Alexander von Schlippenbach; Josh Berman Quintet; Dave Rempis, Kent Kessler, and Michael Vatcher | Jazz | Chicago Reader

Alexander von Schlippenbach; Josh Berman Quintet; Dave Rempis, Kent Kessler, and Michael Vatcher Soundboard Recommended Critics' Picks

When: Thu., Nov. 6, 9 p.m. 2008

In the liner notes to his 1994 release 50th Birthday Concert, saxophonist Evan Parker quotes Alexander von Schlippenbach as saying “free jazz keeps you young.” At age 70, the German pianist certainly keeps a schedule that could tucker out a man half his age: he lists more than 60 concert and recording dates on his 2008 itinerary. Many of those dates renew associations with two of his most enduring projects, the magnificent 38-year-old trio he maintains with Parker and drummer Paul Lovens and the Globe Unity Orchestra, which has an even longer history; their recent records, Gold Is Where You Find It and Globe Unity—40 Years, both on Intakt, prove that familiarity doesn’t always breed contempt. Sometimes it means you’re working with players who know you well enough to make sure you’re at the top of your game. Though Schlippenbach’s style of course differs according to setting, it’s also changed over the decades; he’s condensed his torrent of notes and ideas into a lucid and fluent flow. In his previous Chicago solo appearance, at the Empty Bottle in 2003, Schlippenbach meditated upon the Thelonious Monk songbook; since then he’s recorded two volumes of Twelve Tone Tales (Intakt), which reconcile the rigor of 12-tone composition with the spontaneity and rhythmic assertiveness of free jazz. This concert is part of the Umbrella Music Festival; the Josh Berman Quartet and a trio of saxophonist Dave Rempis, bassist Kent Kessler, and drummer Michael Vatcher open. —Bill Meyer

Add a review

Rating

Select a star to rate.