Richard Galliano & Jean-Charles Capon: Goodbye Miles
Blues sur Seine (La Lichère 177)
Composed by Jean-Charles Capon.
Recorded: Paris, France, February 1992
Rating: 93/100 (learn more)
A series of duets between an accordionist and a cellist? Why would I want to listen to that, you might ask. For the sole reason that they are superbly executed, that's why! Galliano, of course, is a virtuoso on his instrument, and Blues sur Seine makes clear that the lesser-known Capon is in the same class. Capon has played a lot of free jazz over the years, from the Baroque Jazz Trio to projects with musicians such as Joe McPhee and David S. Ware. For this CD, however, he and the equally versatile Galliano focused on a more mainstream playlist.
"Goodbye Miles," Capon's tribute to Miles Davis, tries to capture the flavor of late-'60s Miles, when his more conservative fan base began railing against his newfound fusion style. Yet the track better recalls the works of Jean-Luc Ponty, due to the persistent ostinato figure first sustained by Galliano and later taken up by Capon, and also because of the ethereal nature of the theme. Capon's uplifting bowed solo even sounds like Ponty in its phrasing and with inflections that sometimes veer towards country or bluegrass. Galliano's improv spirals gracefully from nimble single-note lines to grand chordal expressions, as always sounding uniquely like himself. At the end Galliano becomes contemplative, his floating phrases taking on an eerie quality before he drops out entirely and only Capon's pizzicato, contagious ostinato survives.
Reviewer: Scott Albin