Jeff Chan

Winds Shifting

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Tenor Saxophonist Jeff Chan made his recording debut as a leader with Winds Shifting, a generally decent though not fantastic avant-garde date that draws on influences ranging from Ornette Coleman and John Coltrane to the artists of Chicago's AACM. Joined by acoustic bassist Trevor Dunn, drummer/cellist Elliot Humberto Kavee and fellow tenor saxman Francis Wong (who had been an important figure in jazz's Asian-American avant-garde of the 1990s), Chan plays mostly original compositions that are abstract, cerebral and not overly accessible--Chan is the type of artist who has to be accepted on his own radical terms. The probing saxman favors an inside/outside approach (more outside than inside), and his style of free jazz (which clearly owes a debut to Coleman's harmelodics) can be chaotic without being overly abrasive. Despite its imperfections, Winds Shifting let us know that Chan had potential as a leader.

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