Surprisingly, listening to a recording in an intimate setting brings out the best in what the recording offers. This is the case with Change Over Time by the Sonic Liberation Front, an eclectic multi-instrumental ensemble that combines the instrumentation of jazz with a rich rhythmic basis stemming from both acoustic drumming and electronics.
The first impression that this music gives is that it will be broad and open. But its subtleties override its tendency for vastness. Turning up the volume seems to spoil the intricacies that decorate the soundscape. These intricacies are entrenched in the polyrhythms and percussion rather than in melody.
Bright and airy melodies come from the alto sax and the trumpet. The improvisations often glide over the steady rhythmic network and possess a life of their own. The horns often play in unison. The alto and trumpet are singled out in "Glass Eyes". They converse fluently over the solidity of the bass and hand drum combinations.
The deep tones of the bass are thoroughly penetrating and become the mainstay for nearly every track. Particularly in "Dominical" and "Glass Eyes", the bass’s undeniable presence provides an inalterable reference that is comforting. The instruments and electronics can drift away from the bass and return without hesitation because it will be there maintaining a place to reassemble. The solos from the bass, which is predominately plucked, captivate a human persona.
The title and last track is layered with vocals and instrumentation. It encapsulates the meaning of the whole recording, which is concerned with survival of the music. At the outset, a monologue floats over raw chanting. The horns and bass reiterate the musical theme and the drums surge. The rhythmic stronghold never yields except to silence after a single drum carries on until the end. When the train of infectious repetition of the music has stopped, the listener can easily carry the memory of the choruses into the future.