CD Cover Piltch & Davis
Alert Music

Review by Gary 'pigboy' Swartz

45-second excerpt from "Ring Them Bells" (351 Kb .au file)

There is a sentence in the liner notes that accompany this instrumental jazz album by Holly Cole sidemen David Piltch and Aaron Davis that speaks volumes: "Dedicated to the spirit of ensemble music." Whether playing simply as a duo, with Davis on piano and Piltch on acoustic bass, or with the occasional addition of other instruments such as yanuziello dobro, bamboo flute, percussion, guitar or vibes, the commitment of the musicians to set aside their egos and consummate this collaboration for better, period, comes through -- loud and clear.

Well, not exactly loud. This is gentle music. Music to take the edge off a bad day. To subtly accompany and underpin conversations in a restaurant or coffee shop, or over a cup of home-made cappuccino. It both touches on the familiar (Dylan's "Ring Them Bells" and the traditional "Black is the Colour of My True Love's Hair") and at the same time explores the artists' own musical visions, independently and as co-composers. On occasion the songs, such as "My Old Friend the Blues," cry out for vocal and lyrical accompaniment, but the egalitarianism of the performances would likely be lost. And that would be too too high a cost.

First published in Drop-D Magazine on January 11, 1997

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