By Flotz
15 Oct 2013

Chris Speed, Dave King & Chris Tordini Trio / Bad Luck at Poncho Concert Hall October 13 2013

That time of year again when ear bending music gets played as part of the Earshot Festival. Bye bye 4/4; adios major pentatonic; goodnight minor pentatonic; we bid you adieu tonic and dominant and subdominant.

Caught last night’s performance of some great players. First up was Bad Luck, just sax and drums. Sax with very skillful use of delay and loops, creating sonic foundation underneath the compositions.  The songs were either insanely tight, with the drummer locked exactly to crazy runs that made no sense or very loose, with ambient improv explorations. Didn’t catch the player’s names but think the saxophone player was part of the Roscoe Mitchell Nonaah piece as they are on Tables and Chairs and he looked familiar and he sang the praises of Roscoe Mitchell during the set. One tune was called NW Puppet Center:


Chris Speed, Dave King and Chris Tordini came out smoking and let it rip where meter and time became lost in the best of free jazz type explorations.  Crazy three way conversation that mutated into a sound unto itself. Speed’s tone and range are expansive, never predictable. King’s drumming unbelievable, always against the grain, pushing, pushing. And Tordini kept it nonstop on the bass. He had a solo that was gorgeous, playing with intervals and harmonics. All three played around the beat, eschewed predictability and forced the ear to go new places.  A good ride fer sure. Funny, after free jazz assault, they ended with “All of Me” playing it super straight up, the first song ever jazz student learns, great juxtaposition.

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