'Sankalpa' from Tineke Postma sets the bar high. A second under 5 minutes it is the double bass you predominantly hear first plodding along with drums in lock step behind. Then the Dutch saxophonist comes in. It's a high register melodic shard at first which is then harmonised by the guitar of Ben Monder. The double bass of Robert Landfermann continues its own melody behind. Then drums, played by Tristan Renfrow, seem so independent rhythmically.
'Frede' isn't exactly mournful, its ache is something Postma on the album on alto and soprano saxes does so well and Monder on this track circles in for his solo a little like the way Jakob Bro operates. New tunes reveal once again that Postma is a persuasive writer - her writing style sits well with the imagistic panoramas you find on a Wayne Shorter record like 1+1 - and the mood shifts whether in the hurtle of 'The Sky Is Everywhere' where Monder teeters on the point of murderously ripping a punk hole in the fabric of the group play or the more colour saturated things again Monder does on 'Still Another Day.'
There isn't anything safe here and in the fractured splintering of the shards of rapture all four players maintain on this studio album recorded in the German city of Osnabrück last spring you can't guess what's next. At heart Monder and Postma have some sort of uncanny understanding of each other's every turn in their back and forths and Monder while sometimes dystopian does not shy away from the pristine either in his opening statement on 'Idyll for Ellemis' that Postma in turn responds to so plangently. I don't really come away thinking of anything operatic about all this (although that is part of the point of the inspiration of the album apparently) but that doesn't really matter. Given the quality here there are so many multiple interpretations of response possible which is just one reason why this latest album from the remarkable Postma - taking up the mantle of Lee Konitz and making a paradigm shift that contributes so much to the state of the art - works so well. SG
Tineke Postma, photo: press
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