Bill Bruford: Emotional Shirt
Bill Bruford's Earthworks
Live – Stamping Ground (Editions EG 2107)
Iain Ballamy (sax), Tim Harries (bass).
Recorded: Bottom Line, NYC. March, 1992
Rating: 89/100 (learn more)
Bill Bruford has always been my choice for most convincing rock-to-jazz crossover drummer. The incredible amount of nuance he brought to both King Crimson and Yes seemed perfect for the world of improvised music. “Emotional Shirt” catches Earthworks at the height of their sublime game. At first, the ear wants to say “fusion!” as the band lurches through a typically syncopated theme. But then all hell breaks loose in the middle section. Free jazz? The urge to pigeonhole becomes irrelevant as you're overwhelmed with the band's ability to simultaneously groove, freakout, and react, all supported by Bruford's extremely musical play.
Reviewer: Mark Saleski