FAHIR ATAKOGLU

Pasatiempo - - Pasa Tempos - — Paul Wei­de­man

Faces & Places (Far & Here) Since 2003, Turk­ish com­poser and pi­anist Fahir Atakoglu has made seven records, among them Live in Is­tan­bul; East Side

Story, an 18-part bal­let score; and three jazzy re­leases. This disc opens with the first of 11 Atakoglu tunes, “Into You.” This is funky, high-en­ergy stuff: lay­ered drums, bass, and key­boards, plus a wild tenor solo by Bob Mintzer. Af­ter the slow, sum­mery “High Street” comes the first half of the ti­tle. “Faces” starts with harp­like acous­tic pi­ano, fol­lowed by light, beau­ti­ful lines from the pi­ano and gui­tar in uni­son, and then cho­ruses of voices (ap­par­ently Atakoglu, mul­ti­tracked) and an ex­tended 14/8 sec­tion with pi­ano and strings. The mix is gen­tly com­plex, rich, and gor­geous. Six tracks down is “... And Places,” a much sub­tler piece fea­tur­ing fla­menco gui­tarist Rene Toledo and Atakoglu in a mood at once me­lan­choly and fer­vent. The stand­out song, “Rio da Noite,” be­gins with Atakoglu, wax­ing ex­otic (think Re­turn to For­ever) and then opens into a hard swinger with the leader in­sane-busy on key­boards, Mintzer play­ing so­prano, Romero Lubambo adding beau­ti­ful gui­tar, and just daz­zling work by per­cus­sion­ist Roge­rio Boc­cato. This mu­sic is usu­ally ex­u­ber­ant, with an op­u­lent lay­er­ing of in­stru­ments that also in­clude John Pat­i­tucci’s bass, Randy Brecker’s trum­pet, Wayne Krantz’s elec­tric gui­tar, and Ho­ra­cio “El Ne­gro” Her­nan­dez’s drums.

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