George Adams & Don Pullen Quartet
Live At Montmartre
Post Bop,Free Jazz
live at Jazzhus Montmartre, Copenhagen, 4./5.April 1985 / Timeless 2002
George Adams and Don Pullen have been jointly leading their quartet for a number of years now and consequently the band operates like a well oiled machine. This is not to say that any kind of complacency has set in and total commitment is discernible in all their performances. Add a strong improviser like John Scofield and you've probably backed a winner.
From the moment that the rhythm section steam into the Scofield original I.J. we know that it's time to sit up and take notice. The guitarist stretches out in imaginative style, Adams attacks in that bleating abrasive fashion and Pullen, one of the most exciting pianists around, swings fiercely over the length and breadth of the keyboard. The tenorist indulges in some of his beloved r'n'b tenor over the funky rhythm of Flame Games, the guitar takes the honours on Well, I Guess, hot chords progressing into lines of smouldering intensity and the pianist serves up an interesting mixture of heavy percussive chords allied to that very individual treble work when confronted by Forever Lovers, an attractive waltz composed by Adams. Pullen's own Song Everlasting kicks off as a ballad in the hands of the tenorist, moves into double time for a subplot played in unison by saxophone and guitar, and finally opens out to give the leaders plus their guest an ideal vehicle for their respective talents. Scofield is outstandingly expressive on this final track.
Suffice to say that Brown and Richmond constitute the kind of bedrock that good bands are founded on, which just leaves me to recommend this record to all modernists!
(Peter Gamble, JJ)
George Adams (ts)
Don Pullen (p)
Cameron Brown (b);
Dannie Richmond (dr)
John Scofield (g)
1. I.J. (Scofield) 8:03
2. Flame Games (Adams) 11:28
3. Well, I Guess We'll Never Know (Pullen) 8:23
4. Forever Lovers (Adams)10:50
5. Song Everlasting (Pullen) 11:23