Become a member and get exclusive access to articles, live sessions and more!
Start Your Free Trial

Dave Douglas: Charms of the Night Sky

Here are two very attractively packaged sets, both of which seek to expand the parameters by combining elements of different musics. Dave Douglas teams with Dave Feldman, Greg Cohen, and accordionist Guy Klucevsek on Charms to create a convincing style from elements of Hungarian, Rumanian, mussette, klesmer, tango music, and even jazz. There is, of course, no reason for this to work; the new acoustic music groups that followed in David Grisman’s wake are forever dabbling in similar cross-cultural experiments with a success rate of maybe 10%. But the musical intelligence at work here is on a far different plane. There is some high-tech blowing, but most of the music is understated to the point of nakedness, and I could write a page just about how Douglas employs his tone on this disc. Feldman has the ability to not only cover the virtuoso Hungarian gypsy fiddle style but to take it someplace.

Klucevsek’s judicious use of dissonance is a key ingredient in a compelling set that tugs at you to keep coming back. An exotic feather in everyone’s cap.

Start Your Free Trial to Continue Reading

Become a JazzTimes member to explore our complete archive of interviews, profiles, columns, and reviews written by music's best journalists and critics.
Originally Published