has performed in so many contexts, but he seems to have hit a particular stride with his Electro-Acoustic Ensemble
, a strange combination of saxophones, strings, and electronics. What makes this so exceedingly attractive is the continuous wonder that permeates throughout. Parker
is no means the standout performer; his soprano and tenor sometimes meld, at others lead, but it is his remarkable companions, Philipp Wachsmann
(on violin, viola, and electronics), Barry Guy
(on acoustic bass), Paul Lytton
(on percussion and electronics), plus three very different electronic sound manipulators, Lawrence Casserly, Walter Prati
, and Marco Vecchi, who combine to produce some electrifying and starkly delightful music. Parker
fans that have not heard this group before may be surprised at the results. Although the saxophonist embraces his now well-known advanced techniques, they are clearly subordinate to the project. At times there is a busy intensity to it all, at others a serene quality. Highly complex strokes for an increasingly intricate society, perhaps, where moods change and so do their contexts. Don't file under easy listening.