Dominic Duval: Anniversary

Solo-improvised bass albums are rare, and it takes an unusually resourceful performer to sustain interest for a full hour. While Duval does not quite pull it off entirely successfully on Anniversary, there is still enough fascinating plucking and stroking to mark this as more than a curiosity. The choice of tunes is a plus: Rather than engaging in entirely free excursions, the bassist takes a stab at Mingus’ “Goodbye Porkpie Hat,” Ornette Coleman’s rarely performed “Law Years,” structured improvisations on several standards and some original pieces. While Duval plays it surprisingly straight for much of the album, he adds electronic loops, delays and other variations on a few numbers.