Federico Ughi - Federico Ughi Quartet (2013)

Posted By : mark70 | Date : 27 May 2013 09:50:45 | Comments : 0 |

Federico Ughi - Federico Ughi Quartet (2013)
MP3 320 kbps CBR | 48:35 min | 105 MB
Genre: Jazz | Label: FMR

"Given the diversity of this group’s collective background, the many nods toward tradition are almost surprising. It isn’t that drummer Federico Ughi, altoist David Schnug, cornetist Kirk Knuffke and bassist Max Johnson aren’t steeped in the jazz tradition; their credentials are well established and they have developed long-standing collaborative projects in various formations and contexts in and around jazz.
The fact is, however, that they also embrace many others, from bluegrass to art rock and much in between, though subtlety of form and reference seems to be the path trod on every track of this quartet’s debut. The most overtly non-’jazz’ offering here is “Wearing a Wire?”, with its smart and soulfully driven rhythms, courtesy of Ughi, supporting a heavily accented unison melody. Knuffke’s solo gradually morphs from blues to something on the order of Plugged Nickel-era Miles as the others weave in and out of funk and noisy free jazz modes. Frequent pauses and tempo shifts only add to the track’s in-your-face intrigue, conjuring shades of Ornette Coleman’s later projects in the process.
The rest of the album draws on Coleman’s work as well, particularly the jaunty “Technicolor”, sounding as if it was pulled from one of the Sound Museum discs, but, of course, none of the music adheres so strictly to form and structure. The labyrinthine melodies and drones of “Ange” are closer to the New York Art Quartet’s brand of musical cinematography than to anything Coleman waxed as Ughi supports the constantly shifting structures with expert brushwork.

If one aspect of the disc could be changed, it is the almost incessant reliance on unisons. On future efforts, the group would do well to skip right to the bluesy or pointillistic bits, saving unison passages for special occasions. That said, these ten compositions, augmented by Ughi’s polyrhythmic and timbral facility, Schnug’s unpretentious growls, Knuffke’s smooth warm tones and Johnson’s flawless arco, add up to make an excellent first effort."


1. Quantunque (4:15)
2. Song for Charles (3:39)
3. Letter A (6:14)
4. Technicolor (6:04)
5. Ange (6:25)
6. Second Day Syndrome (4:54)
7. Line (5:13)
8. Circled Square (4:09)
9. May (3:37)
10. Wearing a Wire? (4:05)


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