Paul Motian

Circle the Line

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Although drummer Paul Motian gets the first billing on this CD (since he comes first alphabetically and is the best-known musician on the date), this set is mostly significant for the highly inventive playing of pianist Simon Nabatov, who teams up with Motian, bassist Ed Schuller, and (on two of the eight songs) percussionist Arto Tuncboyaci. The Russian-born Nabatov has an impressive classical technique and a pretty original improvising style that rewards repeated listenings. The trio/quartet performs three originals apiece by Nabatov and Schuller, plus "My One and Only Love" and "Lush Life," with Schuller's lengthy "Circle the Line" being a high point. Stimulating music.

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