Daniel Carter/Matthew Shipp/William Parker/Gerald Cleaver

Welcome Adventure! Vol. 2
(577 Records)

The piano-bass partnership of Matthew Shipp and William Parker has been the fulcrum for some heavy soloists over the years. David S. Ware heads the list, of course, but there’s also Ivo Perelman, Wadada Leo Smith, Joe Morris, Roy Campbell and Mat Maneri. But the duo has no connection more enduring that their association with Daniel Carter. Carter, whose multi-instrumentalism encompasses trumpet and numerous woodwinds, has been playing with Parker since the 1970s and Shipp since the 1980s.

The three musicians have a rapport so strong that not just anyone could join them and contribute as an equal, but drummer Gerald Cleaver is up for the challenge. He brings a different approach to each of the five collectively conceived pieces on Welcome Adventure! Vol. 2. His steaming, multi-layered groove pushes “Sunverified” into mid-1960s Miles Davis quintet territory, simultaneously putting an individual spin behind each of the other players’ exploration. On “Wordwide,” Cleaver inserts intermittent accents into Shipp’s winding line, which in turn wraps around Carter’s laconic alto saxophone. Shipp and Parker permit their usually impregnable alliance to dissolve on “Blinking Down,” laying out while Carter alternates between long, coarse tones and short, rippling phrases while Cleaver transform a door-knocking barrage into an undulating maelstrom.

It’s fair to note that all of these musicians are so well represented on record that even a confirmed fan might ask, do I need to hear another one? But, with its highly attuned interaction and stylistic variety, Welcome Adventure! Vol. 2 is not the one to skip.

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