Peter Reavy

Ornette Coleman: Sound Grammar

Posted in music by Peter Reavy on March 14, 2007

At the weekend, I read it was Ornette Coleman’s 77th birthday, so I thought I’d buy his most recent release. It’s a live recording. He’s in good form. Someone once called him a composer of short melody of genius. There is still some truth to that. He’s still coming up with great melodies to start each piece with. Whether the humble listener can follow where each leads is another question.

The opening track, Jordan, has plenty of pace. The next track, Sleep Talking, hangs together well and everything runs along nicely after that. Call To Duty is pretty fierce. Then Once Only has a noodle-y intro and the album loses focus a bit. A violin turns up and outstays its welcome. The album finishes on an intense note with Song X, which goes back to Ornette’s fiery Pat Metheny collaboration in the 80s.

Maybe this CD is not the best intro to Ornette Coleman, but it captures his sound as well as anything else of his I’ve heard and he’s still blasting away.

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