Andy Milne

Forward to Get Back

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Although by the late '90s, the M-Base movement by no longer had as high a profile as it did a few years before, it still was an influence on the music on some of the younger players. Andy Milne, who became involved with Steve Coleman's M-Base collective in 1991, improvises throughout this set over creative and mostly unpredictable funk rhythms. The music generally grooves, yet is full of surprising twists and turns. Milne sometimes hints at McCoy Tyner, Chick Corea and Herbie Hancock, but mostly combines his earlier influences along with his impressive technique to form his own sound. The interplay and tightness between electric bassist Reggie Washington and drummer Mark Prince behind Milne is quite impressive. The guest spots by altoist Steve Coleman (heard on one funky piece and a couple of brooding ballads) and trumpeter Ralph Alessi give some variety to the sound of the music. The performances are less crowded and not as overtly electronic as many others in the free funk field. The occasional vocalizing of Robin Dixon always sounds relaxed no matter what else is going on and gives an otherworldly feel to some of the music; she often functions as a member of the group rather than as a separate voice. Although clearly not for all tastes, as most of the ensembles are dark and vaguely disturbing, this is a stimulating set worth a few close listens.

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