Dresch Quartet - Riding The Wind November Music 2003-2

Szerző: Glenn Astarita, DOWN BEAT

The folks at the UK-based November Music record label produce European artists whose music seemingly defies rigid classification, although discreet jazz elements surface throughout their evolving yet altogether disparate catalog. However, many of these bands are seldom heard outside their native countries, which might be a case in point for this Hungarian aggregation led by saxophonist Dresch Dudas Mihaly and his Dresch Quartet. Here, the Coltrane-inspired saxophonist and violinist Kovacs Ferenc provide listeners with a gorgeously envisioned set, consisting of tuneful melodies, briskly executed interplay and the soloists' cunningly inventive harmonic relationship. Egos were apparently left at the studio door, as this modern jazz contingent fabricates multihued canvases via fiercely swinging vamps, tightly coordinated interaction and melodically rich statements. Throughout, the quartet seamlessly renders ethnocentric themes, succinctly stated classical structures and Appalachian-style bluegrass motifs amid a soaring skyward approach. The 17-minute piece titled, "Serenity-A Tree For lovers," is all about abstract blues vamps and poetic lyricism as the musicians utilize simplistic frameworks as stepping stones for emphatic soloing and skillful employment of dynamics. On "Gergely," Dresch shoots for the stars during his invigorating, Trane-like plaintive cries and dashing flurries as he effortlessly engages all registers, while the band weaves in and out of the sharply defined choruses and delicate passages. Essentially, Dresch and Ferenc make for a ferocious front-line attack above the precise and at times liberally constructed rhythms served up by bassist Szandai Matyas and drummer Balo Jstvan. Overall, the band's striking chemistry instills an intoxicating effect.

Glenn Astarita
DOWN BEAT May, 2001

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