IRON KIM STYLE — Iron Kim Style (review)

IRON KIM STYLE — Iron Kim Style album cover Album · 2010 · Eclectic Fusion Buy this album from MMA partners
3.5/5 ·
js
This album opens up with the syncopated drumbeat from Miles' 'Go Ahead John', which is soon joined by an ostinato bass line and echoed wah-wah trumpet. What is this, the second coming of 70s Miles Davis? Well sort of, but you get a lot more than straight up Miles derivations. Iron Kim Style also pulls influences from Terje Rypdal, Palle Mikkleborg, Don Cherry, Bill Laswell and all manner of avant-garde jazz and 70s psychedelic jazz fusion. This is one of the best jazz rock records I have heard in a while and although they sometimes recall the glory days of mid 70s fusion, Iron Kim also has enough modern European flavored nu jazz elements to not sound dated at all. This is not easy listening, many cuts are abstract and noisy, but not in the all-out way in which 60s avant-garde jazzers would try to bring down the roof. Instead, Iron Kim can also be very mysterious and subtle in their approach. Although all of this music is improvised, Kim also moves beyond the standard modal jams and takes risks with improvised chord changes that make for very interesting accidental tonalities.

Stand out tracks include the somber 'Adrift' where guest Izaak Mill's bass clarinet doubles the bass line and sounds like Bennie Maupin sitting in with Miles' Agharta ensemble with Dennis Rea providing the Pete Cosey styled double octaved reverb heavy guitar riffs. 'Jack out the Kims' features a charging Last Exit styled rhythm section that is driven by Rea's modulating thrash chord progression that recalls Husker Du's 'Land Speed Record'. While album closer 'Slouchin at the Savoy' opens with Bill Jones best 60s Miles impersonation before the band lumbers into something that sounds like Gene Krupa nodding out while still playing.

This is a good CD, and this band's potential and talent is through the roof, but I hope for their next outing they write some tunes. As good as they are at improvising, if they had some stronger material to work with they would be one of the top jazz acts happening today. Bill Jones is one of the most interesting and enjoyable trumpet players out there.
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