Sabir Mateen | Frode Gjerstad feat. Steve Swell | Sound Gathering | Not Two Records

Not Two, 2010 | MW 820-2 | CD

Sabir Mateen – tenor & alto saxophones, flute, bb & alto clarinets | Frode Gjerstad – alto saxophone, bb & bass clarinets | Steve Swell – trombone | Clif Jackson – bass | David Gould – drums & percussion

All music composed by Frode Gjerstad (Tomo Music), Steve Swell (Steve Swell Music BMI) Sabir Mateen (Ribas Music BMI), Clif Jackson & David Gould.  Recorded September 10, 2007 by Jim Clouse Park West Studios, Brooklyn, N.Y. Mixed January 16, 2008 by Jim Clouse, Park West Studios, Brooklyn, N.Y. Musicians photos by Gunn White. Produced by Marek Winiarski. Cover design by Marek Wajda.

Tracklist: 1. Air Conditioning 2. Another Beginning 3. After The Break 4. Talkin’ With David 5. Sound Gathering 6. Til The Next Time

Saxophonist Sabir Mateen is one of those musicians

who have been playing free jazz since the seventies, playing with all the icons of the genre such as Cecil Taylor, William Parker, Daniel Carter, Steve Swell and Frode Gjerstad, to name just a few. With the latter two he recorded a new album on Not Two, and a solo album on RogueArt. He is a frequent player in the free jazz mini big bands, like the Little Huey Orchestra, Gjerstad’s Circulasione Totale, and Earth People.

On this album Sabir Mateen is co-leader with Norwegian saxophonist Frode Gjerstad, and with Steve Swell on trombone, Clif Jackson on bass and David Gould on drums. On the long first track, Swell’s trombone is one of the strongest voice, both in volume and presence, wailing in all emotional registers, from distress to sadness, with the two saxes adding appropriate background support, but the piece becomes strongest when the saxes do their solo-thing. Otherwise there are lots of dialogues and trialogues, and as the title of the album indicates, this is more about sound that about lyricism. That changes with the second piece, when Mateen picks up his flute for a hesitant, almost fragile slowly moving forward tune. With the third piece we’re back in high intensity territory, a kind of jubilant blowing fest. You get the gist: wild interaction reigns, lots of dense interplay, but in my opinion a little lacking in focus and real musical vision.– Stef

Sabir Mateen | Photo by Lena Adasheva

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