Dave Holland: A Seeking Spirit


A Seeking Spirit


Dave Holland (bass)


Prime Directive (ECM 1698)

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Dave Holland (bass), Chris Potter (reeds), Robin Eubanks (trombone), Steve Nelson (vibes, marimba), Billy Kilson (drums).

Recorded: New York, December 10-12, 1998


Rating: 100/100 (learn more)

You havenít lived until youíve heard Dave Hollandís quintet play ďA Seeking SpiritĒ in concert. The next best thing is listening to this version, a recording that is the quintessential example of modern jazz. Itís extremely potent music that builds and builds until itís about to blow its top. How can a quintet featuring trombone and vibraphone get this funky? How can it marry so many influences? We hear the American jazz aesthetic here, and we hear the Caribbean. The tune is played mostly in 10/8, yet it feels so easy and natural. Early on, the theme is stated by Steve Nelsonís vibraphone (note that he was playing marimba at first) while the other guys solo. Later, saxophonist Chris Potter and trombonist Robin Eubanks state the melody so Nelson can solo. In between, no one is stating the melody and yet everyone is referring to it. You can only shake your head when feel-good jazz is this mature and sophisticated.

Reviewer: Steve Greenlee

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