Residency at the Stone

I am honored to present a series of projects I am involved in as well as my own projects at the Stone between June 24-29th.

June 24 – 8pm, the collective quartet LARK with Ralph Alessi, Tom Rainey, Ingrid Laubrock and Kris Davis and 10pm Tom Rainey’s Obbligato featuring Ralph Alessi, Ingrid Laubrock, Drew Gress, Kris Davis and Tom Rainey.

June 25 – 8pm Kermit Driscoll Trio with Kris Davis, Kermit Driscoll and Jared Shoenig.  10pm Kris Davis SOLO

June 26 – 8pm Ingrid Laubrock’s Anti-house with Mary Halvorson, Ingrid Laubrock, Kris Davis, John Hebert and Tom Rainey.  10pm Ingrid Laubrock’s Octet CD release

June 27 – 8 and 10om Infrasound revised with Andrew Bishop and Ben Goldberg, Nate Radley, Kris Davis and Ches Smith.

June 28 – 8 and 10pm Paradoxical Frog with Ingrid Laubrock, Kris Davis and Tyshawn Sorey

June 29 – 8pm Death Rattle with Mary Halvorson, Ingrid Laubrock and Kris Davis and 10pm CAPRICORN CLIMBER with Mat Maneri, Ingrid Laubrock, Kris Davis, Eivind Opsvik and Tom Rainey.

Residency at Cornelia Street

As part of a residency at Cornelia Street Cafe, I will perform with 2 of my well established groups and one experimental ensemble. This will take place on the last Saturday of September, October and November.  See below…

September 28th- Kris Davis Trio with Tom Rainey and John Hebert.  Performing the music I composed for the Jazz Gallery Residency  in April.

October 26th- LARK! CD release party (on Skirl Records) with Ingrid Laubrock, Ralph Alessi and Tom Rainey. (We are also playing at Edgefest on the October 24th in Ann Arbor as part of the CD release).

November 30th- ‘Experimental Quartet’ with Sam Newsome-soprano saxophone, William Parker-bass, Ches Smith-drums

Vision Festival and Red Hook Festival this week

Really looking forward to playing with Eric Revis’s trio (Eric Revis, myself and Andrew Cyrille) again at the Vision Festival (Saturday June 15th at 8:45).   Also looking forward to playing with LARK (Ralph Alessi, Ingrid Laubrock, Tom Rainey and myself) at the Red Hook Jazz Festival (June 16th at 1pm).

Heres the New York Times Review of Eric’s new record ‘City of Ayslum’:

The performance to write home about at this year’s Winter Jazzfest was a freely improvised set by the bassist Eric Revis, the pianist Kris Davis and the drummer Andrew Cyrille: musicians of intrepid poise, foraging together in deep communion. “City of Asylum” (Clean Feed) offers a comparable experience. Mr. Revis, who has earned a reputation for hard-swinging brio in the Branford Marsalis Quartet, works here with mystery and indirection. Mr. Cyrille, an avant-garde eminence in his 70s, and Ms. Davis, an ascendant talent in her 30s, explore a language largely defined by common touchstones, like the pianists Cecil Taylor and Andrew Hill.

The album has three proper compositions —  a slinky Revis original (“Question”), a Thelonious Monk tune (“Gallop’s Gallop”) and a hymn by Keith Jarrett (“Prayer”) — but its lifeblood is the uncharted territory, spread across seven tracks that cohere as a whole. What that material reveals is the quality of the listening among the players, an abstract ideal made nearly tangible.

Residency at the Jazz Gallery and European Tour

Through the Jerome Foundation, the Jazz Gallery commissioned me to compose a series of new works in the month of April.  I composed a series of new pieces for my working trio with Tom Rainey and John Hebert.  Looking forward to premiering the new music in Europe next week (see dates below) and in New York City at the Jazz Gallery May 10th and 11th.  We go into the studio right after the performances to make a new CD on Cleanfeed Records, to be release some time in early 2014.

May 1- Stadtgarten, Cologne, Germany

May 2nd- Bimhuis, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

May 3rd- AJMi, Avignon, France

May 4th- Jamboree, Barcelona, Spain

May 5th- National Jazz Scene, Oslo, Norway

May 10th and 11th- Jazz Gallery, NY, NY





NY Times review – Capricorn Climber and Strong Place (Ingrid laubrock’s Anti-house record)

Ingrid Laubrock, a saxophonist, and Kris Davis, a pianist, share an aesthetic of unsettled calm and unhurried revelation. With the drummer Tyshawn Sorey they make up Paradoxical Frog, a trio that can make free improvisation feel structurally inevitable, like the logical conclusion to a far-reaching argument.

