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4.6 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Live, February 15, 2000

Editorial Reviews


Erik Friedlander, who continues his exploration of jazz textures and contemporary, classical improvised and notated music on Skin, is pushing the creative envelope on cello. There have been jazz precedents on his instrument, notably Oscar Pettiford and Ron Carter--both better known as bassists. Friedlander is both colorist and soloist, working here with a core ensemble of alto saxophonist Andy Laster (who takes the lion's share of the CD's solos), bass guitarist Stomu Takeishi, and percussionist Satoshi Takeishi. Friedlander's work can be quite percussive, as on the title track, and he engages the Atlas Cello Quartet to haunting effect on his "Skin 1." His original compositions are leavened throughout Skin with selections from disparate sources, including one each from Charles Mingus, Julius Hemphill, Santana, and Henry Mancini. The results are often edgy, challenging, and ultimately rewarding. --Willard Jenkins


The cello was not an instrument associated with jazz-fusion until New Yorker Erik Friedlander and his band Topaz came along. Skin is Friedlander's second album with the group, which includes Andy Laster on alto saxophone, Stomu Takeishi on bass and Satoshi Takeishi on percussion. Also featured here are cimbalom player Alexander Fedoriouk and the Atlas Cello Quartet. Although cello traditionalists might shudder, Friedlander doesn't pop the balloon of convention but gently punctures it, producing a slow leak that softens long-held attitudes. The pieces, fusing Eastern European harmonies with Middle Eastern percussion and funky bass lines, require attentive listening and an adventurous spirit. Dissonance prevails throughout the project, which features works by Henry Mancini, Carlos Santana and Charles Mingus along with original compositions. -- From Rhythm Magazine

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Split Screen
  2. Susan
  3. Life, In-Line
  4. Skin 1
  5. Sahel Va Danya
  6. Reflections
  7. Fekunk
  8. White Mountain
  9. Doomwatcher
  10. Eclipse
  11. Golden Dawn

Product details

  • Audio CD (February 15, 2000)
  • Original Release Date: February 15, 2000
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Live
  • Label: Siam Records
  • ASIN: B000042O0I
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #590,887 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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June 22, 2000
Format: Audio CD|Verified Purchase
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December 22, 2011
Format: Audio CD
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