Daniel Levin, Jeff Kimmel, and Marc Riordan; Daniel Levin & Mars Williams; DJ John Corbett | Hideout | Jazz | Chicago Reader

Daniel Levin, Jeff Kimmel, and Marc Riordan; Daniel Levin & Mars Williams; DJ John Corbett Recommended Soundboard Critics' Picks

When: Wed., July 8, 9:30 p.m. 2009

Cellist Daniel Levin leads a drummerless quartet that’s released three albums full of the sort of elegant melodic statements and quietly intense, carefully shaded interactions that give chamber jazz a good name. But his trio on Fuhuffah (Clean Feed)—where he’s backed by bassist Ingebrigt Haaker Flaten and drummer Gerald Cleaver—is a straight-up jazz band, no adjectives necessary. Levin fills the same role that horn players like Sonny Rollins and Ornette Coleman have in similarly stripped-down settings, boldly extrapolating from his own strong melodies over a swinging, muscular rhythm section. Even when he and Haaker Flaten bow in tandem on the folk tune “Hangman,” their earthy lyricism and haunted spirituality make me think of Charles Mingus and Albert Ayler. These two sets should force cellist Daniel Levin to tap into very different aspects of his improvisational personality. First he’ll duet with saxophonist Mars Williams, a no-holds-barred blower who never sounds better than in freely improvised contexts like this one. Then he’ll join bass clarinetist Jeff Kimmel and percussionist Marc Riordan to play something Levin calls “language pieces,” intended to foster conversational improvisations in which the instruments swap roles. John Corbett spins records between sets. —Bill Meyer

Price: $7

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