Each of the nine pieces on Choice, the 2016 recording by musician and baritone saxophonist Eden Bareket are a feast for the performer and the listener alike. The Argentinian-born, Israeli-bred writes in a style that is at once accessible and hefty, clearly structured and full of fantasy. His eight compositions performed here – the ninth is by Peter Gabriel – certainly become his profound growl of his baritone saxophone. Clearly Bareket has an uncommon knack for moulding works of vital expressive content. He is also skilled in the stylistic practices of the baritone saxophone, inventive in terms of rhythmic displacement and unusual turns of phrase. The music for his baritone as well as the bellow of the double bass (and drums) ranges from languid ballads and stately-sounding tunes to lilting, rousing dancing melodies. Bareket can also be adventurous with chromatic flights, intriguing dissonances and harmonic suspensions that take the ear on fascinating journeys.
Eden Bareket’s writing, especially for his own instrument, challenges his own dexterity and control, and surely does likewise for its interpreters – bassist Or Bareket and drummer Felix Lecaros as well. But the musicians are in command wherever the music travels. Their playing is the essence of refinement, with every phrase and balance carefully considered. Or Bareket applies subtle elegance to contrabass duties and Felix Lecaros is shapely and sensitive on drums. Their job of anchoring melodies and harmonies is undertaken with restrained authority. ‘Choice’ lives up to its title in the way that the thematic images evolve throughout the score. Works such as ‘Camel’ and ‘Diphthong’ reveals scores of vibrant design whose rhythmic vivacity and thematic unfoldings are matched by an atmospheric sense of sonority.
Music for baritone saxophone usually requires the services of an artist who can tame the formidable technical beasts and bring colourful delineation to a multiplicity of moods and textures. Eden Bareket is just such a musician. His performance is crisply articulate, rich in contrasting hues and attentive to the panoply of significant gestures. It is exactly this ability that makes Bareket best suited for the instrument. Add to this fact that he is also a composer of notable inventiveness and magnetism. For the baritone saxophonist it doesn’t get any better than that.
Track List:Jenga; Raccoon; Choice; Unfinished Business; Arguing With Myself; The Last One; Camel; Diphthong; Don’t Give Up.
Personnel: Eden Bareket: baritone saxophone; Or Bareket: double bass; Felix Lecaros: drums.
Label: Fresh Sound New Talent
Release date: June 2015
Running time: 48:07