Exposé Online banner

Garrett List — The New York Takes
(Carbon 7 C7-042, 1999, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 2000-05-01

The New York Takes Cover art

You may be aware of Carbon 7 for their new Present release (No. 6), Cro-Magnon, and a few others. But with Garrett List we and they step into a different dimension altogether. The New York Takes is one wild ride. Vocal songs form the basis of the recording, sung in a bluesy or soul music-inflected idiom (by both male and female singers) that is — as you probably would guess — not my forte! But it is in the backup music where things really go “out there” so to speak. Instead of the typical and simple strains of funky musical backing one would expect, what List leads is an all-star improvisation-hungry jazz/avant garde assembly; a sort of small big band (if you’ll pardon the oxymoron), whose most famous member is drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson. Everyone here, especially sax and drums, tear it up over the course of the CD, covering bases that include everything from amorphous textural chamber collages, to free-wheeling jazz interplay, to skewed popular sounds like blues and R&B—all well outside the normal jazz boundaries. The delivery is impeccable, done to almost big band proportions at one end, but with an acute sensitivity to lighter sides of delicacy as well. List is a master in shaping and forming his orchestration, how he uses extemporaneous musical substance to create the illusion of strict composition is formidable. And all the members deserve credit for serving these ends splendidly. The vocal styles are not up my alley, and while List’s work is really not Exposé territory, I know professionalism when I hear it.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 19, 1999 releases

Related artist(s): Garrett List, Ronald Shannon Jackson

Latest news

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart $amp; Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more

2017-09-06
Holger Czukay RIP – Holger Czukay, a musical experimentalist without boundaries who has been involved with expanding the sound palette of rock music since the late 60s, has died at the age of 79. After studying with Karlheinz Stockhausen in the early 60s, he became fascinated with the possibilities of rock music, and was a co-founder of the pioneering group Can. He leaves behind an impressive body of work both as musician and producer. » Read more

2017-08-22
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Amon Düül II - Eternal Flashback – By now everyone should know that these classic German space rockers have reformed after about a twelve year hiatus. Last year's Nada Moonshine #, while not quite up to the standards set by their early...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues