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Cover Art

David S. Ware Quartet ( )

Renunciation
AUM Fidelity ( http://www.aumfidelity.com/ @aumfidelity )
Recorded live before an appreciative audience at Vision Festival XI last June, Renunciation is a solid, entertaining effort from tenor saxophonist Ware and his long-running quartet of pianist Matthew Shipp, bassist William Parker and drummer Guillermo E. Brown. I've always thought of Ware as perhaps the perfect "introductory" artist in the world of "free" avant-garde jazz; many of his compositions are based on simple, rhythmic riffs over which the hornman solos with a brawny but inviting tone reminiscent of Sonny Rollins by way of Archie Shepp. This may be the perfect album with which to ease your friends into the abstract jazz realm. That having been said, free jazz aficionados may find little here that is new or innovative, and the band does tend to get stuck on one (loud) dynamic level, with little in the way of subtlety. Still, when Ware leans hard into "Ganesh Sound (reprise)" or spirals madly over Shipp's ascending block chords in "Mikuro's Blues", it's hard not to be won over by the sheer energy and passion of the music. Renunciation doesn't break any new ground, but it should appeal to both connoisseurs and neophytes of free jazz.

By Peter J. MacDonald
Jun 5, 2007

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