|When personnel and personality so closely determine the characteristics of an improvisation, the performers' capabilities define the music's possible parameters. The high level of instrumental virtuosity that saxophonist Evan Parker and acoustic bassist Barry Guy bring to Dividuality not only establishes a more complex web of musical details than the other discs discussed here, but also increases the layers of intensity – not necessary through volume, but with a nearly palpable physicality of purpose (similar to, but on the opposite end of the spectrum from, the music on Dach).
Parker's sophisticated development and breathtaking control of extended techniques – including circular breathing, whereby he can assemble and sustain endlessly looping patterned phrases, and sharp, precise fragments of notes connected into angular phrases – allows him to direct the musical flow into highly articulated streams of pointed sonorities, mirrored by Guy's thrashing pizzicato and whirlwind arco. Then, Lawrence Casserley adds live electronics and sound processing to, as Cage liked to say, "thicken the plot". The electronics maneuver in and around the acoustic instruments, as the sounds ricochet and rub up against each other in Shifting, coordinate a co-dependent relationship with the saxophone in the duo Aulos, and erupt with roars and rips in the brief, energetic bramble of sound that is Spinney. - Art Lange