Blog

1 November 2009
By Dolf Mulder in Vital #703 (Netherlands), November 1, 2009

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“Their explorations go in many directions, implying that there is a lot to discover on this one.”

Marilyn Lerner (piano), Nick Fraser (drums) and Matt Brubeck (cello). Fraser moved from Ottawa to Toronto in 1996 and developped himself into a very busy and active musician who has played with a long list of musicians. Brubeck is a performer specialized in improvisation on the cello. So most of his work is within field of jazz and improvisation. However he played also for many years with Waits, plus Dixie Chicks and Sheryl Crow. Lerner is a reputed pianist and improvisor of worldwide fame, working in the worlds of jazz, improvisation, klezmer and 20th century classical music. Besides she composes for film, theatre, radio and television. They recorded their first one in may 2008 in a Toronto studio. It is made up of collective improvisations plus compositions by all three musicians. Ugly Beauties makes you forget the differences and boundaries between jazz, contemporary classical music and improvisation. These are are very virtuous musicians who demonstrate their talent in a very coherent way with engaging interplay. The pieces focus on different musical aspects. This way the trio shows many faces. The opening track Windsor is one of the most odd grooving pieces I have ever heard. Oubliette comes from another planet, and is a very lyric jazz improvisation. Harold Lloyd plays with rhythm and switches from modern classical to jazz and backwards. Other pieces are very free improvisations, leaving jazz idiom, etc behind. So their explorations go in many directions, implying that there is a lot to discover on this one.

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