Goshu Ondo Suite
Label: AUM Fidelity
"Eri Yamamoto transcended jazz, classical and folk forms in creating her new work for jazz trio and 50-member choir. She has seamlessly melded biography, group improvisation and far-ranging compositional vocabularies in a momentous seven-part suite, featuring her longstanding trio in collaboration with New York-based Choral Chameleon, directed by its award-winning founder, Vince Peterson. The suite is based off of the Goshu Ondo, a traditional circle dance song from Shiga, Japan, where it was sung during the summer Bon festival to warmly welcome ancestral spirits.
The suite commences with the folk song's melodic kernel from which the rest blooms. Choral Chameleon's heterophony, polyphony and unison singing interweave with Yamamoto's trio, often with gorgeous open vowels evocative of natural scenes in works ranging from Claude Debussy through Charles Ives to Duke Ellington. All is bolstered by gentle trio improvisation, Ambrosio and Takeuchi propelling the band forward and ultimately building to a life-affirming choral unison. As the final movement's ecstatic and celebratory rhythms surge, crest and dissipate and the various musical threads converge, a sense of transcultural journey is palpable, of many and disparate experiences existing in luminous multi-communal nexus. The coda composition performed by the trio, Echo of Echo, provides a final moment of reflection, mirroring the suite's ultimate descent toward silence; demonstrating, again, that the part is in the whole, which far exceeds the sum of its components."
Cat. number: AUM 112 CD