With their own bands Ms. Laubrock and Ms. Davis favor a slightly more careful arrangement of ideas, and compositions with discrete parameters. They both like chamber-group dynamics but shot through with rough texture and a vigilant avoidance of sentimentality. That they appear on each others’ new albums is no surprise. It confirms that their interaction is adaptable as well as sturdy and suggests that they haven’t begun to exhaust its potential.

Both albums — Ms. Laubrock’s “Strong Place,” released in January, and Ms. Davis’s “Capricorn Climber,” due out on March 18 — feature quintets driven by the alert and sinewy drumming of Tom Rainey, who happens to be Ms. Laubrock’s husband. Each album also includes a resident mischief maker with a melodic instrument. On “Strong Place” it’s the guitarist Mary Halvorson, and on “Capricorn Climber” it’s the violist Mat Maneri. On both albums it’s the second track, more than the first, that pulls you in.

The second track on “Strong Place” is “Der Deichgraf,” its title a nod to Ms. Laubrock’s German origins. The piece opens with a stern rumble of pianism before the ensemble gives halting chase, and then tapers off into balladic terrain without relaxing its intensity. (At one point the rhythm drops away to leave only Ms. Laubrock, circular-breathing a single note, and Ms. Halvorson, playing a wobbled-pitch version of the same.)

Ms. Laubrock’s band, Anti-House — which appears on Tuesday night at Cornelia Street Café, before embarking on a European tour — has an insistent rhythmic footprint. One track here, “From Farm Girl to Fabulous Vol. 1,” pushes the idea almost to the point of irritation, with a strobelike repetition assigned to piano and guitar.

But the ensemble, anchored by the bassist John Hébert, also has a way with drift and flow. “Cup in a Teastorm (for Henry Threadgill)” features Ms. Laubrock’s focused meanderings over a garden of exotic chords outlined by bass and guitar. “Alley Zen” revolves around a swirl of arpeggios played, with lovely impassivity, by Ms. Davis.

The second track on “Capricorn Climber” is “Pass the Magic Hat,” which begins with a fluid piano solo over an amorphously syncopated groove. Gradually Ms. Laubrock enters the picture, and into sync with a melody that briefly surges before its ebb. What follows is a solo by Mr. Maneri, slipping through the cracks between tempered pitch. The entire track is an engrossing lesson in ensemble flux, carried out with finesse.

A similar energy spills into the next track, “Trevor’s Luffa Complex,” named after the band’s bassist, Trevor Dunn, and featuring an initial melody played on glockenspiel. Several other tracks begin in hazy but thoughtful quietude, only gradually picking up heat and speed. The quieter moments aren’t necessarily more placid, since Ms. Davis is wizardly with tension. And like Ms. Laubrock, who also does some serious work on this album, she’s comfortable leaving an open-ended impression. NATE CHINEN

NYC Jazz Record review – Capricorn Climber

Pianist Kris Davis has perfected a great trick, dressing her elaborate compositions in the guise of improvisation so successfully it’s barely possible to tell one from the other. By doing so she retains the freshness and unpredictability of unscripted interaction while at the same time keeping a taut conceptual grasp. In this she’s abetted by an allstar cast, including frequent collaborators like saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock and drummer Tom Rainey.
Davis sets the mood with her purposefully intelligent promptings, only cutting loose herself on “Pass The Magic Hat”, before setting up the sort of involved interplay characteristic of all the pieces here. For her contribution Laubrock alternates between flowing but asymmetric rounded tones and heated timbral distortion, but meshes well with her frontline partner, violist Mat Maneri, during some tricky unisons. Elsewhere Maneri is angular and abrasive, sliding between notes in a way that ups the surprise quotient. In fact, it’s impossible to anticipate the trajectory of any of the selections. Much credit for such flexibility falls to the rhythmic ingenuity of Rainey allied to the nimble yet assertive bassist Trevor Dunn
Each number is event-strewn but cohesive. The title cut provides as good an example as any: Maneri and the leader pontificate dreamily to start, before building to an energetic crescendo of intersecting layers. A saxophone/viola theme emerges from the swirling chaos, providing a cooling interlude, which morphs into a tappy coda of sustained drones, culminating in a chiming conclusion recalling an oldfashioned clock. While highlights are too many to enumerate, one that sticks in the mind is Laubrock’s forceful tenor solo on “Trevor’s Luffa Complex”, goosed by some explosive comping from the leader.
One of the treats of this tremendous album is to savor the appealing blend of the cerebral and affecting, with new quirks revealed on every listen.