TRIO 3 — Wiring (with Vijay Iyer) (review)

TRIO 3 — Wiring (with Vijay Iyer) album cover Album · 2014 · Avant-Garde Jazz Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
snobb
Trio 3 is a collective made up of veteran sax player Oliver Lake, bassist Reggie Workman and drummer Andrew Cyrille, formed in the late 90s for playing at European jazz festivals. In the beginning of the new century they found their home at the Swiss Intakt label, which regularly releases their music up to today.

Lately the trio has adapted an interesting format, playing with guest pianists, a different one on each studio album (they started playing with Irène Schweizer, and continued with Gerri Allen and Jason Moran). Here on "Wiring", their new guest is rising US star Vijay Iyer. For European listeners, Vijay is well known by his series of excellent contemporary/world fusion releases on the German ACT label, and his ECM solo debut this year.

Oliver Lake is one of the BAG (Black Artists Group, organization similar to AACM) founders and a key figure in New York's 70s loft jazz scene. Reggie Workman has played with John Coltrane and Art Blakey among many others. Andrew Cyrille is best known as one of Cecil Taylor's band members. So no big surprise that Trio 3 plays advanced improvisational jazz, covering decades of its evolution. All of them (and particularly Oliver Lake) are too large of figures to stay just co-members of this project, so generally all the music on here is played by this Lake-led trio, but with plenty of possibilities for the younger Iyer to participate, fortunately he has enough space and freedom for that.

Still very much Lake's album, it represents his stronger side as a blues and hard bop rooted free improviser with attention to melody and structure. all of these songs all are well-made and executed, and sound fresh enough and non-boring even on an almost 70-minute long album. The rhythms and moods change to avoid sameness,the only problem is some sense direction-less which starts to be noticable during the second half of the album. Better editing and probably some shortening of the album length would help to make it more dynamic and inspired.

In all, very competent modern sounding music with deep roots, one of the better jazz releases this year.
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