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Ivo Perelman/Joe Morris/Gerald Cleaver : Family Ties

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Ivo Perelman is a commitment. You must be willing to put yourself through hell and alienate your neighbors in order to arrive at his brutal version of beauty. Most free jazz contains enough external reference points or internal recurrences to give your imagination somewhere to cling. Perelman’s music offers no shelter.

The opening title track begins with Perelman chirping on kazoo for two minutes while Joe Morris’ bass and Gerald Cleaver’s drums quietly, inexorably thud and rumble. It could be the soundtrack to a cartoon nightmare. Perelman’s switch to tenor saxophone is briefly reassuring, but fragments of melody soon become shrieks in the tenor’s falsetto register. Then the shrieks become blasting deep expletives, wild trills, fusillades of splintered runs, dizzying, tumbling descents, and maniacal effusions. The energy is relentless, except when it mysteriously abates.

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