Now that (one hopes) the hurricanes and storms that disconnected me from the internet are a thing of the past, I can begin to catch up with recordings that I do not want to neglect for all the right reasons.
Portuguese bassist-composer Hugo Carvalhais and his album Particula (Clean Feed 253) is one of those. Hugo has been coming into his own for some time now. This album most definitely constitutes an arrival.
It's a quintet of interesting players on display: Hugo on contrabass and electronics, Emile Parisien, soprano, Gabriel Pinto, keys, Dominique Pifarely, violin, and Mario Costa, drums.
The compositions set up beautifully the sort of long-form contemporary avant improvisational excursions that make great use of instrumental colors and soloists' personalities. But they do not do so as more conventional "head" structures usually do. They go a long way in providing the motifs and moods that recur in the ensemble during solos. Hugo sounds great and the rest of the ensemble make worthy sounds as well.
This is innovative, electronically expanded ensemble jazz of a high order. Check it out by all means.