All About Jazz
January 26, 2011
By John Kelman
Amidst all the Americana music, Frisell has made clear
that his folkloric interests extend far beyond the lower 48 states. His
aptly named The Intercontinentals (Nonesuch, 2003) brings together musicians
from around the globe—with friends Scheinman and Liesz joined by
Malian percussionist Sidiki Camara, Brazilian guitarist/multi-instrumentalist
Vinicius Cantuária, and Greek Macedonian oudist Christos Govetas.
Live Download Series #006 is one of the few shows in the series taken
from a tour in specific support of a record, with the identical personnel.
It's also a rarity in that most of the set list is actually culled from
the album, with 11 of The Intercontinentals' 14 tracks represented in
this two-disc, 15-song, two-hour download, though in every case but the
relatively structured miniature, "The Young Monk," the sextet stretches
the material beyond the studio versions' confines.
The interaction of strings and percussion makes for a particularly appealing
sound on the vamp- based, roots-driven "Boubacar," while vocal tracks
such as Cantuária's elegant "Perritos" bring a new complexion
to Frisell's overall oeuvre. But the most revealing track is the old
Smokey Robinson and the Miracles hit, "I Heard It Through the Grapevine"—by
this time a staple in the repertoire of Frisell's trio with Scherr and
Wollesen. There may be no funky bass or backbeat-driven drum set, but
as The Intercontinentals does on its more world-centric material, so,
too, does it work a groove here—in the pocket, and proving that
the term "world music" is really a misleading catch-all phrase. In Frisell's
world, all music, in the final analysis, is world music. - John
Kelman - All About Jazz
For the complete Download Series review visit All
About Jazz here.