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Bireli Lagrene Gipsy Project: Move

Bireli Lagrene’s Gipsy Project pares down to a quartet for Move (Dreyfus). The usual complaint against Lagrene is that he won’t slow down, and surely, few would argue that he’s an economical player. But his time is flawless, and his marriage of musicality and technique-of Django, bebop and blues-is so good it’s almost weird. Joining Lagrene on this, the third Gipsy Project offering, are rhythm guitarist Hono Winterstein, saxophonist Franck Wolf and bassist Diego Imbert. “Hungaria,” “Move” and “Cherokee” are the breakneck cuts, but Lagrene is just as stupefying (and again, musical) on slow and midtempo tunes. His expressive flourishes on “Nuages,” “Troublant Bolero” and “Danse Norvegienne” are practically saxophonic. He spends most of the album on a D-hole acoustic but switches to electric for two tracks, closes the album with a lyrical unaccompanied solo (the original “Jadis”) and also gives his colleagues one original each. Wolf holds his own on tenor, soprano and baritone, and the rhythm team never fails.

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