The music of Joel Harrison stubbornly defies categorizing. You can try using all the post-this, proto-that gibberish you can think of but it is impossible. From the new-age of Paul Winter to the no-wave of Teenage Jesus and the Jerks; from the complex poly-everything of Charles Ives to the deceptively simple deconstruction of American folk ballads, Joel Harrison is perhaps the most imaginative, inventive and inclusive artist in contemporary jazz music.
Angel Band is the third in his acclaimed Free Country series of projects and, like it's predecessors, features a unique mix of jazz interpretations of unlikely material drawn from various forms of Americana. Saxophonist David Binney obviously shares Harrison's musical vision as does pianist Uri Caine whose pianism here ranges from pointillistic to pugilistic.
But for all the considerable talents of the side artists this is Harrison's show. As today's emaciated, blog-fed music scene staggers around looking for the newest trend (no matter how shallow) Harrison continues to cross and combine genres in order to communicate with his listener, challenge pre-conceived notions of "how it should go," and bring out new qualities in familiar music.
Be The First To Review This Product!
Help other Birdland Records users shop smarter by writing reviews for products you have purchased.