Frank Gratkowski, Paul Hartsaw, Jerome Bryerton, and Ausberto Acevedo | Jazz | Chicago Reader

Frank Gratkowski, Paul Hartsaw, Jerome Bryerton, and Ausberto Acevedo Recommended All Ages Soundboard

When: Tue., March 17, 9 p.m. 2009

Over the years German reedist Frank Gratkowski has proved adept at changing his stripes, so that his playing can fit into the deconstructionist quick-shuffle aesthetic of Dutch pianist Michiel Braam as well as the wild postbop of his own quartets. For the new Wake (Red Toucan) he joined Bay Area improvisers Chris Brown (piano, electronics) and William Winant (vibes, percussion) for a session of yet another color: their purely improvised music favors subdued textural abstraction over muscular blowouts, and Gratkowski’s use of extended technique masterfully complements his bandmates’ splintery, pointillistic approach. Early in his career Gratkowski sounded obviously influenced by Evan Parker, but he’s since amassed an impressive discography that documents his emergence as a resourceful, distinctive player. I expect him to bring some serious swagger to this duet with powerhouse Chicago-based drummer Hamid Drake, who makes everyone sound better. Gratkowski plays in a quartet with Paul Hartsaw, Jerome Bryerton, and Ausberto Acevedo.—Peter Margasak

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