Ulery, Matt - By a Little Light 2 x CDs
Finally this great 'jazz and beyond' talent from Chicago gets a bit of attention via Dave Douglas' Greenleaf Music label. What a composer!
"This magical, profoundly musical release embraces more aesthetic influences than one might have thought a cohesive recording could. Drawing upon jazz, classical and Eastern European folkloric languages, among others, "By a Little Light" at first seduces the ear through its unusual instrumentation: jazz trio plus vibraphone, glockenspiel and classical chamber instrumentation (performed by members of the ensemble eighth blackbird and others) But it's what Chicago bassist Ulery has written for these instruments that counts most, his compositions sometimes sublimely melodic, sometimes hypnotically repetitive but always exquisitely arranged. The second of the album's two CDs features the haunting vocals of Polish-born, Chicago-based singer Grazyna Auguscik, accompanied by Ulery's enchanting, genre-defying extended ensemble. Though Ulery clearly felt strongly enough about this material to join her on vocals, the nondescript quality of his singing suggests the recording would have been stronger without this contribution. Even so, the originality and purling beauty of this release cannot be overstated."-Chicago Tribune