Marty Ehrlich and Anthony Cox each make wonderful music--consistently, unstintingly, and with the simple gusto of artistic conviction. That they've chosen to do this in the same room at the same time is a bonus. I've long admired Ehrlich, not just for his expertise on saxes, clarinets, and flute, but also for the company he keeps (he's played with innovative ensembles led by Muhal Richard Abrams, John Carter, Julius Hemphill, and Bobby Previte, to name a few). But to hear his relatively austere, piercingly direct solo work, you're best advised to try the several albums under his own name--as well as last year's set of duets with bassist Cox, Falling Man (on Muse). Cox's resume would fill this box: his cavernous tone and deep swing have informed such diverse musics as Stan Getz's and Elvin Jones's, and on his new debut album (Dark Metals on Antilles), he solos with the same candor you hear in Ehrlich. In some ways, Cox and Ehrlich suggest the quintessential sidemen, and that quality makes their long-running duo such a sure bet: even in the shared spotlight, they support each other in a way that obviates the need for other instrumentation. Go, and expect great things. Saturday, 8 PM, Southend Musicworks, 1313 S. Wabash; 939-2848.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): photo/Cheung Ching Ming.