Dominic Duval

The Experiment

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A poem by Joe McPhee in the insert booklet depicts that "two night birds stand perched on the edge of forever," which perfectly describes this free improvisational music played by Hutchins bassist Duval and violinist Hwang. Acknowledged influences include Olivier Messiaen, with perhaps a touch of Stravinsky. Each piece has its own identity, yet a similar framework or stance. Skittering violin and sawing bowed bass informs the thick, dense improvs, eventually settling down on "Quest." "Speaking of Birds" is self-explanatory, "A Double Stop" full of call and response, somewhat spaced spontaneity, while quick note plucking, resonant bass and violin approaching a banjoish style centers "J.K.H." Pensive and inquisitive discourses identify a moody "The Tower Falls," while gliding and sailing violin buoys Duval's probing bass with his harmonic genius sonically assimilating a steel drum during "Caribbean Sunrise." In a spacey, sentimental mood, the loosely associated "Passing Through" uses quiet violin and arco bass in a most melodic, mezzo piano range, and the delicate to determined and back "Black Swan - the Dance" is perfect in its imagery, the ballet quite visual in the mind's eye. Specialized creative music for a challenged listenership is what Duval and Hwang present, and that audience should respond well to this compelling experiment.

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