STEVE LACY — Disposability (review)

STEVE LACY — Disposability album cover Album · 1966 · Avant-Garde Jazz Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
snobb
Steve Lacy is one among a few jazz star saxmen playing exclusively soprano.His name is well known for jazz fans,but quite surprisingly his music is far not so popular as it could be. I expect one of main reasons is he was extremely prolific musician,often using same musical themes again and again,so his recorded legacy is huge and not all of the same high quality. Inexperienced listener sometimes can be mistaken trying to explore Lacy's music from his not the best place.

For very brief orientation, it's important to note that Lacy's early solo works (he played mostly all the time with greatest jazz musicians of the time as Don Cherry,Mal Waldron,Elvin Jones,Roswell Rudd,etc)are all straight-forward jazz of early 60s up to late 1965.Some critics count Lacy's first four albums as his best music ever,and this point of view is not so strange,at least not for the jazz purists.

"Disposability", Lacy's fifth album released in 1966,is his first trio recordings and and his first album containing original material (together with three Monk compositions,one Carla Bley and one Cecil Taylor's).Recorded in Rome right before Christmas,"Disposability" is first Lacy's album where he switched from hard-bop towards much more adventurous and free music. Rhythm section of heavyweight and extremely quirky Italian drummer Aldo Romano and advanced bassist Ken Carter build very unusual frames comparing with Lacy's previous works. Actually there're them two who push his music ahead. Lacy clear and vibrato-less sax soloing doesn't always fits well over sometimes too-heavy often far not all that subtle drummer constructions, but more interesting and important fact is how well Lacy feels in much freer atmosphere.

Far not his most advanced album,"Disposability" is great border-stone evidence,separating straightforward (and really great) early Lacy music from upcoming decades of his free jazz glory.Still quite accessible album is one of good entrances to Lacy music as well - if it sounds too quirky just go to his earlier music,for those attracted with Lacy's adventurous playing there are lot of excellent later works.
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