Q - 2/94, p.913 Stars
- Good - "...There's a sense of the spirit of the great Bill Evans groups of the past being carried on, particularly on graceful pieces like 'Prelude'...."
/Marc Johnson/Peter Erskine/John Surman.
Personnel: John Abercrombie (guitar); John Surman (soprano & baritone saxophones, bass clarinet); Marc Johnson (acoustic bass); Peter Erskine (drums).
Recorded at Rainbow Studios, Oslo, Norway in November 1992.
Personnel: John Abercrombie (guitar); John Surman (bass clarinet, soprano saxophone, baritone saxophone); Marc Johnson (double bass); Peter Erskine (drums).
Recording information: Rainbow Studio, Oslo, Norway (11/1992).
Those not inclined towards the less avant roots of the jazz genre might be better served by recommencing their continued investigations into the latest works of longtime ECM stablemate John Abercrombie. NOVEMBER finds the guitarist in a spirited quartet alongside the likes of bassist Johnson, drummer Peter Erskine, and saxophonist John Surman.
Though the album has its contemplative side (the lovely "J.S.," penned for and accompanied by Surman's piercing baritone), NOVEMBER's backbone is determined by the less-than-chilly energies of the title track and by European fusion exercises such as "The Cat's Back," where Surman's sax skitters throughout Abercrombie's slithery runs and Erskine's propulsive landscapes. NOVEMBER chooses to hover between free-form flights of fancy and contemplative traditionalist guises, always beguiling and inviting. Abercrombie remains one of contemporary jazz's great, unsung guitarists.