“All Directions Home” Reviewed in the New York City Jazz Record

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Trumpeter Nate Wooley and reed player Ken Vandermark have built names for themselves by
straddling the fine line between improvised and avant garde music. On All Directions Home, the duo crosses back and forth over said fine line by simultaneously taking delight in the dissonance and reveling in the calm between the cacophony.

Recorded at concerts held at The Sugar Maple in Milwaukee over two days in August 2015, All Directions Home showcases the strengths that have made the duo luminaries in their respective scenes. Vandermark-penned opener “Another Lecture (For Walter Benjamin)” is a great example of what makes the pair formidable partners as their use of dynamics gives the song a tight, dramatic arc. Wooley’s “I Prefer The Company of Birds” weaves a tight tapestry of shades, showing that the in-between moments amid the loud and soft are the most purchase paxil online no prescription successful components of their union.

While the duo operates in similar musical circles, their output as composers demonstrates noticeable
variances. Wooley’s “Lutoslawski” shows his talent for composing background lines, Vandermark slinking seamlessly through Wooley’s strident declarations. Vandermark’s “Such Science (for Duke Ellington and Muhammad Ali)” is a showcase for juxtaposed classic-sounding horn lines with free-jazz phrasing in a fusion of vintage and modern.

Ornette Coleman’s “I Heard It Over The Radio” is far more tender than the original while bluesman Fred McDowell’s “Done Left Here” is raw and biting, ending the album on a high note. After two records as a duo, one hopes that Vandermark and Wooley’s musical direction leads to even bigger and more
adventurous territory.

By Eric Wendell

Originally published in the May 2016 Issue of the New York City Jazz Record