See Through Trio Lines and Spaces

The musical dimensions first opened up by the Jimmy Guiffre 3 in the early '60s have more or less languished until now. The See Through Trio, with their similar instrumentation, take up the challenge, ranging over tunes like the ragtime-ish "Waiting For The Punch Line" with interlocking piano and soprano sax lines that knit beautifully with the plucked bass commentary and chamber ensemble clarity and precision. A stated trio goal is to play music outlined in the seminal compositions of Carla Bley, and pianist Tanya Gill does this with rhythmically-free knots of notes that float over then drop into a groove while remaining harmonically ambiguous — a thinking player's playing. Unlike the JG3, this group don't rip it up. Instead, saxist Mark Laver employs a smallish, clarinet-like tone and bassist Pete Johnston keeps things small sound-wise as well, with pizzicato figures and few sustained tones. The liveliest piece is "A Little More To The Left," with its cascading unison line and energetic improv. Lines and Spaces is pensive music that unfolds like a lotus on a quiet pond. (Woods and Waters)