Art of Collaboration: In Common III

Collaborative unit, In Common that was founded in 2017 under the leadership of Walter Smith III and Mathew Stevens, continues its tradition of bringing together great names in their third album, just like their previous ones.

Smith and Stevens invite guest artists, with whom they can walk on similar musical grounds, to the In Common project. On the first album, Stevens and Smith were accompanied by Joel Ross, Harish Raghavan and Marcus Gilmore. On In Common 2, Micah Thomas, Nate Smith, and Linda May Han Oh were invited to the group. Both groups sounded fresh and bright indeed.

In this third edition In Common 3, improviser, pianist and composer Kris Davis, who has accomplished successful works with Pyroclastic Records, takes the piano duty, also two trailblazer giants Dave Holland and Terri Lyne Carrington has been invited to join the crew. On the back cover of the album, we see the heads of Dave Holland, Kris Davis and Terri Lyne Carrington mounted as a collage on the photo in the first album with a great sense of humor. In fact the previous album cover was prepared with the same concept. The use of the previous covers on recent album art shows that In Common produces music as an ongoing series. In other words, it actually gets richer with the new names, but the main starting points are always the same.

Released on March 11 via Whirlwind Recordings, the album consists of 15 beautiful tracks, all original. While cosmic sound waves fly delightfully on the sky, you might catch up some breath-taking passages where every musician can find adequate place for their solos.

Terri Lyne Carrington worked with Stevens on the Grammy-nominated Social Science project. She also recorded with Kris Davis on Davis’ Diatom Ribbons, released in 2019. They seem to have developed a natural relationship to the rhythmic connection that is critical for drums and piano. On the other hand, Carrington has never recorded an album with Dave Holland in the past despite of the fact that they tour together. The idea of ​​recording two of the most valuable names in jazz music in an album for the first time is very nice. In the similar way, it is just as valuable that it is a recording made together by musicians representing different generations.

Over the last 20 years, Smith and Stevens have played on more than 150 albums collectively. They have played with many artists such as Roy Haynes, Esperanza Spalding, Herbie Hancock Ambrose Akinmusire etc. They continue to produce music that meets contemporary jazz in the right places.

All In Common albums start with a tenor and guitar duet. In Common III begins with Shine composed by Smith. This composition is a tribute to the jazz legends Jimmy Heath, McCoy Tyner, Wallace Rooney, Ellis Marsalis and Chick Corea, all of whom we lost in 2020 and 2021. In the playing times of 100 seconds, we hear that their sounds are constructed in the form of a sound spiral in which the breath and guitar rhythm are mixed with each other. The next track, Loping, begins with a thunder-like solo by Carrington and continues with Walter Smith’s excellent blowing. Improvised recordings of Oliver, Lite, Shoutout and Dust are spontaneously composed pieces where bass and drums lays off. These tracks add a very different meaning to the overall mood of the album.

The unique cover art of the album In Common III is designed in the form of lightning stylized by the names of the band members, directing the positive electricity to you and destroying the negative electricity in you. Just like the ray of light that lightning spreading across the sky, you will want to listen to this recording, which I am sure, that will impress you by spreading in waves in your musical memory. Each time you listen to it, you will enjoy a new score you have discovered more.

In the last piece, Miserere, you will enjoy each note that Kris Davis played and while the sound spreads in the air in the last 5 seconds after the last note, you will sigh deeply and say, “Oh man! It was nice!”.

Burak Sülünbaz

Co-Founder, Jazz Writer // Kurucu Ortak, Caz Yazarı

Burak Sülünbaz 'in 42 yazısı var ve artmaya devam ediyor.. Burak Sülünbaz ait tüm yazıları gör

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