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John Abercrombie - Timeless CD (album) cover


John Abercrombie


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.77 | 62 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars Having been part of the scene for some years, playing in various groups, but mostly for the Brecker Bros' first band Dreams, Abercrombie finally attacked his fist studio album after getting a recording contract from ECM, with whom he would remain mostly fidel throughout his career. This debut album, like most of his first few albums are citing his

Abercrombie's choice in DeJohnette (an ex-Bitches Brew drummer, but also very frequent Keith Jarrett sideman) will remain fairly constant in his early career, but it's surprising not seeing Dave Holland (also ex BB and frequent Jarrett sideman) on bass here, but there is no bass at all (whatever might sound is most likely organ-pedalled by Hammer. The opening Hammer-penned Lungs is one of those scary 700 MPH, where ultra-sonic virtuosity is everything. Love Song is one of those boring slow track that are supposed to be the antidote to the demented tracks, but to me these sleeping pills are best skipped. Ralph's Waltz (Towner of Oregon I guess) is at times enthralling, against which Hammer Red & Orange sounds captivating, but let's be careful of Einstein's Relativity theory here. R&O has some delightful moments, but I am saying moments, not minutes or songs. In some ways, this sounds like a Birds Of Fire track (which in itself is quite a feat), but to me it's a little too close for comfort to appreciate this truly. After the relatively new-agey Remembering, the album closes on the 12-mins title track. Starting on a slow drone, the track remain gentle

I've never been really sure why Abercrombie was included in PA, because he seems a bit far from the focus, but his early albums certainly smoked, rivalling in density (the unit is notes/second) with Mahavishnu Orchestra and Return To Forever; but unlike these two groups, Abercrombie's formation lacks the warmth of those cited just before.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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