Nuts - Symphony for Old and New Dimensions

John Sharpe, AllAboutJazz

(Best Albums 2009 Honorable Mention)
There has been an upsurge in creative trumpet in recent years. You could say the trumpet is the new saxophone, in that extended techniques once the preserve of the few are now being absorbed, internalized and extended by growing ranks of adventurous brassmen.
Titled in apparent acknowledgement of antecedents like Don Cherry, Ornette Coleman and Other Dimensions in Music, Symphony for Old and New Dimensions, the second release from collective Nuts, hews closest to the last in its flowing improvised form imprinted with an indelible jazz birthmark. Courtesy of clear well-separated recording, the listener is placed alongside Benjamin Duboc’s propulsively pliant bass at the calm hub of a Catherine wheel storm of trumpets and drums. Rasul Siddik, out of St Louis’ Black Artist’s Group, and Japan’s Itaru Oki are the two expatriate hornmen, while Didier Lasserre and Oki’s countryman Makoto Sato are at the traps.
Firebreathing episodes stand in sharp relief to the organic low-key textures that slowly emerge and mutate from the primordial mire of vibrating air and resonant wood and skin. Two long journeys of 24 and 43 minutes trace a cohesive arc from ghostly percussion and breathy posturing to rustling silence by way of passages of bucolic exoticism and committed, sensual group catharsis. Siddik evinces a smoldering intensity while Oki’s fractured reveilles and incisive flutes ignite in a more spacious soundscape than might be expected from dual drummers, testament to some serious listening and outstanding ensemble play.