November 23, 2010
A “big band” comprised entirely of cellos meets modern jazz milestones: that’s the highly unlikely, and yet entirely winning, formula behind this album helmed by Matt Haimovitz and his group Uccello. Jazz aficionados will discover some very welcome and familiar collaborators on this most unusual project along with McLaughlin, including the fabulous drummer Matt Wilson; all of the very imaginative and highly colored arrangements on this album come courtesy of composer David Sanford.
From the hypnotic drive of the title track (penned by legendary electric guitarist and composer John McLaughlin, who appears as a guest artist along with his own Mahavishnu Orchestra) to the joyous exclamations of Ornette Coleman’s “W.R.U” and Sanford’s furious “Triptych,” Haimovitz and his colleagues prove that the vessel–in this case, the classical cello–is perhaps less important than the message. Still, they play with emotional abandon, but with a distinctly classically informed crispness and sense of ensemble. A terrific, and terrifically fun, release.
by Anastasia Tsioulcas
View article at Ariama