A dog is a man’s best friend, indeed. And on this 2010 release, improvising sax great Lol Coxhill and eminent drummer/percussionist Roger Turner pay a bit of abstract homage to our much beloved canines. The improvisation is at times minimalist in scope, yet the continually moving parts equate into a polytonal feast for one’s psyche.
Coxhill performs on his customary soprano saxophone and counters Turner’s bells hits, rim-shots, tom tom patterns and colorific integration of small percussion implements. Playfully disruptive from an imaginary musical mindset, the duo also acts as prophets of good cheer. Perhaps they fuse the aspects of an angry beast who demands a tasty treat to coincide with incontestable love.
The musicians pull out the proverbial stops on the twenty-two minute opener “Paying Through The Nose,” by pursuing subtly stated avant-garde jazz motifs with gruff breakouts. Here, Coxhill growls, gnaws and shades via a hodgepodge of subplots and bursting movements. While Turner dishes out contrasting treatments and creative sticking maneuvers on his drum kit amid intuitive dialogues with the saxophonist.
The duo creates a visual aspect as well. Occasionally, notions of the Dutch American abstract expressionist Willem de Kooning come to fruition because of the duo’s intersecting lines and multihued textures woven into a cohesive whole. With the piece titled “Tails That Wag,” Coxhill underscores some of these sensitivities with a bluesy gait, interspersed with split-tones and jagged notes.
Here, the artists’ intuitiveness and like-minded faculties emerge with a luminous aura. Hence, these achievements among other attributes are executed by two influential masters of improvisation. Leave it to the pro’s as they say…