from Secret Society
Dark, moodful, and angular, much like everyday in our broken world, Fieldwork's music is hard to define-jazz, movie tunes, classical, manic breakdown. . .doesn't matter, it is solid mental fare, evolving from mood to mood, color to scent. Vijay Iyers eliptical piano walking up and down and Lehman's (Oliver Lake-like) coloring sax play creates something hard to classify but great to listen to in these carefully crafted pieces pulsed by Tyshawn Sorey's superb time-keeping . Crazily, PopMatters writes an insightful review of this eclectic and funky work:
On disc, Fieldwork can still be mightily consuming. The tunes are split among all three members, but they demonstrate a singularity of purpose. In fact, it’s easy to think of the entirety of Door as a lengthy suite with recurring motifs that span individual songs. For example, the great bulk of the disc could be a considered a kind of concerto for Sorey’s toms and crash cymbals; “Of” begins slowly, but gradually puts Sorey in the mood to play complex rolls and groove-fills behind the trio, while “Bend” allows Sorey to play with the funked-out abandon of John Bonham via Dennis Chambers. Melodically, Lehman is usually asked to play jagged lines that contain peculiar intervallic jumps, and he carves them in the air with slashing directness. These melodies arise on nearly every song—counter-intuitive tracks that are un-hummable as much for their mend-bending time signatures as for their obtuse harmonies.
Let’s look at “Less”, a tune written by Iyer. It begins with a pastel melody for the alto, against which the piano plays half-dissonant accompaniment in a different time. Sorey colors this conversation with cymbals only, with no set time feeling. After nearly two minutes, the piano and alto seem to hint at locking together on something, but it does not materialize until 2:12, when a syncopated military groove is established by Iyer’s thumping left hand octaves and Sorey’s emerging funk. Lehman plays over this for two minutes, weaving his off-the-beat melody in a snake around Iyer’s squiggling right hand. When this feel wears down, there’s no clear return to the initial theme, but rather a tumbling backward of tempo and volume. It is utterly like a movie—a plot moving forward, and not necessarily repeating itself—but it can’t offer you a plain story or a set of heroes. You must listen closely to provide them yourself.