TOMAS FUJIWARA — Triple Double (review)

TOMAS FUJIWARA — Triple Double album cover Album · 2017 · Eclectic Fusion Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
snobb
Boston-born Brooklyn-based drummer Tomas Fujiwara is quite well known by his participation in projects playing with Matana Roberts and Michael Formanek among many others. On "Triple Double", his own album as a leader, he combines two unorthodox horns-guitar-drums trios in one band (including 2/3 of the Thumbscrew trio, Halvorson and Fujiwara, but not Formanek).

All-star band of two drummers (Tomas Fujiwara & Gerald Cleaver), two guitarists (Mary Halvorson & Brandon Seabrook) and two horns (Taylor Ho Bynum on cornet & Ralph Alessi on trumpet) plays modern high energy fusion with lot of free jazz elements.

From the very first opening sounds with great old-fashioned separated by channels guitar's sound (with recognizable Halvorson's guitar on the left side and Seabrook on the right) it became obvious that "Triple Double" is not another explosive attack on listener's ears. With heavy anchoring drummers, often playing in unison and framing the music (with longish just-drummers solo piece), melodic and emotionally rich compositions sometimes sound as if they are complex rock pieces, but with all-the-time changing rhythms, plenty of guitar and horn free solos and in all very complex, almost big-bandish, multilayered sound remind listener that we're listening to a real jazz band.

Catchy tunes, excellent techniques and perfect interplay makes this album one great example of modern creative jazz, difficult to classify, and often because of that appealing to very different listeners. It would be extremely interesting to see such a band playing live, it looks like their announced 2020 European tour (with second trumpeter Adam O’Farrill instead of cornetist Taylor Ho Bynum) has been postponed due to COVID19 pandemic, with some concerts moved on-line.
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