Marilyn Crispell is undeniably one of the greatest solo piano performers in free improvisation next to Cecil Taylor, and this recording is one of a multitude of testaments to innovation that she recorded in 1995, a highly prolific year for the artist. The Contrasts: Live at Yoshi's concert was given on June 27, 1995, during a phase in which she frequently performed compositions by Annette Peacock and Bill Evans -- these tributes almost suggest humbly denying the capacity of her own genius as an improviser and composer. The act of revisiting her influences is a situation in which she commonly blooms, pushing the composition into ecstatic realms. It is no over-statement to put Marilyn Crispell alongside such names in jazz, as the pianist has recorded one of the most compelling repertoires in avant-garde jazz of the late 20th century and beyond. At almost 70 minutes, this CD is utterly compelling throughout and cannot be recommended highly enough to those in love with pure innovation in jazz.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Dean McFarlane