TO BE CONTINUED
Carol Liebowitz, piano
Claire de Brunner, bassoon
Daniel Carter, tenor, alto, soprano saxophones, flute, trumpet, clarinet
Kevin Norton, vibraphone, drums, percussion
REVIEW OF POETRY FOR THE FUTURE
There are familiar faces in the third release on our site from the label Line Art Records, representing the ensemble with the name To Be Continued. All the participants of this quartet appeared in various albums on the site (these reviews can be found by indicating the name of the musician in the search box). In this case, if the bassoonist Claire de Brunner and the vibraphonist-drummer Kevin Norton have been heard as sidemen, then both the multi-instrumentalist-wind player Daniel Carter, and, especially, the pianist Carol Liebowitz — as leaders. Actually, all three releases of Line Art Records feature Liebowitz: first in a trio, then duo, and this time, in the quartet.
To Be Continued is an unusual quartet: some of its participants came from academic music, but all of them have long been known in the circles of the New York avant-garde. Biographies of Carol and Daniel can be found in previous reviews, so a few words about the other two members of the quartet. De Brunner received an academic education (and how could it be otherwise, if you play the bassoon?), but was always interested in music outside the classics. She became interested in jazz in the 90s, studied the art of improvisation with Lee Konitz and Connie Crothers (again, Crothers — as in the case of Liebowitz!) and today has serious experience in various new jazz projects. Kevin Norton is one of the rare musicians who successfully plays a wide variety of music, while freely operating with both drum sticks and vibraphone mallets.
The album Poetry from the Future was recorded one day in March 2017 [at Tedesco, a recording studio in New Jersey]. It is the fruit of the collective improvisation of all four musicians. Already the performers’ arsenal of instruments suggests that the listener will meet with unusual music. And it is true. All ten tracks of the album are a constant drift in a zone of the merge of the academic and the new jazz avant-garde. There are many complex harmonies in this music, almost no constant rhythmic patterns, but it abounds with bright sonoristic colors and unexpected development of compositions which are almost impossible to predict. Daniel Carter plays brilliantly, and is armed with a vast set of wind instruments, though he cannot be identified as the main soloist. In To Be Continued, at least in this album, all four musicians are equal. The starting point for development can be set by any instrument, for example, the drums of Norton in “Every Which Way,” Carter’s clarinet in “Sonic Mirage,” or Liebowitz’s piano in “River Run,” but then everything is ruled by the power of collective creativity. Perhaps, only in “Blue Daniel” colleagues gave the opening to Carter — the name obliges! I also note the playing of de Brunner — perhaps, after the death of Daniel Smith, she can be considered one of the leading jazz bassoonists. And again I remember “Every Which Way” and “River Run” — for my taste, the most beautiful compositions of the album. Certainly, the highly-intellectual jazz of To Be Continued is not music for everyone, but if you listen to it attentively, you will understand that this art is not only for a cool mind, but for a warm heart.
Leonid Auskern, jazzquad.ru
June 17, 2017