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An Indefinite Suspension of the Possible

Artist: Michael Cooke
Michael Cooke - An Indefinite Suspension of the Possible CD
Label: Black Hat
Regular Price: $13.95
On Sale For: $5.58 
Year: 2007
Format: CD


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Cooke Quintet is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and draws upon the inspiration and creative energy of multi-cultural and diverse music from around the world and from inside and outside the American and European jazz and avant-garde traditions. CQ's approach to acoustic jazz allows for a new freedom of emotional expression. Combining solid grooves with bursts of energy and sound, Cooke Quintet's music reminds a listener of the work of contemporaries such as Ken Vandermark, Ken Simon, or Elliot Levin.

The instrumentation of CQ, however, presents a fresh twist on the classic jazz quintet - woodwinds, trombone, cello, koto and percussion can be heard interacting here. Additionally, modern forms for improvisation, such as circle music and pan-rhythmic pulse signatures, are center points for spontaneous inventions. Together, these five musicians collaborate in ways that might best and simply be described as "improvised group music."

Alex Kelly returns on cello for this new title, and new drummer Timothy Orr stirs up a provocative concoction of rhythmic suggestions and allusions. Two other new members of the group, Shoko Hikage on koto and Jen Baker on trombone, add an indispensable flavor and shading to the proceedings.

Multi-instrumentalist Michael Cooke heads up the ensemble as both leader and composer. The members of the Cooke Quintet have worked with various contemporary music standouts such as ROVA, Cecil Taylor, Fred Frith, Ed Blackwell, Marco Eneidi, Damon Smith, Pauline Oliveros, Joan Jeanreaud and Paul Dresher.

What sets “an indefinite suspension of the possible” apart from a number of jazz albums on the market today is the variety of styles and techniques employed to make this music. "Love at Twilight" references Tuvan and Indian music influences, "Ha Me'aggel" uses a blended Klezmer scale, "N 36 7.46' W 121 38.35'" and "Loss" synthesize post-modern efforts in subjectivity. "Harmonic Rebellion" is a high-energy improvisation that combines both multiphonic and harmonic releases. Another high-energy work, "Hard 8," steers closest to traditional jazz, while "Chain of Existence," a multi-section composition, encapsulates the outward-looking feel of the entire CD.

Michael Cooke: flute; soprano, alto & tenor saxophones; soprano & bass clarinet
Jen Baker: trombone, didgeridoo & singing bowl
Shoko Hikage: koto
Alex Kelly: cello & igil
Timothy Orr: drums & percussion
See all titles featuring Michael Cooke

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