Thursday, June 9, 2016

Pritsker / Jarvis Duo

The duo formation of electric guitar and drums may have been unusual in the past, but it is less so today. That does not mean that what is stylistically expected is written in stone, or somehow codified into formula, not by any means. And when you pair composer-guitarist Gene Pritsker with composer-drummer Peter Jarvis, and set them loose on a series of compositions, you should expect the unexpected, the unpredictable.

And that is most definitely and happily what you get on their duo CD simply entitled Pritsker / Jarvis Duo (Composers Concordance 032). This is free-wheeling improvisation-composition in an open-form rock context. We experience a series of six compositional frameworks by six composers--Peter Jarvis, Gene Pritsker, David Saperstein, Joseph Pehrson, Jessica Wells (with the addition of Daniel Palkowski on keys and Dan Cooper on bass for her work), and Daniel Palkowski.

Each one is different. each one has its own center, sometimes extended in a sort of prog rock realm, sometimes with the spice of avant, sometimes frankly experimental but generally straightforward and seeking to create dialogic interactions that give equal weight to the drums in a melodic-periodistic way.

I will forbear a detailed description of each, mainly because they speak for themselves far more eloquently than any brief and telescopic prose would here.

It is music that grabs your interest right away but then should be heard repeatedly to get fully on the wavelengths involved.

Gene and Peter turn in carefully considered and vibrantly interesting performances. The idea that "anything goes" is operative. In the end, this is music of fascination--groundbreaking, and
memorable--with each piece exploring its own turf and giving us a coherent approach, but every one of them rather unique.

The album gives you serious fun, daring fare, lots to ponder. Anyone of a progressive mind will appreciate it, I do believe. Kudos!

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