Misha Mengelberg Quartet: Four In One
Songlines SGL SA1535-5
"Four In One"
Misha Mengelberg Quartet:
Misha Mengelberg (piano)
Dave Douglas (trumpet)
Brad Jones (bass)
Han Bennink (drums)
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Review by Mark Werlin - June 21, 2023
The veteran Dutch pianist-composer Misha Mengelberg and his colleague, percussionist Han Bennink, made this date with Americans Dave Douglas and Brad Jones in Avatar Studios, NYC back in 2000, the dawn of the SACD era.
From the opening track, Mengelberg's "Hypochristmutreefuzz", which he and Bennink recorded with Eric Dolphy in 1964 for the album “Last Date” just weeks prior to Dolphy's untimely death, through a set of post-bop originals and Thelonious Monk tunes, this live-to-DSD recording captures the group's sure-footed interactions — listen to the players turn on a dime from free blowing to a walking beat and swinging melodies in "Kneebus" – and the wide dynamics of Bennink's huge percussion kit, a challenge for any recording engineer.
Standouts include an 8-minute reinterpretation of "Monk's Mood" introduced by Brad Jones' lyrical unaccompanied bass, and Mengelberg's splendidly Monkish solo on his own "Blues after Piet". Mengelberg, who died in 2017, was a champion of the works of Thelonious Monk and the unjustly neglected pianist-composer Herbie Nichols, and a co-founder of the Instant Composers Pool (ICP), a collective of European composer-improvisors. "Four in One" captures in the vivid sonics of DSD the energy of purposefulness and whimsical humor that Mengelberg and Bennink brought to their performances.
Copyright © 2023 Mark Werlin and HRAudio.net