brings to town this week, he also pours his energy into a steady profusion of disparate projects. His output from 2016—all of it on his own Greenleaf imprint—was remarkable in this regard. In April he dropped Dark Territory, the cohesive second album by his liquid quartet High Risk, on which the propulsive grooves of drummer Mark Guiliana and muscular electric bass of Jonathan Maron support both the leader’s lyric, high-energy blowing and the fluid electronic ambience and fractal patterns of dance-music producer Shigeto. Following in September was the eponymous album from the New Sanctuary Trio, a dynamic improvisation-driven combo with guitarist Marc Ribot and percussionist Susie Ibarra. October’s Dada People, featuring a new quartet with sensitive French pianist Frank Woeste, bassist Matt Brewer, and drummer Clarence Penn, is a set of brooding, tonally rich originals (half by the pianist) inspired by trickster Dada artists Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp. The results are warm and multilayered, with a sly puckish edge that hints at the titular conceit. Meanwhile, it’s been a couple of years since Douglas dropped an album featuring tonight’s superb quintet with pianist Matt Mitchell, bassist Linda Oh, saxophonist Jon Irabagon, and drummer Rudy Royston. But as a series of digital-only live recordings cut in 2015 proves, this protean outfit has the energy and imagination to endlessly reconfigure its sturdy, soulful repertoire in plenty of new directions.   v

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