Where the Two Worlds Touch

Myra Melford's the Tent

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Where the Two Worlds Touch Review

by Scott Yanow

Inspired by the poetry of Jelaluddin Rumi, pianist/composer Myra Melford has constructed an intriguing and colorful suite of original music for this CD. The music ranges from the impressionistic and the picturesque to fiery sections. Although avant-garde by nature, there are melodic stretches, logical development, and plenty of contrast. While "Eight" is a quiet moody piece with Melford's piano backed by the ensemble and "Where the Two Worlds Touch" is a superior tribute to Andrew Hill (sounding just like one of Hill's complex pieces), "Brainfire and Buglight" is full of explosive ensembles and fire. "Where the Ocean Misquotes the Sky" matches trumpeter Cuong Vu's bizarre tonal distortions with Chris Speed's clarinet and Melford's harmonium before developing into a powerful statement by the leader on piano. "Secrets to Tell You" features bass guitarist Stomu Takeishi while the band plays the mournful theme slowly. The brief "Everything Today" is a bit more lighthearted, "Hello Dreamers" (dedicated to Lester Bowie) is a dramatic and episodic work, while "No News at All" ends the project on a celebratory if quirky note. Overall, this is one of Melford's most ambitious and successful projects to date.

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