Walking on the Tiger's Tail

Walking on the Tiger's Tail

by Nguyên Lê
     
 
On seven previous releases for ACT over the past decade, French-Vietnamese guitarist Nguyên Lê has drawn on the musical cuisines of Paris: the tonalities of traditional Vietnamese song, folkloric melodies and urban grooves from West Africa, Gnawan rhythms, Turkish and flamenco strains, ambient sounds, and the harmonic palette of post-bop hardcore jazz. With

Overview

On seven previous releases for ACT over the past decade, French-Vietnamese guitarist Nguyên Lê has drawn on the musical cuisines of Paris: the tonalities of traditional Vietnamese song, folkloric melodies and urban grooves from West Africa, Gnawan rhythms, Turkish and flamenco strains, ambient sounds, and the harmonic palette of post-bop hardcore jazz. With meticulous attention to idiomatic particulars and a belief that God is in the details, he navigates the genres with postulations of his own. Written after a time of personal tribulation, Walking on the Tiger's Tail, Lê's latest, is perhaps his most personal document. Fluent with all the flavors at his disposal, Lê offers a suite of 11 compositions for an ensemble comprising American improvisers Art Lande (piano) and Paul McCandless (woodwinds) -- Lande performed on Lê's first pair of releases, Miracles (1989) and Zanzibar (1992), McCandless on the latter -- with percussionist Jamey Haddad. Episodic, detailed, and virtuosic, the pieces transcend genre; the musicians interpret them with lyricism, grit, and remarkable mutual intuition. Lê also reminds us that he's a world-class, cutting-edge guitarist, with a unique way of bending notes and a distinctive way of phrasing that is understated and feathery at one moment, headlong and slamming the next.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Scott Yanow
Guitarist Nguyên Le explores a wide span of modern styles throughout Walking on the Tiger's Tail. Some of the up-tempo pieces are essentially fusion while other selections look towards the folk-jazz of Oregon (helped out by the many horns of Paul McCandless), world music and post-bop jazz. The bassless quartet finds each of the musicians assuming the role of the bass at one time or another, and so effectively that one rarely notices its absence. Le's passionate guitar solos, the mixture of stylists and styles, and the inventive originals (which include some impressionistic ballads) make the music completely unclassifiable as anything but stimulating 21st century creative jazz.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/01/2005
Label:
Act Music + Vision
UPC:
0614427943224
catalogNumber:
9432

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