Invisible Guy | Experimental Sound Studio | Jazz | Chicago Reader
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click to enlarge Invisible Guy

Invisible Guy

Martin T. Phillips

Invisible Guy 

When: Mon., June 27, 7:30 p.m. 2016
Price: $10, $5 students and members
One way veteran improvisers can prevent predictability is to keep their ears open to younger generations. That’s certainly a discipline that’s made Bay Area clarinetist Ben Goldberg one of the most consistently rewarding players of the last few decades. Since forming the great New Klezmer Trio 25 years ago—injecting traditional Jewish music with a bold improvisational ethos—he’s regularly recharged his music with new ideas and new collaborators. His recent trio Invisible Guy, with keyboardist Michael Coleman and drummer Hamir Atwal, is his latest such project, and the group’s rich new album Knuckle Sandwich (BAG Production) gets plenty of juice from its junior members. Goldberg and Coleman wrote most of the ten pieces, but you can hear a contemporary vitality coursing through the older material too. For example, the lacerating take on “Hocus Pocus” features Goldberg elucidating composer Steve Lacy’s patient lines while Coleman’s electric keyboard and Atwal’s spazzy runs bring a clenched tension and contrasting vibe. The four pieces by the clarinetist are marked by episodic richness, with pretty, sometimes mournful melodies unfolding like classic jazz balladry. And thanks to overdubbed lines and electronic effects the performances don’t sound remotely old-fashioned.
— Peter Margasak



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