Triage: Premium Plastics
Not long after taking up the challenge of filling Mars Williams' shoes within the Vandermark 5, young saxophonist Dave Rempis initiated a project, Triage, which is now comprised of bassist Jason Ajemian and drummer Tim Daisy. What distinguishes Triage from a lot of combos that have emerged from the new Chicago improvised music scene is its versatility. Indeed, "Premium Plastics", the trio's second opus, covers a lot of ground. At times moody, abstract or passionate, the music can also settle for a nice groove.
Titles such as "Lawrence of Arabia" or "Fellini's Blues" suggest that the musicians have a keen interest in cinema and the trio's ability to seamlessly move from one segment to the other could be compared to great movie editing. Frequent gigs have also enabled the members of Triage to develop cohesiveness and a solid relationship.
Dave Rempis is a rapidly maturing musician. He achieves great control and balance on his instrument. Tim Daisy is arguably one the most musical drummers in town and he possesses one great quality: he never gets loud even when the tempo is fast. During Dave Rempis' fiercest statements, he always contributes to keep the music focused. Plucking or bowing, Jason Ajemian is at ease in all circumstances. His rich sound can particularly be enjoyed on his own "Fellini's Blues", a beautiful melancholic melody.
Besides improvisational skills, the trio display some compositional craftsmanship as well; and they can pen memorable tunes such as Rempis' "Minu(sha)." This is a sparse and unpretentious recording from some of Chicago' top young musicians.—Alain Drouot
Available on Solitaire Records, www.solitairerecords.com