When: Sun., July 17, 9 p.m. 2016
Dave King, the wonderfully aggressive, disruptive, driving drummer in the Bad Plus, balances his prankish side with heart-on-sleeve sincerity. He’s not into archness. He’s a jazz percussionist who’s never abandoned his love of or interest in rock music, and of his many groups none manages to incorporate all sides of his personality like Trucking Company. On the combo’s latest and best album, Surrounded by the Night (Sunnyside), he intertwines jazz and rock interests more thoroughly than ever—yet at the same time the music has nothing to do with fusion. Opening with a tightly coiled, skittering passage that blends frenetic beats, stabbing guitar chords from Erik Fratzke, and languid unison horn lines from saxophonists Chris Speed and Brandon Wozniak, “Parallel Sister Track” has me thinking every time that the band’s about to launch into a cover of Steppenwolf’s “Magic Carpet Ride” when the organ-stoked chug of the chorus kicks in. Instead it veers into a dexterously corkscrewing melody closer to Ornette Coleman than John Kay. King loves to settle into fat backbeats, but he also loves to trip them up with spastic eruptions, and the rest of his group—which now includes the sublimely melodic bassist Chris Morrison—always has his back, lending stability or chaos as the situation warrants.
Price: $15, $12 in advance