Julian Priester / Julian Priester & Marine Intrusion

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Polarization Review

by Richard S. Ginell

Julian Priester and his group Marine Intrusion produce sounds that are mostly polarized between gentle Europeanized reflections and probes into the avant-garde, all unified by the soft-focused, airy ECM sonic perspective. Priester does sound very much like J.J. Johnson in the forward thrust of his attacks, and his flutter effects bring back spaced-out memories of his work in the Herbie Hancock Sextet. The opening title track is a thoughtful overdubbed Priester duet with himself that empties directly out into "Rhythm Magnet," with Heshima Mark Williams' electric bass ostinato and relaxed Spanish-tinged piano by Curtis Clark. "Wind Dolphin" begins with a drum solo and soon becomes a series of gentle, then agitated free-form tumblings, all soothed by the ECM ambience. Welcome quantities of funky rhythmic instability and hard rock flash from guitarist Ray Obiedo enter the picture on "Anatomy of Longing." This is an often engaging record from a trombonist too seldom heard as a leader.

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