Music

David S. Ware and Matthew Shipp: Live in Sant'Anna Arresi 2004

David S. Ware and Matthew Shipp have made beautiful music together for 17 years, but chose this occasion to make a lovely racket.


David S. Ware and Matthew Shipp

Live in Sant'Anna Arresi 2004

Label: AUM Fidelity
US Release Date: 2016-10-28
UK Release Date: 2016-10-21
Amazon
iTunes

Pianist Matthew Shipp was a member of saxophonist David S. Ware's quartet for 17 years, yet by Shipp's estimation, the two of them probably gave only a half-dozen duo concerts during that time. One of those shows, a recording from late 2004 at the Sant'Ann Arresi Jazz Festival, is being released as the second entry in AUM Fidelity's David S. Ware Archive Series. This ongoing retrospective of deep, deep cuts got off to a sprinting start with 2015's Birth of a Being, a double album of Ware and his early band Apogee burning their way through nine fat slices of crazy, free jazz. Now, with Live in Sant'Anna Arresi, 2004, the uncompromising musical voice of David S. Ware rages on long after his 2012 passing.

At the time that this concert took place, both Ware and Shipp had prolific careers as band leaders, and even though Shipp was Ware's subordinate in a technical sense, the two had to completely abandon the idea of either one being a group "leader" when they took the stage that night in Italy. According to Shipp, the working dynamic within the quartet still informed their playing: "[T]he end result of what we did here is different and divorced from the quartet", the pianist writes in the album's liner notes, "but the resonance between David and I in the quartet allowed it to unfold in this way". Their roles may have been altered, but their instincts remained intact and this allowed the two musicians to jam for 45 minutes without playing a "song".

Live in Sant'Anna Arresi is made up of only three tracks; both "Tao Flow, Pt. 1" and "Tao Flow, Pt. 2" are over twenty minutes in length each, while the "Encore" wraps up the program with Shipp and Ware cheekily trading licks for only four minutes. Both musicians use the full pallet of their instruments to create a messy and creative sound that tries its best to halt the earth. "Every performance we felt like we were changing the world and lighting up the stars", Shipp confesses in the album sleeve. "We felt we were on a cosmic mission to bend space-time". That much is obvious within the album's first five minutes. They aren't going halfway on anything, yet they're able to sustain that very intensity for another 40 minutes. Even when Shipp seems to be playing almost every other key on his piano at once while Ware manages to take his horn from the highest squeak to the lowest honk in a fraction of a second, they are still running on a surplus of energy.

Live in Sant'Anna Arresi 2004 is one of those releases in which even the most carefully-worded assessment isn't going to give you the best impression of the music. The language that David S. Ware and Matthew Shipp cultivated together is not a written one, so it stands to reason that the written word can't capture accurately Shipp's rapturous playing or Ware's soulful cries over the crowd. That's what listening is for, and Live in Sant'Anna Arresi 2004 requires plenty of that.

7

Music

Books

Film

Recent
Music

Alexander Wren's "The Earth Is Flat" Wryly Looks at Lost Love (premiere + interview)

Singer-songwriter Alexander Wren's "The Earth Is Flat" is a less a flat-earther's anthem and more a wry examination of heartache.

Music

Big Little Lions' "Distant Air" Is a Powerful Folk-Anthem (premiere)

Folk-pop's Big Little Lions create a powerful anthem with "Distant Air", a song full of sophisticated pop hooks, smart dynamics, and killer choruses.

Music

The Flat Five Invite You to "Look at the Birdy" (premiere)

Chicago's the Flat Five deliver an exciting new single that exemplifies what some have called "twisted sunshine vocal pop".

Music

Brian Bromberg Pays Tribute to Hendrix With "Jimi" (premiere + interview)

Bass giant Brian Bromberg revisits his 2012 tribute to Jimi Hendrix 50 years after his passing, and reflects on the impact Hendrix's music has had on generations.

Jedd Beaudoin
Music

Shirley Collins' ​'Heart's Ease'​ Affirms Her Musical Prowess

Shirley Collins' Heart's Ease makes it apparent these songs do not belong to her as they are ownerless. Collins is the conveyor of their power while ensuring the music maintains cultural importance.

9
Books

Ignorance, Fear, and Democracy in America

Anti-intellectualism in America is, sadly, older than the nation itself. A new collection of Richard Hofstadter's work from Library of America traces the history of ideas and cultural currents in American society and politics.

By the Book

Democratizing Our Data: A Manifesto (excerpt)

Just as big tech leads world in data for profit, the US government can produce data for the public good, sans the bureaucracy. This excerpt of Julia Lane's Democratizing Our Data: A Manifesto will whet your appetite for disruptive change in data management, which is critical for democracy's survival.

Julia Lane
Music

Mobley Laments the Evil of "James Crow" in the US

Austin's Mobley makes upbeat-sounding, soulful pop-rock songs with a political conscience, as on his latest single, "James Crow".

Music

Jordan Tice's "Bad Little Idea" Is a Satirical Spin on Dire Romance (premiere)

Hawktail's Jordan Tice impresses with his solo work on "Bad Little Idea", a folk rambler that blends bluesy undertones with satiric wit.

Music

Composer Ilan Eshkeri Discusses His Soundtrack for the 'Ghost of Tsushima' Game

Having composed for blockbuster films and ballet, Ilan Eshkeri discusses how powerful emotional narratives and the opportunity for creative freedom drew him to triple-A video game Ghost of Tsushima.

Film

What 'O Brother, Where Art Thou?' Gets Right (and Wrong) About America

Telling the tale of the cyclops through the lens of high and low culture, in O'Brother, Where Art Thou? the Coens hammer home a fatalistic criticism about the ways that commerce, violence, and cosmetic Christianity prevail in American society .

Film

Love and Cinema: The Ruinous Lives in Żuławski's L'important c'est d'aimer

Żuławski's world of hapless also-rans in L'important C'est D'aimer is surveyed with a clear and compassionate eye. He has never done anything in his anarchic world by the halves.

Books

On Bruce Springsteen's Music in Film and TV

Bruce Springsteen's music in film and television captured author Caroline Madden's imagination. She discuses her book, Springsteen as Soundtrack, and other things Springsteen in this interview.

Music

Alt-pop's merci, mercy Warns We May "Fall Apart"

Australian alt-pop singer-songwriter, merci, mercy shares a video for her catchy, sophisticated anthem, "Fall Apart".

Film

Tears in Rain: 'Blade Runner' and Philip K. Dick's Legacy in Film

Blade Runner, and the work of Philip K. Dick, continues to find its way into our cinemas and minds. How did the visions of a paranoid loner become the most relevant science fiction of our time?

Music

London Indie-Poppers the Motive Impress on "You" (premiere)

Southwest London's the Motive concoct catchy, indie-pop earworms with breezy melodies, jangly guitars, and hooky riffs, as on their latest single "You".

Books

Vigdis Hjorth's 'Long Live the Post Horn!' Breathes Life into Bureaucratic Anxiety

Vigdis Hjorth's Long Live the Post Horn! is a study in existential torpor that, happily, does not induce the same condition in the reader.

Music

Konqistador and HanHan Team for Darkwave Hip-Hop on "Visaya"

Detroit-based electronic/industrial outfit, Konqistador team with Toronto hip-hopper HanHan for "Visaya", a song that blends darkwave and rap into an incendiary combination.


Reviews
Collapse Expand Reviews



Features
Collapse Expand Features

PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 PopMatters.com. All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.