This album was recorded live in July 2002, as part of Steve Lacy's "farewell" tour of Belgium, before he moved back to the United States. Joëlle Léandre was among the few musicians the saxophonist selected as partners for this ten-date event, and One More Time should provide all the proofs necessary to those who still don't understand why. Yes, the soprano sax and double bass form an unlikely pair, and yes, Lacy and Léandre come from very different backgrounds and approach free improvisation from separate paths, but why should any of that matter? In fact, the unusual instrumentation opens up a wide range of colors and expressions -- and these two sure know how to draw the best from such an opportunity -- and different approaches translate to a wider common vocabulary whenever the participating musicians know each other's work. And the result is One More Time, a daring, stimulating roller coaster of a performance, with a high content of raw beauty and very few moments of hesitation. Exchanges are lively, seductive, and often pretty (Lacy's flexible jazzy licks literally hug Léandre's rougher, less idiomatic forms). The set consists of three improvisations. The first one is over half an hour long, but sounds like it could have continued for another two hours -- it appears as if Lacy picked a random spot to stop. The second piece, 12 minutes in duration, highlights the contagious pleasure of playing. To kick off the third piece (ten minutes), the two musicians engage in a vocal pantomime, the saxophonist begging the bassist for "one more time." The performance is slightly less focused, but still a welcome addition. The concert was recorded in a café and audience chatter and clinking glasses can be heard throughout. The noise is generally not too intrusive (except early in the first piece and during the bass solo in the last one), but might annoy a few listeners. As a postlude, Léandre has added a phone message left by Lacy on her answering machine, giving his approval for releasing the recording.
|Label:||Leo Records Uk|