On the opening strains of "Dewey Miles," the mysterious lead-off track from Pear's extemp'ore, the voice of Miles Davis intones (in that oft-imitated gruff demeanor): "Don't play what you know, play what you hear." Later in that groove-heavy piece, Miles declares: "I don't want to be labeled anything. I'm a musician." Those two mantras serve as sage-like guidance for the duo of pianist Nick Pierone and percussionist Rick Milne on their auspicious debut. Given license to paint vivid colors on a blank canvas, this could be a soundtrack to a Jean-Michel Basquiat painting. Pear dives headlong into a pool of provocative sound where the freedom principle prevails and the results are wide-ranging and genre-defying. Drawing on a wealth of musical influences, the audacious duo has concocted a striking pastiche where Miles and Cecil Taylor sit comfortably beside Brian Eno, Digable Planets, Medeski, Martin & Wood, the Bad Plus and Jaco Pastorius, with touches of minimalism, lyricism and spoken word experimentalism thrown into the subversive mix.
9 New 'ON' this week: 118 Total
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