The most predictable aspect of the artistry of Oliver Lake would be the unpredictability hidden in the dark recesses of each release, What I Heard Is No Different.
Brent Black / www.criticaljazz.com
World Saxophone Quartet veteran Oliver Lake has assembled one of the finest young organ ensembles working today. Organ phenom Jared Gold and trumpet player Freddie Hendrix along with drummer Chris Beck do a harmonic autopsy on the organ ensemble exploring lyrical paths that few musicians will even attempt - or have the skills to even try. The roots of What I Heard are based on a myriad of melodic paths that include blues, soul and of course the more open ended free improvisational style for which he is globally recognized. Nothing predictable.
To adequately review an artist of Lake's stature when one has not specifically played this particular music would be the sonic equivalent of attempting to describe the color blue to someone visually impaired since birth. Meter, dynamics, tonality are constantly in flux as this most formidable of 4tets moves in what might best be described as a theory geeks dream. Just when you think the groove is set, Lake moves the band into a different direction.
This is classic Oliver Lake. Sometimes you don't review greatness but you simply celebrate greatness. Such is the case with What I Heard.
Tracks: 6 & 3; What I Heard; Palma; Cyan; Root; Human Voice; Lucky One; Etc. Thank You.