Thierry Maucci

Liaison Acoustique

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Thierry Maucci has a fat, rich sound on tenor and baritone sax, with a tone a bit more piercing and urgent on the alto. The listener gets a chance to study all of his tricks on this 50-minute solo album. Liaison Acoustique was recorded in the studio in one day by an engineer too fond of digital reverb. If they wanted listeners to believe it was recorded in a church, they might as well have recorded in a church. Instead, the echo feels tacked on and Maucci ignores its presence instead of incorporating it into his playing. That production quirk aside, the saxophonist delivers a passionate free jazz performance. Influenced by the extended techniques of Evan Parker and the lyricism of Louis Sclavis, Maucci's solos focus on emotion instead of power, which does not mean that the music gets syrupy or weak. In "Encore Accords" he explores the extremes of the tenor sax's upper register, shredding notes and ears. In "Sons 2" he comes close to Ivo Perelman's fire mediated by a European temper (a painting by Perelman graces the album cover, by the way). Not the stuff legends are made of, Liaison Acoustique remains a satisfying album.

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