Jimmy Giuffre: Propulsion
Jimmy Giuffre (clarinet)
Free Fall (Columbia/Legacy CK 65446)
Jimmy Giuffre (clarinet).
Composed by Jimmy Giuffre.
Recorded: New York, July 9, 1962
Rating: 96/100 (learn more)
During the Space Age, nobody journeyed farther than Jimmy Giuffre. Never a virtuoso, the clarinetist in 1956 found his niche with "swamp jazz," which bogged him down in a barely audible chalumeau register. Six years later, having grown restless, he fearlessly drained the swamp but was soon up to his ass in alligators. Adapting Italian flutist Severino Gazzelloni's breakthrough techniques involving overtones and multiphonics, Giuffre plunged into the avant-garde without a chute. His subsequent free fall became both album title and career description. "Propulsion," though, remains extraordinary, a depressurized balloon streaking amazed out of a child's fingers and unpredictably into space.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz