Saxophonist Dave Rempis and drummer Frank Rosaly play their first local duo show in more than two years | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

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Saxophonist Dave Rempis and drummer Frank Rosaly play their first local duo show in more than two years


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Before he moved to Amsterdam in 2016, percussionist Frank Rosaly was an integral part of Chicago’s improvised music scene, and his departure left many of his musical partnerships hanging. Rosaly’s bond with saxophonist Dave Rempis in particular runs deep, with collaborations dating back to the turn of the current century. Their 2009 release, Cyrillic (482 Music), reveals their high-energy rapport in a bruising yet agile set of interactive movements and terse melodic exchanges, their lilting postbop routinely exploding into furious expressionism. That surfeit of power extends to the Rempis Percussion Quartet, where Rosaly forms half of an eight-limbed rhythmic maelstrom with Tim Daisy. While there are moments of buoyancy where the jazz roots of the players shine though, the band rarely takes its collective foot off the gas. On last year’s Cochonnerie (Aerophonic), recorded live in October 2015, the group dispensed with trite buildups and went straight for the jugular from square one. On the epic opener, “Straggler”—which features Ingebrigt Håker Flaten playing lacerating electric bass—there’s an effective passage of repose that allows the rhythmic engine to cool off. Rempis takes a different path on his terrific recent solo album Lattice, engaging in some refreshing and effective balladry. Considering Rosaly’s subtle touch and abiding interest in quiet playing, I’m excited by the potential of a different side of this duo in its first local performance in more than two years.   v

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