Dan Warburton | Jean-Luc Guionnet | François Fuchs | Edward Perraud | Return of the New Thing | Alchemy | Not Two Records

Not Two, 2008 | MW 796-2 | CD

Dan Warburton – piano, violin | Jean-Luc Guionnet – alto saxophones | Francois Fuchs – bass | Edward Perraud – percussion

Recorded at Alchemia, Krakow, Poland, June 16, 2007. Recorded by Michal Rosicki (MAQ Studio). Mastered by Maikol Seminatore. Cover photo by Edward Perraud. Cover design by Marie Warburton. Produced by Marek Winiarski.

Tracklist: 1. [29:09] 2. [24:41] 3. [17:22]

Featuring Dan Warburton

on violin & piano, Jean-Luc Guionnet on soprano & alto saxes, Francois Fuchs on bass and Edward Perraud on drums. Dan Warburton runs the Paris Transatlantic on-line web-zine as well as reviewing discs for the Wire. He is one of my favorite journalists and is more open and informed than most. Dan has worked with Arthur Doyle, Frederic Blondy and Frederick Goodwin. Jean-Luc Guionnet and Edward Perraud both play in the great French improv quintet, Hubbub. This is the third disc from Return of the New Thing, after CD’s on Leo and Ayler. This disc was recorded at Alchemy in Poland in June of 2007 and has superb sound. This music has a magical quality, the sounds spin a sublime web around one another. While Dan plays dreamy, harp-like piano, the rest of the quartet swirl sublimely around him. Right away, we are transported into a most mesmerizing terrain. Although this sounds like free/jazz, there is a certain calm at the center of the storm. Jean-Luc starts to blast on his alto and sounds most powerful and uplifting. Dan sounds like a somewhat more reserved Keith Tippett and is nearly as amazing at times. Percussionist, Edward Perraud, who can be heard on that fantastic duo CD with Paul Rogers last year on FMR is also in splendid form.

This band soon erupt and blast forth together tightly. Even when they slow down to a spacious section, they remain a tight-knit quartet. Dan’s twisted violin improv works well with Edward’s quick-spinning free percussion, Jean-Luc out-there sax and Francois’ great bowed bass. Although this great quartet probably don’t get together that often, they don’t sound that way. They have an incredible, well-worn, tight-knit group sound, that remains interconnected no matter how far they go out. Once again we find another European unit that sounds as wonderful as any of their American brethren. Extra-ordinary, yes indeed! — BLG, Downtown Music Gallery



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One thought on “Dan Warburton | Jean-Luc Guionnet | François Fuchs | Edward Perraud | Return of the New Thing | Alchemy | Not Two Records

  1. This quartet mines some open spaces with commitment but the results aren’t really all that involving. This is due in no small part to the fact that their focus seems to ebb and flow. This results in music that’s at some moments diffuse, and at others full of the kind of all-out intensity that’s mostly rhetoric and little substance.

    The three track titles refer only to the duration of each piece in minutes and seconds. That nominal approach applies to the music itself. “29.09” has entered a passage of squall by the time the sixth minute is reached and the result sounds like four musicians in search of an idea. Drummer Edward Perraud injects some levity into proceedings when he’s not approaching his drums as though they deserved assault and battery, but his band mates seem intent on whipping up some kind of ecstatic storm the like of which is hit and miss in terms of impact. By the time the eleventh minute has rolled around that mood has dissolved and it’s in such quieter passages that the music comes to life. Jean-Luc Guionnet stutters into his alto sax and the group imperative is clearly something other than sound for its own sake.

    More or less the same aesthetic apply to “24.41,” the opening of which finds the group looking into subtle, shaded dynamics. The result is compelling music with the very lack of volume contributing considerably to that end. By the eleventh minute however whatever mood they’ve managed to established has been slowly usurped by the evidently collective desire to thrash, although Francois Fuchs’s bass holds to a darker, less nihilistic dynamic in its midst. The music seems to be on the verge of implosion at this point and it’s to the group’s credit that they hold the thing together.

    Dan Warburton’s piano sounds not unlike McCoy Tyner on “17.22,” and indeed the spirit of the Coltrane quartet is summoned up in no uncertain terms for a time, albeit with the perhaps inevitable lack of that group’s singular integral dynamic. Diffusion comes soon enough anyway, with the music losing out to sustained assault.

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