Mark Nodwell – Nemesis (2003)
SACD Rip | SACD ISO | DST64 2.0 & 5.0 > 1-bit/2.8224 MHz | 62:07 minutes | Front/Rear Covers | 3,19 GB
or FLAC 2.0 Stereo (converted with foobar2000 to tracks) 24bit/96 kHz | Front/Rear Covers | 1,28 GB
Features Stereo and Multichannel Surround Sound | Genre: Jazz
Mark Nodwell surfaces as as a formidable modern jazz composer on Nemesis. Nemesis takes listeners on a heroic journey of transformation, portraying a shamanic descent into the underworld to retrieve the spiritual fire. It is a dual world where the familiar becomes arresting, and expectations are suspended, fulfilled, and transformed. The pieces, in turn somber and mischievous, intense and joyful, uncover a broad spectrum of qualities and compositional ideas – the results are both innovative and beautiful. Notables such as Colorado-based trumpeter Ron Miles, pianist Art Lande, and others execute the artist’s material in superb fashion. With this production, the listener will embark upon a multifaceted expedition, brimming with subtle intricacies and poignant dreamscapes.
Lyrical themes, passionate improvisations, and evocative harmonies fill the record, while deeper listening reveals subtle layering, an overarching sense of form, and a play on expectations. Nodwell explains: “I wanted to explore the song form, to see how much I could stretch and warp the standard song structure, how much I could put in or take out, and still have the essence be a song. The forms curl and twist, continually presenting the material in a different light. The music plays with expectations, establishing familiar signposts while laying out unfamiliar terrain, drawing the listener into an enigmatic dreamlike soundspace. It deliberately hovers between the familiar worlds of inside and free jazz, never quite committing to either, creating an unsettling psychological tension. I tried to balance, or at least juxtapose, this tension with the lyricism of heartfelt songs.” Rhythmically, there’s a seamless weaving of metric shifts and harmonic shifts, as well as occasional tempo changes, or multiple tempos.
Each song is its own complex soundworld; from the quietly ominous bass and piano of the title track to the swinging drums of Fleet and the achingly gorgeous twinned trumpet and guitar of Aura, the instruments loop, weave and mesh to create rich textural soundscapes. The ensemble executes these challenging compositions with subtlety and grace. The varied timbres are faithfully conveyed in a transparent analogue recording mixed to 2-channel and 5-channel DSD (with surround sound options used judiciously to enhance the music’s moods).
Canadian saxophonist/composer Mark Nodwell surfaces as a formidable modern jazz composer on Nemesis, where he puts down his sax in favor of having others carry out his musical plan. Nodwell handpicked these musicians for this set consisting of nine original compositions. Notables such as Colorado-based trumpeter Ron Miles, pianist Art Lande, and others execute the artist’s material in superb fashion. With this production, the listener will embark upon a multifaceted expedition, brimming with subtle intricacies and poignant dreamscapes. Electric guitarist Khabu Doug Young is apt to put matters into overdrive on occasion. Yet Lande, bassist Drew Gress, and drummer Tom Rainey often engage in odd-metered rhythmic exercises amid a few atypically constructed passages, derived from the free jazz scheme of things. In addition, Miles executes some knotty bop lines via linearly devised themes. The thrust of this outing resides within the rather supple flow, dappled with soft melodies and the soloists’ often-striking harmonic excursions. Overall, the musicians perform Nodwell’s works with a burning desire as programs like this might insinuate a bit of renewed faith for modern jazz aficionados.
07. Flight Of The Pterodactyl
09. Dreamtime (Epilogue)
Ron Miles – trumpet
Khabu Doug Young – electric guitar
Art Lande – piano
Drew Gress – bass
Tom Rainey – drums
All compositions by Mark Nodwell.
Recorded on June 9, 2001 & June 10, 2001 at Colorado Sound Studios.
Analogue Recording Mixed to 2-channel & 5-multichannel.