Steve Lehman Trio - Dialect Fluorescent (2012)

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* Steve Lehman: alto saxophone
* Matt Brewer: bass
* Damion Reid: drum set

Recorded on August 22nd, 2011 at Systems Two, Brooklyn by Mike Marciano.


By Steve Mossberg


The group takes a similar tack on LehmanΓÇÖs other originals and John ColtraneΓÇÖs
ΓÇ£MomentΓÇÖs NoticeΓÇ¥ on which Brewer joins the leader in a drumless duet of
extremely complex rhythmic variation. They drive forcefully on when Reid joins
with propulsive drums that show as much invention as LehmanΓÇÖs lead lines.
ColtraneΓÇÖs familiar melody peeks through only in very small windows, and when
it shows up at the end of the song it is remixed, some key notes stretched
disproportionately long while others are left alone. ΓÇ£Pure Imagination,ΓÇ¥ the
ballad from ΓÇ£Willy Wonka & The Chocolate FactoryΓÇ¥ appears in similarly
distorted form, this time with dark minor bass drones from Brewer that
transform it from sweet to sinister.

The group surprises with swinging renditions of Duke PearsonΓÇÖs ΓÇ£JeannineΓÇ¥ and
Jackie McLeanΓÇÖs ΓÇ£Mr. E.ΓÇ¥ When the breakbeat drumming and prismatic time
refractions of the other tracks are removed, itΓÇÖs striking how firmly rooted in
tradition the musicians seem to be. LehmanΓÇÖs solos remain daringly distant from
the bass notes accompanying them, but they suddenly call to mind the calculated
tonal romps of Lee Konitz and the knife-edge interjections of Jackie McLean
more strongly than in other contexts. His playing in this manner, though not
ground breaking, is highly accomplished and reveals his deep knowledge of and
strong respect the innovations that preceded his own.

Demonstrating this affinity in a concert last winter at The Stone, Lehman spoke
of how ΓÇ£interestingΓÇ¥ and ΓÇ£usefulΓÇ¥ the material Coltrane and his mentor McLean
still are for a contemporary musician.  This choice of adjectives parallels a
sometimes-clinical approach that, along with a direct, no-frills alto tone,
leaves Lehman open to the same accusations of frigidity that Konitz and other
cool-school musicians received half a century before him. The music on ΓÇ£Dialect
FluorescentΓÇ¥ certainly isnΓÇÖt particularly warm-blooded or overtly emotional,
but engages with its intellectual invention, verve, and deeply felt sense of
groove throughout.

Highly Recommended


By Troy Collins

By Bill Shoemaker

By Michael Rosenstein

Por Micky Almada (es)
Steve Lehman Trio - Dialect Fluorescent (2012)/01 - Allocentric (Intro).flac 11.73 MB
Steve Lehman Trio - Dialect Fluorescent (2012)/02 - Allocentric.flac 27.413 MB
Steve Lehman Trio - Dialect Fluorescent (2012)/03 - Moment's Notice.flac 23.629 MB
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