albert ayler, don cherry, john tchicai, roswell rudd, gary peacock and sunny murray New York Eye and Ear Control (LP, £19.95)
Recorded on July 17, 1964 by Michael Snow for his film Walking Woman (AKA New York Eye and Ear Control). Albert Ayler, tenor saxophone. Don Cherry, trumpet, cornet. John Tchicai, alto saxophone. Roswell Rudd, trombone. Gary Peacock, bass. Sunny Murray, drums. - A free-jazz classic of immense historical and musical value - An all-star band, certainly Ayler's best with other horns - Finally available again on vinyl - ESP-Disk' 50th Anniversary Remaster by archivist Michael D. Anderson - Art clean-up by Jonathan Granoff restores legibility - "Of the records Ayler made during 1964, the LP New York Eye and Ear Control…is probably the most important link between the epoch-making collective improvisation Free Jazz by the Ornette Coleman double quartet, and John Coltrane's Ascension. Apart from that, it is—in my opinion—one of Ayler's very best recordings. New York Eye and Ear Control owes a large part of its success to the contrasting temperaments of the three musicians used by Albert Ayler in addition to his trio, namely, trumpeter Don Cherry, trombonist Roswell Rudd and alto saxophonist John Tchicai. Don Cherry improvises in broad melodic lines or places sharply accented staccato passages. Roswell Rudd interposes fragmentary flourishes in the highest register, or growl sounds and glissandos in the manner of the old tailgate trombonists. John Tchicai presents the polarity of a slightly 'cool,' linear style and offers motivic linkage by insistently repeating melodic patterns. All three inspire Albert Ayler to a breadth of expression which is too often missing in his improvisations with smaller groups. There is less limitation to his sound-span playing, more contrast, more punch and rhythmic accentuation, and with quick response Ayler takes motives from Cherry, Rudd and Tchicai, transforms them into his own musical idiom, and in turn gives a new direction to the flow of ideas." – Free Jazz by Ekkehard Jost/ "The music is fiery but with enough colourful moments to hold one's interest throughout." – Scott Yanow, All Music Guide. "...a valuable window into the music's early history as well as what might have happened outside record dates, more than one is usually privy to." – Clifford Allen, AllAboutJazz.com.
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