Ornette Coleman’s quartet deals in moment-to-moment magic-the kind that defies documentation. But if Sound Grammar, recorded live in Germany, doesn’t exactly match the excitement of being there, it does clear up the acoustic fog of the big halls in which Coleman usually performs. On this album we hear the interlocking arco-pizzicato dance of bassists Tony Falanga and Greg Cohen as never before. Denardo Coleman’s drumming is both propulsive and coloristic, reflecting many years of experience with his illustrious father. Ornette’s alto is gnomic, tireless, characteristically semi-sharp; he briefly switches to trumpet on “Jordan” and “Call to Duty” and bows violin toward the end of “Song X,” the finale.
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