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Improv 04

Karl Seigfried

Criminal Mastermind

Seigfried- acoustic bass



Seigfried here does one of the ultimate high-wire acts: an entire album of solo acoustic bass. Very few players even try this. There’s a reason why, for instance, classical composers never really wrote for solo bass unlike, say, solo cello. And very few jazz bassists have ever done this either. It’s inherently hard making the bass not a background instrument for extended lengths of time. The free improv possibilities enlarge the possibilities and the palette more, though. And Seigfried come off pretty well. “Beneath the Underdog” is a nicely propulsive tip of the hat to the master Mingus, and “Mass Builder” essays existential bleakness without boring you, which isn’t easy to do. “Ambient” makes for a brainy sort of funk, and the pluckfest “Hypnotic Minds” is also a success. This record will appeal to very adventurous jazz and most free improv fans both, but there’s somewhat more appeal for the free music crowd. It makes you wonder if the old guys were missing something by not writing solo works for this instrument.

Imaginary Records 002



Richard Grooms