Dan Plonsey: Ivory Bill

Music & Arts CD-982

From the very first second of this CD, you are in Dan Plonsey's control. His imaginative and creative approach to the saxophone draws you in and floats you fluidly on an ocean of sonic soundscapes. Until this recording I had not heard the sound of 8 baritone saxes simultaneously roaring and rumbling, and the power of the combinations presented here are formidable! Much of this recording is based on textural renderings of different types of birds. This recording does not emulate birdcalls, but instead captures the quality and imaginative visualizations one would have if trying to communicate their description with colors and symbols. Likewise, the "familiar" music presented here (I Can't Get Started, Ah-Leu-Cha) is presented as an abstract of its original form. Plonsey loves the saxophone, and this recording is a saxophone-lover's CD. A veteran improviser and creative musician, Plonsey's saxophone technique leaves few stones unturned. Once you delve past the large ensemble material you find multiphonics, quatertones, altissimo, complex articulations, and just about any other extended technique available. Unlike some "out" players who like to see what noisy sounds they can bleed out of the saxophone, Plonsey's explorations are purely musical. Even in the depths of solo improvisation, Plonsey never stops being "musical" or inspired. Saxophonists who are not normally "comfortable" with avant garde saxophone recordings should consider delving into this recording for that reason alone. There are many interesting acoustic effects on this album that listeners may find themselves incorporating them into their own saxophone vocabularies. This is one CD I am unabashedly willing to say I really like, and I am sure that others will feel the same.

If you want to get a copy, Dan Plonsey can be reached at 5670 Ludwig Avenue, El Cerrito, CA 94530. His e-mail address is: dan@plonsey.com

© 1997 Jason DuMars, International Saxophone Home Page