Esa Pietilä is a musical visionary and when combined with the percussive onslaught of Jeff Siegel then both Pietilä and Siegel welcome You to the land of harmonic disengagement and the percussive nuance that magically reforms each piece into something new.What is amazing when taken at face value is that Pietilä is without his regular quartet and there was but one rehearsal between Siegel and Pietilä. There are baseless 4tets, piano less trios, and a myriad of ensembles that explore the outer reaches that is the freedom or ground zero of jazz itself.
“Out Doors” gives us a spontaneity lacking in so many other well rehearsed and well timed releases of sonic predictability and the appropriate ambiguity that simple comes along for the ride. “Out Doors” kicks the release off with a more free form open ended lyrical approach to the melody while the articulated percussive nuances guide the rhythmic direction of the piece itself. Pietilä explores every sonic inch of his weapon of choice that being the tenor saxophone. Spontaneous ambiguity centered in the midst of controlled chaos is indeed a beautiful thing….Again the open ended approach with with Siegel and Pietilä is nothing short of brilliant… Pietilä is controlled and precise while sightly methodically in his performance, Siegel conducts a percussive exploratory and together two voice become one. Layers of textures and a detached ambivalence to their craft leaving the listener wanting more. Aurora Borealis is indeed a master class. “Power Orbit” is just that, the controlled sonic fury that is the innate gift to shirt meter, harmonics and dynamics for effect on the fly. The amazing aspect of Out Doors is that a drummer, tenor saxophone duet is rarely if ever heard with perhaps Ivo Perelman that last player I can recall attempting such a fight of fancy.
Esa Pietilä and Jeff Siegel and both exemplary artists that could easily stand along side any ECM artist and literally blow their socks off. A master class of what to do and more importantly what not to do. To dwell on hyper criticism s not how I roll…As close to perfect as you can get if you are looking for that happy place between hard bop and free jazz. A superlative recording.