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The Color Of Memory

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Audio CD, March 31, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

International New Music Stalwarts The Vandermark 5 Return With Their First Studio Double-Album: And Their Last With Trombonist Jeb Bishop. The Color Of Memory, Recorded & Mixed In Chicago By Bob Weston (Shellac, Mission Of Burma...) Feels Like

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 31, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: January 1, 2005
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: ATAVISTIC
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #568,676 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Troy Collins on September 26, 2005
Format: Audio CD
"The Color of Memory," the eighth official studio recording by the Vandermark 5, is coincidentally both the band's first double album of original material and the last to feature original trombonist Jeb Bishop (Chicago based cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm is slated to be Bishop's replacement in the future). It is also the ensembles most accessible and enjoyable recording to date. Full of up-tempo swing, intricate but memorable horn charts and plenty of lyrically intense soloing, it is perhaps Vandermark and company's finest statement with this line-up.

Vandermark has long demonstrated an affinity for writing catchy, cross-over tunes that appeal to a younger, hipper audience. Despite their multi-part, suite-like structure, Vandermark's writing always employs traditional elements that are recognizable even to casual jazz fans. The pieces featured on this double album were partially inspired by a tour with Norwegian avant jazz ensemble Atomic, with whom Vandermark collaborated on 2004's "Nuclear Assembly Hall." Falling on the jazzier side of the tenuous rock/jazz divide, Atomic's influence on Vandermark is apparent here. His decision to forsake rock oriented structures (prominently featured on earlier releases when Jeb Bishop doubled on electric guitar) to focus on a swing based feel results in an album that is infectious and consistent in its sound.

Opening with "That Was Now," a hard charging riff driven by the sort of obtuse, lurching funk Vandermark and his cohorts excel at, the piece moves suite-like through numerous motifs, yet always keeps the listeners attention.
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