Dave Rempis, Joshua Abrams, and Avreeayl Ra | Elastic | Jazz | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Dave Rempis, Avreeayl Ra, and Joshua Abrams

Dave Rempis, Avreeayl Ra, and Joshua Abrams

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Dave Rempis, Joshua Abrams, and Avreeayl Ra 

When: Thu., June 23, 9 p.m. 2016
Price: $10 suggested donation
Saxophonist Dave Rempis is one of the most intense fire breathers in free jazz, a musician who thrives in rhythmically agile settings where he can summon furious barrages of energy from his cohorts. His lung power is remarkable, and he can be as loud as any saxophonist I’ve heard. He showcases that power in his sturdy trio with bassist Joshua Abrams and drummer Avreeayl Ra, but also shows off a tender, restrained side that’s largely been absent since he first emerged in 1999 as the Vandermark 5’s unknown replacement for Mars Williams. Last week the trio issued Perihelion (Aerophonic), a double CD that’s a qualitative leap from their 2014 debut, Aphelion, particularly in its display of increased rapport. The first disc is occupied by the 43-minute “Enceladus,” an ebb-and-flow marvel that shows how the members react to and build off one another’s most subtle utterances as well as their most explosive ones. Abrams’s ability to settle into deep ostinato patterns, gnarled high-velocity tangles, or even coolly walking lines results in plenty of propulsion for Rempis, though Ra, a percussionist who sees no dichotomy between swing and free time, can push the saxophonist even beyond that. The album’s second disc features contributions from keyboardist Jim Baker, whose significant history with the other musicians allows him to seamlessly join the fold. He’ll play with the trio tonight.
— Peter Margasak

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