Ellery Eskelin: Ramifications

Rating: B


Sax player Ellery Eskelin leads a core trio, which includes percussion and accordion, in some of the most unique free jazz to come out in a while. Formed in 1994, this New York based group has released 5 albums on the Hatology label, with this release featuring the addition of a cello and tuba. I recently had the opportunity to see the trio perform down in San Diego and I was blown away.  It is rare for a band to emulate the same energy of live performance on a studio recording, but with “Ramifications” they have executed this task brilliantly. Included in this mix is organ and samples, which help guide this album along some heavy layered sonic terrain. I would say that it’s like a modern day film noir soundtrack. Or if you prefer, imagine a musical cocktail comprised of John Coltrane, Stereolab, Kronos Quartet and Captain Beefheart. Admittedly, this genre may not be for everyone but if you feel adventurous this is definitely a great trip to take.